Changes to cruise rules around Svalbard
28.02.2024 Svalbard (Spitsbergen)   37
Changes to cruise rules around Svalbard

Upcoming changes to tourism regulations in Svalbard, a Norwegian archipelago known for its stunning Arctic landscapes and diverse wildlife, will radically impact cruises to in the area.

In an effort to balance tourism with protecting the environment, the Norwegian government has announced new regulations that will come into effect on January 1, 2025, subject to parliamentary approval.

Cruise ships sailing around Svalbard will be limited to 200 passengers per ship. There will be 43 designated visitation sites on the islands, while the rest of the area will remain closed to tourists.

Snowmobiles and drones will also be prohibited, with the exception of snowmobiles for those visiting the cabins. Ships must also keep speeds below five knots to protect marine wildlife, and remain 500 meters away from bird rocks between April and August to protect nesting birds.

Svalbard, better known Because there are more polar bears than people, there is a surge in adventure tourists eager to see the spectacular icy landscapes, prompting the government to take action to protect wildlife.


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