Reasons to go

    • An unparalleled wildlife hotspot - the Serengeti of the Southern Ocean - home to some of the world’s greatest concentrations of wildlife
    • Experience some of the most majestic, unspoiled and least visited scenery on earth
    • mecca for photographers, both amateur and professional alike
    • A rich history of fascinating characters including sealers, whalers and early explorers from The Heroic Era, including Shackleton
    • Vast king penguin colonies numbering over 200,000 individual birds, alongside countless albatross, elephant and fur seals

    Discover South Georgia


    At the height of the breeding season, there is said to be more wildlife here per square foot than any other place on the planet. South Georgia’s prodigious wildlife includes penguins, birds, whales and seals, and the numbers are absolutely staggering. Their lack of fear of humans also makes them incredibly curious, this is one of the best places in the world to be approached by an inquisitive penguin, or lolloping seal.

    South Georgia Cruises

    © Renato Granieri

    Landing sites

    The diversity of landing sites on this small island make it one of the more spectacular places to visit in Antarctica. From a colony of 300,000 king penguins at St Andrews Bay, to Gold Harbour where the sun's rays bathe hanging glaciers in to make them glow in yellows and oranges, the scale of opportunities for wildlife spotting and taking in the scenery is unmatched.

    This is also one of the richest places for history - the sleepy village of Grytviken protects the grave of Sir Ernest Shackleton, and you can even hike in the man himself's footsteps on the Shackleton Walk, from Fortuna Bay to Stromness where he raised the alarm in 1916.

    Swoop Says background image

    Loli says

    On South Georgia we sometimes had a real challenge to find a safe landing place for the zodiacs because the beach was so packed with elephant and fur seals. The quantity of animals is staggering.

    Loli Figueroa Polar Specialist

    Plan your trip to South Georgia

    When to go

    The visitor season is limited to late October through to March. During these months the weather is at its more benign, though still highly unpredictable! As a rule, November and March are chillier, but the softer light is favourable for photographers. More important are the nuances among the wildlife:

    • November - Battling bull elephant seals at this time make for great drama and photo opportunities
    • December - Utter density of animals can make certain landings a real challenge
    • January - Prion Island, a favourite for birders due to the albatross, becomes accessible from 7th Jan
    South Georgia Cruises

    King penguin and a fur seal in South Georgia

    Tips on choosing the right voyage

    As part of a longer cruise, most trips will also visit the Falklands and the Antarctic Peninsula, however, a select few voyages focus solely on South Georgia. On a once-in-a-lifetime trip like this, finding the right voyage is crucial, so to help you get started, here are a few tips on key areas you should be considering:

    • The itinerary: There’s surprising variation between trips of the time actually spent in South Georgia, between 3 - 6 days . Some voyages pass by quickly on their way to the Peninsular or the Falklands, others take advantage of the wealth of landing sites and stay for longer
    South Georgia Cruises
    • Ship size & stability: Given the amount of time you’ll be spending on board ship on the Southern Ocean, carefully choosing the right ship pays real dividends
    • Cabin size: For the length of trip it's definitely worth considering a little extra room where you can have some privacy when booking your cabin
    • Calibre of staff: If top-notch guides are important to you, there are significant variations between ships in the calibre and staff-to-passenger ratio.
    Kings penguins at dusk, South Georgia, Antarctica

    Kings penguins at dusk, South Georgia

    Comfort & adventure

    Daily landings and adventurous activities abound, but with the option of coming back to a more luxurious cabin, or your own private balcony.

    Luxury & fine dining

    The ultimate Antarctic cruises. Bright, spacious cabins, exquisite food, and the highest standard of service throughout.

    Authentic expedition

    Functional vessels with heaps of character, trips aboard these ships feel truly expeditionary. Here, it is all about the quality of the landings, and expertise of the brilliant expedition leaders.

    Customer review background image

    What our customers think of South Georgia Cruises

    South Georgia Cruises trips scored 4/5 from 11 reviews

    Customer Image

    South Georgia is really special. The fact that we missed it on our first Antarctic trip is the major reason we went back.

    Travelled: February 2018

    Cindy & Nor - Washington

    Customer Image

    The highlights were the Shackleton history and being able to stand on the top of the pass where the trio looked down on the whaling base at Stromness - their destination.

    Travelled: November 2017

    Neill - New Zealand

    Customer Image

    South Georgia was simply amazing and quite overwhelming in its abundance of wildlife and history. To have king penguins filled with curiosity and pecking on our boots was unexpected and something we’ll never forget.

    Travelled: December 2015

    Phil & Mickey - Australia

    So many once in a life-time moments. I loved the wildlife encounters: tens of thousands of penguins on the beach; interactions of penguins and fur seal pups. Amazing to watch a leopard seal hunt and catch a penguin. Who knew that icebergs could be so amazing and fascinating? Read the full review

    Travelled: February 2022

    Scott Hunter - USA

    We saw seven different penguin species up close and personal. Five different seal species with amazing encounters with the apex predator "leopard seal". Watching a leopard seal hunt and catch a penguin was nature at its rawest and finest. We saw the complete circle of life from fur seal pups to the demise of a poor gentoo penguin. There were times when the water was boiling with fur seal pups frolicking in the waves. Read the full review

    Travelled: February 2022

    Scott Hunter - USA

    One of my aims was to walk with king penguins and to see them in huge crowds. I did this. And to see king penguins on the same ground as sheep was just extraordinary. That moment in the Falklands is indeed memorable. Read the full review

    Travelled: February 2022

    Sue Gatenby - UK

    10+++++! It was just stunning from start to finish. I had been to the Antarctic Peninsula in 2018 so knew about the peace, space, clear air, vastness and the gentoos. Being there again was truly special. Spending 18 days looking out at wonderful wildlife, vast areas of nothing except sea and icebergs, listening to informative lectures and being without TV/internet/phones was bliss. Read the full review

    Travelled: February 2022

    Sue Gatenby - UK

    Having time to stand and watch animal behaviour was special too. We were very fortunate to see all the penguin species (except emperors of course). Seals we saw: leopard, Weddell, crabeater, elephant & bays full of fur seal pups. Whales were often spotted: humpbacks, fin, sei and one minke, I think. Too many bird species to list but getting close to an albatross chick trying to stretch its wings was special and I saw a caracara with a dead penguin in its beak. Yes it lived up to, and exceeded, expectations. Read the full review

    Travelled: February 2022

    Sue Gatenby - UK

    Most memorable moment: the penguin colonies on South Georgia. Each time seeing the massive colonies on South Georgia I was blown away. It was beyond words. Read the full review

    Travelled: February 2022

    Ron Hart - USA

    Most memorable moments: all kayaking, but especially through ice in Antarctica and coming upon a leopard seal on the ice. Stepping on to the Antarctic continent. Abundant wildlife in South Georgia. Stunning scenery Read the full review

    Travelled: February 2022

    Alison Collins - Canada

    Except for seeing the emperor...we saw all the penguins. And the many. My favorite encounter was having a very curious penguin come up and bite my camera lens. Wow! Read the full review

    Travelled: December 2021

    Gordon Pickering - USA

    South Georgia was the highlight with so much wildlife and the history. The museum in Grytviken and the church were also very interesting. All the penguins, thousands of them at a time, was very overwhelming at times. Read the full review

    Travelled: December 2021

    Gordon Pickering - USA

    The scale and beauty of South Georgia and Antarctica was beyond my expectations. A humpback whale came near the ship to check us out while we were at anchor in Fournier Bay. The whale surfaced, blew, rolled and hung around the ship for quite a while before moving on. The clear water made it easy to see the whale just under the surface. Many good photos and videos were captured! Read the full review

    Travelled: February 2020

    Monica Scott - United States Of America

    The wildlife in South Georgia was amazing! I would recommend everybody who makes the journey to Antartica to make sure that they include South Georgia in their itinerary. Read the full review

    Travelled: December 2019

    Jodie Pigman - United States Of America

    The combination of the Falklands, South Georgia and the Antarctic Peninsula was terrific for the scenery and wildlife. It certainly met my expectations. There were lots of magical moments. Every day was full of anticipation and delight. Read the full review

    Travelled: December 2018

    Patricia Schenkkan - United States Of America

    The South Georgia expedition was a superb experience in every way for my group of 17 participants (including myself). South Georgia landscapes and wildlife viewing opportunities are the best of the best in the Southern Ocean! Read the full review

    Travelled: November 2018

    Audrey Benedict - United States Of America

    If you don't visit South Georgia you're missing the 'jewel in the crown'. When we did this trip in 2008 the expedition leader in her opening remarks described South Georgia as "the place where God goes for his holidays".

    Travelled: February 2018

    RSW & MW - United Kingdom

    We would definitely recommend including South Georgia and the Falklands - whilst we weren't quite prepared for the days at sea to get between these places, they ended up being a wonderfully restorative part of our holiday.

    Travelled: December 2017

    Tish & Obadiah - Massachusetts

    South Georgia was the highlight of the trip. Be sure to choose an itinerary that includes it and you won't regret it. Salisbury Plain and St Andrews were amazing. I also loved Deception Island - I would recommend doing the polar plunge.

    Travelled: November 2017

    Janet - California

    Too many highlights to pick out one in particular, but South Georgia is a must do. Landscapes were simply awesome. The wildlife was much more plentiful than I imagined, also unafraid and curious.

    Travelled: February 2017

    Kay and David - UK

    South Georgia was a delightful surprise – far more to offer than I could have imagined. I knew about the whaling industry & Shackleton but was thrilled with the number of kayak outings & landings we made here. The old whaling stations were particularly overwhelming & emotional.

    Travelled: January 2017

    Freda - UK

    The king penguins on Salisbury Plain were something I've never experienced before - unbelievable; the wildlife was fantastic.

    Travelled: March 2016

    Glyn - UK

    South Georgia Cruises: FAQs

    • How long can I spend in South Georgia?

      This will very much depend on which voyage you choose, most voyages spend between 3- 5 days exploring South Georgia, while the maximum is 8 days.

    • How much luggage am I allowed?

      A crucial question for photographers in particular. As ship’s don’t suffer from the same weight limitations as airlines, there are no restrictions once on board the vessel. However, you need to check weight limits on the domestic flights, which are typically only 15-20kg for hold luggage.

    • Can my food requirements be catered?

      The answer is ‘Yes’. The kitchens on all ships are very experienced at catering for all food requirements, whether you are vegetarian, gluten free, lactose intolerant, or just prefer to avoid certain foods.

    • When should I start to plan my trip?

      The short answer is as soon as possible. There are far fewer of these longer voyages than the regular trip to the Antarctic Peninsula only. Because they're so spectacular, they're also in very high demand.

      To be confident of securing your preferred choice you should start planning as early as possible, and then ideally booking 12 - 18 months in advance. Early booking discounts are sometimes available.

      Voyage dates are typically released by the different boat operators between 15 - 20 months in advance.

    • How much does a cruise to South Georgia cost?

      Prices start from around $8,500 per person, but vary markedly depending on the trip, ship, timing of travel and cabin category you choose. 

      While discounts are rare, those people booking early can take advantage of early booking incentives of up to USD $1,500 per person offered on select trips.

      It's a substantial investment, but in well over a decade of helping people experience South Georgia, nobody has ever been remotely disappointed.

    Plan your trip

    When to visit South Georgia

    When to visit South Georgia

    Hailed as the Serengeti of the Southern Ocean, South Georgia is bursting with life throughout the cruise season, so choosing when to take your voyage will ultimately depend on what…

    Discover More
    South Georgia Island

    South Georgia Island

    South Georgia may be a cartographic speck on the map and one of the least visited territories on Earth, but it's a true gem amidst the roiling southern ocean. Spectacular …

    Discover More
    South Georgia Ships

    South Georgia Ships

    The lack of hotels and limited infrastructure on South Georgia necessitates visitors to be fully self-sufficient. Expedition ships offer both the amenities of a floating base …

    Discover More

    Looking for a shorter cruise?

    Whilst a magnificent sea journey, the number of vacation days required to visit South Georgia can be a big constraint. Instead, reach the spectacular Antarctic Peninsula in just two days sailing, or two hours flying, one of the most accessible and dramatic places on the White Continent.

    Antarctic Peninsula cruises

    Ready to plan your Antarctic adventure?



    We'll spend some time listening to your aspirations, then discuss the kind of experience that might suit you.



    Next we'll discuss the options, shortlist the best trips for you and present you our impartial recommendations.



    We'll place a 24 hour hold on your preferred option - without obligation - whilst we talk through the details.

    With over 50 years of Antarctic experience between us, we can help guide you to exactly the right trip for you.