Trip Summary and Itinerary Map
- 12 days ‘off ship’ exploring – The Falklands (1), South Georgia (5), Antarctic Peninsula (6)
- A city tour of Ushuaia before setting sail from south Patagonia
- Explore on a new state-of-the-art expedition vessel, with X-BOW technology making for the smoothest travel
- Optional kayaking and snorkelling activities (additional cost)
- Complimentary Ushuaia hotel stay + parka jacket
Day 1 – Arrive in Ushuaia:
Arrive in Ushuaia, where you will be met by your Expedition Guide and transferred to your downtown hotel (preferred flights only). Ushuaia, capital city of the province of Tierra del Fuego, is located on the shores of the Beagle Channel and is surrounded by the Martial Range, which offers a unique landscape as a result of the combination of mountains, sea, glaciers and forest. Spend the rest of the day getting familiar with the world's southernmost city, perhaps visiting a café, museum, or setting out on a local hike.
Day 2 – Embarkation:
Wake up to breakfast at the hotel, before exploring Ushuaia further on a half-day city tour. The tour will visit The Mission, Brown and Solier neighbourhoods, where you can see old houses belonging to the first families in Tierra del Fuego, such as the Beban, the Pastoriza, and the Ramos. Head 11km (6.8 miles) out of town to Martial Glacier. The chair lift ride up to the trails leading to the glacier provides wonderful views of Ushuaia town and the whole region, as well as the Beagle Channel and its islands. Afterwards, continue to the End of the World Museum where you can explore the exhibitions explaining the history of Tierra del Fuego.
In the afternoon, you will transfer to the pier where your expedition team will warmly welcome you on board the ship. As you set off, gather on the deck to launch the adventure with spectacular views over Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego. You’ll have time to settle into your cabin before some briefings.
Day 3 – At Sea:
Beginning the trip across the South Atlantic Ocean towards the Falklands (Las Malvinas), you'll be able to make the most of your time onboard. The expedition team will prepare you for your first landing with important wildlife guidelines and biosecurity procedures, and also start the lecture program which will take you on a journey of the region’s history, wildlife and environment.
The wildlife experiences begin 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 skilfully, using air currents created by the ship to gain momentum.
Day 4 – The Falklands (Las Malvinas):
Located 477km/296 miles east of southern Argentina, The Falklands Islands are a unique mix of wildlife hotspot and inhabited outpost. An archipelago of over 700 islands, but consisting of two main islands, East and West, only seven of the islands are inhabited. The cold nutrient-rich waters surrounding the islands makes them a prime location for marine life including seabirds and seals. During your time in thes Falklands, you'll explore the historic Stanley town on a short walk, and then head to Sealion Island, located in East Falkland’s south, where a unique experience of the island's nature reserve awaits.
In 2009, Sealion Island was officially declared a National Nature Reserve, with no introduced predators residing here. You'll be exposed to the raw beauty and solitude of the island, as you enjoy the company of elephant seals and sea lions, seen resting and playing on the beaches. A plethora of birds such as thrushes, finches, tussac birds and Magellanic penguins will also be witnessed on land, while pods of orcas, Peale’s dolphins and leopard seals can be regularly seen in the waters around the island.
The island’s southern giant petrels, with a wingspan of two metres, act as a welcoming party to ships as they approach Sealion Island. Other company you can expect to have includes Macaroni and king penguins and striated and crested caracaras, as well as the rockhopper, gentoo and Magellanic penguins that come here to breed.
Days 5 to 7 – At Sea:
Be ready to be captivated by the ceaseless flight of the many seabirds that follow the ship's wake, as you travel to South Georgia. The seabirds skilfully use the air currents created by the ship to gain momentum, providing lucky travellers with sightings of close proximity.
As the wind is usually prevailing on this leg of the journey, it is difficult to estimate the precise arrival time in South Georgia. The lecture program will continue to highlight all of the incredible sights that the region is host to, while you'll also have good time to spot the sea birds and watch for whales at your own pace.
If time and weather conditions permit, you may pass close to Shag Rocks, a fascinating group of jagged rocky islets protruding from the sea, in the proximity of South Georgia.
Days 8 to 12 – South Georgia:
We reach South Georgia and you will enjoy the next few days marvelling at the incredible scenes. Beaches burst with the activity of enormous colonies of king penguins and fur seals jostling for space. You'll be surrounded by jaw-dropping mountain landscapes as you learn of Shackleton’s epic rescue journey. Out on Zodiacs, navigate around the bays where raucous fur seals play, and land on pebble beaches to meet curious penguins. Challenge yourself on hikes and enjoy rarely visited dazzling pristine landscapes.
Just a speck in the vastness of the South Atlantic Ocean, and lying wholly within the Antarctic Convergence, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands are a life-sustaining haven to some of the world’s largest congregations of wildlife. The surrounding sea is one of the most productive areas on Earth and supports the life of millions of seals, whales, penguins and other seabirds.
A mountain range forms the spine of this long, narrow island. Between the mountains, shattered glaciers carve their way through tussock grass to the deeply indented coastline – a landscape that is synonymous with the epic expedition of survival by Shackleton, Worsley, and Crean. Abandoned rusting whaling stations and remnants of explorers reflect a time of long ago, while summer workers conduct scientific and regeneration projects.
As you explore South Georgia, you will have the opportunity to reflect on Shackleton’s epic journey. If conditions permit, the plan is to follow in Shackleton, Worsley, and Crean’s footsteps and complete the final leg of their walk from Fortuna Bay to Stromness.
A sample of some of the anticipated landings in South Georgia include:
Grytviken – originally a Norwegian sealing and whaling station, it was finally closed in 1965. Sir Ernest Shackleton’s body was laid to rest at Grytviken.
St Andrews Bay – the long black sandy beach fronts a broad valley that stretches well back from the sea. This valley shelters the largest king penguin colony on South Georgia.
Godthul – imagine indented bays lined with bleached whale bones, teeming with fur seals and penguins just ‘hanging about’. A careful descent leads you to a magnificent macaroni penguin rookery.
Salisbury Plains – Salisbury Plain has one of the largest king penguin colonies on South Georgia. With about 100,000 pairs, the shore and beach can be completely crammed with penguins. Along the beach you will also find fur and elephant seals in the mix.
Fortuna Bay & Stromness – Fortuna Bay is surrounded by high mountains with glaciers pushing down from the high country to terminate in the open valley that is home to a small king penguin colony. This is where Shackleton, Worsley, and Crean descended from the treacherous glaciers of the interior on their way to Stromness whaling station.
Days 13 & 14 – At Sea:
Journey on across the Scotia Sea towards the White Continent. During these two days at sea, you'll be able to make the most of admiring the views of the surroundings, as well as the lovely atmosphere and range of things to do onboard. Engage with the lectures aiding your discovery of the continent, treat yourself to a massage in the wellness centre, share stories with your fellow travellers, or work out in the gym; how you choose to spend your days at sea is entirely up to you.
Days 15 to 20 – Antarctic Peninsula, South of the Antarctic Circle:
Over the next few days, depending on ice and weather conditions, the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula is your playground to explore. The experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will plan each day's landings 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. The aim is for two landings or zodiac excursions each day; cruising along spectacular ice cliffs; following 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 a few of the other favourite spots along the peninsula.
There are many places you could visit and the itinerary is deliberately flexible to accommodate choice of the best spots each day. A sample of some of the types of places where you may cruise through, land, hike, photograph or view spectacular wildlife include:
Beautiful protected bays around the Antarctic Peninsula surrounded by magnificent peaks and spectacular glaciers, areas that are havens for whales as you keep our eyes open for humpbacks, orcas, minkes, and crabeater seals while exploring by zodiac.
Wildlife-rich islands where glaciers and mountains dominate the vista and you can see large chinstrap penguin colonies tucked in between basaltic turrets coloured by yellow and orange lichens, and where fur and elephant seals are often hauled out on the pebble beaches.
Harbours home to gentoo penguins, and that regularly host Weddell seals. The scenery is dramatic with towering peaks and calving glaciers surrounding the harbour. The thundering crack of the glaciers as they calve is sure to stop you in your tracks.
Lemaire Channel – If ice conditions allow, standing on the observation deck of the your vessel as she quietly sails along the narrow Lemaire Channel could certainly be one of the highlights of our voyage. Cliffs tower 700m / 2296 ft straight out of the ocean on either side of the ship. The water can sometimes be so still that perfect reflections are mirrored on the surface and it is clear to see why this channel is often called “Kodak Alley”. Gigantic icebergs may clog the channel, creating navigational challenges for the Captain and crew; occasionally they may even obstruct the passage.
Days 21 & 22 – At Sea:
As you come to the end of the extraordinary journey and begin the return sail to Ushuaia, you may choose to spend the sea days editing photos, out on deck, or attending presentations; there’s always plenty to keep you entertained.
Day 23 – Disembarkation:
During the early morning the ship will sail along the Beagle Channel, before quietly slipping into dock in Ushuaia, where you will disembark. Say farewell to your Expedition Team and fellow travellers as you all continue on your onward journeys, hopefully with a newfound sense of the immense power of nature. A transfer to either downtown Ushuaia or to the airport is included in the cost of the voyage.
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.
About The Ship
- With its sleek X-bow lines and ground breaking design, few new Polar ships have created such excitement.
- Zodiac platforms specially designed for quick boardings and more time exploring
- Rolls Royce stabiliser system and polar code 6 ice rating
- Large comfortable cabins
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 $22795
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. However, 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.
- Flights: Punta Arenas to Antarctica as indicated in itinerary
- Pre-flight hotel night
- Transfers as indicated in itinerary
- Printed voyage photo book (1 per booking)
- 3-in-1 waterproof polar expedition jacket
- Voyage aboard the vessel as indicated in the itinerary
- Accommodation and meals during the voyage on full board
- Captain's welcome and farewell drinks including four-course dinner, house cocktails, house beer and wine, non-alcoholic beverages
- 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 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
- Travel insurance or emergency evacuation charges
- Optional adventure activities
- Optional activity surcharges
- 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)