Day 1 Ushuaia, Argentina
Arrive in Ushuaia anytime today, or take advantage of your complimentary flexible arrival program and arrive up to 24 hours in advance. Stay at the beautiful Arakur Hotel & Resort, a member of the Leading Hotels of the World. Explore the trails, take a spa, relax and soak in the surroundings, or head into Ushuaia and browse the Argentinean leather markets. Your optional evening briefing is a great opportunity for you to ask questions and to meet some of your fellow travelers.
Day 2 Ushuaia | Embark
- 1 Breakfast, 1 Dinner
This morning, you are free to explore Ushuaia or unwind at the resort until your mid-afternoon transfer to the ship. On board, be greeted by your Expedition Team and the Ship’s Officers. A concise safety and orientation briefing is followed by the Captain’s welcome dinner. After dinner, relax and take in the scenery on your early evening sail through the Beagle Channel, past Magellanic penguin, rock cormorant, and sea lion colonies.
Day 3-4 Drake Passage
- 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
As you make your way ever closer to the white continent, your Expedition Team and Marine Mammal experts are out on deck and on the bridge, looking for the whales and dolphins that may be seen as you travel south. They prepare you with presentations on everything Antarctic, from wildlife to history, including helpful briefings on environmental regulations and expedition safety. Eventually, cross the Antarctic Convergence where you can notice a distinct drop in temperature as you enter the waters of the Antarctic Ocean.
The length of your journey depends on sea conditions, but you should approach the South Shetland Islands in the evening of Day 4. Keep especially keen watch for pelagic whales as you approach the nutrient rich upwelling areas of the Continental Shelf.
Day 5-7 South Shetlands | Antarctic Peninsula
- 3 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 3 Dinners
Exploring the South Shetland Islands, you may visit Half Moon Island with its stunning backdrop of mountainous and glaciated Livingston Island. Or perhaps sail the ship into an active volcano with an opportunity to take a dip in the relatively balmy waters that surround Deception Island. Bransfield Strait, once the site of an abandoned whaling station, gives you an excellent chance to see whales, who often return to its rich waters.
In the waterways of the Antarctic Peninsula, your Expedition Leader, Captain, and Marine Mammal experts create a flexible itinerary based on weather, ice, and previous sightings to maximize your whale watching opportunities, while also exploring some of the lesser travelled areas of the Peninsula. Aim for the most scenic bays and channels, with stops at penguin rookeries, seal wallows, bird colonies and whale feeding areas, as well as sites of historic and scientific interest.
Day 8-11 Antarctic Peninsula
- 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
Heading further South, be sure to explore the Gerlache Strait and its surrounding channels and islands. This may include trips to picturesque Neko Harbor, sheltered Paradise Harbor, the humpback whale favored Wilhelmina Bay, the striking Lemaire Channel, the wildlife-filled Penola Channel, or the majestic Neumayer Channel. You may stop at an active scientific base such as Poland’s Arctowksi or Ukraine’s Vernadskiy as well as a historic base such as U.K.’s Port Lockroy or Wordie House.
At this time of year, most areas have amazing marine mammal viewing opportunities with Weddell, crabeater and elephant seals often found hauled out to rest along with predatory leopard seals and the assertive Antarctic fur seal. minke and humpback whales are frequent visitors during this season and orca sightings are also common.
Day 12-13 Drake Passage
- 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
As you leave this magical place and make your way north, heading again across the Antarctic Convergence and the Drake Passage, continue your presentation series and wildlife spotting. Sailing back to Ushuaia through the Beagle Channel, celebrate the conclusion of your expedition with a special slideshow.
Day 14 Ushuaia | Disembark
Morning disembarkation lets you catch a flight to Buenos Aires or stay in Ushuaia for more sights and adventure.