A 13-day itinerary by PONANT sailing into the heart of the ice of the Weddell Sea, discovering the impressive Larsen Ice Shelf and its immense tabletop icebergs. From Ushuaia, cross the Drake Passage, and explore the South Shetland Islands and the Northern Antarctic Peninsula. Sail the Weddell Sea and be amazed at the colossal Larsen Ice Shelf.
Insurmountable, extreme and captivating is the best way to describe the Weddell Sea, mostly frozen by a thick and compressed ice floe, it is both a challenge and a privilege to sail on it, You'll experience exceptional landscapes and original encounters as you advance across this immense polar expanse. To the northwest of the Weddell Sea, stretching along the eastern coast of the Antarctic Peninsula stands an imposing ice shelf known as the Larsen Ice Shelf. An extension of the ice sheet into the sea, it generates some of the largest icebergs ever seen.
This 13-day voyage, allows you to come as close as possible to the Weddell Sea and its many inhabitants.
Sail into the heart of the ice of the Weddell Sea, discovering the impressive Larsen Ice Shelf and its immense table top icebergs
Outings and shore visits in Zodiac inflatables
Onboard lectures and information sessions hosted by naturalist-guides
Alpine landscapes, table top icebergs, glaciers and ice floes
Weddell seals, crabeater seals and leopard seals, Adelie penguins, humpback whales and sea birds
Arrive in the capital of Argentina's Tierra del Fuego province. Ushuaia is considered the gateway to the White Continent and the South Pole. Embark your ship here, ready to set sail in the early evening.
The ship will navigate across the iconic Drake Passage. Use your days to familiarise yourself with your ship and expand your knowledge of the Antarctic region. Enjoy lectures from onboard experts about the history and wildlife of Antarctica and enjoy exceptional views on deck as your guides look out for albatrosses, cape petrels and other seabirds flying over the Passage.
Today you'll explore the South Shetland Islands. Surreal and mysterious volcanic islands home to scientific research stations and a large number of animal species including chinstrap penguins, crabeater seals and Weddell seals, Antarctic terns, giant petrels and elephant seals have also taken up residence here.
The North Antarctic Peninsula is today's destination. You'll sail through the Antarctic Sound, the gateway to the Weddell Sea, filled with gigantic tabular icebergs and plates of sea ice drifting northward from the coastal areas of this vast sea. It is home to Adelie penguins and a great many leopard seals.
Today you will wind your way through a labyrinth of dense ice floe and majestic table icebergs as your ship navigates the Weddell Sea. A landscape unlike any other it is populated by fur seals, penguins, albatross and many other seabirds. The Weddell seal is the king of this realm though, and you'll hear his cry pierce the surrounding silence. You might have to wait a while to spot one though, as they can stay underwater for more than an hour!
Sail close to the gigantic Larsen ice shelves which help to prevent erosion of the Antarctic ice sheet. In 2017, a portion of the ice shelf was broken off, forming one of the largest tabular icebergs in the world.
Sail back across the Weddell Sea as you make your journey back towards the Drake Passage. Marvel again at the amazing ice floes and massive table top icebergs.
Navigate the Drake Passage, the shortest route to connect Antarctica to South America. Look to the sky as you sail to witness albatross and cape petrels playfully floating along in the wind above your ship
Arrive in Ushuaia in the early morning for disembarkation and return to the airport for your return flights
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