The ultimate Antarctic adventure, this trip is specifically for the active traveller. Spend 6 days kayaking, hiking, camping, mountaineering and snowshoeing, all included in the price. A medium-sized expedition ship acts as your floating ‘basecamp’. Great value for money backed up by rave customer reviews.
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Trip Summary and Itinerary Map
- 6 full days in Antarctica = 12 planned ‘off ship’ excursions
- The widest selection of activities of any Antarctic voyage currently available
- Camping, kayaking, mountaineering and snowshoeing are all included
- A comfortable, homely (not luxury) 116 passenger ship
- Bivouac under the stars, instead of camping in a tent
Day 1: Departure from Ushuaia
In the afternoon you will embark from Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world located in Tierra del Fuego, Argentina. Sail across the waters of the Beagle Channel and beyond throughout the evening.
Days 2-3: At sea
During these two days you will sail across the Drake Passage. After crossing the Antarctic Convergence, you'll arrive in the circum-Antarctic up welling zone. In this area, you may see Wandering Albatrosses, Grey Headed Albatrosses, Black-browed Albatrosses, Light-mantled Albatrosses, Cape Petrels, Southern Fulmars, Wilson's Storm Petrels, Blue Petrels and Antarctic Petrels.
You'll experience the same salty breezes and rolling seas as those encountered by the great polar explorers, spotting the first icebergs as you near the South Shetland Islands.
Days 4-9: Antarctica
Sail directly to High Antartica, witnessing grey stone peaks sketched with snow, towers of broken blue-white ice, and dramatically diverse wildlife both below and above. You'll pass the snow-capped Melchior Islands and the Schollaert Channel between Brabant and Anvers Island.
The intended route for your adventure includes:
The Neumayer Channel – Here the ship will be positioned for the multi activity base camp. The protected waters around Wiencke Island will become your playground for all activities. In this alpine environment, there are great opportunities to scout the region on foot, by zodiac and during kayak trips.
Walkers will find opportunities to use snowshoes on hikes near the shore lines and the mountaineers will find their challenge by climbing hills and view points further inland, i.e. Jabet Peak (540 m). Naturally, all climbs and excursions are weather dependent. The plan is to anchor for two nights in order to enjoy two full activity days as well as two nights of camping.
Port Lockroy – After sailing through the Neumayer Channel, you may have the opportunity to visit the former British research station – now a museum and post office – of Port Lockroy on Goudier Island. You may also be able to partake in activities around Jougla Point, meeting gentoo penguins and blue-eyed shags. There are also great opportunities for kayaking and camping, and when the contains are right, you can even snowshoe around the shore.
Pléneau and Petermann Islands – If the ice allows it, the ship will journey on through the spectacular Lemaire Channel to Pléneau and Petermann Islands, where you can find Adelie penguins and blue-eyed shags. There is also a good change you'll encounter humpback whales, minke whales and fin whales, in addition to leopard seals.
Whilst here, take part in a kayaking trip, glacier walk, or an ambitious mountaineering challenge, aiming for the summit of Mt. Demaria (640 m) at Waddington Bay. A visit to one of the scientific stations in Antarctica will give you a glimpse into the life of modern Antarcticans working on the White Continent. Further south, there may be time to visit the Ukrainian Vernadsky Station, receiving a warm welcome from the station crew.
Neko Harbour – Set foot on the Antarctic Continent once more, in a magnificent landscape with close-up views of mammoth glaciers. Explore surrounded by alpine peaks, on a hike, by zodiac cruise or kayak, or climb up to the highest grounds of a glacier. The night will be spent camping at Neko Harbour or closer to Paradise Bay – setting up camp on the ice like a true polar explorer.
Errera Channel – Possible sites include Danco Island and Cuverville Island, as well as the lesser known, but equally picturesque, Orne Island and Georges Point on Rongé Island.
Melchior Islands – On your last day of near-shore activities you will pass these islands headed towards the open sea. Keep a lookout for humpback whales in Dallmann Bay. You might also shoot for Half Moon Islands, with hopeful encounters with Chinstrap Penguins and Weddell Seals out on the beach.
Days 10-11: At sea towards Ushuaia
As you make your way north you are again followed by a great selection of seabirds while crossing the Drake Passage – making for a far from lonely return voyage.
Day 12: Ushuaia
Arrive in Ushuaia in the morning and disembark after breakfast.
NOTES: Activities are offered once during the voyage. Antarctica is a wonderful, wild destination; because of this it is not guaranteed that every Basecamp departure will offer all activities.
This itinerary is for guidance only as each voyage will vary depending on ice and weather conditions, and opportunities to see wildlife. Flexibility is key and all part of the adventure of an expeditionary cruise.
What our customers think
Most memorable moment was seeing penguins for the first time as we were on the mountaineering walk. Chinstrap penguins - they were so close! 🥰
Sarah Gillett Switzerland December 2019
This was an absolutely spectacular trip. We booked for and achieved all of the activities and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves in fantastic weather. Both clients and staff/crew on board were very friendly and the big surprise was the amount and quality of the food.
Gill & Richard Starling United Kingdom December 2018
The trip lived up to expectations, we have already recommended to others. And with our active lifestyle, the basecamp experience was a great match.
Travis & Kalli Texas December 2017
For active people who wanted to do everything, this was absolutely the best trip. First and foremost, the entire crew was excellent, everyone was professional, knowledgeable and hard working. Having all the excursions, kayaking, mountaineering, etc. included made it stress-free and a lot of fun. As an active person, I think this is the best way to see the continent.
Nick Canada December 2017
The expedition staff far surpassed all my expectations. My favourite moment was just sitting with the penguin colonies and watching them interact with each other. An absolutely incredible experience!
Jill Pickett United States Of America December 2019
An amazing experience, it was beyond my expectations.
Rebecca Kronick Guatemala November 2018
The expedition team was one of a kind. They were incredibly talented, knowledgeable and would sit and discuss anything at length.
Nancy Jones Canada December 2019
Loved it! We saw lots of penguins, whales, and some seals! We got more and better pictures than expected :)
Kayla Kissane United States Of America December 2019
Kayaking and snowshoeing were brilliant. The highlight was the grandeur of the landscape.
Prue & Dominique Australia November 2017
This was truly a trip of a lifetime. The staff ensured it was a safe and incredible experience. The views were beyond imagination. To be a guest in such a magical place was a true privilege.
Carla & Ross MacHattie Canada December 2017
The highlight of the trip was mountain climbing in a snowstorm. I was surprised by a lot of interesting and accomplished people.
Shawn Faessler United States Of America November 2017
This was truly a trip of a lifetime. The staff ensured it was a safe and incredible experience. The other guests were interesting, like minded individuals. The wildlife was up close and personal. To be a guest in such a magical place was a true privilege.
Carla & Ross Canada January 2018
The ship's crew - both staff and guides - were amazing and there were great fellow travellers too.
Connie Parkinson New Zealand December 2018
We totally enjoyed and were absolutely happy with all the activities, including shore landings, mountaineering, kayaking, camping and the zodiac cruises.
Nora & Zoltan Patsenker Switzerland November 2018
About The Ship
- A 3-4* expedition vessel for 108 guests
- Contemporary feel after 2009 re-build
- A quiet diesel-electric propulsion system
- 1D ice class rating
- Kayaking, camping, mountaineering, hiking
- Rubber boots are provided on loan
Antarctica Basecamp Adventure
Prices, Departures and Inclusions
Prices quoted below are per person based on 2 people sharing. Cabin availability changes all the time so please contact us for up-to-date details and information on specific cabin availability.
* Note: Prices are per person. Paid in USD ($) - figure above is based on today's exchange rate. Actual cost $8050
Please note, departures on the following dates are 13 days long:
13-Jan-2022, 25-Jan-2022 , 06-Feb-2022. There are two departures on 08-Mar-2022. The first voyage is 13 days long and the second (cheaper) departure is 12 days long.
10-Nov-2022, 22-Nov-2022, 24-Nov-2022, 22-Dec-2022, 23-Dec-2022, 20-Feb-2023, 08-Mar-2023
The 06-Dec-2022 departure is a special "Exploring Anvers Islands and Flandres Bay" voyage - includes all free optional adventure activities, plus navigational workshops.
The optional adventure activities are offered once during the voyage. Antarctica is a wonderful, wild destination; because of this it is not guaranteed that every Basecamp departure will offer all activities.
Single Supplement And Child Policy
For those travelling solo and want their own cabin, the single supplement is 1.7 times the cost of a single berth, please contact us for details. However there is no single supplement for passengers willing to share a cabin.
Children aged 3 years or over are welcome. On select departures, children under 16 may receive a 40% discount, please contact us for details.
Optional Adventure Activities
Enhance your trip with the following add ons. Limited places per activity.
Get in contact to check availability.
|Kayaking||Complimentary||Basic competency required.|
|Photography||Complimentary||Participation with own camera.|
|Snowshoeing||Complimentary||Dependent on snow conditions. Snow shoes provided.|
|Mountaineering||Complimentary||Crampons provided. Mountaineering boots are needed.|
- Voyage aboard the vessel as indicated in the itinerary
- Accommodation and meals during the voyage on full board including snacks, coffee and tea
- All shore excursions and zodiac activities
- Optional adventure activities such as camping, kayaking, snowshoe/hiking, mountaineering, photography workshops (all weather dependent)
- Educational lectures by expert onboard polar guides
- Access to an onboard doctor and basic medical services
- Loan of rubber boots and snowshoes for the voyage's duration
- Comprehensive pre-departure information
- Port taxes and any entry fees to landing sites
- Luggage transfer from pick-up point to the vessel on embarkation day
- Pre-scheduled group transfer from the vessel to the airport directly after disembarkation
- Flights to and from points of embarkation/disembarkation
- Any additional pre/post land services, including meals
- Transfers not specified in the itinerary
- Visa, passport and any vaccination expenses
- Airport arrival or departure taxes
- Personal travel insurance
- Items of a personal nature - laundry, beverages, etc
- Customary staff gratuity at the end of the voyage
- Additional onboard purchases (i.e. gift shop)