Antarctic Peninsula - Basecamp Plancius Cruise

Jesper Regin-Visit
Ski the Arctic.
Franco Banfi
Cruising the pack ice
Julia Kocubinski
Icebergs in the harbor of Port Lockroy
Jan Belgers-Oceanwide Expeditions
Snowshoeing remote polar destinations
Franco Banfi
A contemplative Chinstrap penguin
Monica Salmang
Bar and observation room
Monica Salmang
Modern and comfortable lounge
Expedition is the passion of these voyages aboard the MV Plancius. The ship becomes a base camp for these polar voyages. “Base camp” is by definition a temporary storing and starting place, from which an activity starts. "Activity modules” are offered which go beyond normal shore programs. The vessel will stay for two or three days at specific locations to serve active passengers as a comfortable hub to allow more time than usual for wide ranging activities on this exciting Antarctic cruise.

Day 1

Arrive Ushuaia, Argentina/ Embark Ship

In the afternoon, embark in Ushuaia, Argentina, the southernmost city in the world. Sail through the scenic waterway during the afternoon on your way to open sea.

Days 2-3

Drake Passage

Spend two days sailing across the Drake Passage. When crossing 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, glimpse at the first icebergs.

Days 4-8

Antarctic Peninsula - Basecamp Plancius

Sail directly to “High Antarctica,” passing the Melchior Islands and the Schollaert Channel between Brabant and Anvers Island. On Cuverville Island, find a large colony of Gentoo Penguins and breeding pairs of Brown Skuas. If landing on Danco Island, observe Chinstrap Penguins and possibly Weddell and Crabeater Seals. In Neko Harbour, set foot on the Antarctic Continent in a magnificent landscape of huge glaciers and enjoy the landscape during zodiac cruises, hikes and kayak excursions. A small group of mountaineers may climb up on higher grounds of the glacier.

The same evening, sail to the Neumayer Channel and visit the British research station and post office Port Lockroy on Goudier Island. Close to Port Lockroy, land on Jougla Point with Gentoo Penguins and Imperial Shags. The protected waters around Wiencke Island will become your “Basecamp” for all activities. In the alpine environment, there are great opportunities to scout the region on foot, by zodiac, or kayak. Plan to stay two overnights at anchor in order to implement two camp nights and one full day activity from Basecamp at Wiencke Island. Walkers will find opportunities to use snowshoes on hikes to Jabet Peak (540 m), Noble Peak (545 m) or Stokes Hill (Doumer Island). The mountaineers will find their challenge by climbing Mount Luigi (1.400 m). All climbs and excursions can only be conducted in good weather conditions.

Sail through the spectacular Lemaire Channel to Pleneau and Petermann Island, where you can find Adelie Penguins and Blue-eyed Shags. In this area there are good chances to encounter Humpback Whales, Minke Whales and Fin Whales. A visit to one of the scientific stations in Antarctica will give you an insight about the life of modern Antarcticans working on the White Continent. Further south, visit the Ukrainian Vernadsky Station and receive a warm welcome from the station crew. Your second Basecamp will be erected in Waddington Bay. All activities are offered: 2 camp nights and one full day activity from Basecamp. Hikers use snowshoes to walk up to Cape Tuxen (352 m) and Mt Demaria (640 m). The mountaineers hope to reach the summit of Lumiere Peak (1050 m).

Day 9

Towards Drake Passage

Leave Waddington Bay in the morning and sail via the French Passage or Bismarck Strait towards the open sea of the Drake Passage.

Days 10-11

At Sea

On your way north, be again followed by a great selection of seabirds while crossing the Drake Passage.

Day 12

  • Breakfast

Ushuaia / Disembark

Arrive in the morning and disembark in Ushuaia.
- 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.
- Single occupancy: All cabins 1.7 times the share twin price
- Due to the extreme nature of itinerary destinations, travel insurance is mandatory for all cruises aboard the Plancius - including medical, accident and repatriation/evacuation insurance.
A Basecamp itinerary to the Antarctic Peninsula is illustrated above. 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.
• Complementary Field camping, Hiking, Kayaking, Mountaineering, and Photo Workshop.
• All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including snacks, coffee and tea.
• Free use of rubber boots and snowshoes aboard ‘Plancius’.
• Pre-scheduled group transfer from the vessel to the airport in Ushuaia (directly after disembarkation).
• All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac.
• Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff.
• 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; transfers to the vessel; passport and visa expenses; Government arrival and departure taxes; meals ashore; baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is strongly recommended); excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges; and the customary gratuity at the end of the voyages for stewards and other service personnel aboard (guidelines will be provided).

If world fuel prices will reach or exceed US Dollar $120/Barrel 90 days prior to departure MV Plancius reserves the right to levy a fuel surcharge of US Dollar 25 per passenger per night.