Traversing the Antarctic Circle
For an unparalleled Polar Circle experience spending 8 full days in Antarctica, choose this February departure. Head south when penguin and whale activity is at its peak, accompanied by a highly experienced team. This elegant 139 passenger ship combines real comfort and enhanced stability with a keen sense for adventure. For an unparalleled Polar Circle experience spending 8 full days in Antarctica, choose this February departure. Head south when penguin and whale activity is at its peak, accompanied by a highly experienced team. Read more...
Trip Summary —
- 8 full days in Antarctica, the longest time that any voyage spends down there
- We love this ship for its high levels of comfort, unparalleled calibre of staff and its spirit of adventure
- Only one departure in January when the channels are most ice free
- All alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks are included for the entirety of the voyage
- Camping and kayaking (additional cost)
- Complimentary 2 night stay in a 5* hotel in Ushuaia, with parka jacket and 200Mb free Wi-Fi
Complimentary pre-arrival day: Ushuaia
Don't worry about a missed flight or connection at the start of your adventure by taking advantage of an optional free night at Ushuaia's finest 5 star hotel (please enquire for more details).
Day 1: Ushuaia
Arrive in Ushuaia anytime today; enjoy a complimentary stay at Ushuaia's finest 5 star hotel (please enquire for more details). Explore the trails, take a spa, head into town, or relax and soak in the surroundings. Our optional evening briefing is a great opportunity for you to ask questions and to meet some of your fellow travelers. Enjoy a complimentary buffet breakfast in the morning.
Day 2: Embarkation
Today is the first day of our adventure. As we board the Hebridean Sky in Ushuaia, the world's southernmost city at the tip of Argentina, and start to become familiar with 'our home' for the next 13 days, we cannot help but wonder about the exciting journey ahead of us. In the early evening, we set sail and begin our voyage leaving behind Ushuaia and charting a course through the Beagle Channel.
Days 3-4: Drake Passage
Crossing the Drake Passage, there is so much excitement in the air as we make our way ever closer to the white continent. Guests eagerly soak up the friendly atmosphere onboard as our numerous Polar experts prepare us for our adventures with presentations on everything Antarctic, from wildlife to history.
Eventually, we will cross the Antarctic Convergence where we will notice a distinct drop in temperature as we enter the waters of the Antarctic Ocean. Those keen in Citizen Science can take part in collecting salinity samples, wind and temperature readings along the way. On our sea crossing we will witness many spectacular sights from icebergs to an array of seabirds and even several whale species, some of which are known on occasion to fully breach from the sea.
Days 5-12: Antarctic Peninsula
Our first sight of land will likely be that of the South Shetland Islands. These highly volcanic islands offer amazing abundance and beauty. We may visit Half Moon Island nestled inside Livingston’s eastern shore, or conditions permitting visit historic Deception Island. Being further north, sub-Antarctic species are more commonly found here, including Chinstrap penguins and Southern Elephant seals. As we head south across the Bransfield Strait, we sail towards the Antarctic Circle.
From our most southerly point (south of the Antarctic Circle), we will make our way back north, cruising through the narrow waterways and channels of the Antarctic Peninsula. Spectacular waterways such as Crystal Sound, or the living museums of Detaille or Horseshoe Island are some of the less visited places of the Antarctic Peninsula. These waters are significantly further south making sea ice more common. The ice ultimately directs what adventures we will have in these lesser travelled waterways.
Heading north we enter Gerlache Strait and Trinity Coast. Here we may explore picturesque Neko Harbor, sheltered Paradise Harbor, the Humpback Whale favored Wilhelmina Bay, the striking Lemaire Channel, the wildlife-filled Penola Channel, or the majestic Neumayer Channel. We may stop at an active scientific base such as Poland’s Arctowksi or Ukraine’s Vernadskiy as well as a historic base such as U.K.’s Port Lockroy or Wordie House. Adelie, Chinstrap and Gentoo Penguins abound, and Weddell and Crabeater seals are often found hauled out to rest along with predatory Leopard seals and the assertive Antarctic Fur Seal. Minke and Humpback whales are frequent visitors in the late season and Orca sightings are also common.
Days 13-14: Drake Passage
As we leave this magical place and make our way north, heading again across the Antarctic Convergence and the Drake Passage we have no doubt that time will be spent sharing and reflecting on the wonderful experiences of the last few days. Sailing down the Beagle Channel, we celebrate the conclusion of our Polar expedition at a special slideshow and dinner.
Day 15: Disembarkation
As we arrive back in Ushuaia, it is time to say farewell to your crew and fellow travellers. Morning disembarkation lets you catch a flight to Buenos Aires or stay in Ushuaia for more sights and adventure.
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.
What our customers think
from Swoop customers
who've been on this trip
The experience was fantastic, all and more than we had hoped for!! The highlight was the enormity of the scale of the peninsular and the pristine, untouched solitude of the environment. The landscape was overwhelming and all encompassing, with a grandeur that we had not expected.February 2018
About The Ship
- Highest ice-class rating available (1A Super)
- Cruising speed of 14.5 knots means less time at sea and more time exploring
- Capped at only 139 guests - plenty of space
- State-of-the-art stabilising system ensures comfort in open water
- Sauna, fitness centre and heated pool
- Dedicated laboratory for Citizen Science
- All-inclusive drinks and 2 hotel nights in Ushuaia included
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.
Twin Window Suite
- All airport/ hotel/ ship transfers on day 1
- All alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages
- Complimentary parka jacket
- Daily international news service
- Post voyage digital log
- Two pre-voyage 5* hotel nights in Ushuaia
- Free public internet and 200Mb of Wi-Fi
- Voyage aboard the vessel as indicated in the itinerary
- Accommodation and meals during the voyage on full board
- All shore excursions and zodiac activities
- Educational lectures by expert onboard polar guides
- 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
- Any flights to and from points of embarkation/disembarkation
- Any additional pre/post land services, including meals
- Transfers not specified in the itinerary
- Optional non-complimentary adventure activities (e.g. kayaking)
- Visa, passport and any vaccination expenses
- Airport arrival or departure taxes
- Personal travel insurance
- Items of a personal nature, e.g. laundry, beverages and communication
- Customary staff gratuity at the end of the voyage
- Additional onboard purchases (i.e. gift shop)
Single Supplement And Child Policy
For those travelling solo who would like their own cabin, the single supplement is 1.7 times the cost of a single berth. Please contact us for details. There is no single supplement for solo passengers willing to share a cabin.
Children aged 12 years old or over are welcome. There isn't any concession on pricing.
Optional Adventure Activities
Enhance your Antarctic experience by choosing from these extraordinary once-in-a-lifetime add-on activities. All gear is provided for you. Limited places per activity.
All departures. Basic competency required.
2020/2021 rate = US$250. 2021/22 rate = US$295. Limited spaces.
Questions about this Voyage?
Our team is happy to answer your trip queries. Just fill out the form and we’ll be in touch as soon as possible.
Free, impartial & expert advice
We don't charge for our advice and you won’t pay any extra. Our Polar experts can help guide you.
Pre & Post Antarctica
We can also help you arrange and and plan your flights and additional time in Argentina or Chile.
Travel comes with responsibility. We’re offsetting all our customers’ trips, but this is just the start.