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“Way up North & not Alaska”

Ny Alesund + The most Northern Town
Certificate of Excellence
Brisbane
Level 6 Contributor
918 reviews
586 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 405 helpful votes
“Way up North & not Alaska”
Reviewed August 21, 2013

This small town on Spitzbergan seems to be mostly a research town. The walk around the town doesn't take long. There is a statue/monument to Amundsen, the Post Office, the local shop which can take a while to navigate in and out if there is a large crowd, the airship tower used by Amundsen for his flight to the North Pole, a very small museum, the kennels for the huskies, the locomotive and carriages that were used in the coal mines and lots of wildlife. We only had a small group on our expedition ship so it didn't take too long.

Visited July 2013
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1 Thank AntarcticBound
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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76 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
San Antonio, Texas
Level 6 Contributor
145 reviews
59 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 81 helpful votes
“Things to do and how to shop.”
Reviewed August 5, 2013

Things to do:
Shop at single store.
Mail post card from the most northern post office.
Do the walk.


The walk is nice read the signs and see the sights. The old blimp tower is neat.

For shopping the store has more postcard options and does sell stamps, there are two stamp prices one for Europe and then the rest of the world and they are for post card. Stamps can be purchased form both places are but in the same mailbox, and all receive the same cancel stamp (guess that keeps them busy for some time). The post office was a slower with only one person and the reason to shop there is if you want the certificate of being in Ny Alesdund with a local stamp the post office cancels it with the post mark the store cancels it with another stamp with a blimp. The souvenir store seemed to have a better collection of items then the stores in Longyearbyen.

Lines for both can be long if you are in a cruise ship so go there first then do the walk. Our cruise ship said to plan 45 mins plan 2 hours with shopping or 90 mins if you just want to see the place and take pictures. We released in waves so get in the first wave.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
5 Thank AmericanInEurope02
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
45 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Wonderfully unspoilt”
Reviewed August 5, 2013

This is the most unspoilt place to visit - no hotels, just one small shop and the post office which is the most northern post office in the world and a small museum. We didn't see any polar bears but maybe that was just as well!
What we did see were barnacle geese, snow buntings and scores of arctic terns. We would love to go back!!!

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank jaygee1943
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
294 reviews
160 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 116 helpful votes
“Remote destination with interesting birdlife”
Reviewed July 11, 2013

A research station, this "town" is great for a 2-3 hour walk as you discover birds, fabulous views of the mountains, and even an old steam train which allows for some great photography. Careful of the Arctic Terns as they will attack you if they think you're getting close to their nests. You can get a great view of them, along with the tundra and tiny flowers along the way. There's a pretty substantial souvenir shop which is opened when the cruise ships come in.

It's really a photographer's delight with shapes, colors, wildlife and much more to keep you busy!

Visited July 2013
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3 Thank papillon2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Huntingdon, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“79 degrees north”
Reviewed June 24, 2013

The approach to Spitsbergen the night before gave a foretaste of the day to come. Our ship approached the archipelago to views in the midnight sun of towering snow covered mountains dropping into the sea.

From my initial research wondered just what we would do here for a whole day. No excursions were listed on the itinerary although there was an indication of the limited features there. However this is a place that you walk at your own pace, mine being slow, and just take in the awesome splendour of this artic landscape.

We walked the p shaped road stopping to view artic terns nesting just a few feet away and revelling in the antics of their mates dive bombing all who came close to ward off danger. A good had is recommended not only for warmth but also protection from attack.

Moving on we spot white coated reindeer, still in winter coats waiting to turn brown for the summer. Further around is the the huskie pound serving the 35 or so scientific personnel living here. It is feeding time so they are quite vocal and active.

Near the north end of the settlement is the bust of Roald Amundsen who spent time here launching airship expeditions into the artic plus his own expedition by foot. Nearby is the Norsk Polar Institute.

Moving on we come to the worlds most northerly post office where a resident offers to photograph us. Inside she is behind the counter selling cards and souvenirs

As we head south a train stands to the side as a reminder of the coal mining origins of the settlement whilst houses from previous settlements and the current scientific settlement abound. The small museum is worth a visit.

So we head back towards the jetties to pick up the tender back to our ship. Three hours has elapsed and this time probably ranks as one of the most memorable in all the travelling that I have ever done.

One word of advice the roadways are there for a purpose. Areas of the road are delicate artic tundra. Advice is given not to walk on the tundra. Regrettably some fellow passengers and crew failed to heed the advice. Only by respecting the environment will future tourists be granted landing rights in this delicate and sensitive environment

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
12 Thank John B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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