Antarctica has captured the imagination of artists and explorers for the best part of 200 years. Your expedition here will be completely unlike any holiday you have before or after. The first time you set eyes on this land of ice, you will be awestruck by its colossal scale and stunning beauty. Whether you are standing on the summit of one of the peninsulas peaks or watching penguins building their nests, or cruising in a zodiac, your time here is sure to be completely unforgettable.
Day 1: Ushuaia, Argentina
Day 2: Embarkation Day
Days 3-4: Cross the Drake Passage
Days 5-8: The South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula
Days 9-10: Crossing the Drake Passage
Day 11: Disembarkation in Ushuaia
Day 1 — Ushuaia, Argentina
Ushuaia, the most southerly city in the world, on the banks of the Beagle channel this remote port town has an eclectic history and some incredible wildlife. Make sure to see the Magellanic Penguins at penguin beach, as you won’t be able to see them when you get to Antarctica.
Day 2 — Embarkation Day
You will embark in the late afternoon; your vessel will sail through the Beagle channel out into the Drake Passage. You will say goodbye to dry land until you set sights on Antarctica in a few days’ time.
Days 3 and 4 — Cross the Drake Passage
Day 3 and four will be spent crossing the Drake Passage, the weather can be unpredictable and the waters quite rough, but it will all be worth it in the end as Antarctica draws ever nearer.
You will be able to enjoy lectures from the expedition team as well as socialise with your shipmates. As you cross the Antarctic convergence and enter the Southern Ocean, you will be greeted with a positive deluge of wildlife feasting in the rich upwelling waters.
Days 5 to 8 — the South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula
The moment you see your first glimpses of the icy continent on the horizon, it will raise your hackles and send shivers down your spine. It’s a sight that you won’t forget any time soon, small wonder this frozen wilderness has enchanted explorers for so long.
Your time will be spent exploring the Antarctic Peninsula seeing the incredible variety of wildlife. Each day will feature two excursions one in the morning and one in the afternoon. The exact itinerary isn’t set in stone owing to the changeable conditions in the Antarctic. But some of the incredible landing sites include Deception Island, Neko Harbour and paradise bay. Whether it’s wandering albatross, the penguins or whales there is a vast quantity of wildlife to see throughout your cruise.
Depending on how adventurous you are feeling, you may choose to take part in the invigorating ‘polar plunge’ where you leap off into the frigid waters of the Southern Ocean.
There is a healthy mix of adventurous activities available including Snowshoeing, Zodiac Cruising, Polar Plunge, Lectures and Photography. Available at an additional charge you can try your hand at Sea Kayaking, Camping, Cross-Country Skiing, Mountaineering and Stand-up Paddleboarding.
The onboard lecture programme encompasses a full spectrum of subjects from regional history to zoology and geology all given by subject matter experts.
Days 9 and 10 — Crossing the Drake Passage
As you bid farewell to Antarctica, you will cross the Drake Passage catching your final glimpses of the incredible wildlife of the Southern Ocean.
Day 11 — Disembark in Ushuaia
You will arrive back in Ushuaia in the morning, from here you will able to either continue your adventure around South America or catch your flights home.
The 12-day version of this cruise includes an extra day in Antarctica
The Ocean Diamond is a modern, stable super-yacht designed for exploring the remote waters of Antarctica. She carries a maximum of 189 passengers, and cruises are run with a focus on exploration. On-board you will find expansive common spaces, a club lounge and an elegant restaurant serving a variety of delicious cuisine.
The Ocean Adventurer has been a very popular Antarctic exploration ship for many years and is perfectly designed for exploring the region. Carrying just 128 passengers ensures there is a high focus on exploration, and the ship boasts an expert team of expedition staff alongside a varied programme of landings, a fleet of zodiacs and a series of lectures.
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