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A huge colony of king penguins.

The Falkland Islands, South Georgia, and Antarctic Peninsula

Example 19 Day Cruise aboard Akademik Ioffe
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On this 19-day voyage on the Akademik Ioffe, visit the sub-Antarctic Falkland Islands, South Georgia, and Antarctica. The Falkland Islands and the island of South Georgia are home to a proliferation of unique wildlife and birdlife. Both locations feature a fascinating history and stunning scenery. To the south lies Antarctica, the frozen continent where icebergs in all shapes and sizes fill the waters, and encounters with whales including humpback, minke, and orca are frequent. Explore on shore in the company of expert guides – including naturalists, marine biologists, ornithologists and adventurers as well as a resident photography professional.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Embark in Ushuaia
Day 2 : At Sea
Days 3-4 : Falkland Islands
Days 5-6 : At Sea towards South Georgia
Days 7-9 : South Georgia
Days 10-12 : Scotia Sea | Elephant Island
Days 13-16 : South Shetlands | Antarctic Peninsula
Days 17-18 : Drake Passage
Day 19 : Disembark in Ushuaia

Highlights

  • Zodiac cruise through South Georgia looking for fur and elephant seals
  • Visit old whaling stations and the gravesite of Sir Ernest Shackleton
  • Look for the large icebergs that announce your arrival in Antarctic waters
  • Discover the vast wildlife living on the Antarctic Peninsula's shorelines

Ship

Akademik Ioffe

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

A huge colony of king penguins. Humpback whale dive Elephant seal on the coast Kayaking through the icy waters. Antarctic mountains at sunset

Day 1 Embark in Ushuaia

Today is the first day of your adventure. As you board the vessel in Ushuaia, the world's southernmost city on the tip Argentina, and start to become familiar with your 'home' for the next 19 days, one cannot help but wonder about the exciting journey ahead. In the early evening, set sail and begin your voyage leaving behind Ushuaia and charting a course through the Beagle Channel.

Day 2 At Sea

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Sailing northeast towards the Falkland Islands be joined by hundreds of seabirds including the wandering albatross. Giant petrels and smaller Cape petrels are also constant companions. Photographing these magnificent birds from the deck of the ship takes patience and skill and a photography expert is on hand to show you the best techniques. Join the ship’s Captain on the bridge and learn about the operations of the modern research vessel. Throughout the day onboard experts educate you with a series of presentations about the environment, wildlife, and history of the Southern Ocean and the locations to visit.

Day 3-4 Falkland Islands

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Arriving in the Falklands overnight, by morning plan to make your first shore excursion. Explore the islands of the West Falkland Archipelago, home to a profusion of seabirds and migratory birds including the black-browed albatross. Spot you first penguins in the island of West Point with its bustling rookeries of rockhoppers. On Carcass Island, observe nesting Magellanic penguins along with oystercatchers, geese, and the flightless steamer duck who is a permanent Falkland resident.

The next day stop in Stanley, the capital of the Falkland Islands. Wander through the charming streets of brightly-painted houses and learn how this quiet harbor was once a major port in the 19th century for ships attempting to round the formidable waters of Cape Horn. Make a stop in Stanley's famed philatelic museum with its impressive collection of historic stamps.

Day 5-6 At Sea towards South Georgia

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Sail southeast bound for the island of South Georgia. These days at sea are never dull. Much of your time is spent scanning the horizon in search of whales and other marine mammals as well as seabirds. Friendly onboard experts continue to fill minds with heroic stories of some of the earliest daredevils to explore Antarctica. Learn about Polar conservation - a theme particularly close to the hearts of guides and crew. The anticipation grows as the ship crosses the Antarctic Convergence and you notice a dramatic drop in temperature.

Day 7-9 South Georgia

  • Ship
  • 3 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 3 Dinners
South Georgia has often been called the ‘Serengeti of the Southern Ocean’– and, as you approach the deep bays of this rugged, rocky outcrop, you begin to see why. Launch the Zodiacs for an exploration of the island, in the vicinity of Elsehul Bay. Large numbers of fur seals and the much larger elephant seal line the dark sand beaches. Living in the tussock grass, king penguins and their chicks may number up to 100,000 birds in some locations, including Salisbury Plain, St Andrews Bay and Gold Harbour. The island is also home to large numbers of nesting albatross as they fill the skies above, coming and going from the nest.

The scenery is spectacular and the snowy peaks of the island make you pause to consider the incredible feat of mountaineering when Shackleton and his exhausted companions traversed the island from the wild south coast in 1916. They arrived into Stromness whaling station having crossed from King Haakon Bay, to raise the alarm that eventuated in the rescue of his men on Elephant Island, in Antarctica, 100 years ago.

South Georgia is a thrilling location for history buffs and the rusting relics of the early whaling industry are all around you. Hope to observe several of the old stations at locations including Leith, Husvik, and Stromness. A highlight is a visit to Grytviken– the largest of the whaling stations, situated at the head of Cumberland Bay. Here you can visit the gravesite of Sir Ernest Shackleton. For many, being in the presence of the great explorer is a highlight of the trip. There’s an excellent museum at Grytviken, maintained by the South Georgia Heritage Trust, and the restored church, built by the original Norwegian whalers, provides a fascinating glimpse into the past.

Day 10-12 Scotia Sea | Elephant Island

  • Ship
  • 3 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 3 Dinners
Weather and ice dictate your crossing of the Scotia Sea from South Georgia to Antarctica, leading you perhaps to the South Orkney Islands or Elephant Island. As with all of your itinerary planning, the Expedition Leader and Captain make a decision based on the conditions at the time.

The South Orkney Islands represent the peaks of a submarine mountain range called the Scotia Arc, connecting South Georgia to the South Shetland Islands. Often shrouded in fog and surrounded by ice much of the year, a chance to visit these islands doesn’t come often.

As you edge ever closer to the frozen continent, large icebergs announce your arrival in Antarctic waters. If conditions allow, hope to see the dark cliffs of Elephant Island appear on the horizon and attempt a landing at Point Wild.
 

Day 13-16 South Shetlands | Antarctic Peninsula

  • Ship
  • 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
Around 60 miles off the coast of the Antarctic mainland lies the South Shetland Island chain. Possible landing sites might include King George Island, Half Moon Island, Yankee Harbour, or Hannah Point. Weather conditions permitting, sail the ship into the flooded volcanic caldera of Deception Island. There are some outstanding hikes at these locations and the old whaling station and aircraft hangar at Deception Island beg for further exploration

After so much anticipation, enter the icy waters of the Antarctic Peninsula in the vicinity of Mikkelson Harbour or Cierva Cove. Snow-covered mountains soar from the dark waters. Along the shoreline in the bays and harbors of the peninsula live an incredible abundance of wildlife. Large rookeries are home to chinstrap, gentoo and Adelie penguins. Seals live on the ice floes, including the powerful leopard seal that you may encounter. Gulls, skuas, and cormorants are also found nesting and feeding at many sites along the Antarctic Peninsula.

Explore by Zodiac boat and ashore where a range of wonderful activities awaits. Locations to visit include Wilhelmina Bay, Orne Harbour, Cuverville Island, and the Errera Channel. Join the photographic guide and take close-up photos of the penguins, or of the impossibly blue ice. Or enjoy a hike to the top of a snowy mountain saddle with one of the adventure guides. If the opportunity presents itself, visit a science base or old historic hut. Each day, you have a range of great choices.

Day 17-18 Drake Passage

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
After several busy days of exploration along the Antarctic Peninsula, it’s time to return to South America. The educational presentations continue as you enjoy an entertaining and memorable voyage recap by the Expedition Leader. Join the photography experts in the multimedia room and download and back up your precious images. If weather conditions allow, hope to make a rounding of Cape Horn. This fabled stretch of water is home to legendary tales of exploration and early navigation. It’s a fitting place to reflect on a wonderful expedition to some of the most remote corners of the planet. Approaching the entrance to the Beagle Channel in early evening light, enjoy a special dinner attended by the Captain of the ship.

Day 19 Disembark in Ushuaia

  • 1 Breakfast
In the early morning, arrive back in Ushuaia. It is time to say farewell to your crew and fellow traveler and transfer to your hotel or to the airport for return flights home.

Akademik Ioffe

Deals

Save $1000
Early Bird Savings - Book by November 1 and receive $1,000 in flight credit.
Applies to Nov 30, 2017 departure
Per person starting at
$13,095
The Triple Cabins.
Select a Date
Main Deck Triple
Deck 3, bunk beds and a sofa bed. Shared facilities, in cabin washbasin, writing desk/chair, ample storage, bathrobes & porthole.
Twin Private Cabins.
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Twin Semi-Private
Deck 4, one lower berth and one sofa bed, a writing desk and ample storage. Semi-private facilities (one bathroom between two cabins). Opening window.
Twin Private Cabin.
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Twin Private
Deck 4 and 5. All cabins have two lower berths, a writing desk/chair and ample storage. Facilities are private and all cabins have a window.
Superior Cabins.
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Superior
Deck 6 these cabins have two lower berths, a sofa, a writing desk/chair and ample storage. Facilities are private and all cabins have a window.
The Shackelton Suite.
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Shackleton Suite
Deck 4 & 5, 1 double berth, 1 sofa bed, separate sleeping quarters, writing desk/chair, TV/DVD, IPod alarm clock. Private facilities, window & deluxe amenities.
One Ocean Suite.
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One Ocean Suite
Deck 5, 1 double berth, 1 sofa bed & separate sleeping quarters, up-graded bedding, a writing desk/chair, TV/DVD, IPod station. Private facilities with tub. Windows overlooking the bow. Deluxe amenities.

Notes

- Rates are quoted in U.S. dollars and represent costs per person, double or triple occupancy. Request the Twin or Triple Share Program where you are matched with a cabin mate of the same gender. Even if a cabin mate is not found for you, no single supplement will be charged.

- Twin and superior cabins are available for single occupancy at 1.5 times the shared price, suites for 2 times the shared price. Single supplement is not available in triple cabins.

- Child and Youth Prices: 25% discount for young people aged up to 17 years, and 20% off for those aged from 18-21 years who can prove they are in full-time education.

Please Note: Polar exploration can be unpredictable, which regularly causes variations to itineraries. Specific sites visited will depend on prevailing weather and ice conditions at the time of sailing. The above itinerary should be read as a 'guide only' and is subject to change.

Included in Cost:
- Transfers from/to designated meeting points to/from the ship
- Luggage transfer from designated locations to/from your cabin
- All meals during the voyage
- Welcome reception & welcome dinner
- Farewell dinner hosted by the Captain
- Daily afternoon tea with fresh snacks
- Coffee, tea & hot chocolate available anytime
- Access to wellness area (Finnish Sauna, Plunge Pool filled with sea water, Hot Tub)
- Natural essential oil amenities
- Services of English-speaking medical officer
- Use of multimedia room
- Use of on-board expedition rubber boots & wet weather gear
- All zodiac and landing excursions
- Zodiac cruising, hiking, guided walks, photography workshops, fitness & yoga
- Camping (subject to weather and ice conditions)
- Educational presentations
- Photography advice and instructions from the resident photographer
- Expedition guides, naturalist staff, and hospitality staff

Not Included in Cost:
- International and national airfares
- Visa and passport fees, airport taxes
- Pre- or post-cruise hotel accommodation in arrival/departure cities
- Meals & transfers in arrival/departure cities
- Personal expenses
- Soft drinks and alcoholic beverages
- Massages from registered therapist
- Personal laundry charges
- Postage, telephone calls & email set up
- Medical expenses such as fees, prescriptions or medications
- Travel medical insurance including medical evacuation (mandatory)
- Trip interruption / cancellation insurance
- Gratuities to staff and crew

Included

  • 18 Breakfasts, 17 Lunches, 18 Dinners
Payment & Cancellation Policies
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