Introducing Secret Atlas – The Experts in Low Impact, Micro Expeditions to the Polar Regions

secret atlas

*Launching new tours & a brand-new vessel in May 2023 – MV Vikingfjord, the most environmentally friendly small ship in the Arctic with only 12 guests onboard*

Founded in 2019, by two passionate explorers, Secret Atlas was created to take curious and conscious travellers on the most immersive voyages to the polar regions in an intimate way, with the lowest impact. Setting out to disrupt the mass expedition market that’s overcrowding the fragile wildernesses of the Arctic and Antarctica, Secret Atlas have pioneered a new approach, offering micro cruises of up to 12 guests on some of the smallest ships in the polar regions, with rockstar guides of the photography and exploration world. This specialist approach ensures off-grid experiences with up-close, wildlife encounters, whilst having a minimal environmental footprint thanks to the size and eco-consciously designed vessels.

Offering a range of experiences from expedition micro cruises and photography expeditions to fully personalised private charters, each Secret Atlas adventure has a main purpose – to offer their guests genuine intrepid journeys, where few have gone before, and to appreciate and truly understand the polar environments. Key destinations include the Svalbard archipelago, Greenland, South Georgia and Antarctica and each flexible exploration ranges from 7-15 days.

*New for 2023: MV Vikingfjord – brand new vessel*

Sustainability is the driving force behind Secret Atlas and in May 2023 the team will be launching a new vessel – MV Vikingfjord, which will allow guests to explore Svalbard on the most environmentally friendly small ship in the polar regions with a 95% reduction in NOX emissions. The ice-strengthened expedition vessel with a 1B rating for exploring the polar regions can navigate hard to reach areas that only micro cruise expeditions of this nature can access. Itineraries will include micro-expeditions, specialist photography expeditions and exclusive private charters.

Secret Atlas co-founder Andy Marsh comments – “MV Vikingfjord not only offers cruise ship comfort to our guests with the huge benefit of just 12 guests, but is built for real exploration. Vikingfjord has improved environmental credentials and is the first small expedition ship with a 95% reduction in NOX emissions. This is vital for Secret Atlas, as we are a sustainability first company committed to protecting the places we explore”.

“Vikingfjord’s exciting new expeditions, including Svalbard Pioneer which is our most in-depth exploration of Svalbard. Our privileged guests will get to see so much of Svalbard that is rarely seen with an expert team of guides. Our new 10-day September photo expedition offers the rare chance to witness the meltwater of the Austfonna Ice cap with a group of expert photographers”.

Rebuilt from the ground up, in 2022, as a modern expedition vessel offering cruise ship comfort, the vessel will accommodate 12 guests with 9 ensuite cabins, an open plan saloon with rear facing windows, and on deck hot tub and sauna.

Three new itineraries will be offered on MV Vikingfjord – From May 2023, a 7-day expedition micro cruise – the Svalbard Encounter and an in-depth 14-day circumnavigation, Svalbard Pioneer.Finally, for those interested specifically in photography, a 10-day photo expedition will launch in September 2023Ice Waterfalls, Wildlife & Arctic Colours Svalbard. The expedition will offer the rare opportunity to capture the meltwater waterfalls of the Austfonna Ice Cap, along with Svalbard’s array of wildlife, including a high chance to sight polar bears.

In 2023 Secret Atlas will introduce a no single supplement on all expeditions on the new vessel MV Vikingfjord. This will offer solo travellers their own single cabin with en-suite at no extra cost. On other vessels, Kinfish offers the option to share with another solo traveller of the same gender at no extra cost. Explorer offers the options of single cabins with en-suite or the option to share

Photography Expeditions

For beginners through to professionals, Secret Atlas offers in-depth photography tours led by a professional expedition team and a photo expert in every destination visited to help guests develop skills and get closer to that perfect shot. Working with a dedicated team of industry professionals, the photography tours are unique and offer the unrivalled chance to view wildlife and ice formations from a new perspective, on a small scale, far from the crowds.

Private charters

For multi-gen families and groups of friends, Secret Atlas excels in arranging Private Charter Expeditions on vessels ranging from tall ships to expedition motor yachts and superyachts to Svalbard, Greenland and Antarctica. The team offer a full-service experience including expedition planning, voyage customisation, expert guide teams, and special requests, including chefs, specialists, etc. Private charters for skiing, heli-skiing, sailing and film and television are also available. Secret Atlas can match guests with guides and vessels to ensure the ultimate polar adventure.


Secret Atlas voyages offers guests the highest ratio for guest to guide in the polar cruise space with one guide to every six guests.  With a focus on immersion and exploration over traditional luxury, each trip is led by rockstars of the expedition and photography industry. More than just guides, they are individuals with years of experience and fascinating backgrounds that help support and shape the future of the polar industry. Working as an expedition leader, Mette Elisuessen has guided in all polar regions for over 16 years, totalling over 300 voyages. Before this, she was program manager for Save the Children in Afghanistan from 1990 to 1997 and was a key member of the international campaign to ban landmines, who were awarded the 1997 Nobel Peace prize.

Leading photography expeditions, Florian Ledoux is an artist, documentary filmmaker and photographer. Lately, he worked for BBC “Frozen Planet II”, Disney “Polar Bear” as well as Netflix and National Geographic.

Sample itineraries –

Rates – starting rates from £7,300 pp

Video content –