• Wave icon Trip Type: Offshore
  • Speech bubble icon Instructors: 2
  • People icon Crew Size: Max 9 (10 for ocean)
  • Cake icon Ages: 18-70 ish
  • Pin icon Region: Norway, Iceland & The Arctic
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Adventure Rating:
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Experience Required:
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12 Days from £2,699

Dates, Prices & Travel

Arctic sailing adventure: Svalbard Iceland Jan Mayan

The offshore sailing trip from Svalbard to Iceland via Jan Mayen is a once in a lifetime adventure for those who love all things Arctic, offshore and a bit more extreme! Starting from Longyearbjen on the west coast of Svalbard, at near 80° North, we are a world of vast glaciers, polar bears and ice choked fjords. After some training and exploring, we will set out into the Arctic Ocean for the 550 mile passage south west toward the island of Jan Mayen. Wildly remote, difficult to land at and not often visited, we will hope to stop there for a day to explore before setting sail into the North Atlantic again for a further 450 miles to the snow capped mountains and vast fjords of the east coast of Iceland. With around a 1000 miles of tru adventure sailing, visiting truly remote and beautiful areas, this offshore sailing and exploration of the highest level.

Sail with Experts in Arctic Exploration

Rubicon 3 are renowned as Arctic sailing experts, recognized in the sailing world for our extensive experience, comprehensive training, dedication to Arctic exploration, and unforgettable sailing adventures. Our expert team, comprised of highly experienced sailors in Arctic expeditions, the North Sea, and the Norwegian Sea, offers hands-on instruction in all aspects of Arctic sailing, catering to both newcomers and more seasoned sailors seeking Arctic challenges.

Our selection of unique bucket lists and less-traveled Arctic routes sets us apart, ensuring sailing adventures that are both exhilarating and full of discovery. Our ethos is an unwavering commitment to safety and environmental sustainability, ensuring every voyage respects both the sailors and the pristine Arctic environment. Additionally, we focus on individual skill-building as a sailing school so that everyone is fully involved in every aspect of the journey. This holistic approach has built Rubicon 3’s reputation as the go-to experts for anyone seeking the highest level of Arctic sailing experience.

Want to join?

Go to the Dates & Prices button to see the dates for this Arctic sailing holiday. It will also give you information on connecting travel, including where to fly and when and where to join the boat.

Sailing Area

Norway to svalbard sailing area map
Norway to svalbard sailing route map
The Yachts
Key Information
What’s included
  • All food and accommodation on board

  • All fuel & berthing fees

  • Your own bunk and storage area

  • Use of oilskins

  • Use of lifejacket

  • Sailing tuition

  • RYA Competent Crew (supplementary fee)

What’s Not included
  • Your connecting travel to & from boat

  • Sailing & travel insurance

  • Meals you choose to eat ashore

  • Alcohol

  • Visas where required

  • Discretionary tip

Interested in dates & availability?

To see when this trip runs, its start and end locations, price to join the crew and availability, click on the ‘Dates, Prices & Travel’ button up top.

Discretionary tipping of the Rubicon 3 crew

The trip price is 5% less than we would normally charge. This is to allow you at the end of your adventure to offer a combined 5-10% tip to the Rubicon 3 skipper and mate if you feel they have delivered exceptional performance. This tip is entirely discretionary. See our FAQs here.

Got some questions?

Joining a big sailing adventure is a big thing, so don’t be surprised if you have lots of questions before you book. Who else joins, what to expect, and so many more queries are entirely normal. The home page has loads of info on this (scroll to the bottom), there are our FAQs and never hesitate to contact us by email, phone or live chat. The team are here to have a chat, discuss options, answer questions and help make sure you get on the exact right sailing trip for you.

A Brief History of Svalbard

The history of Svalbard is a fascinating tale of exploration, exploitation, and international intrigue. First spotted in 1596 by Dutch explorer Willem Barentsz, Svalbard quickly became a hotspot for whaling and hunting, especially of whales and land mammals such as the arctic fox and polar bear, drawing adventurers and workers from Europe. In the 19th and early 20th centuries, coal mining became the dominant industry, with countries establishing settlements to stake their claims. The 1920 Svalbard Treaty recognized Norwegian sovereignty while allowing all signatory countries equal rights to commercial ventures, a unique arrangement that continues today. Beerenberg (2,227 m) is Norway’s only active volcano; having been dormant for years, volcanic activity resumed in 1970 with the most recent eruption occurring in 1985. Throughout its history, Svalbard has been a frontier of Arctic exploration, a site of geopolitical importance, and a living example of international cooperation in managing and researching one of the world’s most extreme environments.

yacht by mountains

Itinerary

The exact weather conditions and sea ice levels at the time will determine what happens on this expedition. Offshore sailing at these high latitudes is a serious undertaking and the priority will be making a safe and sensible choice of when to head south toward Iceland. We will explore as much as we can in Svalbard before leaving. We run an exploration of the west coast of Svalbard before this route and together they make a great combined route.

Here are some of the highlights of the route.

Longyearbyen

This small but vibrant community is the gateway to the Arctic’s remote wilderness and where the expedition begins. Nestled amidst the glaciated mountains, this town is an authentic blend of Norwegian and polar cultures. Visit the Svalbard Museum while you’re here to learn more about the history of Spitsbergen, its mining industry, and polar exploration over the years.

Longyearbjen

Trygghamna

Translating to “Safe Harbor” in English, Trygghamna is a stunning bay that historically served as a crucial anchorage for whalers and explorers due to its sheltered waters, which provided refuge from the harsh Arctic conditions. The bay is home to thousands of seabirds, including guillemots and kittiwakes, surrounded by towering cliffs and glaciers. The area around Trygghamna is also rich in Arctic flora, and you may see Svalbard reindeer and Arctic foxes. The historical remnants of blubber ovens also bear witness to its past, mixing the bay’s natural beauty with a touch of human history.

Trygghamna

Offshore sailing: passage to Jan Mayen

When the weather window is at its best, we will leave the glaciated shores of Svalbard behind us and head out into the wilds of the Arctic Ocean. We will be sailing day and night for around 4 days, in a watch system, helming, navigating, trimming sails, keeping a lookout and with plenty of time to gaze out over the vast arctic horizon as we surge south.

jan mayen

Jan Mayen

Seeing the small island of Jan Mayen rise over the horizon is always an exciting moment. Whether we can land here depends entirely on the weather and sea state – and it is certainly not guaranteed – but if we are lucky we will be able to land and spend a day exploring. This desolate, mountainous island was named after a Dutch whaling captain who discovered it in 1614. Jan Mayen is situated approximately halfway between mainland Norway and Greenland. This rugged, mountainous island is dominated by Beerenberg, the northernmost active volcano on Earth, which last erupted in 1985. The island is uninhabited, except for a small Norwegian meteorological research station that operates year-round. Other than ice, it is marked by moss and grass flora. The island consists of two parts: a larger northeast Nord-Jan (the spoon “bowl”) and the smaller Sor-Jan (the “handle”), linked by a 2.5 km-wide isthmus (the “stem”) with two large lakes, Sorlaguna (South Lagoon) and Nordlaguna (North Lagoon). The island’s isolation, harsh climate, and limited access make it a unique natural environment, primarily known for its significant meteorological, geophysical, and oceanographic research contributions. The island holds a special place in the hearts of adventurers and scientists alike.

Offshore sailing: passage to Iceland

From Jan Mayen, it’s another 400 miles to the northeast coast of Iceland, so we can expect to be at sea for another 2-3 days, during which time we will cross the Arctic Circle. Iceland’s east coast is marked by huge mountain ranges and deep fjords and there are only a few places where it is safe to make landfall. With any spare time we have left, we will cruise and explore this coast, before rendering Seydisfjord on the southeastern coast and the end point of our adventure. Magical!

Seydisfjordur

Iceland

This tough, wild island, whose dominant religion is Lutheranism, is an awe-inspiring testament to nature. It has a wonderful and dramatic history, most famously told in the Icelandic sagas, which recount heroic episodes and are regarded as among the finest literary achievements of the Middle Ages. Unlike most European countries, it is ethnically homogeneous making it a favourite population to study by academics. The climate is affected by the confluence of two ocean currents: the Gulf Stream, from near the Equator, and the East Greenland Current. The latter sometimes carries Arctic drift ice as far as Iceland’s northern and eastern shores.

Dates, Prices & Travel

Start Date & Location

August 18, 2025
Longyearbyen, Svalbard

End Date & Location

August 29, 2025
Seydisfjordur, Iceland

Price

£2,699

Availability

Available

Trip Information

Start Date: August 18, 2025

Start Time: 09:00

Start Country: Longyearbyen, Svalbard

Start Port: Longyearbyen Harbour

Start Marina: Longyearbyen

End Date: August 29, 2025

End Time: 10:00

End Country: Seydisfjordur, Iceland

End Port: Seydisfjordur Harbour

End Marina: Seydisfjordur

Find Flights For This Trip
Fly Into: Svalbard Airport: IATA Code: LYR
Fly Out of: Egilsstaðir Airport: IATA Code: EGS

* Flights are not included in the trip price.

Important Notes
Joining the boat
  • You will join the boat in Longyearbyen, Svalbard.
  • It is scheduled to be in Longyearbyen Harbour.
  • It is easy to get here from Svalbard Airport.
  • The trip starts at 9:00 AM on August 18 2025, so you will need to be in Svalbard by August 17, 2025.
  • You have two options for accommodation on the night before the start date:
    • Stay in a hotel or AirBnB in the Longyearbyen.
    • Alternatively, you can stay onboard the boat from 6:00 PM on a bed & breakfast basis. Select this option during your booking process.
Leaving the boat
  • You will leave the boat in Seydisfjordur, Iceland
  • The boat is scheduled to arrive into Seydisfjordur on the evening of August 28th, 2025, and you will need to disembark by 09:00 AM, August 29th, 2025.
General Notes
  • We have a very strong track record of meeting the scheduled end date, with only a few exceptions over a decade of sailing and across hundreds of thousands of miles of sailing. However, given the nature and distance of ocean crossings, we can’t guarantee it and recommend booking flexible onward travel from Iceland or at least allowing an extra day in your itinerary as a precaution.
  • You cannot stay on the boat after the trip end date.
  • Once you have booked, we will connect you up with other crew so you can liaise regarding connecting travel, meet up in advance etc.
  • If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
5-Point Pre-Booking Checklist

Before you finalize your booking, we suggest you run through our pre-booking checklist:

  1. Check Flights: Make sure you have found the right flights for your trip. Book them as soon as you have booked your Rubicon 3 trip.
  2. Travel Insurance: Once you’ve booked your trip with us, buy some sailing travel insurance. Read our full guide here.
  3. Passport Validity: Ensure your passport is valid for at least six months beyond your planned return date. Some countries require this for entry, so it’s crucial to check and renew your passport if necessary.
  4. Visas: Most sailors will not require any visas for this trip. However, if you are concerned, check any visa requirements for both your destination and any transit countries. If you do need a visa, processing times can vary, so it’s advisable to apply well in advance of your trip.
  5. Vaccinations and Health Checks: There are no vaccinations required for this trip. Make sure you have an acceptable level of fitness and agility. You can read our guide here. This is for the safety of all on board.
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