- Ocean Diamond
- Expedition Ship
- 189 Capacity
- 11 Days
- 2014, 2015, 2016
- Price from
Summary : This well-established expedition cruise offers you the ideal introduction to Antarctica. Departing and finishing in the port of Ushuaia in Argentina, the itinerary visits prime sites along the Antarctic Peninsula and the neighboring South Shetland Islands. This program will emphasize wildlife viewing of penguins, whales and seals, possible visits to scientific bases, and breathtaking scenery with narrow waterways, glaciers, icebergs and rugged mountains. Experience adventure options, such as kayaking, camping, cross-country skiing, mountaineering and snowshoeing, and take advantage of an onboard photography program.
Activities : Birding, Camping, Hiking, Kayaking, Photography
Just-Released Offer Save up to 25% per person (up to $2,998).
$5,995 to $15,995
Arrive in Ushuaia, a small town at the "end of the world" surrounded by rugged peaks and glaciers, and transfer to your hotel. The following day, in the afternoon, the Expedition Team gets you settled aboard your ship as you sail into the Beagle Channel to start your Antarctic expedition.
Embarkation will occur in the late afternoon, after which your vessel will sail down the historic Beagle Channel. This historic channel transects the Tierra del Fuego archipelago in the extreme south of South America. Expect an air of excitement as you depart for the world’s most southern continent!
Weather permitting, attempt to land on Cape Horn. The Cape Horn National Park was declared a World Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in June 2005. If possible, see the monument dedicated to the thousands of sailors lost on more than 800 ships that were wrecked sailing around this iconic landmark.
Prepare for rough water, but do not be disappointed if your crossing is smooth sailing. The Drake is always changing. Time during these first days is largely spent chatting with other travelers and listening to the presentations given by your Expedition Team.
Many factors play a role in shaping the expedition’s progress. There will be attempts to leave the ship to explore in a range of activity levels at least twice a day. Perhaps you’ll feel salt spray on your face as the Zodiac weaves in and around grounded icebergs in Pleneau Bay. You could scramble to the top of a craggy hill for an unforgettable view of an icy chasm near Port Lockroy. You might sit quietly on a pebbled beach and wait for a curious penguin chick to approach or plunge into the frigid Antarctic waters. You could explore the highlights of the Antarctic Peninsula with adventurers who enjoy camping, kayaking, and other active pursuits.
Over the course of the austral spring and summer, the sun lingers longer and longer, melting snow and ice. Wildlife abounds: chicks hatch and fledge, and pods of whales breach in a deep bay where a calving iceberg has churned up krill, the local delicacy. The natural cycle of life ensures that every expedition is different. And that every expedition is full of surprises! As you sail from island to shore to bay during four days in the Peninsula, the Expedition Team provides opportunities for contemplation, to test your endurance and engage your curiosity.
Today you leave Antarctica and head north across the Drake Passage. In between bird watching and whale watching, and enjoying some final lectures by your expedition staff, this is a chance to relax and review your adventures before returning to Ushuaia.
Disembark after breakfast and transfer to the airport for your independent flights home.
Read this itinerary as a guide only; the exact route and program varies according to ice and weather conditions - and the wildlife you encounter. Flexibility is the key to the success of this expedition.
Mandatory Travel Insurance:
All guests are required to have comprehensive travel insurance coverage. Due to the remoteness of the areas in this itinerary, travelers must have a minimum $50,000 of emergency medical coverage. Proof of coverage is required prior to embarkation. The shipping company will not be held responsible for delays due to force majeure. Any additional costs accrued will be the responsibility of the traveler. ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends at least $200,000 Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage for Antarctic trips which includes coverage for cancellation, trip disruption, baggage and personal property. ExpeditionTrips can assist you with this.
Sea Kayaking Option: Available all departures
Not included in cruise rate. See rates page for price. Minimum age 16 years. This is a pre-booked option for kayakers with some experience. Places are strictly limited so please advise at time of booking. Please contact ExpeditionTrips for additional details.
Camping Option: Not available in 2016
Not included in cruise rate. See rates page for price. Minimum age 16 years. Space is limited; request at time of booking. No camping experience is necessary to participate in this program. Sleeping bags and all safety equipment are provided.
Kayaking & Camping Package: Not available in 2016
Not included in cruise rate. See rates page for price. Minimum age 16 years. Space is limited; request at time of booking.
Mountaineering Option: Available 2014 only
Not included in cruise rate. See rates page for price. Minimum age 16 years. Space is limited; request at time of booking. The program is for adventurers with above average physical fitness and mental stamina who want to challenge one or more of the remote Antarctic peaks. Each climbing adventure can last up to 10 hours, based on local conditions. Axes, ropes, crampons, and all safety equipment are provided.
Cross-Country Skiing Option: Available 2014 only
Not included in cruise rate. See rates page for price. Minimum age 16 years. Space is limited; request at time of booking. The program requires a moderate level of physical fitness, but novice cross-country skiers are invited to participate. Skis, poles, and all safety equipment provided.
Snowshoeing Option: Available 2014 only
Included in cruise rate. Anyone can take part, no previous experience necessary. Snowshoes available free of charge for excursions when conditions permit.
Photography Program: Available all departures
Included in cruise rate. This is a complimentary course available to everyone on board who wishes to participate. There is no need to register ahead of time for the course. The course includes the services of a resident photography instructor; a program of lectures on photography and digital image manipulation; and photography focused excursions at landing sites with hands-on instruction.
Group transfer from the airport to the pre-expedition hotel on day 1 of the itinerary (or 1 day prior); one night pre-expedition hotel accommodation with breakfast in Ushuaia; group transfer from hotel to ship on embarkation day; group transfer upon disembarkation in Ushuaia from the ship to the local airport only for passengers with departing flights before noon; shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping; breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board ship; shore landings per the daily program; Zodiac cruising per the daily program; photographic Journal on DVD; waterproof expedition boots on loan for shore landings; parka to keep; coffee, tea, and cocoa available around the clock; miscellaneous service taxes and port charges; luggage handling aboard ship; emergency Evacuation Insurance for all passengers to a maximum benefit of $100,000 per person; yoga classes.
Any airfare; passport and visa expenses; government arrival and departure taxes, Argentina's Reciprocity Fee; any meals ashore with the exception of breakfast at the host hotel before embarkation; supplements for adventure options; alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, except for ones mentioned as included; baggage, cancellation and medical travel insurance; excess baggage charges; laundry, bar, beveragem massage and other personal charges; telecommunications charges; voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for shipboard staff and crew; fuel surcharge may apply.
*Emergency Evacuation Insurance:
Emergency evacuation coverage to a maximum benefit per paying passenger of $100,000 is included in the cost of this expedition. Included coverage is applicable only to travel between the first and last day of the expedition purchased. Additional days of travel prior to the expedition and/or after the expedition are not covered by the included emergency evacuation insurance. We strongly advise all passengers to purchase medical, cancellation and baggage insurance, and additional emergency evacuation coverage.