The gateway to the North Pole, Spitsbergen in the Svalbard Archipelago should be your destination of choice if you love cold water and big animals. Dive here with whales among roving icebergs.
Spitsbergen is the largest and only inhabited island in the Svalbard Archipelago off Norway’s northern coast. Most liveaboards heading to the Arctic depart from this island. Here, the waters don’t freeze but remain frigid. Luckily, this doesn’t stop marine life from visiting. You might see blue whales, narwhals, humpback whales, white belugas and orcas. Seals and walruses are common, and you’ll hopefully spot polar bears from a distance. Environments include lush kelp forests and roving icebergs. The best way to arrange diving in Spitsbergen is via a liveaboard. Typical itineraries in the region last 7 to 11 nights, and the best time to dive in Svalbard is from May to September.