With the "Nordpolhotell", Ny Ålesund had a pleasant tourist accomodation already before World War II. After the transformation of the settlement from a mining town to the biggest high arctic international research base, the demand for shortterm accomodation has grown and today, the management of the settlement has several accomodation buildings at its disposal, including the old hotel as the most traditional and most expensive.
For non-official visitors: only "last minute" booking possibilities:
Going on holiday to Ny Ålesund is not so easy, because the management company of the place, which is in charge for all buildings, all accomodation and also the sale of the connective fliights from and to Longyearbyen, gives priority to the needs of the research activities, followed by official visitors. Moreover, Ny Ålesund has a restrictive attitude to tourism, which is seen as a potential disturbance for the research work and therefore, no steps are taken to encourage touristic visits. In practice, this means that both flight seats and rooms are offered only on a "last minute" basis: remaining capacities not needed otherwise, are offered about 1 week in advance, only. Obviously, this is of little use for a longterm holiday planning. However, there is still the possibility of booking such capacities on short notice, when already in Spitsbergen and having some spare time there (for customers who have booked a tour via terra polaris, we will assist with such short-term bookings). Advantage: then, a long-term weather report for the next days can be used as an additional help. In clear weather, just the flight to Ny Ålesund across the mountains and glaciers is quite an experience (as can be also an eventual sea passage).
Accomodation with full board, only:
Out of principle, accomodation can be booked with full board, only, in Ny Ålesund, 4 meals per day, which are served in the excellent and nice canteen in the local community house. The whole concept (and also the economic calculation of the settlement) for Ny Ålesund is based on joint use of this canteen by all persons staying (also temporarily) in this settlement. For cooking oneself, there is neither a provision store nor cooking facilities in the buildings.
The only exception would be a stay on the so-called campingsite: a patch of tundra, 2 km east of the settlement, with an outdoor loo as the only facility. Firearm and tripwire alarm, tent, stove and provisions have to be brought along by the camper and the fee is NOK 75 per person and night.
Connection from and to Longyearbyen:
All year round, the plane (15-seater Dornier Do-228 turboprop) is the only regular means of transport between Longyearbyen and Ny Ålesund, operating twice a week (in summer some extra flights), the capacities of which are sold by the management company of Ny Ålesund. In summer, there may be occasional opportunities to reach Ny Ålesund also by ship (bserve that the long touristic cruises around Spitsbergen do not sell short passages just to/from Ny Ålesund).
Station staff, researchers and official guests of Ny Ålesund are given priority regarding accomodation and flight capacities - only residual capacities are made available to other customers, usually just a week in advance.
Single room without private facilities, including full board: NOK 1305
Single room with private facilities, incl. full board: NOK 1640-1885
Double room with private facilities, incl. full board: NOK 1410
(double rooms can be booked by 2 persons together, only)
Flight between Longyearbyen and Ny Ålesund, per way: NOK 2600
(incl. 20 kg flight baggage, INCLUDING hand baggage)
Limited touristic infrastrukture:
Ny Ålesund regards itself as a research base - not a tourist resort, and tourism is not encouraged. Accordingly, there is practically no touristic infrastructure: no shopping (except of souvenirs), no local transports, no rental of bicyzles, boats, cars, no guided excursions.
Further Ny Ålesund information:
see guide book Spitsbergen - Svalbard, Jan Mayen, Franz Josef Land