Photo of the day – Svalbard
Svalbard (formerly known by its Dutch name Spitsbergen) is a Norwegian archipelago in the Arctic Ocean. Situated north of mainland Europe, it is about midway between continental Norway and the North Pole. The islands of the group range from 74° to 81° north latitude, and from 10° to 35° east longitude. The largest island is Spitsbergen, followed by Nordaustlandet and Edgeøya.
Polar bears are the iconic symbol of Svalbard, and one of the main tourist attractions. While protected, anyone outside of settlements is required to carry a rifle to kill polar bears in self-defence, as a last resort, should they attack; a British schoolboy was killed by a polar bear in 2011. Svalbard and Franz Joseph Land share a common population of 3,000 polar bears, with Kong Karls Land being the most important breeding ground.