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A polar landscape

Polar Circle - Antarctic Peninsula

Example 12 Day Cruise aboard MV Plancius
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This 12-day expedition cruise aboard the MV Plancius offers a unique possibility to visit the south of Antarctica, crossing the Polar Circle. Enjoy two days sailing across the Drake Passage and observe four species of albatrosses, and spot your first icebergs on your way to Deception Island. Sail through the spectacular Lemaire Channel and meet Adélie penguins and blue-eyed shags. 

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Ushuaia | Embark
Days 2-3 : Drake Passage
Days 4-9 : Antarctic Peninsula
Days 10-11 : Drake Passage
Day 12 : Ushuaia | Disembark

Highlights

  • Cross the Drake Passage and enjoy the scenic waterway
  • Land at Hannah Point - meet gentoo and chinstrap penguins & giant petrels
  • Navigate through a myriad of icebergs and deep-cut fjords
  • Sail across the Polar Circle and land in the abandoned British station

Ship

MV Plancius

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

A polar landscape Stunning views from your zodiac cruise Showing off his beautiful tail Chinstrap penguin sighting A whale plays near the surface at dusk.

Day 1 Ushuaia | Embark

Your voyage begins where the world drops off. Ushuaia, Argentina, reputed to be the southernmost city on the planet, is located on the far southern tip of South America. Starting in the afternoon, you embark from this small resort town on Tierra del Fuego, nicknamed “The End of the World,” and sail the mountain-fringed Beagle Channel for the remainder of the evening. 

Day 2-3 Drake Passage

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Over the next two days on the Drake Passage, you enjoy some of the same experiences encountered by the great polar explorers who first charted these regions: cool salt breezes, rolling seas, maybe even a fin whale spouting up sea spray. After passing the Antarctic Convergence – Antarctica’s natural boundary formed when north-flowing cold waters collide with warmer sub-Antarctic seas – you are in the circum-Antarctic up welling zone. Not only does the marine life change, but the avian life also changes too. Wandering albatrosses, grey-headed albatrosses, black-browed albatrosses, light-mantled sooty albatrosses, cape pigeons, southern fulmars, Wilson’s storm petrels, blue petrels, and Antarctic petrels are a few of the birds you might see.

Day 4-9 Antarctic Peninsula

  • Ship
  • 6 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 6 Dinners
Options for Antarctic Peninsula activities are many, and no less great during the late summer. Humpback whales are prolific in this region, gorging themselves on krill before their migration north. The penguin chicks are also fledging, stirring up activity on the beaches while sleek leopard seals lie in wait, poised to attack the less fortunate ones.
 
Sites for your Antarctic adventures may include: 
 
Livingston Island – Here you find a wide variety of gentoo and chinstrap penguins on Hannah Point, as well as southern giant petrels and elephant seals hauling out onto the beach. 
 
Deception Island – Actually a subducted crater, this island opens into the sea and creates a natural harbor for the ship. Hot springs, an abandoned whaling station, and multiple bird species – cape petrels, kelp gulls, brown and south polar skuas, and Antarctic terns – can be seen here. Wilson’s storm petrels and black-bellied storm petrels also nest in the ruins of the whaling station in Whalers Bay. 
 
Cuverville Island – A small precipitous island nestled between the mountains of the Antarctic Peninsula and Rongé Island, Cuverville houses a large colony of gentoo penguins and breeding pairs of brown skuas. 
 
Neko Harbour – An epic landscape of mammoth glaciers and endless wind-carved snow, Neko Harbour offers opportunities for a Zodiac cruise and landing that afford the closest views of the surrounding alpine peaks. You might also be able to set foot on the continent here. 
 
Paradise Bay – You could take a Zodiac cruise in these sprawling, ice-flecked waters, where you have a good chance of seeing humpback and minke whales. 
 
Pléneau & Petermann Islands – If the ice allows it, you may sail through the Lemaire Channel in search of Adélie penguins and blue-eyed shags. There’s also a good chance you’ll encounter humpback and minke whales as well as leopard seals. 
 
Crystal Sound – Your journey takes you south along the Argentine Islands to this ice-packed body of water, and from here across the Polar Circle in the morning. 
 
Detaille Island – You may make a landing at an abandoned British research station here, taking in the island’s lofty mountains and imposing glaciers. 
 
Fish Islands – Further north you encounter one of the southernmost Adélie penguin and blue-eyed shag colonies in the Antarctic Peninsula. 
 
Melchior Islands – These islands offer a beautiful landscape rich with icebergs. Leopard seals, crabeater seals, and whales are found here, and there are excellent opportunities for kayaking and diving. 
 
Conditions on the Drake Passage determine the exact time of departure.

Day 10-11 Drake Passage

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Your return voyage is far from lonely. While crossing the Drake, you’re again greeted by the vast array of seabirds remembered from the passage south. But they seem a little more familiar to you now, and you to them.

Day 12 Ushuaia | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
Arrive in the morning in Ushuaia and disembark after breakfast.

MV Plancius

Deals

Save 5%
Polar Savings - Book before June 1, 2019 and save 5% per person. Contact us for details.
Applies to all upcoming departures.

Per person starting at
$7,950
Plancius' Quadruple Cabin.
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Quadruple Porthole
4 cabins with private facilities, 2 bunk beds. (ca. 15 m2)
The quadruple porthole cabin
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Triple Porthole
2 cabins with private facilities, 1 bunk bed and 1 lower berth. (ca. 15 m2)
Plancius' Twin Porthole Cabin.
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Twin with Porthole
9 twin private cabins with porthole. Two Lower berths. (ca. 15 m2)
Plancius' Twin Window Cabin.
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Twin with Window
26 twin private cabins with window. Two Lower berths (ca. 15 m2)
Plancius' Twin Deluxe Cabin.
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Twin Deluxe
2 twin private deluxe cabins. Lower berths - two single beds.(ca. 15 m2)
Plancius' Superior Cabin.
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Superior
10 twin superior cabins. Lower berth - double bed. (ca. 21 m2)

Notes

- Rates are quoted in U.S. dollars and 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 occupancy: All cabins 1.7 times the share twin price
- Due to the extreme nature of itinerary destinations, travel insurance is mandatory for all cruises aboard the Plancius - including medical, accident and repatriation/evacuation insurance.

All itineraries are for guidance only. Programs may vary depending on local ice and weather conditions, the availability of landing sites, and opportunities to see wildlife. The final itinerary will be determined by the Expedition Leader on board. Flexibility is paramount for expedition cruises. 

Fares include:
- Voyage aboard the designated vessel as indicated in the itinerary
- All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including snacks, coffee, and tea
- All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac
- Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff
- Free use of rubber boots and snowshoes 
- Luggage transfer from pick-up point to the vessel on the day of embarkation, in Ushuaia
- Pre-scheduled group transfer from the vessel to the airport in Ushuaia (directly after disembarkation)
- All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program
- Comprehensive pre-departure material

Not included:
- Any airfare whether on scheduled or charter flights
- Pre- and post land arrangements
- Transfers to the vessel in Ushuaia and Ascension and from the vessel in Ascension and Praia
- Passport and visa expenses
- Government arrival and departure taxes
- Meals ashore
- Baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is mandatory)
- Excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges, and telecommunication charges
- The customary gratuity at the end of the voyages for stewards and other service personnel aboard (guidelines will be provided)

Please note:
It is agreed that if world fuel prices will reach or exceed US $120 per Barrel Brent 90 days prior to departure, MV Plancius reserves the right to levy a fuel surcharge of US $25 per passenger per night.
Payment & Cancellation Policies
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Alexandra L

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The trip was terrific with great planning on your part. Most of the adventures were not mainstream and somewhat off the beaten path which made it especially enjoyable!! We felt taken care of and you all were readily available to respond to questions and issues. I would highly recommend your company and friends have already expressed interest based on our pictures and excitement.
Gale Cantor

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