Danskøya (English: Danes Island) is an island in Norway's Svalbard archipelago in the Arctic Ocean. It lies just off the northwest coast of Spitsbergen, the largest island in the archipelago, near to Magdalenefjorden. Just to the north lies of Amsterdamøya. Like many of Svalbard's islands, Danskøya is uninhabited. The island has an area of 40.6 square kilometers (15.7 sq mi).

The first temporary whaling station was established on Danskøya by the English in 1614, probably on the southeastern point of the island. The English abandoned it in 1624 or 1625, after which it was probably appropriated by the Dutch. In 1632 the Danish established a permanent station in Robbe Bay (Kobbefjorden). Another station was established by the Dutch in Houcker Bay (Virgohamna), on the north side of Danskøya in 1636. It was called the "Cookery of Harlingen." The remains of this station were seen by Frederich Martens in 1671.

The island is the location from which S. A. Andrée's Arctic balloon expedition of 1897 started. Andrée's hydrogen balloon crashed on the pack ice three days after its launch from Danskøya, and after wandering and drifting for nearly three months, the explorers finally perished on Kvitøya, also in Svalbard.

See also



  • Conway, W. M. 1906. No Man’s Land: A History of Spitsbergen from Its Discovery in 1596 to the Beginning of the Scientific Exploration of the Country. Cambridge: At the University Press.
  • Norwegian Polar Institute Place Names of Svalbard Database
  • Lundström, Sven (1997). "Vår position är ej synnerligen god…" Andréexpeditionen i svart och vitt. Borås: Carlssons förlag. (Swedish)

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