Banner image

Crossing the Antarctic Circle

Spend 6 full days exploring Antarctica with the Polar Circle at 66 degrees south as your most southerly objective, on board one of the most exciting new vessels. A maximum of just 132 passengers, with spacious cabins, state-of-the-art technology and optional kayaking, polar snorkelling or diving available.

Please send me the full itinerary for
Crossing the Antarctic Circle

Thank you for your enquiry

Trip type

Cross Polar Circle

Trip length

13-14 Days

From

$16,195 -$39,395

Ship Comfort

Comfort & Adventure

Crossing the Antarctic Circle - 13-14 Days - $16,195

Trip Summary and Itinerary Map

  • 6-9 full days exploring Antarctica (depending on your voyage length)
  • Join the exclusive club of Antarctic Circle visitors
  • Travelling on a small ship with a maximum of just 132 guests means faster logistics for getting off the ship
  • Antarctic operational experience since 1992
  • A low expedition staff to guest ratio of 1:8 to ensure a high level of personalisation
  • Explore the polar sea kayaking, snorkelling diving or snowshoeing (additional cost)
  • Complimentary parka jacket, post-voyage digital photo book and drinks with dinner

Start from Ushuaia and end at Ushuaia

Landmarks potentially visited on Crossing the Antarctic Circle

Operator's Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Ushuaia

Arrive in Ushuaia, where you will be met and transferred to your included downtown hotel (if you have taken preferred flights only).


Day 2: Exploring Ushuaia and Embarkation

This morning after a leisurely breakfast, your luggage will be collected for loading onto the ship and you have free time to explore the city. Ushuaia, capital of Tierra del Fuego, is located at the shores of the Beagle Channel and surrounded by the Martial Mountains, giving you a unique landscape in Argentina of mountains, sea, glaciers and forests.

There is an optional included afternoon catamaran cruise this afternoon. Meet back at the hotel lobby at 12.45 pm ready to transfer to the port at 1 pm. Here, you will board a comfortable catamaran and sail the Beagle Channel, towards the city’s iconic Les Eclaireurs Lighthouse. Crossing the Bridges Archipelago look out for colonies of sea lions and imperial cormorants on the rocky outcrops. Gulls, rock cormorants, skuas, petrels, albatrosses and cauquenes are also often sighted. Alternatively, enjoy your day at leisure and meet at the hotel lobby at 3.45 pm to be transferred to the pier for embarkation. 

As the ship pulls away from port, gather on the deck to commence your adventure with spectacular views over Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego. You'll have time to settle into your cabin before the briefings. Over the first evening, get to know your fellow passengers, crew and expedition team at a welcome dinner to celebrate the start of a thrilling adventure to Antarctica.


Day 3: Drake Passage Crossing

As you sail across the Drake Passage, make the most of your time getting comfortable with the motions of the sea. The expedition team prepare you for the first landing with important wildlife guidelines and biosecurity procedures, and start their educational lecture program to help you learn more about Antarctica's history, wildlife and environment.

Your wildlife experiences begin immediately as you enjoy watching and photographing the many seabirds, including majestic albatrosses and giant petrels following in the wake of the ship. They rise and fall effortlessly, using air currents created by the ship to gain momentum.


Day 4: Drake Passage & South Shetland Islands

Nearing the South Shetland Islands and the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula on day four , the excitement is palpable with everyone converging on one of the observation decks, watching for the first iceberg. The ocean takes on a whole new perspective once you are below the Antarctic Convergence and are surrounded by the surreal presence of floating ice sculptures. The memory of your first big iceberg sighting is likely to remain with you for a lifetime. Weather permitting, the team may attempt your first landing in Antarctica by late afternoon. 


Days 5-10: Antarctic Peninsula & Antarctic Circle

The experienced expedition team and Captain will use their expertise to design the voyage from day to day. This allows them to make best use of the prevailing weather, ice conditions and wildlife opportunities.

Because you are so far south, you will experience approximately 18-20 hours of daylight and the days can be as busy as you wish. You will generally make landings or Zodiac excursions two, and occasionally three, times a day; cruising along spectacular ice cliffs, watching whales that are feeding near the surface, and landing on the continent and its off-shore islands to visit penguin rookeries, seal haul outs, historic huts, and other favourite spots along the Peninsula. There will be plenty of time for sleep when you get home!

During this voyage, the ship will attempt to cross the invisible line of the Antarctic Circle at latitude 66 degrees South - this is certainly a special highlight for everyone and there may even be the opportunity to celebrate with a toast on the deck. In order to reach the Antarctic Circle, the ship will motor south every night and during meal times or when we are not ashore exploring.

As you reach and cross the circle, you may notice subtle changes in the Antarctic land and icescapes, and also in the distribution of wildlife. The waters at this time of year are rich with krill and so keep a look out for whales, particularly humpbacks and minkes. 


Days 11-12: Drake Passage Crossing

Today you enter the Drake Passage for the return journey to South America. With lectures and videos to complete your Antarctic experience, there is still plenty of time to enjoy the magic of Southern Ocean and the life that calls it home. There is time for reflection and discussion about what you have seen and experienced.


Day 13: Disembark in Ushuaia

During the early morning, you will cruise up the Beagle Channel, before quietly slipping into dock in Ushuaia, where we will be free to disembark around 0800, weather permitting.  A transfer to downtown Ushuaia before continuing to the airport is included in the cost of the voyage.

At the conclusion of the voyage, we do not recommend booking flights departing Ushuaia prior to 1200 on the day of disembarkation in case there are any delays.


PLEASE NOTE: 

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. Furthermore, it's important to understand that the charter flight(s) to/from Antarctica where applicable are particularly prone to weather, which requires a flexible flight schedule.

Why our customers love Swoop

The Antarctic Experts.
No Compromises

Depth Of Knowledge SVG

Our team has visited Antarctica over 150 times and has 100 collective years of polar experience, so from which trip is right for you to what shoes to bring - there’s no question we can’t answer.

Expert impartial advice at no extra cost

Expert Impartial Advice SVG

Choosing the right voyage is complicated, Swoop makes it easy. We offer no-nonsense advice on 1500 voyages across 30 ships to find you the right trip, cabin, price - and we don’t charge a fee.

The only B Corp certified Antarctic specialist

Ends Of The Earth SVG

We want to protect Antarctica for future generations - which is why we became a certified B Corp and set up our own conservation fund. So your adventures can be a force for good.

A full concierge service, unlike booking direct

With You SVG

We leave nothing to chance in delivering your perfect trip and have over 6500 happy travellers to show for it. With a dedicated Antarctic co-ordinator & support throughout - you’re in safe hands.

Customer review background image

What our customers think of Crossing the Antarctic Circle

Crossing the Antarctic Circle trips scored 4.3/5 from 35 reviews

10/10 - Besides meeting amazing people, the ship is beautiful, a staff that prepared delicious food for us, or the reception desk personnel that greeted you every time you walked by, and an excellent beyond words expedition staff; I never felt like I was just another passenger when I was out with the expedition team.

Travelled: February 2024

Debra Sharkey - USA

10/10 - The ship was fantastic, the ship staff were most excellent and attentive, and the expedition staff extremely knowledgeable. All the activities were well planned, exciting, and real pleasures to do. New and different and exciting adventures every day.

Travelled: February 2024

Charles Williams - USA

10 - It was truly a trip of a lifetime. My goal was to go below the Polar Circle. That was only the beginning of my incredible adventure. Every day was more inspiring than the next. What I was most pleased with was that being on such a small ship afforded us so much more than the large ships could provide.

Travelled: December 2023

Wendy Williamson - USA

10/10 - Amazing adventure.

Travelled: December 2023

Niall Trainor - UK

10/10 - We had so many amazing wildlife experiences. Our ship’s crew and expedition staff were all absolutely top notch and made sure our entire trip was perfect. They were flexible and worked with conditions to ensure the best possible experiences for us. We had so much fun.

Travelled: December 2023

Patti Shelton - USA

The awesome beauty of Antarctica is difficult, if not impossible, to put into words. My wife, Laura, and I read several books prior to the expedition, but nothing matched the experience. The most memorable moment was probably standing on the land for the first time. Everything there seemed larger than at home . . . and a great deal colder! A thought that struck me several times was that the Earth was its own and not necessarily meant for man. I was strictly a visitor to this creation.

Travelled: January 2023

Thomas Goodman - USA

Each of the Expedition team members were incredibly passionate and knowledgeable about their specific subjects. All were friendly. I really enjoyed A's sketching lesson. Ashley as team leader was amazing. Confident, no nonsense, caring, well liked by her team and all of us passengers.

Travelled: January 2023

Betsy Shake - USA

10/10 - Crossing the Antarctic Circle was the ultimate experience for me as I have also crossed the Arctic Circle.

Travelled: January 2023

Mary Hockaday - Australia

They really made us feel like a family on the ship. The staff was very friendly and knowledgeable in their respective fields.

Travelled: January 2023

John Buschman - USA

The trip cannot be put into words. To see and experience all that we were able to accomplish on our journey can only be experienced. We were fortunate in that we were able to get further south of the circle than we anticipated.

Travelled: January 2023

John Buschman - USA

The people made everything run very well, the service and food were excellent and everyone was helpful and friendly from every angle.

Travelled: January 2023

Timothy Sieck - USA

10/10 - The trip was absolutely fantastic! We had an amazing crew that jam-packed as many landings, activities, and zodiac cruises as possible into just 6 days on the peninsula. I enjoyed the citizen science and many lectures about Antarctic natural and human history. This is an experience that I will never forget!

Travelled: January 2023

Maricela Alaniz - USA

On our second day in Antarctica, we celebrated crossing the Antarctic circle. All guests and expedition guides gathered on deck 8 as we joined in an Antarctic circle ritual: stamping a circle on our foreheads! Afterwards, we enjoyed the most fantastic views of The Gullet - a narrow passageway surrounded by towering mountains covered in thick layers of ice. It was the most beautiful place I have ever seen!

Travelled: January 2023

Maricela Alaniz - USA

The expedition team were some of the most experienced and impressive group of people I have ever met. Many of them both led zodiac cruises and were knowledgeable experts in varying Antarctic subjects.

Travelled: January 2023

Maricela Alaniz - USA

10/10 - The team promised to take us south and explore, rather than just tick off boxes, and they delivered and tried to get us ashore as much as possible, which they did.

Travelled: January 2023

Suzanne Lang - South Africa

It was the right combination of luxury and comfort and excellent expedition leaders and lecturers. We also appreciated their years of experience in Antarctica.

Travelled: January 2023

Rebecca Klein - USA

10/10 - The ship, crew, and expedition team exceeded our expectations

Travelled: December 2022

Francis Smith - USA

The entire trip greatly exceeded all expectations! From the great weather affording us the opportunity to leave the ship on zodiac cruises, landings and other excursions twice most days, to also travelling as far south of the Antarctic Circle as we did.

Travelled: February 2022

Jamal Perry - USA

Cruising below the Antarctic circle near Crystal Sound (can't remember the exact location) and witnessing the otherworldly site of a sea of bergy bits, growlers and icebergs tightly packed together as far as the eye can see. Like a broken-up ice shelf with pieces so close it looked like you could hop from one to another for miles.

Travelled: February 2022

Jamal Perry - USA

Kayaking was fantastic, as well as the many zodiac cruises and landings on the different islands and historical sights.

Travelled: February 2022

Jamal Perry - USA

Best encounter with penguins was the final day. If you sat down, some of the more curious youngsters would come up to you and check you out. Made for some memorable pictures.

Travelled: February 2022

Tom Hoster - USA

Most memorable moment: kayaking south of the Antarctic Circle.

Travelled: February 2022

Tom Hoster - USA

Cruise was all it was cracked up to be. Kayaking was very special. Food was surprisingly good.

Travelled: February 2022

Tom Hoster - USA

Most memorable moment: the humpback whales all around us in the Lemaire Channel.

Travelled: February 2022

Tom Crowley - USA

The trip was perfectly designed. Allowed us to cross the Drake Passage by air and use the extra days to sail below the Antarctic circle. Greg Mortimer's leader - Flo - did an excellent job picking locations to land and zodiac as well.

Travelled: February 2022

Tom Crowley - USA

Expedition team were extremely knowledgeable and on task with any inquiries you might have. There were years of experience as the team had been in Antarctica a number of times.

Travelled: February 2022

Tom Crowley - USA

The staff on the Greg Mortimer exceeded any expectations for the entirety of the trip with their desire to give us the best experience possible in every way, from caring for us, our comfort, our nutrition to our desire for fun, and to see the micro and macro fauna.

Travelled: February 2022

Teresa Targosz - USA

It's hard to choose from so many memorable moments; every day I thought it was the best ever but I think I will say that the zodiac excursion across Paradise Bay with the whales right in front of us, or the cruise through Spert Islands channels and the iceberg graveyard with it all set off by the amazingly blue water. Also getting to 68 degrees south was incredible!

Travelled: February 2022

Jennifer Ruth - USA

I expected it to be an amazing trip and it was even better than expected. I don't think you can really be prepared for the experience.

Travelled: February 2022

Jennifer Ruth - USA

I loved all the zodiac trips; the landings were incredible too but I could do zodiacs all day every day. The zodiac across Paradise Bay and Spert Island were the best; we used the term "white water zodiacing" at Spert and it was so much fun!

Travelled: February 2022

Jennifer Ruth - USA

Everything was perfectly organized by Swoop. Fast, precise and very much in details. I can also say I had perfect advice which ship took for my Antarctica adventure. Great communication at all times. Would highly recommend.

Travelled: November 2018

Rafal Wilk - Ireland

I am very glad I booked with a polar specialist. I would have chosen a different itinerary if I had gone with a local travel agent, and I probably would not have enjoyed it. I also felt I was prepared for the trip.

Travelled: November 2017

Shawn Faessler - United States Of America

Review:

With her slick lines, small number of guests, well-priced balcony suites and onboard hot tub, this is one of the hottest ships in Antarctica right now.

Alex Mudd Head of Swoop Antarctica

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.

2024

2025

2026

Additional Notes

The 21-Dec-2024 departure is a special Christmas voyage lasting 14 days, with the extra day spent exploring the Antarctic Peninsula.

The 16-Jan-2025 and 29-Jan-2026 departures are 13-day sail-fly voyages cutting out the Drake Passage crossing in one direction. Your trip begins in Ushuaia with a pre-cruise night included. You will sail across the Drake Passage and spend 7 days exploring the Antarctic Peninsula. On Day 12 you will disembark the ship at King George Island and fly back to Punta Arenas, Chile (a 2 hour flight) where you have a post-cruise hotel night included.

The 23-Feb-2025, 29-Nov-2025 and 16-Dec-2025 departures are 13-day sailing voyages, starting and ending in Ushuaia.

Single Supplement And Child Policy

For those travelling solo who would like their own cabin, the single supplement is 1.5 times the cost of a single berth. Please contact us for details. There is no single supplement for passengers willing to share a cabin. 

Children aged 8 years old or over are welcome. There isn't any concession on pricing. 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.

Activity Cost Additional Information
Add on icon Kayaking Kayaking $1,295 An immersive full sea kayaking program for those who want to kayak multiple times (as often as weather and ice conditions allow). Prior kayaking experience to at least intermediate level is required and you must be able to do a wet exit to participate. Subject to weather and ice conditions. Booking in advance is essential. Available on select departures. Cost varies from USD $1295-1330.
Add on icon Polar diving Polar diving $1,260 Available on select departures. Prior cold water diving experience is mandatory.
Add on icon Polar snorkelling Polar snorkelling $640 Available on select departures. Cost varies from USD $640-800. No experience required. Dry suit provided.
Add on icon Photography Photography Complimentary All departures.
Add on icon Snowshoeing Snowshoeing $320 Available on select departures. Cost varies from USD $320-370.
Add on icon Paddling Paddling $640 Available on select departures. A gentler option staying closer to shore and using inflatable kayaks, in a group of maximum 6 participants. Includes multiple outings, subject to suitable weather and ice conditions. Suitable for novices and only offered in calm conditions. Booking in advance is essential.

Includes

  • Overnight hotel accommodation in Ushuaia on Day 1
  • A 3-in-1 waterproof polar expedition jacket
  • An experienced team of destination specialists and activity leaders
  • Captain's Welcome and Farewell drinks reception
  • Complimentary use of fitness centre
  • Voyage aboard the vessel as indicated in the itinerary
  • Accommodation during the voyage on full board basis
  • Beer, house wine and soft drinks with dinner
  • All shore excursions and zodiac activities
  • Educational lectures by expert onboard polar guides
  • Complimentary WiFi
  • Access to an onboard doctor and basic medical services
  • Loan of rubber boots for the voyage's duration
  • Comprehensive pre-departure information
  • Port taxes and any entry fees to historic landing sites
  • A digital photo book produced with photos and ship logs from your voyage

Excludes

  • Flights to and from points of embarkation/disembarkation
  • Any additional services before and after your voyage
  • Transfers not specific to the itinerary
  • Travel insurance or emergency evacuation charges
  • Optional adventure activities
  • Optional activity surcharges
  • Any visa, passport and vaccination expenses
  • Airport arrival or departure taxes
  • Items of a personal nature: laundry, beverages, etc
  • Additional onboard purchases (i.e. gift shop)
  • Gratuities for ship crew 

Questions about this Voyage?