Join a photography expedition with Arctic photographer Rayann Elzein on a small expedition vessel to explore and photograph the wildlife and Arctic landscapes of Svalbard. 

Experience this unique voyage to explore the west coast of Svalbard early in the season, with just 12 other guests.


  • Numerous opportunities to photograph Svalbard’s wild and stunning landscapes from the ship and shore.
  • Get up close and photograph glaciers and sea ice.
  • Develop your photography skills in the field with a highly experienced Arctic photographer.
  • Learn about the area from an expert Svalbard guide.
  • Encounter the wildlife which could include Polar Bears, Walruses, Arctic Foxes, Svalbard Reindeer and Whales.
  • Photograph and explore the coastline by Zodiac landing craft.
  • Comfortable, and intimate ice-strengthened expedition vessel.

Svalbard Photography Tour Key Information

Departure Location Longyearbyen
Arrival Location Longyearbyen
Trip StylePhotography and Exploration
Physical RatingEasy
Maximum Group Size12
Accommodation3 x Twins and 1 x Double with en-suite, 1 x Twin and 2 x Singles with shared bathroom
Duration9 Days
Time of YearMay
Not Included

The Voyage

The planned route departs from the Longyearbyen, the world’s most northerly inhabited town. From there we will explore the Isfjord and then sail up the north-west coast of Spitsbergen as far as weather and ice conditions allow.

svalbard photography expedition map

Svalbard Photography Tour | A Journey Into The Arctic Wilderness

Upon leaving Longyearbyen we will say goodbye to civilisation for the next 8 days to explore the rugged coastline, searching for landscape and wildlife photography opportunities at every stage. As we sail north we are likely to encounter glaciers and sea ice which make the perfect photo subject.

Every morning Rayann will give a brief workshop to help you get the best out of your photography for that day. In the evening we will run feedback sessions to help you improve your photography skills. Rayann will be on hand at all times to provide you with assistance if needed. We will also be accompanied by an expert Svalbard guide who will share information about the places we are visiting and the varied history the area offers.

We will drop anchor in remote bays to take advantage of the photography opportunities ashore, ideal for landscape and wildlife shots. During shore landings, we will be accompanied by a guide armed and trained in Polar Bear protection for our safety.

We will explore the different fjords of the west coast with a plan to visit glaciers and the scientific research settlement of Ny-Ålesund.

Our ultimate plan is to reach the edge of the sea ice where we will spend time searching for wildlife including Polar Bears. During the month of May, our final route will be dictated by sea ice conditions and the captain of the boat will work with the conditions to maximise photography opportunities.

svalbard photography workshop
svalbard photography workshop expedition
polar bear photography tour in svalbard

Are you wondering if this Svalbard photography tour is a good fit for you?

Please get in touch and we will use our expertise to recommend the right voyage for you dependent on your experience and comfort levels.

Video | Introducing Expedition Micro Cruising

Meet Your Photographer

photographer Rayann Elzein in svalbard

Rayann Elzein is a French nature photographer passionate about the Arctic and raising awareness about the challenges it faces. He currently resides in Nijmegen (the Netherlands) and travels worldwide for assignments and to lead workshops.

Rayann is a skilled photographer with years of experience running Arctic photography workshops making him the perfect choice to help the less experienced photographers on this voyage.

‘More than anywhere else in the world, there are clear signs of climate change, which affects both the wildlife and the local populations. I have made it one of my goals to contribute to raising awareness about the dangers of global warming through my photography.’

You can read a recent interview we did with Rayann here on his love for shooting in Svalbard.

spitsbergen photography tour
spitsbergen photography workshop
polar bear tour spitsbergen
iceberg in svalbard

Who This Trip Is Aimed At

This trip is aimed at anyone with an interest in photography and exploring a remote, natural wilderness. A basic level of fitness and mobility is required. A passion for adventure is a must. The focus of this trip is on exploring the coastline and looking for photographic opportunities.

What Photography Experience Do I need?

This trip is open to photographers of all levels from complete novice through to experienced professionals. Rayann will provide assistance and advice throughout the trip on the techniques he uses to help you improve your photography. Each evening we will run feedback sessions, and share tips and advice.

Is a Small Expedition Vessel Right For Me?

A small expedition vessel offers a comfortable and spacious platform to explore the Svalbard coastline. She is smaller than an expedition cruise ship with the huge benefit of offering a more intimate and personal experience with just 12 guests. There are large, open decks from which to shoot from. Inside there is a communal saloon area to warm up in after a day in the cold. She is equipped with 2 Zodiac landing crafts that are used for shore landings and can also be used to shoot from.

This voyage takes place along a mixture of sheltered fjords and open coastline. The Captain will make decisions based on the weather to ensure the most comfortable and safe experience.

Find out why we prefer small expedition vessels to larger ships here.

photography tour in svalbard

The Expedition Vessel

Step aboard M/V Togo a classic expedition vessel.

Togo is a 102ft /31m motor yacht, custom built in 1965 by legendary Dunston Shipyard and last refitted in 2018. Originally built as North Sea trawler she was converted into Lloyd’s safety vessel in 1980s, then into a Yacht with extensive refit 2012 and upgraded to expedition yacht in 2018.

Togo has a well-appointed galley and mess room, elegant and comfortable mahogany paneled salon with bar and kitchenette. Her deck areas are spacious with semi-enclosed sides. She is a sturdy vessel with elegant sheer, sails with abundant intimacy from the bygone era of tramp steamers.

small expedition ship cruises in the arctic
  • Accommodation in twin cabins and double cabins with private shower and w/c (mostly en-suite).

  • Small group size of 12 photographers ensures an intimate experience

  • Hot Showers

  • Equipped with 2 x Zodiacs landing crafts for shore landings
  • Large deck space for photography

  • Large saloon with bar.

  • Ice-strengthened hull for travel in the polar regions

  • Full safety gear

deck plan expedition vessel

Dates & Availability

Select a date to start your journey

13th May - 21st May 2020
21st May - 29th May 2020


double cabin svalbard photography

Double Cabin with en suite – Sleeps 2

€8,200 / £6,950 / $9,100 per person based on double occupancy

Cabin 4

Twin Cabin with en suite – Sleeps 2

€8,200 / £6,950 / $9,100 per person based on double occupancy

Cabins 1, 2 and 3

Twin Cabin with shared facilities – Sleeps 2

€7,700 / £6,530 / $8,600 per person based on double occupancy

Cabin 7

togo single cabin expedition ship

Single Cabin with shared facilities – Sleeps 1

€6,200 / £5,255 / $6,880 per person based on single occupancy

Cabin 5 and 6

Payment Options


  • Credit card
  • Payment by bank transfer
  • Monthly instalments to spread the cost of payments

Booking Terms and Conditions

Other Voyages