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Antarctica Tours, Cruises & Ships

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Adventure Life's Antarctica cruises & tours are the ultimate way to visit the white continent in comfort, safety and style. Thousands of travelers have trusted Adventure Life's Antarctica tour experts to help them choose the perfect small ship cruise to Antarctica. Depart from Ushuaia, on the southern tip of South America on a minimum 6-day trip and choose from small expedition ships, luxury ships, fly/cruise combos and even cruises that include skiing, sea kayakingcamping in Antartica. Onboard guides lecture about the region's natural history, weather, and captivating Antarctic animals like penguins, seals & whales. Dozens of ships sail the Antarctic waters, and we can help you find the best cruise for your needs. Contact us with your interests, schedule & budget, and we'll help you plan the perfect Antarctic tour.

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Antarctica Cruises (141 Results)
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Antarctica Cruise Deals
Trip NameSaveFromDaysLevelSummary
Falklands, South Georgia and Antarctica: Explorers and Kings$5600-$6000$1379520RelaxedThis comprehensive Antarctic tour visits the Falkland Islands, South Georgia Island, and the Antarctic Peninsula. Encounter penguins, seals, and whales upon the Ocean Diamond as you embark on the cruise of a lifetime for a full 20 days cruising the Antarctic!
Falklands, South Georgia, and Antarctica: Explorers and Kings$5600-$6000$1449520RelaxedExperience a true polar expedition to the northernmost tip of the world´s 7th continent on this 20-days small ship cruise onboard the Sea Adventurer. Visit the remote Falkland Islands and see South Georgia´s incredible wildlife as you immerse in the icy realm of the Antarctic.
Falklands, South Georgia and Antarctica: Explorers and Kings$5600-$6000$1199520RelaxedBoard the Ocean Endeavour for this 20-day quintessential Antarctic experience visiting the Falkland Islands, South Georgia, South Shetland Islands, and the Antarctic Peninsula. Watch scores of penguins dive for food, herds of elephant seals bathe in the sun, and pods of orcas pass you by.
Antarctica East & West: Peninsula in Depth$5600-$6000$1199520RelaxedGet to know Antarctica intimately during this 20-day cruise aboard the Ocean Endeavour. Zodiac cruise among icebergs, meet Antarctica´s abundant wildlife, and visit important historical sites. Sail into the Weddell Sea on the remote east coast of the Antarctic Peninsula and cross the Antarctic Circle at 66º33´ South.
Antarctica, Falkland Islands, & South Georgia: Ushuaia Roundtrip10%-15%$1259520RelaxedJoin the Sea Spirit for an extended 20-day Antarctic cruise from Ushuaia, including the Falkland Islands and South Georgia. This voyage gives you an opportunity to explore the untold beauty of one of the most remote parts of the world.
Antarctic Explorer: Discovering the 7th Continent$300-$3400$599511RelaxedThis 11-day Antarctic expedition offers the chance to discover the best of the Antarctic Peninsula, the continent’s most northern region. Be delighted by penguins, seals & whales along the coastline. Landing on the continent itself is memorable - explore the sights that make this one of the world’s most pristine and unforgettable environments.

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Our Favorite Small Antarctic Cruise Ships

Ship NameCapacityFromSummary
Hebridean Sky114$7295The Hebridean Sky, formerly known as the Sea Explorer, emerged from dry dock in June 2016 after undergoing a multi-million dollar renovation and has …
Akademik Ioffe96$3195Designed as a scientific research vessel in Finland, the Akademik Ioffe is modern, comfortable, safe and ice-strengthened. Carrying 96 passengers on …
National Geographic Explorer148$6990The National Geographic Explorer is a state-of-the-art luxury expedition ship accommodating 148 guests in 81 outside cabins. It is fully stabilized, …
MV Plancius112$1050Built in 1976 and reconstructed in 2008, the MV Plancius is fully equipped for polar expedition cruises to the Arctic and Antarctica, and …
Akademik Shokalskiy48$16000Originally designed and built in Finland for Polar and ocean research, the Akademik Shokalskiy is small, nimble and ice-strengthened, capable of …
Akademik Sergey Vavilov110$3195The Akademik Sergey Vavilov is widely recognized as the best expedition-style ice-strengthened cruise vessel operating in Polar waters. She is 'state …

Antarctica Travel Guide

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How to Choose an Antarctica Tour or Cruise
 
Where to Go?  
Most cruises to Antarctica depart from Ushuaia, Argentina, though several, especially Antarctic Air Cruises, leave from Punta Arenas, Chile. A few, those visiting the Ross Sea, may visit or depart from New Zealand. or even South Africa. If you have limited time and budget you'll likely choose to visit the Antarctic Peninsula, as only longer cruises includes the Weddell SeaFalkland Islands, and the mountainous South Georgia.
 
How Long?
The shortest trip length available to Antarctica is six days with an Express Air Cruise, where you sail or fly to King George Island and return on a flight or cruise. Without the flight, you'll need at least a ten day trip starting and finishing from Ushuaia to get an optimal experience on the Antarctic continent. Trips to the Ross Sea last around 30 days. To explore the Falkland Islands and South Georgia in addition to the Antarctic Peninsula budget at least an 18 day cruise.

On which ship?
All of our ships that sail to Antartica have strengthened hulls designed for the demands of the Antarctic and exceed the highest safety standards. We only offer cruises on small ships, as large cruise ships are not allowed to disembark in many places. Only 100 passengers are allowed to disembark in Antarctica at one time, so we recommend a ship of around 100 passengers if you want to maximize your time exploring as all passengers can be on land at once and don't have to rotate. 

Contact an Adventure Life Antarctica cruise expert for help choosing the perfect ship for your needs. 

What is there to do and see?
All of our small ship Antarctica cruises feature zodiac excursions and hikes for up-close encounters with Antarctic wildlifeSome ships have sea kayaks that give a unique perspective of penguins, whales and other wildlife. Some tours include  skiing and camping in Antarctica for the ultimate adventure trip to the white continent.
Traveling in the Extreme Climate of Antarctica

Flexibility, and patience is key. The weather in both Antarctica and Patagonia is unpredictable and can impact both flights and landings at sea. 

The captian of your ship will make decisions on where to visit and what activities are available based upon wind, temperature, and sea conditions.

An Antarctic itinerary should be considered a rough "plan A" that will be adjusted as the climate dictates.
Antarctic Trip Highlights

The most popular regions for Antarctic cruises are the Antarctic Peninsula, the Weddell Sea, Ross Sea, and the sub-antarctic South Georgia & the Sandwich Islands & the The Falkland Islands.

The Antarctic Peninsula - is the most frequently visited region. Don't miss the South Shetland Islands including King George Island & Deception Island. On the western side of the Peninsula, the The Lamaire Channel, Neko Harbor, Port Lockroy and Paradise Bay offer breathtaking views and visits to penguin rookeries. This is the most accessible, and wildlife-rich area of Antarctica.

The Ross Sea - is remote and normally visited on cruises of 30 days or more. Explore the newly-formed marine reserve protecting what the journal Biological Conservation called the Ross Sea “the least altered marine ecosystem on Earth.” Cruise to the volcanic Ross Island and the huge Ross Ice Shelf with the Transantarctic Mountains as a backdrop. Sail to the remote Peter I Island and Macquarie Island as you approach New Zealand.

The Weddell Sea - is the area east of the Antarctic Peninsula infrequntly visited and frequently clogged with massive icebergs is the resting place of Shackelton's ship, the Endurance.

Getting to Antarctica

The Gateways to Antarctica
The vast majority of visitors arrive from either Argentina or Chile at the southern tip of South America.

From Ushuaia to Antarctica 
Ushuaia, Argentina is the primary port for cruises leaving to Antarctica and claims the title of "world's southernmost city". Sail across the Beagle Channel near Puerto Williams, Chile (the world's southernmost town) near Cape Horn, and through the Drake Passage across the Southern Sea. Choose between cruises that go directly to the Antarctic Peninsula, or sail to the Falkland Islands and South Georgia Island, or even to the Ross Sea and on to New Zealand.

Flights From Chile to Antarctica
The flight two hour flight from Punta Arenas Chile to King George Island near the Antarctic Peninsula, is the fastest way to arrive to the Antarctic. Most flights are carrying passengers of cruise-flight packages that fly one way and sail the other direction.

Fun Facts About Antarctica

Continent of Extremes - Antarctica is the coldest, driest, windiest, and has the highest average altitude of any continent. It also sits upon active volcanoes like Mt. Erebus and the sub-glacial volcano at Deception Island, which has hot springs where you can go swimming in Antarctica!

Population - The only people who live in Antarctica are about 4000 resident scientists in the summer and about 1000 in the winter. There are no cities in Antarctica as the entire populace lives in about 70 different research stations run by around 30 countries.

Government - There is no government of Antarctica, only pending territorial claims. 52 nations have signed on to the Antarctic Treaty which designates Antarctica a military free zone dedicated to scientific research.   

The Coldest Place on Earth - On a high ridge on the East Antarctic Plateau is where temperatures can dip to a record minus 136 degrees Fahrenheit (-93.2 degrees Celsius).

A Land of Ice & Water - around 98% of Antarctica is covered by ice averaging 1.9 km (1.2 mi; 6,200 ft) in thickness and between 70%-90% of the world's fresh water is here. The northernmost regions of the Antarctic Peninsula are about the only places not covered by ice. 

A Not-So-Fun Fact - If all the ice in Antarctica melted, global sea levels would rise at least 60 meters, over 200 feet! 

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