Hi my lovely readers!

In 2019 I went on an Expedition cruise to Svalbard, in the Arctic on MS Spitsbergen with Hurtigruten and was totally underprepared when it came to packing for my trip.

Of course I looked at the weather forecast and the temperature chart, but the weather is colder than you would expect in the polar regions in terms of how it feels, not necessarily the actual temperature. The temperature was about -2°C, which is not too bad.

However, the winds are the problem and can chill you right down to your bones if you’re not dressed properly. I have never felt so cold in my entire life although I wore several layers of tights, long sleeved tops and jumpers. I felt like the Michelin tyre man.

Related post: Packing Tips for Arctic Expedition Cruises

One day I spend a good hour or so under my shower to defrost, boiling water running over me and still not warming me up after being outside for 30 min on a zodiac for ice cruising. It was one of the highlights for me as I got close to glaciers on the water, but man it was freezing and really got to me.

Therefore, don’t make the same mistake as me. Pack properly for polar water cruises. Those cruises that go to the Arctic, Antarctica, Greenland, Canada and Norway.

Invest in fleece, thermal underwear and good walking/hiking shoes with a grip for uneven terrain. Forget about glitzy dresses, make-up and all that non-sense. Just make sure you have warm and comfortable clothes and enjoy the experience.

My printable packing list for expedition cruises that go to the polar regions will help you with this and ensures that you have everything you need.

Printable Polar Waters Expedition Cruise Packing List

Download PDF: Polar Expedition Cruise Packing List


    1. I totally recommend it. I can;t say it enough, but it was one of the best cruise and experiences I was lucky enough to have. The polar regions are special.


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