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Cruises visiting Franz Josef Land & all Franz Josef Land cruises for  2019-2020

Currently we have no major cruise ships visiting Franz Josef Land in the 2019-2021 seasons.

Future sailings will be shown here as they become available, and alternative ports in the region can be viewed at Arctic Cruises. Please contact one of our cruise specialists today on 1800 121 187 if you require further assistance.

View Franz Josef Land 2019-2020 cruises for 0 ships listing 0 cruises from Franz Josef Land with today's best deals!

The archipelago of Franz Josef Land is 1000 km from the Geographic North Pole in the Arctic Sea. The 191 ice-covered islands are part of Russia, and its few island settlements are based on harvesting walrus and seal meat. Franz Josef Land is accessible for a few weeks in summer, and parts may well year-round be covered in pack ice. Though claimed by Russia in 1929, the names of the islands reflect their exploratory history - German, British, American, Italian and Norwegian. Interestingly, the Graf Zeppelin made an aerial survey of the islands in 1931.

The first reported finding was in the 1873 Austro-Hungarian North Pole Expedition led by Julius von Payer and Karl Weyprecht, who named the area after Emperor Franz Joseph I. The islands were annexed by the Soviet Union in 1926, who settled small outposts for research and military purposes. The Kingdom of Norway rejected the claim and several private expeditions were sent to the islands. With the Cold War, the islands became off limits for foreigners and two military airfields were built. The islands have been a nature sanctuary since 1994 and became part of the Russian Arctic National Park in 2012.

Actually, the archipelago was spotted by the Norwegian sealers Nils Fredrik Rønnbeck and Johan Petter Aidijärvi in 1865, although they did not report their finding. From 15 June 2009 the islands became part of Russkaya Arktika National Park to promote tourism in the area. Its inhabitants are polar bears, foxes, bowhead whales, walruses, seals and seabird colonies. In summer the daytime temperature hovers above Zero Celcius and fog is common. The only colours on the island are the reds and greens of lichens and mosses. Travel to Franz Josef Land is an extreme adventure surrounded by magical landscapes. Landfall is easily accessible by Zodiacs.

Franz Josef Land cruises

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