Charles Engelke's Blog

July 23, 2011

Pictures from our Arctic Circle Cruise

Filed under: Uncategorized — Charles Engelke @ 12:02 pm
View of Longyearbyen, Norway from above

Overlooking Longyearbyen

Now that I’m home and have decent Internet access, I’ve posted pictures from our Celebrity Constellation cruise to the Arctic Circle. We visited three Norwegian ports north of the Arctic Circle: Leknes (in the Lofoten archipelago), Honningsvåg (near the north cape and the Gjesværstappan bird sanctuary), and Longyearbyen (above, on Spitsbergen in the Svalbard archipelago).

We also visited two Norwegian ports south of the Arctic Circle: Bergen and Ålesund (where we took a bus tour inland along the Path of the Trolls). And we spent several days before the cruise in Amsterdam, from which we took a day trip to the Hague.

It was all beautiful, and now I have an idea of the difference in degree between different arctic areas. All our visits were to seaside areas, but Leknes (at 68° 08′ N) is coastal and lush…

Leknes

Leknes

… while the North Cape area around Honningsvåg (at 70° 58′ N) is much more sparsely vegetated…

House near Honningsvåg

House near Honningsvåg

… and Longyearbyen (all the way up at 78° 13′ N) is very severe, not only lacking trees but really without any plants more than few inches tall…

Guide at Longyearbyen

Guide at Longyearbyen

… and with polar bears, which is why our guide was armed with a rifle. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see a polar bear; fortunately, we didn’t get attacked by one, either.

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