Day Trip to Barentsburg and the Esmark Glacier

 

 

p1000652.jpgThe second day at Svalbard, we had booked a fjord cruise with MS Langøysund. We were picked up at our hotel in the morning and driven down to the fjord where we were met by our guide, Stein from Svalbard.

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Our guide telling us about the safety on board.

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We left the Adventfjord and crossed the Isfjord and headed over to the impressive Esmark glacier. The fjords and mountains are so beautiful at Svalbard, and to explore them by boat were just perfect.

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It was my friend’s birthday this day, and the guide surprised us with champagne. Happy birthday! And what a great guide!

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It was amazing to face the glacier. I was hoping to see a polar bear also, but he didn’t turn up. Next time……

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Warm lunch from the barbecue was served when we left the glacier behind.

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1003049_10200456805846829_885617900_nWe arrived at Barentsburg after lunch. Barentsburg is a Russian mining settlement located by the Grønfjord. Grønfjord means green fjord, and I guess you can see by the photos above why it’s named Grønfjord.

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At the dock we were met by hundreds of stairs up to the settlement. Ok, I have read later that is was “only” 220.

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There is only one main street in Barentsburg and there are about 400 inhabitants. We walked around the settlement with our guide and stopped by the hotel.

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I loved the school building which was decorated with beautiful Russian culture, but also Norwegian culture. If you look closely you can see a Viking ship, Bryggen in Bergen and Nidarosdomen in Trondheim. I think this building describes the diversity of Svalbard community.

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In the center of the settlement is the Lenin statue, overlooking the fjord.

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This Orthodox Chapel was built to commemorate the 141 victim’s of a plane that crashed while bringing in a new shift of miners to Barentsburg in 1996.

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On the way back to Longyearbyen we passed the deserted Russian settlements in Coles Bay and Grumant, and the impressive bird cliffs of Fuglefjellet, where we could see thousands of breeding birds.

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Back in Longyearbyen. We had an amazing day, with beautiful scenery, great food and the best guide.

Thank you for reading!

 

 

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