Day 1 Arrival in Ushuaia
Arrive in Ushuaia, where you will be met by a representative of Aurora Expeditions and transferred to your downtown hotel (preferred flights only).
Day 2 Embarkation Day | Ushuaia
- 1 Breakfast, 1 Dinner
This morning, enjoy a leisurely breakfast at the hotel before exploring Ushuaia on a half-day city tour.
Ushuaia, capital of Tierra del Fuego is located at the shores of the Beagle Channel and surrounded by the Martial Mountains giving you a unique landscape in Argentina, which is the combination of mountains, sea, glaciers and forests. On this half day introductory tour, you will visit “La Mision” neighbourhood, the old Government House, and the upper area of the city, which offers beautiful panoramic views of Ushuaia and the Beagle Channel. During the excursion you will see the antique houses that belonged to the first families settled in Ushuaia. The excursion ends with a visit to the Old Prison Museum before transferring to the pier for embarkation at approximately 4.00 PM.
As the Sylvia Earle pulls away from port, You'll gather on the deck to commence your adventure with spectacular views over Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego. You’ll have time to settle into your cabin before your important briefings.
Day 3 At Sea
- 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
As you commence your trip across the South Atlantic Ocean towards the Falklands~Malvinas, make the most of your time getting comfortable with the motions of the sea. Your expedition team prepare you for your first landing with important wildlife guidelines and biosecurity procedures, and start your lecture program to help you learn more about the region’s history, wildlife and environment.
Your wildlife experiences begin as you enjoy watching and photographing the many seabirds, including majestic albatrosses and giant petrels following in your wake. They rise and fall skillfully, using air currents created by the ship to gain momentum.
Day 4-6 Falklands - Malvinas
- 3 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 3 Dinners
The Falklands~Malvinas comprises two large islands (East and West Falkland), with over 700 islands scattered off the coast. All but seven of these are uninhabited, with windswept coastlines, white sand beaches and crystal clear water. These beautifully barren islands are true wildlife havens, sheltering an impressive diversity of birdlife, including the largest black-browed albatross colony on earth. The cold, nutrient-rich waters surrounding the islands make this a prime location for spotting marine life.
There are many beautiful areas to explore across the Falklands~Malvinas, each offering a unique perspective on this magnificent archipelago. Your experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their expertise to design your voyage from day to day, choosing the best options based on the prevailing winds, weather and wildlife opportunities.
Generally, landings or Zodiac excursions happen twice a day. Even though you're north of the Antarctic Convergence it can be quite chilly here, so you’ll want to layer up before joining Zodiac cruises into rocky coves or along sea cliffs, keeping watch for seals, sea lions, dolphins and porpoising penguins. Zodiacs will also transport you from the ship to land, where you may be able to visit albatross colonies, penguin rookeries and perhaps even have a traditional English ‘tea and scones’ at a local cottage.
Also aim to land in historic Stanley, the capital of the Falklands~Malvinas. This charming town has a distinctly British character, with terraced town houses, pioneer cottages and even an iconic red telephone box! Colourful buildings house cosy cafes, English pubs, souvenir shops, a post office and the fascinating Historic Dockyard Museum, with displays on the maritime history of the Falkland Islands, natural history and links to Antarctica.
Day 7-8 At Sea
- 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Between the Falklands~Malvinas and South Georgia, you will be entranced by the ceaseless flight of the many seabirds that follow the wake, skillfully using the air currents created by the ship to gain momentum. On this leg, you are usually travelling into the prevailing weather so it is difficult to estimate your precise arrival time in South Georgia. Your lecture program will continue highlighting all of the incredible sights you have witnessed over the past few days. You will have ample time to enjoy observing the sea birds, whale-watching from the observation areas, or simply relaxing with a book. If time and weather conditions permit, you could pass close to Shag Rocks, a fascinating group of jagged rocky islets protruding from the sea, in the proximity of South Georgia.
Day 9-13 South Georgia
- 5 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 5 Dinners
As you near the rugged island of South Georgia, spare a thought for Captain James Cook, who arrived here in 1775 and believed it to be the northern tip of a great southern continent! In fact, it is a small island only 176 km (110 mi) long, but with a 3,000 m (9,842 ft) snow-capped mountain range, some of the world’s largest congregations of wildlife and a truly fascinating human history, South Georgia is an island of incredible riches.
On approach, jagged mountain peaks rise steeply, while seabirds are often spotted soaring around the ship. You’ll sail down the east coast, taking in the spectacular glaciated scenery and enjoying a little shelter from the prevailing westerly winds. This enchanting coastline is yours to explore!
Your experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their local knowledge to plan your voyage from day to day, choosing the best options based on the prevailing weather, sea state and wildlife opportunities.
Generally, landings or Zodiac excursions happen twice a day. Make sure you layer up before joining Zodiac cruises around craggy coves and along the rocky coastline in search of nesting penguins, seal haul-outs and bird cliffs. Remember to keep an eye out for South Georgia’s kelp forests as well - these remarkable underwater ecosystems are quite mesmerizing as their fronds sway back and forth on the water’s surface.
Zodiacs will also transport you from ship to shore, where you can visit some of the largest king penguin colonies on earth, take a guided walk among fur seals and elephant seals (making sure you listen to your guides and keep your distance!) and wander along pebbled streams and grassy glacial outwash plains. Also hope to visit the remnants of South Georgia’s thriving whaling stations and pay your respects to Sir Ernest Shackleton, whose incredible voyage of survival is synonymous with this island. If you have chosen an optional activity, you’ll have the option to do that whenever conditions allow.
In addition to Zodiac cruises and shore excursions, you may ship cruise through fjords with towering cliffs of ancient stone, or into deeply indented bays towards dramatic glacier fronts. This is a great time to find a comfy spot in the observation lounge or make your way to the bridge to enjoy uninterrupted views of South Georgia’s majestic coast.
Day 14-16 At Sea
- 3 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 3 Dinners
On your return sailing to Ushuaia, you may choose to spend your time editing photos, enjoying the onboard facilities, or listening to an informative lecture.
Day 17 Ushuaia | Disembark
During the early morning, sail along the Beagle Channel, before quietly slipping into dock in Ushuaia, where you begin disembarking at around 8.00 am. Farewell your expedition team and fellow travellers as you all continue your onward journeys, hopefully with a newfound sense of the immense power of nature. A transfer to either downtown Ushuaia or to the airport is included in the cost of the voyage.