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Antarctic landscape

Crossing the Circle: Southern Expedition

Roundtrip Ushuaia - Example 14 Day Cruise aboard Ocean Explorer
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Explore the Antarctic Peninsula on this 14-Day Crossing the Circle: Southern Expedition roundtrip Ushuaia aboard Ocean Explorer. Start the trip in Ushuaia, Argentina, and end in Punta Arenas, Chile. Travel through the Drake Passage before reaching the Antarctic Peninsula. The expedition is led by a team of experienced polar experts. Visit several iconic landing sites like Port Lockroy - a former British research station that is now a museum and gift shop, Hope Bay - a sheltered bay that is home to a large colony of gentoo penguins, and Cuverville Island - an island with a stunning beach and a large colony of Adélie penguins. See wildlife in their natural habitat. The Antarctic is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including penguins, seals, and whales.
Penguins are everywhere...Whale watching in AntarcticaKayaking in AntarcticaAntarctic view from aboveHiking up a snowy hillThe most spectacular landscapes and scenery I've ever seenAntarctic landscape
Highlights
  • Sail across the fabled Drake Passage
  • Cross the Antarctic Circle, a memorable experience
  • Set foot on the 7th Continent, an exciting achievement for any traveler
  • Look for minke and humpback whales while Zodiac cruising
  • Visit iconic landing sites, Port Lockroy, Hope Bay, and Cuverville Island
  • Take the Polar Plunge onshore, from the gangway or Zodiac
Activity Level: Variable
Activity options vary depending on destination and operator. Activity level is determined by the range and intensity of activities you choose to participate in. Discuss with your Trip Planner which options are best for you.
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Arrive in Ushuaia, Argentina

You will begin your journey in Ushuaia, a small but bustling port town at the tip of South America. This Argentine town is an ideal gateway for you to explore the southern extent of Patagonia while preparing for your adventure ahead. Enjoy active outings in the mountains or sample handcrafted chocolate at a café in town.

Day 2: Embark

As the ship sets sail in the late afternoon, you will begin your Antarctic journey, passing through the historic Beagle Channel. Named after the famed ship on which Charles Darwin traveled, the channel presents great photo opportunities of landscapes and seabirds. Eventually the channel opens up to the Southern Ocean, and onwards to Antarctica.

Day 3-4: Crossing the Drake Passage

Your days at sea are filled with presentations and lectures led by your Expedition Team, who prepares you for the wildlife that greets you upon your arrival. In between presentations, spend time chatting with your shipmates over a drink at the bar, or enjoy the fresh air and views on the outer decks.

Day 5-7: South Shetland Islands & Antarctic Peninsula

The most common reaction upon reaching the White Continent is a sense of reverence and awe. The experience is beyond words, since few places are as untouched and enduring as Antarctica. Begin to appreciate why this region has long captivated the attention of explorers and travelers alike. Every visit to Antarctica, visitors witness something new or unexpected, which means that your expedition will be unlike any other—creating a unique, personal experience.

Each day, take Zodiac excursions from the ship to explore local bays, channels and landing sites. With wildlife always at the forefront, visit penguin rookeries, scout for humpback and minke whales, and search for a number of southern seal species, including the cunning leopard seal. Your Expedition Team takes care of you at each landing, whether you are exploring the Antarctic terrain, visiting a research station or consorting with penguin colonies. Chinstrap, Adélie and gentoo penguins are found here, along with five different species of seals. Zodiac cruising can offer opportunities to view some of the larger local marine mammals more intimately, such as Antarctic minke and humpback whales. Each day and each excursion presents a new collection of creatures to delight you and keep your camera busy.

Be busy spotting wildlife and being mesmerized by the astounding beauty of Antarctica. Listening to the crackling and crumbling of icebergs and glaciers and watching penguins waddling on the beach becomes your daily entertainment, while sea kayaking, paddle excursions, or camping are optional activities available on select voyages (at an extra cost).

Day 8-9: Antarctic Circle

Crossing the Antarctic Circle is both a memorable experience and an impressive achievement, as few travelers reach so far south. If conditions allow, cross this famed line at 66°33´ S, toast to the first explorers who ventured here, and you can raise a glass and take pride in knowing you’ve made it to a part of the world visited by very few people. This is raw Antarctica, home of the midnight sun, Weddell seals, and your best chances of encountering sea ice – the foundation of the Antarctic marine ecosystem.

Day 10-11: Northbound Along The Peninsula

By now, your knowledge of Adélie, chinstrap and gentoo penguins will be matched by your ability to differentiate between a leopard, fur and Weddell seal. Terms like ‘bergy bits’ and ‘pancake ice’ becomes part of your vocabulary, yet there are still many tales to be told. As you head north, Zodiac excursions fill your days, and your Expedition Team continues to look out for species of seabirds, seals and whales that may have eluded you on your journey south.

Day 12-13: Crossing the Drake Passage

As you recross the Drake, Antarctica fades away, leaving you with a collection of memories to last a lifetime. Excited conversations with your newfound friends make the crossing fly by, regardless of weather and sea conditions. Your Expedition Team rounds up its series of presentations as well, with a slideshow of the great landing sites and wildlife you’ve witnessed over the course of your voyage. Be sure to take some time to reflect on everything you’ve experienced so far.

Day 14: Disembarkation in Ushuaia

  • 1 Breakfast
Today, you’ll say goodbye to your Expedition Team and fellow travelers, disembarking in the morning to catch your homeward flights or continue your travels on your own.

Ship/Hotel

Ocean Explorer

Ocean Explorer
Atrium - Two level lounge
Explorer Presentation Lounge

Ushuaia - Hotels

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Per person starting at
$17,995 2-3 travelers
Rates are dynamic and fluctuate based on capacity. Contact us for a specific quote.
Ocean Explorer - Studio Double
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Studio Double
The Studio Double, located on Deck 3 and classified as Standard, offers a peaceful atmosphere with a porthole window, all necessary amenities, and a double bed of twin berths. It can accommodate up to two occupants in its 175-186 sqft space.
Studio Veranda State Room
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Studio Veranda Stateroom
The Studio Veranda Stateroom, located on Deck 6 and measuring approximately 173 sq. f. (16.1 sq.m.), is classified as Standard and features a floor-to-ceiling glass view that opens to a walkout balcony, one double bed that can be configured into two singles, a desk and chair, TV, state-of-the-art 'infotainment' system, and a private bathroom with shower, vanity and heated floor, making it ideal for 1-2 occupants.
Ocean Explorer  - Deluxe Veranda Forward Stateroom
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Deluxe Veranda Forward Stateroom
The Deluxe Veranda Forward Stateroom is a standard class on Deck 4, providing guests with privacy, elegance, and sweeping views from their private veranda. It is 168-195 sqft and has a bed configuration of one double bed made up of two twin berths, with a maximum occupancy of 2.
Ocean Explorer - Deluxe Veranda Middle Stateroom
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Deluxe Veranda Middle Stateroom
The Deluxe Veranda Middle Stateroom, located on Deck 4 and classified as Standard, offers guests easy access to all ship amenities. It is 203-272 sqft and accommodates 1-2 guests on a double bed made up of two twin berths plus some with a fold-out sofa bed.
Ocean Explorer - Deluxe Veranda Stateroom
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Deluxe Veranda Stateroom
Experience the panoramic ocean views from the comfort of a Deluxe Veranda Stateroom on Deck 4. This room has a bed configuration of one double bed made up of two twin berths plus a fold-out sofa bed, a size ranging from 200-205 sqft, and a standard class.
Ocean Explorer  - Studio Single
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Studio Single
The Studio Single is a standard class located on Deck 3, with an occupancy of one person. It features a double bed made up of two twin berths, a porthole view, a desk and chair, a TV, a state-of-the-art 'infotainment' system, and a private bathroom with shower, vanity, and heated floor, all within approximately 177 sq. ft. (16.5 sq. m) of space.
Grand Veranda State Room
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Grand Veranda Stateroom
This premium Grand Veranda Stateroom, located on Deck 6 and spanning over 195-205 sqft, is perfect for 1-2 occupants. It features a double bed made up of two twin berths plus a fold-out sofa bed, and it has easy access to the lounge, dining room, and private veranda.
Royal Veranda State Room
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Royal Veranda Stateroom
The Royal Veranda Stateroom, located on Decks 4 and 6, is a spacious premium-class cabin that can accommodate up to two guests. It features one double bed made up of two twin berths and a fold-out sofa bed, and its size ranges from 189 to 272 sqft.
Ocean Explorer - Studio Veranda Single
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Studio Veranda Single
The Studio Veranda Single is a premium cabin located on Deck 7, with an occupancy of 1 person, featuring a twin single bed, a private bathroom with shower, vanity, and heated floor, a state-of-the-art 'infotainment' system, and a floor-to-ceiling glass view that opens to a generous walkout balcony, covering an area of approximately 162 sq. ft. (15.1 sq. m.).
Junior SuiteJunior Suite Receiving area
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Junior Suite
This Junior Suite, located on Deck 6, boasts an impressive decor and layout, a private veranda, and proximity to the lounge and downstairs dining room. It is 296-299 sqft and has a bed configuration of two rooms: one double bed made up of two twin berths and a fold-out sofa bed. It accommodates up to two guests and is classified as Premium.
Ocean Explorer - Explorer Suite
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Explorer Suite
The Explorer Suite is a premium class accommodation located on Deck 7, featuring a unique 2-room layout with a double bed that can be configured into two singles in the inner bedroom, a fold-out sofa bed in the outer sitting area, walk-out access to a double-sized balcony from either room, 2 TVs, state-of-the-art 'infotainment' system, private bathroom with shower, vanity, and heated floor, as well as an additional powder room in the outside sitting area, and can accommodate up to 2 guests.
Owners SuiteOwner's Suite - Receiving area
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Owners Suite
The Owners Suite, located on Deck 7, is a premium class, palatial apartment that features a large master bedroom, living room, dining area, two master bathrooms, and a private veranda with stunning views while accommodating 1-2 occupants with a bed configuration of two rooms, one double bed made up of two twin berths, and a fold-out sofa bed, all within a total size of 443 square feet.

Notes

- Rates are quoted in U.S. dollars and represent costs per person, double occupancy. Request the Twin 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.

- Standard Cabins are available for single occupancy at 1.7 times the double occupancy rate. The supplement for a Premium Cabin is 2 times the shared rate.

Insurance: Emergency medical evacuation coverage for a maximum benefit of US$500,000 per person is included. Travelers should have a minimum US$50,000 (or equivalent) of emergency medical coverage prior to embarkation. It is recommended that you and all members of your party have comprehensive travel insurance covering trip cancellation, trip delay (interruption or after departure coverage), baggage, and repatriation. Contact us for details.
Included
  • 12 Breakfasts, 11 Lunches, 12 Dinners
  • 13 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Coffee, Tea and Cocoa Available Around the Clock
  • Leadership throughout the expedition by our experienced Expedition Leader
  • Loan of Waterproof Boots for Landings
  • Official Expedition Parka to Keep
  • Select Beer and Wine During Dinner
  • Photographic Journal Documenting the Expedition
  • All Miscellaneous Service Taxes and Port Charges Throughout the Program
  • All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program
  • Emergency Evacuation insurance for all passengers to a maximum benefit of USD $500,000 per person
  • All shore landings as per the daily program
  • Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping
  • All meals, snacks, soft drinks and juices on board throughout your voyage
  • All luggage handling aboard the ship
  • Group arrival transfer in Ushuaia from airport to pre-expedition hotel on Day 1
  • Group transfer from hotel to ship on embarkation day
  • Group departure transfer upon disembarkation in Ushuaia from ship to local airport or to luggage storage facility
  • One night’s pre-expedition hotel accommodation in Ushuaia with breakfast. (Note: The number of guests per room is the same as cabin occupancy on the ship. Due to limited availability, travelers who reserve a suite on board are accommodated in standard rooms at the hotel. Triple rooms may not be available.)
  • Free beer, standard wines, spirits, and cocktails during bar service hours and dinner
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi service on one device permitting basic Internet browsing, email, posting on social media and voice applications. (Premium packages are available for more data intensive applications.)
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
  • Internet & Phone Charges
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Mandatory Waterproof Pants for Zodiac Cruising & Any Other Gear Not Specifically Mentioned
  • Arrival and departure transfers, except where explicitly stated
  • Adventure Options not listed in Included Activities
  • Additional overnight accommodation
  • Basic complimentary Wi-Fi service does not include Premium packages, which enable more data-intensive applications

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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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