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Pair of King penguins on an Antarctica cruise

Falklands, South Georgia and Antarctica: Explorers and Kings

Example 20 Day Cruise aboard Ocean Diamond
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This extended 20-day Antarctic expedition encompasses the wildlife paradise of South Georgia, the remote Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas), as well as the extraordinary beauty of the Antarctic Peninsula. Experience a great diversity of environments and landscapes which provide unprecedented wildlife viewing opportunities. Join the Ocean Diamond for the quintessential Antarctic experience for polar travelers!

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Ushuaia, Argentina
Day 2 : Ushuaia | Embark
Day 3 : At Sea
Days 4-5 : Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)
Days 6-7 : At Sea
Days 8-11 : South Georgia
Days 12-13 : At Sea
Days 14-17 : South Shetland Islands | Antarctic Peninsula
Days 18-19 : Crossing the Drake Passage
Day 20 : Ushuaia | Disembark

Highlights

  • Zodiac around the Falkland Islands and view Magellanic & gentoo penguins
  • Watch for whales and seals as you sail through the Antarctic Convergence
  • Hike the Antarctic landscape to glaciers
  • Treat yourself to a special experience by partaking in optional kayaking

Ship

Ocean Diamond

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Pair of King penguins on an Antarctica cruise Curious penguins approach during an Antarctic shore excursion Elephant seal on the coast A humpback whale dives beneath the Antarctic waters Explore remote shores in your zodiacs

Day 1 Ushuaia, Argentina

Your gateway for this expedition is Ushuaia, Argentina. Nestled within the Tierra del Fuego archipelago, Ushuaia offers a small-town feel but has many shops, museums, cafes, and restaurants to enjoy before your voyage. If feeling adventurous, the nearby Tierra del Fuego National Park and Martial Glacier offer plenty of hiking and outdoor activities.

Day 2 Ushuaia | Embark

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
As you embark, the anticipation and excitement grows. Trade your land legs for sea legs, meet and greet fellow travelers, and get acquainted with your ship. As every Antarctic adventure presents new opportunities and experiences, embarkation day is just as exciting for your Expedition Team as it is for you. They’re onboard to ensure your comfort and safety, as well as help make your wildlife dreams come true.

Day 3 At Sea

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
There are many activities to keep you engaged while you are at sea. Learn to identify seabirds that glide alongside the ship or attend illustrated presentations by your Expedition Team. Be prepped on procedures for your Zodiac cruises and shore landings and receive instructions for getting the most out of your optional kayaking adventures, a truly intimate way to experience Antarctica.

Day 4-5 Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Upon arrival in this archipelago, your cameras get their first real workout capturing the abundant wildlife and the rugged feel of the Falklands (Malvinas). The archipelago contains two main islands - East and West, to explore by Zodiac excursions and daily landings.

Port Stanley is often a favored landing site, as the town offers a unique British outpost feel to it, complete with a bit of a ramshackle charm. Explore the town, grab a pint at the local pub, or visit numerous churches and museums.

In terms of wildlife, the archipelago is home to Magellanic, gentoo, and rockhopper penguins. If lucky, you may even spot king penguins here as well! Expect to see black-browed albatross and two endemic bird species: Cobb’s wren and the Falkland’s flightless steamer duck.

Your team of lecturers and specialists educate you on the local flora and fauna so that you get the most out of your time in the Falklands.

Day 6-7 At Sea

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Sailing south, officially enter Antarctic waters by crossing the invisible biological boundary called the Antarctic Convergence. Encircling the continent, cold Antarctic waters meet and mix with the warmer waters of the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic Oceans, creating the abundance of krill and marine life that attracts whales and seals to this part of the world. Expedition staff keep you posted when you cross this invisible, yet important line.

Day 8-11 South Georgia

  • Ship
  • 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
This remote outpost was a popular stop for many historic Antarctic expeditions and was once a haven for hunting whales and elephant and fur seals. Today, South Georgia Island wildlife populations have rebounded, but see remnants of those old whaling stations and other abandoned outposts.

One significant and historic site of interest is the grave of the great explorer, Sir Ernest Shackleton. Visit his grave at the settlement of Grytviken, which is also home to an old whaling station, a museum, gift shop, church, and a research station of approximately 20 scientists and support personnel.

While South Georgia’s history is an important attraction to the islands, it is the wildlife on South Georgia that you and your shipmates surely find most captivating. Often referred to as the Galapagos of the Poles, each landing you make on South Georgia opens your eyes to a new wonder of wildlife.

One day you may see rookeries with a hundred thousand pairs of king penguins waddling on the beach. The next day visit another beach with thousands of fur or elephant seals with (non-native) reindeer grazing in the background. The grasses, mountains, and beaches of South Georgia all play an important role in the breeding and survival of different species on the island - this fragile and symbiotic relationship is something that your expedition team shares with you during your time here.

Day 12-13 At Sea

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Say goodbye to the king penguins, as your next destination is Antarctica! Your days at sea are filled with seminars from your Expedition Team, who prepare you for the wildlife greeting you upon your arrival. In between presentations, spend time chatting with your shipmates over a drink at the bar. If conditions allow, your team may attempt landfall on the South Orkney Islands, which are officially in Antarctica.

Day 14-17 South Shetland Islands | Antarctic Peninsula

  • Ship
  • 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
The most common reaction to arriving at the white continent is a sense of reverence and awe. The experience is hard to put into words, as few places are as untouched, unique and enduring as Antarctica. Discover that Antarctica is a land of extremes. At one moment be overcome with a feeling of complete desolation and silence, at the next moment be inspired by nature as a calving glacier crashes into the brilliant blue sea or a penguin comes waddling by to inspect your footwear.

Your Expedition Team takes care of you at each landing, whether it is trekking up a glacier, visiting a research station, or consorting with penguin colonies. Chinstrap, Adélie, and gentoo penguins are found here, along with Weddell, fur, crabeater, and leopard seals. Curious whales, such as minkes, are often attracted to Zodiacs as well, giving you a chance to get within reaching distance of these majestic animals. Each day and every landing presents a new collection of creatures to entertain you and keep your camera shutter busy.

As exciting as the Zodiac excursions and landings are, perhaps treat yourself to an extra special Antarctic experience by partaking in an optional (extra cost) kayaking excursion or going for a swim in the Antarctic!

Day 18-19 Crossing the Drake Passage

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
After more than two weeks of endless wildlife encounters, your journey home begins. Crossing the Drake Passage is your unofficial rite of passage, completing your Antarctic adventure.

Enjoy some final moments mingling with your fellow travelers. The noisy, busy, populated world awaits your return, so savor the silence of the sea as long as you can.

Day 20 Ushuaia | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
After breakfast aboard the ship, it is time to part ways and say goodbye to your Expedition Team. Be transferred to the airport for your homeward flight.

Ocean Diamond

Port of Ushuaia

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Observation Deck, 226 sq feet, one double bed or two twin beds, window and sliding glass door, private 96 sq ft deck. Private bathroom with tub and shower.

Notes

- Rates are quoted in U.S. dollars and represent costs per person, double occupancy. Request the Twin 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.
-Cabins are available for single occupancy at 1.7 times the double occupancy rate. The supplement for a suite is 2 times the shared rate.
-Emergency medical evacuation coverage for a maximum benefit of US$100,000 per person is included. Contact us for details on arranging additional travel insurance.

Important reminder: Embracing the unexpected is part of the legacy – and excitement – of expedition travel. There are no guarantees that you will achieve everything outlined to accomplish. A measure of flexibility is something all must bring to a voyage. There are nearly 200 recognized sites in the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetlands and the places mentioned above may be changed to others equally as interesting.

Included in cruise fare:
- One night pre-expedition hotel accommodation with breakfast in Ushuaia as indicated in the itinerary.
- Group transfer in Ushuaia from the airport to the pre-expedition hotel on Day 1
- Group transfer from the hotel to the ship on embarkation day
- Group transfer upon disembarkation in Ushuaia from the ship to the local airport
- Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping
- All breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board throughout your voyage.
- All shore landings per the daily program
- Leadership throughout the voyage by your experienced Expedition Leader, including shore landings and other activities
- All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program
- Formal and informal presentations by your Expedition Team and guest speakers as scheduled
- Photographic Journal on DVD, documenting the voyage
- A pair of waterproof expedition boots on loan for shore landings
- An official parka to keep
- Coffee, tea and cocoa available around the clock
- Hair dryer and bathrobes
- Comprehensive pre-departure materials, including a map and an informative Antarctic Reader
- All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program
- All luggage handling aboard ship
- Emergency Evacuation Insurance to a maximum benefit of USD $100,000 per person
- Snowshoes available on loan for shore excursions

Not included in cruise fare:
- International airfare
- Passport and visa expenses
- Government arrival and departure taxes
- Any meals ashore with the exception of breakfast at the host hotel before
- Baggage, cancellation and medical travel insurance
- Excess baggage fees on international flights
- Mandatory waterproff pants for Zodiac cruising, or any other gear not mentioned
- Laundry, bar, beverage and other personal charges unless specified
- Telecommunications charges
- The voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for shipboard staff and crew
- Additional overnight accommodation
- Optional adventure activities

Included

  • 19 Breakfasts, 18 Lunches, 18 Dinners
Payment & Cancellation Policies
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We are so glad that we chose Adventure Life. The service is top-notch. Everything is well taken care of and we just have to print the documents and go. Franny even gave us timely updates on possible airport strike.
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