Day 1 Ushuaia
Arrive in Ushuaia, where you will be met by a representative of the expedition company and transferred to your group hotel (preferred flights only). Upon arrival at your included hotel, kindly remind hotel check-in staff to provide you with cabin tags. Please clearly label the tags with your name and ship cabin number.
Day 3 Drake Passage
- 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Cross the Drake Passage, accompanied by albatross, petrels, fulmars, and prions. The polar experts speak about Antarctica’s unique wildlife and history and prepare you for landings with environmental, activity and Zodiac briefings. All eyes are peeled for first iceberg, first penguin and first glimpse of land, the mercurial sea stacks outlying the South Shetland Islands. If conditions allow, you may have a chance to go ashore by late afternoon on Day 3.
Day 4 Drake Passage | South Shetland Islands
- 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Nearing the South Shetland Islands and the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula on day four, the excitement is palpable with everyone converging on one of the observation decks, watching for our first iceberg. The ocean takes on a whole new perspective once we 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. Weather permitting, we may attempt our first landing in Antarctica by late afternoon.
Day 5-12 Antarctic Peninsula & Antarctic Circle
- 8 Breakfasts, 8 Lunches, 8 Dinners
t’s 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 we arrive, the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands are ours to explore, and we have a host of choices available to us. Because we are so far south, we 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.
We generally make landings or Zodiac excursions twice a day. You’ll 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 favorite spots along the peninsula.
While ashore we aim to stretch our 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’ll have the option to do that whenever conditions allow, and of course keen polar plungers will have the chance to fully immerse themselves in polar waters - conditions permitting!
In addition to Zodiac cruises and shore excursions, we may ship cruise some of the narrow, dramatic straits separating offshore islands from the mainland, or linger in scenic bays to watch whales traveling or feeding. This is a great time to enjoy the observation lounge or make your way to the bridge for uninterrupted views of Antarctica in all its splendor. Keep an ear out for the creak and deep rumble of glaciers as they carve their way from the summit to sea, and take a quiet moment to experience the wonder of this incredible white continent.
On this voyage, we plan to cross the Antarctic Circle, an imaginary line located at the Antarctic Circle at latitude 66°33' South (approximately). This is certainly a special highlight for everyone, and the moment will be celebrated with a toast on the deck. You’ve earned some boasting privileges, joining a small group of lucky adventurers who’ve made it to this part of the world. As we approach and cross the circle, you will notice subtle changes in the landscape, icescape, and also in the distribution of wildlife. The waters at this time of year are rich with krill and we hope to see plenty of whales - particularly humpbacks and minkes and enjoy the spectacle of penguins feeding their ravenous chicks.
Expect a Christmas like no other, on this voyage. No matter where we are along the peninsula, we’ll enjoy some festive landings before savoring a special festive feast with our fellow expeditioners.
Day 13-14 Drake Passage
- 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Cross the Drake Passage, accompanied by albatross, petrels, fulmars and prions. Take the time to reflect on your experience and spend the last few days with your newly made friends.