Step aboard in the late afternoon to a warm welcome, introductory briefing and an evening departure along the Beagle Channel. Settle into your homely cabin, explore the ship and enjoy a drink with your shipmates.
Tune into the Southern Ocean as you cross the Drake Passage. Your naturalist and historians will inform you about Antarctica and the weeks ahead. Safety and environmental briefings prepare us for landings, while the outer decks and flying bridge offer the best vantage points for photography and wildlife viewing.
The temperature plummets as you cross the biological boundary of the Antarctic Convergence. Cormorants, penguins and seals mark your approach to the South Shetland Islands, where you may well land.
Sail through Antarctic Sound with its spectacular iceberg parade, and into the Weddell Sea. Along the way set foot on the Antarctic continent, watch for whales and seals in a sea of abundance, and visit magnificent penguins rookeries at the Antarctic Peninsula’s northern end. In the Weddell Sea begin to trace Shackleton’s path.
Approaching the steep slopes of Elephant Island, home to 22 of Shackleton’s men for four months, hope for a clear view of the spot where the men wintered beneath upturned boats. With luck go ashore to pay tribute to these hardy souls.
Following in Shackleton’s wake, sail across the Scotia Sea, hoping to detour to the remote, mountainous South Orkney Islands. Zodiac cruise through a maze of icebergs, landing at a beach decorated with autumnal-hued lichen-encrusted boulders.
Time to reflect on all you’ve seen and learned, to prepare for the next phase of your journey as your ship continues across the Scotia Sea.
Enter King Haakon Bay on South Georgia’s southern coast and may make a ceremonial landing at Cave Cove, Shackleton’s first landfall after his epic open boat voyage. Bid a farewell your alpine crossing party here as they begin their own adventurous journey through the crevassed terrain of the island’s interior.
While the alpine party crosses the mountains and passes of South Georgia, the shipboard party explores the bays and promontories, reveling in the island’s extraordinary diversity of wildlife. You will be spoiled for choice of landings: the world’s largest penguin rookeries, wandering albatross on nests, beaches of elephant and fur seals, and Grytviken’s whaling museum vie for your attention. You may choose to hike from Fortuna to Stromness, whose whaling station marked the ending of Shackleton’s arduous island crossing.
Back to the Scotia Sea for a relaxing interlude. Continue your Antarctic education and wildlife watching en route to the Falkland Islands.
Stanley, the Falklands, features an excellent museum, post office, picturesque houses, welcoming shops and pubs. Spend the morning exploring the beautiful capital of the Falkland Islands.
Sea Lion Island offers a welcome opportunity to stretch your legs. Amongst a treasure trove of birdlife, Falkland Island steamer ducks and Magellanic penguins enliven walks through the tussock. There are cliff tops to explore, birds and southern sea lions to watch.
Prions, petrels and albatross accompany you on the last leg of your voyage as you swap photos and stories and reflect on shared adventures.
In the wee hours sail up the Beagle Channel to dock in Ushuaia. A hearty breakfast and fond farewell prepare you for leave-taking and the next leg of your respective journeys.