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Antarctic Explorer - Fly/Sail Cruise

Example 10 Day Cruise aboard Sylvia Earle
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Early Antarctic explorers returned from their voyages to the deep south with tales of a magnificent, ice-covered land teeming with life. Experience the awe-inspiring immensity of Antarctica and immerse yourself in the unimaginable beauty of the Antarctic Peninsula, where vast glaciers tumble into the sea, penguins are dwarfed by soaring peaks, and humpback and minke whales feast on abundant krill. Reduce your time on the high seas by flying at least one way across the Drake Passage.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Arrive in Punta Arenas
Day 2 : Fly Punta Arenas to King George Island | Embarkation
Days 3-7 : Antarctic Peninsula
Days 8-9 : Drake Passage crossing
Day 10 : Ushuaia | Disembark

Highlights

  • Skip one or two legs of the Drake Passage to maximise your holiday time in the white continent
  • Zodiac-cruise in search of feeding and breaching whales
  • Chance to spot leopard seals on ice floes from our Zodiacs

Ship

Sylvia Earle

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Easy Active

Trip Snapshots

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Day 1 Arrive in Punta Arenas

Arrive in Punta Arenas, where you will be met by a representative of Aurora Expeditions and transferred to your downtown hotel (preferred flights only).

Overlooking the Straits of Magellan, the city sits astride one of the world's most historic trade routes. Today, Punta Arenas reflects a great mix of cultures, from English sheep ranchers to Portuguese sailors, and it remains an utterly fascinating testament to Chile's rich history.
Tonight, you will gather to meet your fellow expeditioners and a briefing on the first leg of your expedition – your flight to Antarctica!

Day 2 Fly Punta Arenas to King George Island | Embarkation

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Dinner
This morning you will be transferred to Punta Arenas airport for your early morning charter flight to King George Island, Antarctica (weather permitting). The flight will take approximately one-and-a-half hours.
On arrival into King George Island your expedition team is on hand to greet you for your Zodiac transfer to board the vessel. You’ll have time to settle into your cabin before your important briefings.
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 3-7 Antarctic Peninsula

  • Ship
  • 5 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 5 Dinners
It’s almost impossible to describe the feeling of arriving in Antarctica. Spotting your first iceberg and taking a deep breath of some of the most fresh, 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 you have a host of choices available. 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.
Generally, landings or Zodiac excursions happen 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 the favourite spots along the peninsula.
While ashore, 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’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, 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 for uninterrupted views of Antarctica in all its splendour. Keep an ear out for the creak and deep rumble of glaciers as they carve their way from summit to sea, and take a quiet moment to experience the wonder of this incredible white continent.

Day 8-9 Drake Passage crossing

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Today, your 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 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 10 Ushuaia | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
During the early morning, you cruise up the Beagle Channel, before quietly slipping into dock in Ushuaia, where you will be free to disembark around 8.00 am. Farewell your expedition team and fellow passengers as you all continue your onward journeys, hopefully with a newfound sense of the immense power of nature. A transfer to downtown Ushuaia before continuing to the airport is included.
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Sylvia Earle

Punta Arenas - Hotels

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Per person starting at
$10,895
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Aurora Stateroom Triple
4 Aurora Stateroom Triple cabins featuring portholes, all with private en-suites. Located on Deck 3, they're close to the mudroom and loading platforms.
Greg Mortimer
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Aurora Stateroom Twin
3 Aurora Stateroom Twin cabins featuring portholes, all with private en-suites. Located on Deck 3, they're close to the mudroom and loading platforms, perfect for adventurers who are looking for a comfortable base that's close to the action.
Greg Mortimer-Aurora Stateroom
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Aurora Stateroom Superior
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.
Greg Mortimer-Balcony Stateroom
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Balcony Stateroom C
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.
Greg Mortimer
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Balcony Stateroom B
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
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Balcony Stateroom A
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.
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Balcony Stateroom Superior
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.
Greg Mortimer- Junior Suite
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Junior Suite
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
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Captain’s Suite
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.

Notes

Inclusions

  • Arrival transfer from airport to hotel on Day 1

  • One night’s hotel accommodation with breakfast in Punta Arenas on Day 1

  • Transfer from hotel to airport in Punta Arenas on Day 2

  • Flight from Punta Arenas to King George Island on Day 2

  • Transfer to downtown Ushuaia or airport on Day 12

  • On-board accommodation during voyage including daily cabin service

  • All meals, snacks, tea and coffee during voyage

  • Beer, house wine and soft drinks with dinner

  • Captain’s Welcome and Farewell reception including four-course dinner, house cocktails, house beer and wine, non-alcoholic beverages

  • All shore excursions and Zodiac cruises

  • Educational lectures and guiding services from expedition team

  • Free access to our onboard doctor for consultations relating to sea-sickness. A standard fee of US $60.00 (reclaimable through your travel insurance provider) applies for medical consultations not related to sea-sickness

  • A 3-in-1 waterproof polar expedition jacket

  • Complimentary use of muck boots during the voyage

  • Comprehensive pre-departure information

  • Port surcharges, permits and landing fees


Exclusions


  • International or domestic flights, unless specified

  • Transfers not mentioned in the itinerary

  • Airport arrival or departure taxes

  • Passport, visa, reciprocity 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 surcharges

  • All items of a personal nature including but not limited to: alcoholic beverages and soft drinks (outside of dinner service), laundry services, personal clothing, medical expenses, gratuities, Wi-Fi, email or phone charges

Payment & Cancellation Policies
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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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