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Falkland Islands - South Georgia - Antarctic Peninsula

Example 21 Day Cruise aboard MV Janssonius
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This 21-day expedition cruise aboard the MV Janssonius showcases the highlights of the Antarctic Peninsula and the sub-Antarctic islands. Enjoy excursions to the Falkland Islands, South Georgia, and the South Orkney Islands before heading to the Antarctic Peninsula. The wildlife watching during this expedition is unparalleled, with opportunities to observe at least six species of penguins, seals, whales, and a wide range of seabird species. The dramatic vistas of these icy landscapes are sure to astound every traveler, and history buffs enjoy the visits to Shackleton's grave and other historic sites. 
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Highlights
  • Observe southern right whales as you sail towards the Falkland Islands.
  • Discover Falkland´s culture, colorful houses, gardens & English-style pubs.
  • View a multitude of albatrosses, shearwaters, petrels, prions & skuas.
  • Set foot on the Antarctic Continent in a magnificent landscape of glaciers.
Activity Level: Relaxed
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Puerto Madryn | Embark

In the afternoon, embark in Puerto Madryn and sail towards the Falkland Islands. Have a chance to see whales in Golfo Nuevo, world renowned for their visiting southern right whales, as you head towards open ocean.

Day 2-3: At Sea

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Though you’re now at sea, there’s rarely a lonesome moment here. Several species of bird follow the vessel southeast, such as albatrosses, storm petrels, shearwaters, and diving petrels.

Day 4: Falkland Islands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The Falkland Islands offer an abundance of wildlife that is easily approachable, though caution is always advised. These islands are largely unknown gems, the site of a 1982 war between the UK and Argentina. Not only do various species of bird live here, but chances are great you’ll see both Peale’s dolphins and Commerson’s dolphins in the surrounding waters.

During this segment of the voyage, you may visit the following sites:

Steeple Jason – Home to the world’s largest black-browed albatross colony (roughly 113,000), Steeple Jason is a wild and rarely visited island buffeted by wind and waves. Weather and swell conditions dictate the journey here.

Carcass Island – Despite its name, this island is pleasantly rodent-free and hence bounteous with birdlife. Anything from breeding Magellanic penguins and gentoos to numerous waders and passerine birds (including Cobb’s wrens and tussock-birds) live here.

Saunders Island – On Saunders Island you can see the black-browed albatross and its sometimes-clumsy landings, along with breeding imperial shags and rockhopper penguins. King penguins, Magellanic penguins, and gentoos are also found here.

Day 5: Port Stanley, Falklands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The capital of the Falklands and center of its culture, Port Stanley has some Victorian-era charm: colorful houses, well-tended gardens, and English-style pubs are all to be found here. You can also see several century-old clipper ships nearby, silent witnesses to the hardships of 19th-century sailors. The small but interesting museum is also worth a visit, covering the early days of settlement up to the Falklands War. Approximately 2,100 people live in Port Stanley. Admission to the museum is included.

Day 6-7: At Sea

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Cross the Antarctic Convergence on your way to South Georgia. Entering Antarctic waters, the temperature may drop significantly in the time span of only a few hours. Near the Convergence see a multitude of southern seabirds near the ship, including several species of albatrosses, shearwaters, petrels, prions, and skuas.

Day 8-11: South Georgia

  • Ship
  • 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
Today you arrive at the first South Georgia activity site. Please keep in mind that weather conditions in this area can be challenging, essentially dictating the program. 

Sites you might visit include:

Prion Island – This location is closed during the early part of the wandering albatross breeding season (November 20 – January 7). The previous summer’s wandering albatross chicks are almost ready to fledge, and adults seek out their old partners after a year and a half at sea.

Salisbury Plain, St. Andrews Bay, Gold Harbour – These sites not only house the three largest king penguin colonies in South Georgia, but they’re also three of the world’s most extensive breeding beaches for southern elephant seals. Only during this time of year do they peak in their breeding cycle. Watch the four-ton bulls keep a constant vigil (and occasionally fight) over territories where dozens of females have just given birth or are about to deliver. You can also see many Antarctic fur seals here during the breeding season (December – January).

Fortuna Bay – A beautiful outwash plain from Fortuna Glacier is home to many king penguins and seals. Here you may also have the chance to follow the final leg of Shackleton’s route to the abandoned whaling village of Stromness. This path cuts across the mountain pass beyond Shackleton’s Waterfall, and as the terrain is partly swampy, be prepared to cross a few small streams.

Grytviken – In this abandoned whaling station, king penguins walk the streets, and elephant seals lie around like they own the place – because they do. Here you might be able to see the South Georgia Museum as well as Shackleton’s grave.

In the afternoon of day 11, and depending on the conditions, start sailing southwards in the direction of the South Orkney Islands.

Day 12: Southward bound

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
There may be sea ice on this route, and at the edge of the ice some south polar skuas and snow petrels could join the other seabirds trailing the vessel south.

Day 13: South Orkney

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Depending on the conditions, you might visit Orcadas Base, an Argentine scientific station on Laurie Island in the South Orkney archipelago. The personnel here will happily show you their facility, where you can enjoy expansive views of the surrounding glaciers. If a visit isn’t possible, you may instead land at Signy Island’s Shingle Cove.

Day 14: Last push to the Antarctic

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Enormous icebergs and a fair chance of fin whale sightings ensure there’s never a dull moment on this last sea voyage south. Also, your best chance to spot Antarctic petrels is here.

Day 15-18: Antarctic Peninsula

  • Ship
  • 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
If the ice conditions permit, you now sail into the Weddell Sea. Here colossal tabular icebergs herald your arrival to the eastern side of the Antarctic Peninsula. Paulet Island, with its large population of Adélie penguins, is a possible stop. You might also visit Brown Bluff, located in the ice-clogged Antarctic Sound, where you could get the chance to set foot on the Antarctic Continent itself. 

If conditions aren’t favorable to enter the Weddell Sea from the east, the ship sets course for Elephant Island and heads into the Bransfield Strait, between the South Shetland Island and the Antarctic Peninsula. 

The volcanic islands of the South Shetlands are windswept and often cloaked in mist, but they nonetheless offer many subtle pleasures. A wide variety of flora (mosses, lichens, flowering grasses) and fauna (gentoo penguins, chinstrap penguins, southern giant petrels) live here. Chinstrap penguins and Weddell seals often haul out onto the beach near Cámara Base, an Argentine scientific research station on Half Moon Island.

On Deception Island, the ship plunges through Neptune’s Bellows and into the flooded caldera. Here you can find hot springs, an abandoned whaling station, and thousands of cape petrels. A number of kelp gulls, brown skuas, south polar skuas, and Antarctic terns can be spotted too. Wilson’s storm petrels and black-bellied storm petrels also nest in the ruins of the whaling station in Whalers Bay. As an alternative, you can take part in activities near Telefon Bay, further inside the caldera.

This extended voyage gives you the chance to sail even farther down the icy coast of the western Antarctic Peninsula. There are several opportunities for great landings where you might set foot on the Antarctic Continent, surrounded by an epic landscape of alpine peaks and mammoth glaciers calving at sea level. Gentoo penguins, leopard seals, Weddell seals, humpback whales, and minke whales are often seen here.
 
The breathtaking scenery continues in the Bransfield Strait and if conditions allow further South in the Gerlache Strait. Conditions on the Drake Passage determine the exact time of departure.

 

Day 19-20: At Sea

  • 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 21: Ushuaia | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
You arrive and disembark in Ushuaia, commonly held to be the world’s most southern city. It is located on the Tierra del Fuego archipelago, nicknamed the “End of the World.” But despite this stopping point, the wealth of memories you’ve made on your Antarctic expedition travels with you wherever your next adventure lies.

Ship/Hotel

MV Janssonius

MV Janssonius
MV Janssonius
MV Janssonius

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$13,350
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Included
  • 20 Breakfasts, 19 Lunches, 20 Dinners
  • 20 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Excursions and activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Comprehensive Pre- and Post-voyage Information Materials
     
  • Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff.
  • All Miscellaneous Service Taxes and Port Charges Throughout the Program
     
  • Snowshoes Available on Loan for Shore Excursions on Designated Voyages
  •  Luggage Transfer from Pick-up Point to the Vessel on the Day of Embarkation in Ushuaia
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
  • Government arrival and departure taxes
  • Loan of Waterproof Boots for Landings
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Pre- and Post Land Arrangements

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