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Photographing in the snow.

Photographer's First Light - Antarctic Peninsula & South Georgia

Example 18 Day Cruise aboard Polar Pioneer
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South Georgia and the Antarctic Peninsula are the focus of this 18-day springtime photographic expedition cruise. Capture perfect light as the days grow longer, king penguins shuffle eggs on their feet, elephant seals pup, and fur seal males battle for mating rights. Toast the graves of Wild and Shackleton and visit Grytviken’s whaling museum. Sail to Elephant Island and the Antarctic Peninsula, with ample time to photograph penguin rookeries during nest-building and breeding, whales and seals, historic sites, and the continent itself before crossing the Drake Passage to Puerto Williams.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Falkland Islands | Embark
Days 2-3 : Bound for South Georgia
Days 4-8 : South Georgia
Days 9-10 : Scotia Sea
Day 11 : Elephant Island
Days 12-15 : Antarctic Peninsula
Days 16-17 : Drake Passage
Day 18 : Disembark in Puerto Williams | Punta Arenas


  • Photograph South Georgia's spectacular northern coast
  • Visit the world's largest king penguin rookeries & majestic albatross nests
  • Pay your respects at Sir Ernest Shackleton's grave
  • Sail down to Gerlache Strait, a photographer's paradise!


Polar Pioneer

Places Visited


Activity Level


Trip Snapshots

Photographing in the snow. A close up of an Elephant Seal. Antarctica is a photographers delight! Enjoy myriad photo ops on your Antarctica expedition cruise Zodiac cruising among the pack ice and icebergs of the peninsula Kayaker's wandering through the beautiful waters.

Day 1 Falkland Islands | Embark

Fly from Santiago or Punta Arenas, Chile, and tour the Falkland Islands’ very British capital, Stanley, before embarking the Polar Pioneer in the late afternoon.

Day 2-3 Bound for South Georgia

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Bound for South Georgia, escorted by albatrosses, giant petrels, and tiny Wilson’s storm petrels, where your photography program begins. Your naturalist and historian enliven the crossing with informative talks and the rest of the team prepares you for first landings with environmental and Zodiac briefings.

Day 4-8 South Georgia

  • Ship
  • 5 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 5 Dinners
Spring brings an explosion of life to South Georgia, offering ample time to explore and photograph the island’s spectacular northern coast. Photograph wildlife havens that include the world’s largest king penguin rookeries, majestic albatross nests, and beaches cluttered with basking elephant seals, feisty fur seals, and penguins. Inspired by Shackleton’s epic, hope to retrace the expedition’s final steps from Fortuna Bay to Stromness.

Day 9-10 Scotia Sea

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Cross the Scotia Sea, watching for seabirds, your first icebergs, and great whales including blues, fin, and sei. Enjoy time to reflect on South Georgia and prepare for Antarctica, the next leg of your adventure.

Day 11 Elephant Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Conditions permitting, approach Cape Wild, a bleak, rocky spit along Elephant Island’s dramatic north coast. If the sea state allows, Zodiac cruise, possibly even step ashore, to pay tribute to Shackleton’s 22 men who survived four months here.

Day 12-15 Antarctic Peninsula

  • Ship
  • 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
Land in the South Shetland Islands before sailing down Gerlache Strait and awaken to the drama of Antarctica – a photographer’s paradise! Encounter pack ice and penguin rookeries alive with courtship, mating and nest-building, visit historic sites, and land on the continent proper.

Day 16-17 Drake Passage

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Return to the realm of the albatross – the Drake Passage. Celebrate, recap your many experiences, and learn to manage your abundant collection of new photos.

Day 18 Disembark in Puerto Williams | Punta Arenas

Dawn greets you in the Beagle Channel. Disembark for a tour of Puerto Williams before boarding your flight to Punta Arenas.

Polar Pioneer

Per person starting at
Polar Pioneer's Triple Cabin.
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Triple Shared
Triple Cabins have two lower and one upper berth, a desk, a small washbasin, storage and hanging space and portholes. Showers and toilets are very close by and are shared with other Main Deck cabins.
Polar Pioneer's Public Twin Cabin.
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Twin Shared
Twin Shared Cabins have two lower bunks, a desk, small washbasin, ample storage and hanging space and portholes. Showers and toilets are very close by and are shared with other Main Deck cabins.
Polar Pioneer's Private Twin Cabin.
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Twin Private
Twin Private Cabins have two lower bunks, a desk, windows, and a private bathroom with shower, toilet and washbasin. Two cabins have upper and lower bunks (cabins 402 and 403).
Polar Pioneer's Mini Suite.
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Mini Suite
Mini Suites have a separate small bedroom with double bed, a sofa bed in the main room, a desk, video player and TV, windows and a private bathroom with shower, toilet and washbasin.
Polar Pioneer's Captain Suite.
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The Suite features a large lounge area, a separate small bedroom with double bed, a sofabed in the main room, a video player and TV, refrigerator, large forward and side facing windows, and a private bathroom with shower, toilet and washbasin.


Please note that all of Polar Pioneer itineraries are at the mercy of weather conditions and not all landings are guaranteed. These itineraries are flexible and will change voyage to voyage, allowing the best chance to make the most of surprising wildlife displays and unexpected opportunities.

- Rates 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 costs are 1.7 times the twin rate

Voyage Inclusions:
  • Flight from Santiago or Punta Arenas, Chile to Stanley, Falkland Islands/Malvinas (no reduced fare for starting in Punta Arenas)
  • Transfer from Stanley airport to Polar Pioneer
  • Sightseeing tour of Stanley, Falkland Islands/Malvinas
  • Transfer from Polar Pioneer to Puerto Williams airport
  • Sightseeing tour of Puerto Williams and surroundings
  • Flight from Puerto Williams to Punta Arenas
  • Accommodation on board Polar Pioneer
  • All meals, snacks, tea and coffee during the voyage
  • All shore excursions and Zodiac (inflatable boat) cruises
  • Educational lectures and guiding services from your expert team
  • Access to an o-board doctor and basic medical services
  • Complimentary custom-designed Polar Expedition jacket
  • Free gumboot hire during the voyage
  • Daily cabin service
  • A multi-purpose waterproof jacket
  • Comprehensive pre-departure information
  • Professionally produced voyage journal (one per booking)
  • Port taxes and charges
  • All entry fees to historic landings sites.
Voyage Exclusions:
  • International or domestic flights to or from ship, unless specified
  • Transfers not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Airport arrival or departure taxes
  • Visa, passport, and vaccination charges
  • Travel insurance or emergency evacuation charges
  • Hotels and meals not included in itinerary
  • Optional excursions not included in the itinerary
  • Optional activity surcharge. Please contact us if you wish to book any optional activities, such as sea kayaking
  • All items of a personal nature including but not limited to: alcoholic beverages and soft drinks, laundry services, personal clothing, medical expenses, gratuities, and email or phone charges


  • 17 Breakfasts, 16 Lunches, 17 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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