In the afternoon, embark in Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, the southernmost city in the world located in the shadow of the Andes and right at the Beagle Channel shore. Sail through this scenic waterway during the afternoon.
At sea, in the westerlies the ship is followed by several species of albatrosses, storm petrels, shearwaters and diving petrels.
In the Falkland Islands (Malvinas) plan to spend the whole day on the fascinating western side of the archipelago. A hike along the shore of Carcass Island will give views of Magellanic and gentoo penguins, as well as close encounters with waterfowl, night herons, and passerines. In addition, on Saunders observe four species of breeding penguins (gentoo, king, Magellanic and rockhopper), black-browed albatrosses, and king cormorants.
In Stanley, the capital of the Falklands, experience Falkland culture, which has some South American characteristics as well as Victorian charm. In Stanley and the surrounding area see quite an important number of stranded clippers from a century ago. All passengers are free to wander around on their own. A visit to the local church and museum are recommended.
At sea, on your way to South Georgia, cross the Antarctic Convergence. Entering Antarctic waters, the temperature may drop significantly in the time span of only a few hours. Near the Convergence see a multitude of southern seabirds near the ship, including several species of albatrosses, shearwaters, petrels, prions, and skuas.
In the afternoon of day 7 arrive at the first landing site in South Georgia. You might visit the bay of Elsehul, with its very active fur seal breeding beach, and then set course to Right Whale Bay, Salisbury Plain, Godthul, St. Andrews Bay, Gold Harbour, Cooper Bay and Drygalski Fjord to give you a good opportunity to see a wide spectrum of landscapes and wildlife, like the elephant seals, fur seals, and king and macaroni penguins. One of the highlights might be your visit to Prion Island, where you can witness the breeding efforts of the huge wandering albatross and enjoy watching their displays.
At Fortuna Bay try to follow in the footsteps of the great British Explorer Ernest Shackleton and hike over to Stromness Bay. There and at Grytviken see an abandoned whaling village, where king penguins now walk in the streets and seals have taken over the buildings. At Grytviken visit the Whaling History Museum as well as Shackleton´s grave nearby. Depart from South Georgia in the afternoon of day 10.
Spend the day at sea, where the ship is again followed by a multitude of seabirds. At some point you might encounter sea-ice, and it is at the ice-edge where you might have a chance to see some high-Antarctic species like the McCormick skua and snow petrel.
Visit Orcadas station, an Argentinean base located in the South Orkney Islands. The friendly base personnel show you their facilities with wonderful views of the surrounding glaciers.
At sea towards Antarctica.
Sail into the Weddell Sea through the ice-clogged Antarctic Sound as huge tabular icebergs announce your arrival to the eastern side of the Antarctic Peninsula. Plan to visit Brown Bluff where you may set foot on the continent. In good sailing conditions more time may be spent in the Weddell Sea. Potential landing sites include:
Half Moon Island
Aim for Half Moon Island in the South Shetland Islands for a visit to a Chinstrap penguin rookery and the usually non-occupied Argentinean Camara station. Often Weddell seals haul out on the beaches here.
Venture to Deception Island through Neptune's Bellows. 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 petrels 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.
Visit Cierva Cove, in a world of icebergs well suited for an exploratory Zodiac cruise in search of fantastic photo opportunities. Crabeater seals and leopard seals are often seen here and a small rookery of chinstraps are found on a small island in the bay. The landscape is typical Antarctica with huge glaciated mountains all around. Mikkelson Harbour on the southern side of Trinity Island was discovered by the Swedish Antarctic Expedition of 1901-04. Gentoo penguins nest on the island and Weddell seals often haul out on shore. View remains of the early 20th Century Whaling period and an Argentinean refuge hut.
Charlotte Bay in the northern parts of Gerlache Strait, on the west coast of Graham Land, was discovered by Adrien de Gerlache during the 1897–99 Belgica expedition and named after the fiancée of Georges Lecointe, Gerlache's executive officer, hydrographer and second-in-command of the expedition. The topography of the surrounding area is mountainous, with nunataks rising through the ice. Charlotte Bay is often filled with icebergs. View seals on floes and occasional kelp gulls, skuas, shags, or penguins.
On your way north you are again followed by a great selection of seabirds while crossing the Drake Passage.
Arrive in the morning in Ushuaia and disembark. Transfer to the airport for flights home.
|Quadruple Porthole||Triple Porthole||Twin Porthole||Twin Window||Twin Deluxe||Superior|