Svalbard and Jan Mayen Educational activities

Our most recommended Svalbard and Jan Mayen Educational activities

Longyearbyen: Historic Coal Mine Tour at Gruve 3

1. Longyearbyen: Historic Coal Mine Tour at Gruve 3

Start with pickup at the hotels and guesthouses in town before a short drive to the outside facility of Mine Number 3. On the way there, you will pass the world-renowned Global Seed Vault where over 1 million seeds from around the world are stored. The first seed bank on Svalbard was opened in Mine no. 3 in 1984. This is where the ideas to build the Global Seed Vault on Svalbard started — by storing seeds in the permafrost with no need for electricity.  Enter the facility and explore maps over Longyearbyen and Svalbard. Enjoy a historic coal mine and listen to the stories and anecdotes of what was the last mine in town where thin-seam production was applied. Expect in-depth information about the town’s history and why some men decided to settle here some 100 years ago. A model of the mine is used to illustrate how the coal was extracted using thin-seam techniques. Walk through the workshops and see machines and equipment that was left behind when the mine was shut down in 1996. Put on a miner’s overall and crawl through a replica of a mining shaft and get a feeling of how a miner spent his days. Towards the end of the tour, discover the mine itself by walking 300 meters in and entering two different side tunnels.

  • Guided tours
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What people are saying about Svalbard and Jan Mayen

Very interesting to gain an insight into mining and the history of mining in the mine in question, as well as in Svalbard in general. Skilled guide who gave us many interesting details and was able to answer questions

A very informative tour of the former coal mine. You can feel how hard work was done here. Great respect for these men.

A very nice guide who explains the history of the mine well. It was very interesting !

The visit is great, the place is well preserved and the guide very friendly!

Very interesting visit with guide who gives many explanations