One of Project Travel’s clients, Finbarr Sheehy from Co Kildare, travelled to Svalbard in February 2019 for a few days. He went on our 5 night ‘Snow, Sun & Fun’ Winter Package. This includes a night in Oslo before and after the 3 nights in Svalbard and included a Snowmobile Safari activity. Finbarr added a few other excursions to enjoy during his trip.

He very kindly sent us a quick report on his trip (published below with his permission), but more importantly, Finbarr made a fantastic 20 minute Svalbard Story video of his time in the Spitsbergen Archipelago which he has put up on YouTube. What better way to find out if a winter short break in Svalbard is for you, than to see exactly what it is like there!

Unfortunately for Finbarr, bad weather in Svalbard delayed his departure from Oslo, so he only spent 2 nights in Svalbard. Thanks to Hurtigruten Svalbard he didn’t miss out on any of his activities as they efficiently rebooked him for alternative dates once they realised he was arriving a day late. But every cloud has a silver lining – or in this case a green one. Finbarr’s rescheduled flight from Oslo to Svalbard was at night and he got to see the Northern Lights from the plane. As Svalbard is actually inside the aural oval, the chances of seeing the Lights, while good, are not quite as high as hunting them in Tromso in Northern Norway.

Enough from us. Here’s what Finbarr has to say about a short winter break in Svalbard:

“Just a note to say ‘Thank You’ for organising the trip to Svalbard. It was a very enjoyable trip and well worth it.

We obviously had some weather difficulties getting onto the island the first day but SAS were very good in providing accommodation and meals while we waited to travel. I was also very surprised that the activities company rang me to reschedule trips that I had missed due to the flight cancellation. I assumed that they would have been lost as I was not there, but they were great to rearrange for the days I was there.

I would highly recommend the island. The ‘Longyearbyen in a Nutshell’ trip was very informative and interesting. Camp Barents was good, but no lights. It is expected that the lights would not be that visible in Svalbard as it is above the ideal aurora band. I did get to see it on the plane to Longyearbyen as we were travelling at night. The Snowcat was interesting, would have been great if the lights were visible.

Overall a very good trip. I am thinking of going back to Svalbard during the summer and doing a short cruise around the island, to see some wildlife. If I go ahead, I will give you a call.

I did a video of my visit. It is on YouTube at

Thanks again for all your efforts.”

If you want to experience Svalbard for yourself, winter or summer, on a land-based holiday or on an Expedition Cruise, give Project Travel a call on 01-210 8391.

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