Holidays to Spitsbergen
Arctic Expeditions to Norway's Spitsbergen (Svalbard) Islands. The name Spitsbergen (also spelt: Spitzbergen) means "jagged peaks" and was given by the Dutch explorer Willem Barents, who discovered the island while searching for the Northern Sea Route in 1596. However, this archipelago may have been known to Russian Pomor hunters as early as the 14th or 15th century, though solid evidence from before the 17th century is lacking. They concluded that the land they had found was a part of Greenland and, therefore, named it Grumant. The name Svalbard is first mentioned in Icelandic sagas of the 10th and 11th centuries, but they may also refer to the Jan Mayen island or even Greenland. To discuss your travel options in detail please contact one of our travel experts.