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Geographic South Pole Explorers

South Pole and Emperors at Whichaway Camp

Example 8 Day Tour
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Discover the untouched wonders of the Great White Continent by taking an exciting trip to the Antarctic. Discover nearby ice tunnels, ice waves, a blue river, and a crystal cave network on this 8-day South Pole and Emperor's Antarctic expedition. With the help of experienced guides, take a ski plane and see the vast icy expanse contrasting the Emperor penguin colony. Visit the Geographic South Pole and take time for stunning high mountain range photos. During the expedition, stay in a sophisticated and luxurious camp on the edge of a frozen lake and join multiple activities at the Camp. This expedition offers an unforgettable journey for those who crave a taste of the continent's awe-inspiring landscapes and remarkable wildlife adventures.
Emperor's Penguin Colony in Atka BayEmperor PenguinsTravelers looking for Emperor PenguinsGeographic South PoleGeographic South PoleDixie's CampTeam of explorers in Geographic South PoleGeographic South Pole Explorers
Highlights
  • Explore the far reaches of Antarctica by crossing the Polar Circle
  • Stay at Whichaway, a luxurious camp on the edge of a frozen lake
  • Flight to a massive Emperor penguin colony in Atka Bay
  • Visit the heart of the Great White Continent, the Geographic South Pole.
Places Visited
Activity Level: Moderate
Activities that provide a reasonable level of physical challenge and elevate the heart rate. Focused on more active pursuits including multisport tours. Travelers may be active 5-7 hours total each day. Recommended for travelers with active lifestyles.
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Cape Town | Fly to Antarctica

You fly over thousands of icebergs on a 5-hour flight across the Southern Ocean to Antarctica. During the flight, you enter the Polar Circle and the continuous daylight of the Antarctic summer.

After landing on the ancient blue ice of the runway, you will transfer to the camp at Whichaway and have the chance to stretch your legs on a gentle hike around the Oasis.

* It is a mandatory requirement that all participants arrive in Cape Town, South Africa, at least two to three days before your scheduled flight to Antarctica. This is to allow flexibility should your flight be brought forward due to weather conditions – something that can, and does, happen! White Desert will host a mandatory safety briefing in Cape Town one day prior to "Day 1" of your itinerary to ensure your readiness for your upcoming adventure. The experienced team will personally inspect your equipment and polar clothing and hold briefings and orientations to ensure all participants are adequately equipped and prepared. 

Day 2: Explore Whichaway Camp

Settle into Whichaway and do as much or as little as you like each day. Activities range from yoga, massages, and gentle treks to exploring the incredible ice waves, summiting a nunatak, ice climbing, and even abseiling!

On quieter days, you’ll hear talks from our polar explorer staff about some of the lesser-known history of Antarctica and their world record-breaking expeditions.

Whichaway Camp offers a variety of group excursions and plenty of activities you can do on your own around the camp. While at the Camp, you are free to tailor your days to be more active or relaxed as you see fit. Some of the excursions and activities available to you during your stay are:

Ice Tunnels - The seasonal meltwater carves a path through the ice waves, forming deep tunnels of iridescent blue ice at the base of the Oasis. Exploring the tunnels is truly a magical experience.

Crystal Caves - The meltwater flows through tunnels and caves that will defy our guests’ imagination. The ancient ice, created over millennia, has so little air trapped within it that it turns blue – and is a perfect accompaniment to a cocktail!

Nunatak Climb - With the help of an expert guides, scale a blue-ice glacier and reach the easy summit of "Nunatak" Mountain for spectacular views

Rope Walk - On a hike that is as safe as it is spectacular, guides lead the guests on an easy traverse across a 200-foot cliff with an incredible view of the ice waves below.

Blue Rivers - The cascading meltwater of the Antarctic spring flows through the ice waves below Whichaway, creating blue rivers that seem to have jumped straight out of the pages of a storybook.

Adventure Picnic - Refuel on the top of a rugged peak with views to every horizon, the perfect opportunity to sip on a cocktail with 1,000-year old ice

Body and Spirit - Guests will love the stunning views across Whichaway Lake from the yoga pod, followed by a sauna or just a drink on the terrace before dinner.

Day 3: Fly to Atka Bay | Emperor Penguin Colony

Fly 2.5 hours across Antarctica, witnessing beautiful views of the nearby mountain ranges and coastline, before landing at the Emperor penguin colony at Atka Bay. You will be among the very few who have ever witnessed such a spectacle, observing the real-life stars of March of the Penguins.

At the colony’s height in November and December, you’ll see over 14,000 breeding pairs and their newly hatched chicks—a spectacle full of noise and energy that is a favorite with wildlife watchers and photographers.

There are so few visitors to this colony that the chicks are unafraid of humans and often waddle close by. Mindful of our responsibility to the wildlife and of IAATO guidelines, we keep at least 5m (16.4ft) from the Penguins. Looking in every direction, all you’ll see is a vast icy expanse contrasting the penguins’ shimmering feathers.

Day 4: Explore Whichaway Camp

Today, spend the day exploring the ice waves below camp, guided by your expert expedition guides, delving into the series of ice tunnels that are as surreal as they are beautiful. After, head off with your guide, winding your way through the snow and ice to an incredible vantage point where you can take in the panoramic view over the waves that you have just explored.

Day 5: Fly to Geographic South Pole via Dixie's Camp

The South Pole trip is always a highlight! On the day of this adventure, plan to leave early in the morning in the Basler BT-67 aircraft, flying over stunning mountain ranges for 5 hours before landing at Dixie’s camp to refuel. After a walk on the High Polar Plateau, continue an additional 2 hours to the South Pole, where you will have plenty of time for photos and a chance to stamp your passport at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station before flying back to Dixie’s Camp to rest overnight at 83 degrees south. This extremely remote camp allows visitors to join the list of the very few who have ever spent a night in the beauty of the High Polar Plateau.

Camp at Dixie’s Camp this evening to allow the Basler pilots to take their statutory rest period (to ensure they do not exceed their daily flying hours). Dixie’s Camp is situated at a lower altitude to the South Pole, which makes the camp more comfortable for an overnight stay. It is also one of the most remote locations on the planet and will give you a taste of what it is like to live as an Antarctic explorer! This rest stop will last for 10-12 hours and can occur on either leg of the flight, depending on weather conditions. Enjoy a hot meal, reflect on the day, and fall asleep knowing you’re in one of the wildest places on Earth, a place rarely visited and still vastly unexplored.

Day 6: Fly back to Whichaway Camp

After a night under canvas, you’ll enjoy breakfast before boarding the plane once again for the flight back to Whichaway. The flight is the perfect chance to appreciate the immense scale of Antarctica before you return to camp for a three-course champagne dinner to celebrate your achievements.

Day 7: Explore Whichaway Camp

An adventurous hike along a winding cliff face affords guests stunning views over the last pristine wilderness on Earth. The team of world-class UIAGM mountain guides will expertly lead you on this exhilarating hike, ensuring your safety at all times.

Day 8: Fly to Cape Town | Return Home

  • 1 Breakfast
The flight out of Antarctica will be the last of your enduring memories of the great White Continent before you dive back into the vibrant energy of Africa. You will be transferred to your hotel, where you will have a chance to relax and reflect on your Antarctic adventure!

*It is a mandatory requirement that all participants plan at least  two to three days minimum in Cape Town, South Africa at the end of your scheduled flight back from Antarctica in order to be prepared for any unforeseen flight changes or delays. 

Please Note: This itinerary is entirely subject to weather conditions in Antarctica and is meant purely as a guide to what guests may expect day by day. The exact sequence of activities and the types of aircraft mentioned may vary. Although rare, it is possible that travelers may not reach the South Pole or Emperor Penguins during your stay. The South Pole is especially complex involving three different landing locations. Details can be found in trip terms and conditions. Antarctica is a bucket list trip for a reason - Mother Nature reigns supreme here, that’s what makes it a true adventure.

Accommodations

Whichaway Camp

Whichaway Campsite
Whichaway Camp Lodge
Whichaway's Polar pods

Dixie's Camp

Dixie's Camp
Dixie's Camp in Antarctica
Geographic South Pole Explorers

Dates & Prices

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Per person starting at
$105,000

Notes

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Included
  • 7 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 7 Dinners
  • 7 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • All private airport transfer and ground transportation as per the program
  • A mandatory safety briefing and lectures by expedition team held the day before your scheduled flight into Antarctica
  • Return flight to Antarctica with a 23kg for hold luggage and 7kg for hand luggage
  • The use of certain items of polar clothing, as denoted on the equipment list.
  • Payment by White Desert Ltd of a ‘Carbon Tax’ for offsetting. emissions created by all logistics associated with Antarctic travel
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Commercial flights to and from Cape Town, South Africa
  • Accommodation and meals whilst in Cape Town
  • Polar Clothing (you will be sent a tailored kit list in advance of your trip to help you purchase the necessary items)
  • Additional expenses incurred in Cape Town due to any delay and baggage costs over the agreed amount
  • Use of a satellite phone while in Antarctica
  • Coverage for all members of the party, in respect of medical care and emergency repatriation costs, for a minimum of $500,000 (USD) per person and for a minimum of 5 days beyond the expected return date.

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When to Go

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Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.
Typically not offered during this period because of weather conditions.

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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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