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Sea kayaking in Antarctica

Polar Circle & Antarctic Peninsula

12 Day Sample Cruise aboard Ortelius
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View albatross, whales, penguins, seals, and more while exploring the Antarctic by land and sea on this 12-day polar voyage onboard the Ortelius. Enjoy daily Zodiac trips exploring icebergs, fjords, and shore landings where you have the opportunity to step foot on the 7th continent. View and explore penguin rookeries, hot springs, historic landmarks and more! As you absorb the wonders and beauty of Antarctica prepare for your journey back across the Drake Passage to Ushuaia. 

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Embark in Ushuaia, Argentina
Days 2-3 : At Sea
Days 4-9 : Antarctica
Days 10-11 : At Sea
Day 12 : Disembark in Ushuaia

Highlights

  • Search for Antarctic seabirds as you cross the Drake Passage
  • Find gentoo & chinstrap penguins at Hannah Point
  • Sail between a myriad of icebergs and deep-cut fjords
  • Explore the Antarctic landscape by land and sea

Ship

Ortelius

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Sea kayaking in Antarctica A humpback whale breaches the polar waters Albatross in the arctic. Beautiful King Penguins A humpback whale passes by the expedition ship

Day 1 Embark in Ushuaia, Argentina

In the afternoon, embark in Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, the southernmost city in the world located at the Beagle Channel and sail through this scenic waterway for the rest of the evening.

Day 2-3 At Sea

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
During these two days sail across the Drake Passage. When you cross the Antarctic Convergence, arrive in the circum-Antarctic up-welling zone. In this area you may see wandering albatrosses, grey-headed albatrosses, black-browed albatrosses, light-mantled sooty albatrosses, Cape pigeons, southern fulmars, Wilson’s storm petrels, blue petrels and Antarctic petrels. Near the South Shetland Islands, spot your first icebergs.

The Master of the vessel may decide to sail the narrow English Strait between Robert Island and Greenwich Island or McFarlane Strait between Greenwich Island and Livingston Island if the conditions are favorable. Then you might be able to enter Antarctic waters in the late evening of the third day and see Aitcho Island at the South Shetlands. If the conditions do not allow for maneuvering through the English Strait, then continue sailing south of Livingston. These volcanic islands or the South Shetlands are windswept and often shrouded in mist and fog, but do offer subtle pleasures. There is a nice variety of flora (mosses, lichens and flowering grasses) and fauna, such as gentoo penguins, chinstrap penguins and southern giant petrels.

Day 4-9 Antarctica

  • Ship
  • 6 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 6 Dinners
Start your first day in Antarctica with a landing at Hannah Point, and find a nice variety of gentoo penguins, chinstraps and southern giant petrels, as well as elephant seals hauling out on the beach.

At Deception Island, a landing is attempted. Deception itself is a subducted crater, which opens into the sea, creating a natural harbor for the ship. Here find hot springs, an abandoned whaling station, thousands of Cape pigeons and many Dominican gulls, brown and south polar skuas, and Antarctic terns. Wilson’s storm petrels and black-bellied storm petrels nest in the ruins of the whaling station in Whalers Bay. Further south call at Cuverville Island, a small precipitous island, nestled between the mountains of the Antarctic Peninsula and Danco Island. It contains a large colony of gentoo penguins and breeding pairs of brown skuas. In Neko Harbor and Paradise Bay, with its myriad icebergs and deep cut fjords, have the opportunity to set foot on the Antarctic Continent and zodiac cruise between the icebergs in the inner parts of the amazing waterway of Paradise Bay.

Sail through the spectacular Lemaire Channel to Petermann Island, offering Adélie penguins and blue-eyed shags. Also try to land at Pléneau Island with fair chances to encounter humpback and minke whales. Overnight head south along the Argentine Islands to Crystal Sound, and cross the Polar Circle in the morning. Aim to make a landing at the abandoned British station on Detaille Island, which is likely to be your furthest south. The landscape is very impressive with very high mountains and huge glaciers.

The expedition may reach the Fish Islands on the way northwards where it encounters one of the southernmost Adélie penguin and blue-eyed shag colonies in the Antarctic Peninsula. Sailing north again through Neumayer Channel and Gerlache Strait, arrive at the Melchior Islands with a very beautiful landscape with icebergs, where you may encounter leopard seals, crabeater seals, and whales.

Day 10-11 At Sea

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
On your way north again be followed by a great selection of seabirds while crossing the Drake Passage.

Day 12 Disembark in Ushuaia

  • 1 Breakfast
Arrive in the morning in Ushuaia and disembark.

Ortelius

Per person starting at
$7,950
Twin porthole cabin
Quadruple Porthole
$7,950
4 quadruple cabins with bunk beds and private facilities (these can also be used as triple or twin cabins). Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin
Triple Porthole Cabin
Triple Porthole
$8,950
2 triple cabins with bunk beds and private facilities. These cabins are spacious with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin.
Twin Porthole on the Ortelius
Twin Porthole
$9,650
23 twin cabins with portholes, private toilet and shower and 2 single lower berths. Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin.
Twin Window on the Ortelius
Twin Window
$10,250
10 twin cabins with windows, private toilet and shower and 2 single lower berths. Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin
Twin Deluxe on the Ortelius
Twin Deluxe
$10,850
6 superior cabins with double beds, private toilet and shower and a separate day room. Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin
Superior Suite on the Ortelius
Superior
$11,850
1 suite with a double bed, private toilet and shower and a separate day room. Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin.

Notes

- Rates are quoted in U.S. dollars and represent costs per person, double occupancy.
- Cabins are available for single occupancy at 1.7 times the double occupancy rate.
- Due to the extreme nature of itinerary destinations, travel insurance is mandatory for all cruises aboard the Ortelius - including medical, accident and repatriation/evacuation insurance.

All itineraries are for guidance only. Programs may vary depending on local ice and weather conditions, the availability of landing sites, and opportunities to see wildlife. The final itinerary will be determined by the Expedition Leader on board. Flexibility is paramount for expedition cruises.

Fares include:
- Voyage aboard the designated vessel as indicated in the itinerary
- All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including snacks, coffee and tea
- All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac
- Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff
- Free use of rubber boots and snowshoes aboard the Ortelius
- Luggage transfer from pick-up point to the vessel on the day of embarkation, in Ushuaia
- Pre-scheduled group transfer from the vessel to the airport in Ushuaia (directly after   disembarkation)
- All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program
- Comprehensive pre-departure material

Not included:
- Any airfare whether on scheduled or charter flights
- Pre- and post land arrangements
- Passport and visa expenses
- Government arrival and departure taxes
- Meals ashore
- Baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is mandatory)
- Excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges
- The customary gratuity at the end of the voyages for stewards and other service personnel aboard (guidelines will be provided)

Please Note:
It is agreed that if world fuel prices will reach or exceed $120 USD per Barrel Brent 90 days prior to departure the Ortelius reserves the right to levy a fuel surcharge of $25 USD per passenger per night.

Included

  • 11 Breakfasts, 10 Lunches, 11 Dinners
Payment & Cancellation Policies
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Kevin M

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Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!
Meyer Smolen

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