Atlantic walrus, Rosmarus rosmarus, Svalbard


If you travel to a place that’s 80 degrees north of the equator and only 800 miles from the North Pole, there are certain things you can expect to find: snow, ice, polar bears, and a distinct lack of people. True, the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard is home to a population of barely 2,500, and thanks to the dominant mining industry men heavily outnumber women. And the white stuff is never far away, ensuring that once visitors are warmly wrapped and ready to explore, they are guaranteed some of the world’s most beautiful scenery. As for wildlife, although the polar bears are of course the star attraction, there’s plenty of other creatures to see,

Here are a few photos which should help to illustrate why Svalbard is a travel destination which is well worth exploring, whether by land or by sea.

Mother polar bear and cub jumping across ice floe in Arctic ocean north of Svalbard

Polar bear Svalbard

Young arctic fox looks curiously in Svalbard in summer

Wild reindeer - Svalbard

Dog sledding on a wintry Landscape, Svalbard.

Row of colorful homes in Longyearbyen, Svalbard

Russian Orthodox Church in Barentsburg

Warning sign polar bears, Svalbard

The end of a glacier where it falls into the Arctic Ocean in Hornsund, Svalbard

Svalbard landscape

Aurora Borealis

Photos via Shutterstock