Have questions? We're here.
A spectacular iceberg off the coast of Antarctica

The Epic Antarctica and South Georgia Adventure

Example 18 Day Cruise aboard Ocean Albatros
Talk with an expert
Build your ideal Antarctica trip. Call 1.406.541.2677
Start Planning My Trip
Embark on an 18-day expedition cruise aboard the Ocean Albatros. From Ushuaia, Argentina, through the Southern Ocean to explore Antarctica, the South Shetland Islands, and South Georgia, discover awe-inspiring landscapes of icebergs, glaciers, and mountains. Experience the wildlife-rich shores of South Georgia and conclude in Uruguay's vibrant capital, Montevideo.
King penguins on South GeorgiaBlue ice of AntarcticaObserve beautiful fur sealsKing penguins on South GeorgiaA spectacular iceberg off the coast of Antarctica
Highlights
  • Explore Ushuaia, the world's southernmost city, and its vibrant Patagonian surroundings
  • Experience the thrill of sailing through the famous Beagle Channel and the tempestuous Drake Passage
  • Discover the breathtaking beauty of the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands
  • Marvel at the massive icebergs and glaciers in the Gerlache Strait region
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: Ushuaia | Embark

Arrive in Ushuaia, Argentina, the world’s southernmost city. Explore this vibrant Patagonian city or stretch your legs in the surrounding forests. Alternatively, consider a day trip off the beaten path into the raw nature of Tierra del Fuego. The island of Tierra del Fuego is a hiker's paradise with rugged snow-capped mountains, glaciers, flower-filled meadows, and rich boggy wetlands. In the afternoon, board your vessel, waiting to welcome you in port.

After the mandatory safety drill, your expedition begins as you navigate through the calm waters of the famous Beagle Channel (named for Charles Darwin's ship). This steep-sided strait divides southern Tierra del Fuego between Chile and Argentina and has been the jumping-off point for thousands of expeditions into the unknown. Watch out for whales and dolphins as you sail off the edge of the map into the tempestuous Drake Passage.

Day 2-3: At Sea | Drake Passage

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Sailing onward, cross the famed Drake Passage, the body of water separating Patagonia and the Antarctic Peninsula. The Drake Passage is known for rollicking conditions and strong westerly winds, nicknamed the Roaring Fifties. While this passage may be challenging, you can rest comfortably aboard your expedition vessels, which are purpose-built with stabilizers and powerful engines and manned by a highly-qualified crew. The most spirited sailors consider the Drake Passage a lifetime achievement and complete the crossing twice!

Your days in the Drake Passage will be put to good use preparing for your arrival in Antarctica. Your Expedition Leader will brief you comprehensively on how to stay safe and minimize your impact on this precious wilderness, as well as brief you thoroughly on your plans for your time spent exploring, including hints and tips for wildlife watching. The dedicated Expedition Team will assist you in biosecuring your clothing and equipment (a vital process to protect Antarctica's delicate ecology), as well as sharing tailored lectures on Antarctic exploration history, wildlife, geology, glaciology, and more!

Cross into the Antarctic Convergence on the third day of your voyage. Watch the mercury plummet as you sail southwards into Antarctic waters, an abrupt cooling that marks the intersection of Antarctic waters with the warmer waters of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. As the sea cools, wildlife multiplies; these are some of the most biologically productive waters on Earth, so expect to see petrels, albatrosses, and potentially penguins, seals, and whales in abundance. Weather permitting, you may be able to make landfall in the South Shetland Islands (a small but spectacular archipelago to the north of the Antarctic Peninsula) on the afternoon of your second day in the Drake Passage, marking the start of your exploration on the Last Continent.

Day 4-5: South Shetland Islands | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Sound

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Over the next few days, enjoy a safe and exciting Antarctic experience that explorers of yesteryear could only dream of.

Your Antarctic adventure begins in the South Shetland Islands, a chain of rugged rocks marking the northernmost point of Antarctica. It is also one of the richest in terms of wildlife, with large Gentoo and Chinstrap Penguin colonies and an abundance of large seabirds, such as predatory Giant Petrels. Landing sites that may be visited in the South Shetland Islands include the black, steaming sands and rusting ruins of Deception Island (an active volcanic crater), the bustling penguin colonies of Aitcho and Half Moon Islands, or the old sealers' anchorage of Yankee Harbour.

The following days will be spent exploring further south on the Antarctic Peninsula in the Gerlache Strait region. This region is typically icy, so your exact route will be subject to careful planning by the expedition leader and captain and explained to the guests through regular evening briefings. However, the team aims to visit a range of sites that showcase the best of this staggeringly beautiful region.

Consisting of the "spine" of the Antarctic Peninsula and a large number of glaciated and mountainous islands, the Gerlache Strait is what comes to mind when most people think of Antarctica. Marvel at the massive icebergs and vast glaciers on a Zodiac cruise in Paradise Bay. Be moved by penguins tenderly caring for their precious eggs and fiercely defending their nests on Cuverville Island. Watch cataracts of ice tumble into the clear blue ocean on a hike over the active glaciers of Neko Harbour. Experience the Antarctica of old at historic huts such as Damoy Point, lovingly restored and open to all. Feel the spray of water from the blow of a humpback whale on a zodiac safari in Wilhelmina Bay. Wonder at awe-inspiring scenery on a ship cruise through the Lemaire Channel. Wherever you go on the Antarctic Peninsula, endemic wildlife, tantalizing history, and breathtaking natural beauty abound.

On Antarctica, all human activity is subject to the whims of Mother Nature. While the team makes every possible effort to maximize opportunities for exploration off the vessel, the safety of the guests and crew is a top priority. The team therefore asks all guests to join the expedition spirit and be flexible. Harsh weather offers the opportunity to expand your knowledge of Antarctica with lectures from the expert Expedition Team or to enjoy the superlative comfort of the vessels, be it wine-tasting, relaxing in the hot tubs, or recharging with a relaxing massage in the Polar Spa.

Day 6-7: Antarctic Sound | Elephant Island

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Over the coming days, begin exploring the exciting region at the very tip of the continent, beginning with the Antarctic Sound. Named in 1902 after the Swedish vessel Antarctic (itself named, confusingly, for the Antarctic region), the Antarctic sound is much colder than the rest of the Peninsula. Despite its northerly location, the area is subject to winds and currents that arrive from much further south in the Weddell Sea, bringing freezing temperatures, rafts of sea ice, and vast tabular icebergs, which can only form from the vast ice shelves fringing the continent's interior. Though challenging to reach, this region hosts some of the Peninsula's most spectacular sites, from the vast Adelie Penguin colonies of Hope Bay and Devil's Island to the historical sites of Paulet Island and the dramatic volcanic landscapes of Brown Bluff.

From here, venture further south into the Weddell Sea, which takes its name from the early British explorer and sealer James Weddell, who reached the southernmost point of his day in the area. As you enter the Weddell Sea today, you can expect to see numerous city-sized tabular icebergs and catch a glimpse of the icepack—the vast mosaic of never-melting floating ice that stretches to the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf. This sea ice is the nursery of the Antarctic krill, the tiny crustaceans that form the base of the food chain. Where krill can be found, predators are not far behind. Apart from penguins, the wildlife here includes Weddell, leopard and elephant seals, vast numbers of seabirds, and often large numbers of humpback whales, all of which come to feast on the bountiful krill.

Because of the considerable sea ice and enormous bergs in the Weddell Sea, navigation through this remote nature is at the edge of what is possible. Your seasoned captain and expedition leader are well aware that shifting ice means that no individual part of this area can be guaranteed to be accessible at any time, so they will work together to find the best opportunities to explore. This is part of the wonder of this part of the world: undertaking a true expedition into the unknown and visiting an area few humans have ever been lucky enough to see.

The team plans to finalize your time in Antarctica by navigating past Elephant Island, legendary as the scene of Shackleton’s daring lifeboat escape (sea conditions permitting). While landing here is almost impossible, the team hopes to see where the Elephant Island party waited for rescue at Point Wild. A famous part of expedition history, the ideal finale to the Antarctic segment of your voyage.

Day 8-9: At Sea towards South Georgia

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
From Antarctica, set out again into the mighty Drake Passage, this time following the furious seas towards South Georgia, mirroring the route of Sir Ernest Shackleton onboard the James Caird. His voyage took an agonizing seventeen days in the tiny wooden lifeboat—still considered one of the greatest ever feats of navigation and seamanship. Your crossing will benefit from the vessels' powerful engines and the stability provided by the specially designed X-Bow, making the journey in just two days!

In order to protect the extremely delicate and rich ecosystem of South Georgia, the dedicated Expedition Team will again assist you in biosecuring your clothing and equipment while continuing with their in-depth lecture program, now focusing on the fascinating history, biology, and wildlife of South Georgia. Be sure to wrap up warm and join your expedition team out on deck. This section of the Scotia Sea (of which the Drake Passage constitutes the western portion) is one of the most biologically productive on Earth and is a haven for vast quantities of wildlife, from whales and albatrosses to penguins and seals. Watch the waves carefully. In this region, sub-Antarctic species (such as fur seals) mingle with true polar species (such as Adelie Penguins), creating a fascinating ecological mix.

Additionally, a raffle or auction onboard usually takes place during this time to raise funds for charitable organizations focused on global issues and local environmental solutions. In this case, for example, you may choose to donate to the South Georgia Heritage Trust or other charities carrying out conservation in the region. Take this opportunity to give back to the world while educating yourself on the subjects that these organizations support in a fun and enjoyable way—ideally with a hand-crafted cocktail in hand!

Day 10-13: Exploring South Georgia

  • Ship
  • 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
A strip of jagged mountains pierces the brooding clouds of the Southern Ocean. Icebound peaks loom over storm-washed beaches, while glaciers peek from the heads of deep fjords. First believed to have been landed on by legendary explorer Captain James Cook, even to modern explorers, South Georgia presents a forbidding aura. But peer closer, and you can see greenery among the ice, movement on the beaches, and wings in the skies above.

While it seems hard to believe today, South Georgia was once one of the most degraded environments on Earth. Hearing of the rich pickings, sealers flocked to the island after Cook, slaughtering wantonly. Once the seals had been almost exterminated, visiting ships sought larger prey, and South Georgia became the world's largest whaling destination, with several settlements built to carry out this industrialized slaughter. Whalers from Norway introduced reindeer as game, which soon destroyed the island's native vegetation, while brown rats (accidentally introduced by Europeans and their boats) feasted upon seabirds and their eggs—a horror against which these naive birds had no defense.

Thankfully, extensive conservation (including the painstaking eradication of reindeer and rats) has restored this magnificent island to its former glory—and glory it truly is. Beaches throng with hundreds of thousands of King Penguins, arguably some of Earth's most elegant animals. They must vie for space with the abundant Antarctic fur seals, all desperately defending territories and competing furiously for mates, and they themselves must avoid the southern elephant seals, Earth's largest seals (weighing up to a staggering four tons). Tiny South Georgia pippits and pintail ducks (once almost extinct) are now abundant, and petrels, albatross, and shags nest on the steep hillsides and wheel in the air above. In the sea, leopard seals stalk for their next penguin meal, fur seal pups play in the shallows, and offshore, a huge variety of whale species gorge on krill. Nowhere else on Earth can boast such a diversity of wildlife, or in such quantities; South Georgia truly has to be experienced to be believed.

As in Antarctica, your exact itinerary will be dictated by weather and sea conditions, but especially by the wind and swell; nevertheless, the experienced Expedition Team and Captain will work their hardest to maximize opportunities to explore. Options include visiting the vast penguin colonies of Salisbury Plain and St Andrew's Bay, seeing the former whaling stations of Lieth and Stromness, drinking in the scenery and seal colonies of Gold Harbor, or exploring this island's fascinating exploration heritage at Grytviken (where Sir Ernest Shackleton is buried). South Georgia is one of those locations that grabs hold of the senses and never lets go; even long after departure, the jewel of the South Atlantic will captivate visitors for years to come.

Day 14-17: At Sea toward South America

  • Ship
  • 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
You are now into the last leg of this adventurous voyage, heading northwestwards towards Montevideo, Uruguay—one of the most important ports for historical Antarctic expeditions.

During your time at sea, a variety of activities will be arranged on board to provide the guests with the chance to reflect on their voyage. Relax with an expertly crafted cocktail in the Nordic Bar in the company of new friends, soak up the knowledge and passion of the Expedition Team during lectures in the Shackleton Lounge, or simply enjoy the flight of the albatross that accompany you westward.

During your last evening onboard, join the captain and senior officers for the farewell cocktail party, followed by a presentation of photos and video by the onboard photographer—the ideal opportunity to relive your Southern Ocean adventure. Skål! 

Day 18: Montevideo, Uruguay | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
The city of Montevideo sits at the mouth of the Rio de la Plata, a vast estuary that holds not one but two capital cities (the vast Argentine capital of Buenos Aires being just across the water). Head for the northern Uruguayan shore, where your voyage ends. Trees, cars, grass, and a bustling capital city may seem strange to you after the white wilderness of Antarctica! After a hearty breakfast, it is time to bid a fond farewell to the crew and Albatros Expedition Team and descend the gangway back to dry land with memories of the voyage of a lifetime.

Ship/Hotel

Ocean Albatros

Ocean Albatros BBQ Deck
Ocean Albatros Fitness
Ocean Albatros Pool Deck

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$11,590
Ocean Albatros Cat GOcean Albatros Cat G
Select a Date
Category G
Single Stateroom (Porthole) - 14 m2 Standard single Stateroom onboard, located on deck 3. This is a conveniently located State Room close to the Mudroom which facilitates access to the Zodiacs during embarkation and disembarkation to begin your adventures.
Ocean Albatros Cat FOcean Albatros Cat F
Select a Date
Category F
Triple Stateroom (Porthole) - 22 m2 There are four Triple Staterooms on board Ocean Albatros featuring portholes, all with private en-suites. Located on Deck 3, they're close to the mudroom and loading platforms. Triple staterooms are normally with twin beds however a double bed can be accommodated.
Ocean Albatros Cat EOcean Albatros Cat E
Select a Date
Category E
French Balcony Stateroom - 14 m2 The French Balcony Suite is a standard Stateroom with a French balcony, a double bed, floor-to-ceiling windows and a bathroom. All French Balcony Suites are located on Deck 7.
Ocean Albatros Cat DOcean Albatros Cat D
Select a Date
Category D
Albatros Stateroom (Porthole) - 13-22 m2 The standard Stateroom on Ocean Albatros is close to the Mudroom and has quick access to the Zodiac platforms for disembarkation during landings. This is very convenient if you have more limited mobility and would like a short distance to the Zodiacs. The State Rooms are perfect for those who wish a comfortable base during their stay onboard Ocean Albatros. The standard State Rooms all have a double bed or 2 single beds and a bathroom. The State Rooms are located on deck 3 and 4.
Ocean Albatros Cat COcean Albatros Cat B Balcony
Select a Date
Category C
Balcony Stateroom - 18-22 m2 The most abundant type of Stateroom on Ocean Albatros located on decks 4 & 6. They have a balcony, a double bed or two single beds, a bathroom and a sofa that can be used as a bed for a child if traveling as a family. If you desire to book two staterooms with connecting doors, this is also a possibility within this category.
Ocean Albatros Cat COcean Albatros Cat C Balcony
Select a Date
Category Csp
Superior Balcony Stateroom (48) app. 24 sqm, including Balcony.
Ocean Albatros Cat COcean Albatros Cat C Balcony
Select a Date
Category Cxl
Grand Balcony Stateroom (4) app. 30 sqm, including Balcony.
Ocean Albatros Cat BOcean Albatros Cat B Balcony
Select a Date
Category B
Balcony Suite approximately - 25-32 m2 Ocean Albatros has 6 Balcony Suites on board located on decks 4 & 6. The suites feature double or twin beds and a seating area, bathroom, and a large balcony. The balcony suites can host 2 people.
Ocean Albatros Cat AOcean Albatros Cat A Balcony
Select a Date
Category A
Junior suite - 39 m2 The 4 junior suites aboard Ocean Albatros have a great view from their location high up on the ship on deck 7. The suites feature a double bed or twin beds, sofa bed, seating area, a spacious bathroom and a private balcony. The suite can accommodate up to 3 people.
Ocean Albatros Premium SuiteOcean Albatros Premium Suite
Select a Date
Premium Suite (Freydis Suite)
Premium suite - 45 m2 – FS (Freydis Suite) The second largest of all the staterooms on board the Ocean Albatros is the Premium Suite. This 2-bedroom suite features a double bed (or twin beds), a sofa bed, table and chair, a balcony and a spacious bathroom. Located on deck.4. This category is available upon request. Please refer to Albatros Expeditions for price.
Ocean Albatros Family SuiteOcean Albatros Family Suite
Select a Date
Family Suite (Brynhilde Suite)
Family suite - 52 m2 – BS (Brynhilde Suite) The largest of all the staterooms on board the Ocean Albatros is the Premium Suite. The Double-Bedroom, Family Suite is going to be located on Deck 7, featuring two interconnecting French Balcony Suites, accommodating up to 5 people on two double beds and a sofa bed. This category is available upon request. Please refer to Albatros Expeditions for price.

Notes

Kayaking activities available on both Arctic and Antarctic voyages. 
Although kayaking opportunities are possible in most locations during each excursion in the Antarctic region, weather, sea, and ice conditions will dictate the when and where to ensure your safety and improve your experience.
In order to sign up for this activity, you need to have previous kayaking experience and attend a mandatory safety briefing by the Kayak Master. The cost is $345/person per outing and it can only be booked onboard.

Possible shared staterooms for same-gender, single travelers: Category C (Balcony Stateroom) and Category F (Triple Porthole Stateroom)
Included
  • 17 Breakfasts, 16 Lunches, 17 Dinners
  • 17 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Welcome and Farewell Cocktails   
  • Digital visual journal link after voyage, including voyage log, gallery, species list and more.
  • English-speaking expedition team
  • Information briefings and lectures by expedition team
  • Parkas and Boots in assorted sizes, suitable for shore landings
  • Special photo workshop
  • Complimentary house wine, beer and soda at dinner (selected labels and brands, served at the a-la-carte dinners)
  • All Zodiac landings and excursions, as per itinerary, guided by the Expedition Team
  • Free tea and coffee available 24 hours
  • Taxes and landing fees
  • Embarkation shuttle transfer to the vessel from Ushuaia city centre
  • Transfer after disembarkation from the ship to Montevideo city centre or airport
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Beverages (other than coffee and tea)
  • Anything not mentioned under 'inclusions'
  • Extra excursions and activities not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Meals not on board the ship
  • Tips for the crew (we recommend USD 14 per person per day)
  • Emergency Evacuation insurance of at least $200,000 per passenger is required. Please bring a copy of your insurance onboard.

Map

When to Go

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.

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