Ice Waterfalls, Wildlife & Arctic Colours Svalbard Autumn Photo Tour

Explore Svalbard in September with 12 Photographers

Svalbard

10 days

September

From €10,800

Join an adventurous Svalbard autumn photo tour with the goal of capturing the stunning meltwater waterfalls as they plunge into the ocean from the edge of the Austfonna ice cap located in Nordaustlandet.  

This expedition is ideal for both landscape and wildlife photographers. It will offer photographers countless opportunities which include glaciers, landscapes, and wildlife bathed in gorgeous autumn light.

Watch The Film Download Brochure See Dates and Rates

Introduction

On this expedition, we will explore the east of Svalbard. Our aim of the expedition is to capture the meltwater waterfalls of the Austfonna Ice Cap. This rare phenomenon occurs as the ice cap warms during the summer months causing streams of meltwater to pour over the sheer ice cliffs and is often very active this time of year. 

Expect long sunsets and sunrises which offer beautiful hues and tones for landscape and wildlife photographers. There is a great (but never guaranteed) opportunity to photograph polar bears in the wild. Other wildlife opportunities could include walruses, Svalbard reindeer, Arctic foxes and whales which are very active during this season.  

Our small expedition vessel is equipped with 2 Zodiacs which will allow us to get up close to nature and reach the places the larger ships can’t reach. Every expedition offers a unique experience.

Expedition Highlights

  • Stunning landscapes and unique lighting conditions provide incredible photography opportunities, combined with dramatic glaciers and fjords.
  • Capture breathtaking sunsets and sunrises, which only grace Svalbard for a few months each year.
  • Witness flowing waterfalls from the unique Austfonna Ice Cap, Europe’s third largest glacier by area and volume.
  • We have the best guest-to-guide ratio, including 2 expedition guides and 2 photography leaders available at all times to enhance your experience and develop your skills.
  • Explore in comfort aboard a modern, ice-strengthened expedition vessel with a maximum of only 12 guests.
  • The use of 2 Zodiacs means you’ll never be kept waiting to reach the shore and can cruise close to the environment.
  • Amazing encounters with polar bears, walruses, whales, reindeer, and arctic foxes are likely.
  • Enjoy a friendly and inclusive atmosphere.
  • Be led by world-class photographers and expedition leaders.

Learn and Develop New Photography Skills

Our photography guides are passionate to share their skills and expertise with you, to help you improve your skills and capture the best images possible. The emphasis is always on maximising time outside in the field, but where time allows tutorials will be carried out onboard.

Our expedition team has extensive experience in Svalbard and will seek out the optimal places for photography based on the conditions. Our Svalbard Photography Guide will help prepare you for your photography expedition!

The Voyage

Secret Atlas is founded, led, and made for explorers by explorers. We understand that every expedition is unique, so we don’t follow a fixed itinerary. We believe that real expeditions should follow the opportunities that the wilderness offers and our expert guides know exactly how to maximise your experience.  The following itinerary is an example. Every expedition is flexible and inherently authentic as its course will be defined on daily bases sustained by the opportunities presented by weather, ice and wildlife.

Day 1 Welcome aboard! Embarkation in Longyearbyen at 16:00

Day 2  West and Northwest Spitsbergen

Day 3 Exploring North of Svalbard

Day 4-5-6 Exploring northeast Svalbard and Austfonna

Day 7-8 Exploring as we head south

Day 9 Isfjorden

Day 10 Disembarkation in Longyearbyen at 09:00

* We always recommend arriving in Svalbard at least 24 hours before departure.

svalbard autumn photo tour map

Day by Day

Our flexibility to adapt to the conditions and wildlife encounters, allows us to make the most of every opportunity. But let us give you an idea of what your dream expedition could look like below…

Day 1

.2° N, .6° E

Longyearbyen

Our expedition departs from Longyearbyen, the most northerly town on earth. We will leave the port late in the afternoon and for the next 10 days, say goodbye to civilisation as we sail to the far northeast. Whales are active this time of year and we will scour the horizon in search for photography opportunities as we sail out through Isfjord. The aim of this expedition is to spend lots of time exploring nature, scenery, wildlife and glaciers.

Day 2

.3° N, .7° E

West Spitsbergen and Prins Karls Forland Area

On a daily basis we will launch the Zodiacs to go exploring. During September we will undertake lots of zodiac cruises and shore landings to open up different photography opportunities. On the first morning we will sail alongside Prins Karls Forland, an island known for it’s dramatic scenery and walrus colonies. If the conditions allow we will land at a walrus colony which will offer some great shots of walruses. As we head north we will visit some of Svalbard’s glaciers bathed in golden light whilst keeping a good look out for polar bears that roam the shores.

Day 3

.5° N, .4° E

Exploring North East Svalbard

Over the next few days, we will navigate between the coast and the sea ice that extends all the way to the North Pole. We will count on regular shore landings and zodiac tours to visit different natural and historical sites including glaciers, partake in wilderness hikes and fully immersive ourselves in the raw nature of the Arctic.

Every day we will explore deeper into the wilderness Svalbard has to offer. Under the guidance of our expedition leader, we will work with the weather and sea ice conditions to show you the best that the northwest coast has to offer.

Day 4-5-6

.3° N, .5° E

North East Svalbard and Austfonna

If the sea ice grants passage, we will aim to head east towards the Hinlopen Strait area and venture deeper into a vast world of ice and cliffs. While attempting this we will be obliged to reach a new higher latitude to the voyage, crossing the 80 degrees north parallel. The days will be long and complemented with action, zodiac cruises and the search for wildlife.

As we continue our exploration east of Svalbard, we aim to visit the meltwater waterfalls pouring from the edge of the Austfonna Ice Cap, taking the time to cruise alongside the breathtaking natural spectacle.

Day 7-8-9

.2° N, .3° E

The returning route and more exploration

The return route is extremely dependent on the ice and weather aspects. If conditions allow, we may follow the compass south and explore the region along the south coast of Spitsbergen, sailing via the Freemansund. Or, we might resolve to head back north and west and cruise the ice edge while exploring sites and scouting for wildlife.

Day 10

.2° N, .6° E

Longyearbyen

By morning we will have arrived back at the port of Longyearbyen. Disembarking the ship will involve saying goodbye to the new friends you’ve made but knowing you will keep the memories of the transformative adventure you shared together.

Inside This Svalbard Autumn Photo Tour

Our trips are aimed at anyone with a passion for exploring the Arctic with a small group of like minded individuals on a comfortable small ship cruise and include :

Amazing Wildlife

We will visit areas where walruses haul out, encounter reindeer and Arctic foxes on land, observe whales and other marine life and explore coasts where polar bears are known to roam.

Stunning Scenery

We will encounter mighty glaciers, cruise tranquil steep-sided fjords and spend time outside exploring the beautiful untouched wilderness.

Climate Compensated

We’re serious about the environment and wildlife, which is why we’re proud to be a member of 1% for the Planet—an organisation dedicated to supporting impactful global projects that give back to our planet.

Expedition Leader and Guide

On this Svalbard photography tour we have an expedition leader, 2nd guide and photo expert. An aspect of our journeys is to learn about the place you are visiting. Our onboard guides are the core of what we do and will share their passion and knowledge of Svalbard throughout the trip. We offer the best guide to guest ratio available.

Zodiac landing craft for shore landings

Shore landings are the essence of every expedition and your guides will take you exploring on a daily basis. The vessel is equipped with landing craft that can be used to reach remote beaches so you can experience the wilderness firsthand.

Expedition Vessel With 12 Guests

We believe the best way to experience an environmentally sensitive place such as the Arctic is with a small group of travelers. New expedition cruise ships now take up to 350 passengers, we believe smaller is better.

Your Vessel

Step aboard MV Kinfish 

A former Norwegian research vessel that has been tastefully converted into an expedition vessel ideal for exploring the Arctic.

  •  Accommodates 12 guests in 6 x twin cabins with en-suite.
  • All cabins are well-appointed and are finished to a high standard.

  • Large dining saloon with bar.

  • Spacious passenger lounge on the top deck.

  • Equipped with 2 Zodiac landing crafts for shore landings
  • Semi enclosed deck spaces to enjoy the view

  • Fully staffed with experienced captain, crew and expedition leaders.
  • Her small size makes her perfect for exploring the places larger vessels can’t reach.
  • Modern, spacious interior with passenger lounge and large saloon.
  • All cabins have en-suite with comfortable beds.
  • Large bridge area where guests are welcome to observe.
  • Ice strengthened hull

  • Multiple deck heights and viewing areas.
See Vessel

Svalbard Autumn Photo Tour Dates and Prices

Prices quoted are per person. Twin and double cabins are based on double occupancy. Dates for all our tours are also displayed below.

DateVoyageDurationVesselClassic PortholeClassic TwinSignature Twin/doubleSignature Single 
24th July – 1st August 2024Natural Wonders of Svalbard9 daysMV FreyaSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
26th July – 8th August 2024Svalbard Pioneer14 daysMV VikingfjordSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
1st – 10th August 2024Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV FreyaSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
9th – 18th August 2024Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV KinfishSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
18th – 27th August 2024Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Kinfish€10,900€10,200 Book
27th August – 5th September 2024Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Kinfish€10,900€10,200 Book
5th – 14th September 2024Svalbard Ice Waterfalls Photo Tour w/ Piet van den Bemd10 daysMV Kinfish€11,500€10,800 Book
DateVoyageDurationVesselClassic PortholeClassic TwinSignature Twin/doubleSignature Single 
24th July – 1st August 2024Natural Wonders of Svalbard9 daysMV FreyaSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
26th July – 8th August 2024Svalbard Pioneer14 daysMV VikingfjordSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
1st – 10th August 2024Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV FreyaSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
9th – 18th August 2024Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV KinfishSOLD OUTSOLD OUT   Join Waitlist
18th – 27th August 2024Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Kinfish£9,700£9,100   Book
27th August – 5th September 2024Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Kinfish£9,700£9,100   Book
5th – 14th September 2024Svalbard Ice Waterfalls Photo Tour w/ Piet van den Bemd10 daysMV Kinfish£10,200£9,700   Book
DateVoyageDurationVesselSignature Twin/DoubleSignature Penthouse (Double)Signature Single 
17th – 24th April 2025Frozen Svalbard Photography Expedition8 daysMV Vikingfjord€11,550€13,850€13,850 Book
24th April – 1st May 2025Frozen Svalbard Photography Expedition8 daysMV Vikingfjord€11,550€13,850€13,850 Book
1st – 10th May 2025Frozen Svalbard Photography Expedition10 daysMV Vikingfjord€14,450€17,350€17,350 Book
17th – 24th May 2025Svalbard Encounter8 daysMV Freya€10,150€12,150 Book
19th – 26th May 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard Photography Tour8 daysMV Vikingfjord€11,550€13,850€13,850 Book
24th May – 2nd June 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Freya€12,650€15,150 Book
26th May – 4th June 2025Spitsbergen Explorer Photo Expedition with Paul Goldstein10 daysMV Vikingfjord€14,450€17,350€17,350 Book
4th – 13th June 2025Spitsbergen Explorer Photo Expedition with Paul Goldstein10 daysMV VikingfjordSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
27th June – 5th July 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard9 daysMV Freya€12,650€15,150 Book
27th June – 6th July 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV VikingfjordSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
5th – 14th July 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Freya€12,650€15,150 Book
6th – 15th July 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Vikingfjord€14,150€17,050€17,050 Book
14th – 25th July 2025Svalbard Pioneer12 daysMV Freya€14,950€17,900 Book
15th – 26th July 2025Svalbard Pioneer12 daysMV Vikingfjord€17,050€20,450€20,450 Book
26th July – 6th August 2025Svalbard Pioneer12 daysMV Vikingfjord€17,050€20,450€20,450 Book
6th – 15th August 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Vikingfjord€14,150€17,050€17,050 Book
DateVoyageDurationVesselSignature Twin/DoubleSignature Penthouse (Double)Signature Single 
17th – 24th April 2025Frozen Svalbard Photography Expedition8 daysMV Vikingfjord£10,550£12,600£12,600 Book
24th April – 1st May 2025Frozen Svalbard Photography Expedition8 daysMV Vikingfjord£10,550£12,600£12,600 Book
1st – 10th May 2025Frozen Svalbard Photography Expedition10 daysMV Vikingfjord£12,500£14,900£14,900 Book
17th – 24th May 2025Svalbard Encounter8 daysMV Freya£8,900£10,550 Book
19th – 26th May 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard Photography Tour8 daysMV Vikingfjord£10,550£12,600£12,600 Book
24th May – 2nd June 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Freya£10,900£12,900 Book
26th May – 4th June 2025Spitsbergen Explorer Photo Expedition with Paul Goldstein10 daysMV Vikingfjord£12,500£14,900£14,900 Book
4th – 13th June 2025Spitsbergen Explorer Photo Expedition with Paul Goldstein10 daysMV VikingfjordSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
27th June – 5th July 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard9 daysMV Freya£10,950£12,950 Book
27th June – 6th July 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV VikingfjordSOLD OUTSOLD OUTSOLD OUT Join Waitlist
5th – 14th July 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Freya£10,950£12,950 Book
6th – 15th July 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Vikingfjord£12,500£14,950£14,950 Book
14th – 25th July 2025Svalbard Pioneer12 daysMV Freya£12,900£15,550 Book
15th – 26th July 2025Svalbard Pioneer12 daysMV Vikingfjord£14,950£17,500£17,500 Book
26th July – 6th August 2025Svalbard Pioneer12 daysMV Vikingfjord£14,950£17,500£17,500 Book
6th – 15th August 2025Natural Wonders of Svalbard10 daysMV Vikingfjord£12,500£14,950£14,950 Book

If you have any questions about this Svalbard Autumn Photo Tour please get in touch

Useful Information

How To Get To Svalbard

Svalbard is easily accessible from daily flights from Oslo in Norway. To find out more see our guide.

Read More

New To Expedition Micro Cruises?

Find out all about the experience of travelling on an expedition vessel with 12 guests and how it compares to other cruises.

Read More

Longyearbyen Travel Guide

All the information you need to plan your trip including how to get to Longyearbyen, arrival information, places to stay, and activities to do before your cruise.

Read More

Svalbard Photography Tour FAQ

Departure Location Longyearbyen
Arrival Location Longyearbyen
Trip Style Exploration
Physical Rating Easy
Maximum Group Size 12
Accommodation Twin, Double & Single ensuite cabins
Duration 10 days
Time of Year September
Included
Not Included

We would like to ensure our guests about our risk free booking policy.

As travel returns to normal we would like to ensure you we will do everything to make sure your trip goes ahead as planned.

If your trip is canceled by us you can rebook on another departure free of charge or receive a full refund with no questions asked.

If you can’t enter the departure country due to covid travel restrictions we will offer you a free rebooking on a future departure.

You can read our full policy here.

We offer payment via the following methods:

  • Credit card
  • Payment by bank transfer

Please let us know at the time of booking your preferred method.

You have the option to pay in full at time of booking or pay in the following instalments:

30% deposit is taken at the time of booking

30% 6 months before departure

40%  90 days prior to departure

It is mandatory you take out comprehensive travel insurance at the time of booking that also covers cancellation.

Solo travellers are welcome on all our voyages. We often host solo travellers, particularly on our photo voyages so the chances are you won’t be the only one. We offer the following accommodation options:

  • Single cabins.
  • Option to share a twin cabin with another traveller of the same gender.
  • Option to have your own double cabin for an additional supplement. Please contact us for this option as the price varies depending on trip and availability.

This trip is operated by Secret Atlas and is subject to the Secret Atlas terms and conditions of travel. You can read the full booking terms here.

See Our Other Photography Tours