Polar bears

On my recent trip to Svalbard I was lucky enough to get to spend many hours up close with four polar bears on the edge of the arctic pack ice. One swam round our ship curiously checking us out, while others decided we were nothing of interest and so stretched and went to sleep or got back to eating the remains of a seal. It was a huge privilege to be able to share these incredible animals’ environment with them, at 81° north.

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You can see more from my arctic adventure here.

Photos © 2013 Hannah Larkin www.hannahlarkinphotography.com

Svalbard: Longyearbyen

At 78° north, Longyearbyen is Svalbard’s largest settlement and the world’s northernmost town. Almost everything here (from the church and museum, to the ATM and sushi restaurant) is prefaced by the words “the most northerly…”! I was able to enjoy the midnight sun which lasts from April to August, but would love to return to experience the town during its long polar night (October to February). Gun lockers at the entrance to shops and hotels, stuffed specimens and the famous road signs remind you that you’re in polar bear territory.

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You can see more from my arctic adventure here.

Photos © 2013 Hannah Larkin www.hannahlarkinphotography.com