Why You Should Travel to Svalbard

While we were putting together the itinerary for our year of travel, Pete was adamant about visiting Svalbard. Never heard of it? Neither had I. It’s the northern-most inhabited place on this planet.  We agree on most destinations, but this one blew my mind – why would anyone ever want to visit a place where the polar bears outnumber the people, you’re required by law to carry a gun for said bears, it’s freeeeezing cold, and it’s far, far away? I didn’t see the appeal – that is, until we visited and all my doubts melted (pun-intended) away. I’m so glad Pete discovered this place.

Why would you want to visit Svalbard?

Great question. If you enjoy:

  • scenic landscapes
View from our boat tour
View from our boat tour
  • snow-capped mountains, glaciers or icebergs
Very large glacier
Very large glacier
Icebergs ahead!
Iceberg ahead!
  • friendly & eclectic locals
  • adventures in the great outdoors
Dream boat <3
Dream boat <3
  • animals, especially huskies, puffins, whales & walruses
Puffins are adorable - their struggle to swim is real
Puffins are adorable – their struggle to swim is real
  • polar bear paraphernalia & folklore
  • relatively inexpensive groceries

then you should definitely check out Svalbard.

We knew this place was special from the moment we landed:

Landed in the North Pole! (sorta)
Landed in the North Pole! (sorta)

Actually, our excitement began building during our descent into this arctic wonderland:

What more could you ask for?
*Ooooo* *ahhhhh*

Even if you’re scared of cold weather (like me), you should give this place a chance. If you’re worried about finding room in your suitcase, toss your fears aside – you don’t have to bring any crazy gear, just make sure you’ve packed layers and you’ll be good to go.


  • 24 hours of sunlight (during the summer)
  • Karlsberger pub. Check it out for a crazy liquor selection and/or to get a glimpse into life in Longyearbyen
  • the adventurous and rustic vibes; it is the arctic, after all
  • cheap food & wine! Not as expensive as mainland Norway; it’s tax-free (yippee!)
  • adventure tours. We liked our heated boat tour through the fjords (with the company Better Moments AS – recommend!)
  • the small town of Longyearbyen

I hope I’ve convinced you to book a ticket to experience this magical arctic wonderland!

Have you been to Svalbard or another super-remote location? Let us know!


svalbard pinterest

4 Comment

  1. Janice THOMPSON says: Reply

    You got me interested! I love this post and the photos were beautiful 🙂 Thanks for sharing..

    1. Brittany says: Reply

      Thanks for reading! Svalbard is absolutely gorgeous.

  2. Marc Gooman says: Reply

    Terrific post! Fabulous pictures.
    Do you have any suggestions for places to visit in Ireland in September?
    Thank you.

    1. Pete says: Reply

      Hey Marc,

      Thanks for reading. I would suggest Killarney National Park. I had a great time there last year. We rented bicycles and biked around and it was absolutely gorgeous!

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