Day 1: Ushuaia, Argentina
Ushuaia is the most Southerly town in Argentina and often described as “El Fin del Mundo” or the “End of the World”. It’s a bustling port town which sits on the edge of the Tierra del Fuego National Park and although the town appears quite finctional, the surrounding landscape is very dramatic. It’s best seen as you come to land at Ushuaia airport. You will board your ship in the late afternoon and enjoy your first delicious meal heading out to open sea.
Day 2-4: At Sea
The first 3 days of this cruise are spent cruising to South Georgia, it’s the perfect oppourtunity to explore all the facilities your ship has to offer. Perhaps enjoy a spa treatment, a lecture from one of the on-board expedition team on a fascinating aspect of Antarctica, or just sit with a drink in the observation lounge and look out for birds and wildlife.
Days 5-7: South Georgia
Over the next 3 days, you’ll soon discover the journey to reach South Georgia will be worth it. What lies in wait, is a spectacular destination of towering mountains, mighty glaciers, and low-lying grasslands. However, it’s the astounding concentration of wildlife that makes this place truly special. There are hundreds of species of birds that are found on these islands and as well as the ones in the sky, there are thousands of King Penguins which make up the colonies on land here. There are also fascinating links to the early Antarctic explorers and South Georgia is where the British explorer Ernest Shackleton is buried. There may be an oppourtunity to visit his grave and pay homage to one of the most famous (and perhaps most unsuccessful) Antarctic explorers.
Days 8-9: At Sea
After moving on from South Georgia there are a further 2 days of sailing to get to the Antarctic Peninsula. The excitement will build along the way as you get ever nearer the 7th continent and you prepare for your first sightings of the amazing icebergs.
Day 10: Elephant Island
Impressive glaciers can be seen approaching Elephant Island which was given its name because of its elephant-like appearance. It is also a place where sightings of elephant seals are very common too. The Islands biggest significance is that in 1916, when Ernest Shackleton’s ship Endurance was crushed in pack ice in the Weddell Sea, his crew managed to navigate here before becoming stranded for more than 4 months sheltering under two upturned lifeboats on a dramatic spit of land.
Day 11: Antarctic Sound
Today you will get your first experiences of Antarctica as your ship moves into Antarctic Sound and its magnificent array of tabular icebergs, historical sites and Adelie and Gentoo Penguin rookeries. Depending on weather and ice conditions your ship may go on to visit Brown Bluff and Hope Bay before moving towards the Antarctic Peninsula overnight.
Days 12: Antarctic Peninsula
Antarctica is irresistible for its spectacular iceberg sculptures, calving glaciers and for the possibility of up-close encounters with marine mammals and the iconic penguins. You will spend the day exploring some of the amazing sites here.
Day 13: South Shetland Islands
Your last visits to Antarctica will be made in the area of Deception Island which is a huge sunken caldera (volcano) which can be reached from the sea. From whaling to scientific studies, the Island’s history is very interesting, and you can discover more of the unique volcanic features during a hike.
Day 14-15: At Sea
The time has come for you to return towards the mainland and the next 2 days will be spent cruising the Drake Passage back to South America. During the last afternoon, the onboard photographer will show the Voyage DVD.
Day 16: Ushuaia
After breakfast, its time to disembark the ship.
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