Have questions? We're here.

Spirit of Antarctica

Roundtrip Ushuaia - Example 12 Day Cruise aboard Sylvia Earle
Talk with an expert
Build your ideal Antarctica trip. Call 1.406.541.2677
Start Planning My Trip
On this 12-day adventure cruise roundtrip Ushuaia aboard Sylvia Earle, immerse yourself in the essence of polar exploration with this traditional expedition to the sought-after white continent. Traverse the renowned Drake Passage, marveling at breathtaking seabirds and approaching the ice by sea, just like the early explorers. You will have the opportunity to navigate through pack ice on a Zodiac, step on the continent, select from various adventure activities, and potentially camp beneath colorful polar skies. This is the ultimate Antarctic journey for those who crave adventure.
Highlights
  • Hone your ice and wildlife photography skills
  • Explore the Drake Passage and witness breathtaking seabirds
  • Experience the excitement of navigating through pack ice on a Zodiac
  • Join the exclusive polar plunge club and dive into the beautiful Antarctic waters
Activity Level: Relaxed
Involves minimal physical effort and is typically associated with leisurely activities. Activities are low-intensity or last less than a few hours each day.
0

Full Itinerary

Expand All

Day 1: Arrival in Ushuaia

Arrive in Ushuaia, where you will be met by a representative and transferred to your downtown hotel. 

This afternoon, visit the hospitality desk in the lobby between 8.00 am and 12.00 pm, or 3.00 pm and 7.00 pm, to collect your luggage tags, and confirm if you wish to join the Beagle Channel and Isla de Los Lobos Cruise (sea lion island) tomorrow. The team will confirm details regarding your embarkation day, answer any questions and provide you with information on where to dine or purchase last-minute items.   

The remainder of your time is at leisure. 

Assigned accommodation: Las Hayas Ushuaia Resort or Los Acebos Ushuaia Hotel 

Day 2: Ushuaia | Embark

This morning, enjoy breakfast and check out. Ensure your cabin luggage is fitted with cabin tags clearly labeled with your name and cabin number. Take your cabin luggage to the hotel reception, before, or at check-out. Your luggage will be stored and transferred directly to the port for clearance, to be placed in your cabin ahead of your arrival on board. Keep any valuables or personal items with you throughout the day.  

Your morning is at leisure to explore Ushuaia. 

Those wishing to join the afternoon catamaran cruise, meet back at the hotel lobby at 12.45 pm ready to transfer to the port at 1.00 pm. Here you board your catamaran and sail the Beagle Channel, towards the city’s iconic Les Eclaireurs Lighthouse. Crossing the Bridges Archipelago you’ll slow down to watch colonies of sea lions and imperial cormorants sun themselves on the rocky outcrops, while gulls, rock cormorants, skuas, petrels, albatrosses, and cauquenes are often sighted. The cruise offers panoramic views of the city and the surrounding mountain range, in addition to hearing tales of the people and communities of the region. 

Alternatively, enjoy your day at leisure and meet at your hotel lobby at 3.45 pm to be transferred to the pier for embarkation. 

Once onboard, you’ll have time to settle into your cabin before our important mandatory briefings. As the ship pulls away from the port, gather on the deck to commence your adventure with spectacular views over Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego.  

This evening, get to know your fellow expeditioners and friendly expedition team and crew at a welcome dinner to celebrate the start of a thrilling adventure to Antarctica. 

Day 3: Drake Passage Crossing

As you commence the Drake Passage crossing, make the most of your time getting comfortable with the motions of the sea. Your expedition team prepares you for your first landing with important wildlife guidelines and biosecurity procedures and starts your lecture program to help you learn more about Antarctica’s history, wildlife, and environment.

Your wildlife experiences begin as you enjoy watching and photographing the many seabirds, including majestic albatrosses and giant petrels following in your wake. They rise and fall skilfully, using air currents created by the ship to gain momentum.

Your wildlife experiences begin as you enjoy watching and photographing the many seabirds, including majestic albatrosses and giant petrels following your vessel. On sea days, you may enjoy the facilities on board the vessel including the gym, and wellness center, or the relaxing in one of the observation lounges. 

Day 4: Drake Passage | South Shetland Islands

Nearing the South Shetland Islands and the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula on the afternoon of day four, the excitement is palpable with everyone converging on one of the observation decks watching for your first iceberg. The ocean takes on a whole new perspective once you are below the Antarctic Convergence and are surrounded by the surreal presence of floating ice sculptures. The memory of your first big iceberg sighting is likely to remain with you for a lifetime. Time and weather permitting, you may attempt your first landing in Antarctica by late afternoon.

Day 5-9: Antarctic Peninsula

It is almost impossible to describe the feeling of arriving in Antarctica. Spotting your first iceberg and taking a deep breath of some of the freshest, crisp air on earth is an experience that will stay with you forever. Once you arrive, the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands are yours to explore, and have a host of choices available to you. Because you are so far south, you will experience approximately 18-24 hours of daylight and the days can be as busy as you wish. 

Your experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their expertise to design your voyage from day to day, choosing the best options based on the prevailing weather, ice conditions and wildlife opportunities.

You generally make landings or Zodiac excursions twice a day. You will want to rug up before joining Zodiac cruises along spectacular ice cliffs or among grounded icebergs, keeping watch for whales, seals and porpoising penguins. Zodiacs will also transport you from the ship to land, where you can visit penguin rookeries, discover historic huts and explore some of our favourite spots along the peninsula. 

While ashore you aim to stretch your legs, wandering along pebbly beaches or perhaps up snow-covered ridgelines to vantage points with mountains towering overhead and ice-speckled oceans below. If you have chosen an optional activity, you will have the option to participate in the activity whenever conditions allow, and of course, keen polar plungers will have the chance to fully immerse themselves in polar waters - conditions permitting! The polar plunge can take place at any time during the voyage, so listen out for the announcement from the expedition team and get ready for the most exhilarating dip of your life! 

In addition to Zodiac cruises and shore excursions, you may ship cruise some of the narrow, dramatic straits separating offshore islands from the mainland, or linger in scenic bays to watch whales travelling or feeding. This is a great time to enjoy the observation lounge or make your way to the bridge (open at the captain’s discretion) for uninterrupted views of Antarctica in all its splendour. Listen out for the creak and deep rumble of glaciers as they carve into the sea. Take a quiet moment to experience the wonder of the pristine paradise of the splendid white continent.

If you have chosen an optional activity, you will have the option to enjoy that activity whenever conditions allow. 

Day 10-11: Drake Passage Crossing

Today, landings come to an end as you enter the Drake Passage for your return journey to South America. With lectures and film presentations to complete your Antarctic experience, there is still plenty of time to enjoy the magic of the Southern Ocean and the life that calls it home. There is time for reflection and discussion about what you have seen and experienced, and the impact this voyage has had on your attitude to life.

As you approach the tip of South America, the Captain may sail close to legendary Cape Horn, weather and time permitting.

Day 12: Disembark in Ushuaia

  • 1 Breakfast
During the early morning, you sail along the Beagle Channel, before quietly slipping into the dock in Ushuaia, where you begin disembarking at around 8.00 am. Wish farewell to your expedition team and fellow travelers as you all continue your onward journeys, hopefully with a newfound sense of the immense power of nature. A transfer to either downtown Ushuaia or to the airport is included in the cost of the voyage.

Note: After the cruise, we do not recommend booking flights departing Ushuaia before 12.00 pm on the day of disembarkation in case there are delays. 

Ship/Hotel

Sylvia Earle

Sylvia Earle
Sylvia Earle Observation Deck
Sylvia Earle Library

Ushuaia - Hotels

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Deals

Save 20% Off + Air Credit on 24/25 Antarctica Season 23787
Book now and save 20% off per person plus $2000 air credit on select 2024-2025 Antarctica departures. Bookings must be made and deposited by June 30, 2024. This promotion is valid for new bookings, is capacity-controlled, and is not combinable with other offers. A non-refundable deposit of $2,500 per person is required to confirm your booking within seven days of reserved berth/s. Additional restrictions may apply. Please contact us for details.

Code: ADVDEAL24
Click for departure dates

Per person starting at
$13,695 2-3 travelers
Greg Mortimer-Aurora Stateroom Triple
Select a Date
Aurora Stateroom Triple
22.67m2 (244ft2) - There are two Aurora Stateroom Triple cabins featuring portholes, all with private en-suites. Located on Deck 3, they're close to the mudroom and loading platforms.
Sylvia Earle Aurora Stateroom Superior
Select a Date
Aurora Stateroom Superior
19.9m2 - 20.8m2(214.2ft2 - 223.9ft2) - Located on Deck 7, the Staterooms feature french balconies, floor to ceiling windows, en-suite bathrooms and a comfortable desk area. Perfect for polar adventurers who travel with plenty of gear.
Sylvia Earle Balcony Stateroom C
Select a Date
Balcony Stateroom C
19.5m2 - 28.7m2 (209.9ft² - 308.9ft2) - 11 Balcony Stateroom C cabins - most economical, fitted with all the necessities and comfortable for up to 2 people. These cabins are scattered throughout Deck 6.
Sylvia Earle Balcony Stateroom B
Select a Date
Balcony Stateroom B
19.5m2 - 28.7m2 (209.9ft² - 308.9ft2) - 17 Balcony Stateroom B Cabins - standard cabin, many fitted with interconnecting features making them great for families or groups. These cabins are located at the fore and aft of Deck 4 and 6.
Greg Mortimer
Select a Date
Balcony Stateroom A
19.5m² - 28.7m² (209.9ft² - 308.9ft²)- 23 Balcony Stateroom A cabins - premium cabin, and the most abundant on board. These cabins are located in preferred positions on Deck 4 and 6 which provides easy access between Decks via the internal stairs or elevator.
Select a Date
Balcony Stateroom Superior
29.2m2 - 35.2m2 (314.3ft2 - 378.9ft2) - Located on Deck 4 and 6, the Staterooms feature floor to ceiling windows, en-suite bathrooms and a comfortable desk area. Some of these rooms are equipped with wheelchair accessible bathrooms.
Sylvia Earle Junior Suite
Select a Date
Junior Suite
Up to 41.6m2 (447.8ft2)- 4 Junior Suites take in some impressive scenery from their vantage points on Deck 7. When you aren't enjoying a landing, you can relax in the suites' separate lounge area, or just watch the world float by from the private balcony.
Greg Mortimer-Captain's Suite
Select a Date
Captain’s Suite
43.8m2 (471.5 ft2) - Captain's Suite - the largest of all our rooms, will take you to the polar regions in ultimate style and comfort. Complete with large lounge area, balcony, walk-in wardrobe and en-suite, you'll need to get in early to secure this suite.
Included
  • 11 Breakfasts, 9 Lunches, 10 Dinners
  • 11 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Comprehensive pre-departure information
  • Beer, House Wine, and Soft Drinks with Dinner 
  • Educational Lectures and Guiding Services from Expedition Team 
  • Complimentary access to onboard expedition doctor and medical clinic (initial consult)
  • Port Surcharges, Permits, and Landing Fees
  • Captain's Welcome and Farewell drinks including four-course dinner, house cocktails, house beer and wine, non-alcoholic beverages.
  • A 3-in-1 waterproof polar expedition jacket
  • Complimentary use of Muck boots during the voyage
  • All shore excursions and Zodiac cruises
  • All airport transfers mentioned in the itinerary.
  • On-board accommodation during voyage including daily cabin service
  • Luggage transfer from your hotel in Ushuaia to ship on Day 2
  • One night’s hotel accommodation with breakfast in Ushuaia on day 1
  • Half day city tour in Ushuaia on day 2 prior to embarkation
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Passport and Applicable Visa Expenses
  • Airport Departure Tax - Airport arrival or departure taxes
  • Alcoholic beverages and soft drinks (outside of dinner service), laundry services, personal clothing, medical expenses, Wi-Fi, email or phone charges
  • Hotels and meals not included in itinerary
  • Optional activity surcharges
  • Reciprocity and Vaccination Charges
  • Passengers traveling with Aurora Expeditions are required to be covered by a reputable travel insurance policy that includes baggage loss, cancellation & curtailment of the holiday, medical, accident, and repatriation/emergency evacuation coverage worth at least $250,000 USD.
  • International or domestic flights to or within South America, unless specified
  • Add-on activities should be reserved at the time of the booking.

Map

Inquire

* By providing your phone number, you consent to receive direct phone calls or SMS messages from our Trip Planners to get the process started. We do not share your information with third-parties.
Travel Agents

We Love to Talk Travel

Call 1.800.344.6118
or
Chat Now
Beyond expectations! Then again we weren't sure what to expect. Lovely stay at the lodge, met other like-minded travelers (many had their trips planned by Adventure Life) and the owner was a gracious hostess. It felt like you were one happy family, visiting with a favorite aunt.
Nancy Sin

Antarctica Travel Guide

Favorite Antarctica All Trips

More Reasons

Why Travel With Adventure Life

All News

Recognized By