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Spitsbergen's history is closely related to mining.
In the 17th century, John Munro Longyear, American of Marquette, Michigan took the lead in developing massive coal fields of the Svalbard Archipelago. Coal deposits were discovered in Longyearbyen and mining began in 1905. Longyear sold out in 1916 to the Norwegian company SNSK - Store Norske Spitsbergen kullkompani.

The King's Bay area (fjord Kongsfjorden) is a tourist destination of Arctic and Svalbard polar cruises. Ny-Ålesund is one of the world’s northernmost human settlements and a modern research centre accessed by several flights a week.

Ny-Ålesund was the starting point of expeditions of Nobile and Amundsen to reach the North Pole.

On May 12, 1926 with a crew of 16 led by Roald Amundsen, the Airship Norge became the first to reach the North Pole.
The airship left Ny-Ålesund for the flight to the North Pole on May 11.

  Click on the arrows on the map WebCam Summer Winter



 Spitsbergen West - Maps

Longyearbyen City Map (1.5 MB) [pdf]
Nordenskiöld Land - Adventdalen [gif]
Isfjord [gif]
King's Bay [gif]
Prins Karls Forland - Forlandet [jpg] - Norwegian Polar Institute
Tromsdalen - Trongdalen (Krossfjorden) [gif]

 Video Svalbard
Video - Flight over Svalbard   Flight over Svalbard
Flying low level in a small plane over Svalbard
 Longyearbyen and Adventdalen

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