Summary : Discover the best of the Antarctic Peninsula: vast colonies of penguins and seabirds courting, nesting and rearing their young; hanging ice cliffs, stately icebergs and calving glaciers. Journey through the incredible adventures of Shackleton and experience the excitement of spontaneous explorations on sea and land. From the whale-rich waters of the Drake Passage to the Antarctic Peninsula's pristine, remote coastlines, this comprehensive expedition cruise reveals the many faces of the world's last frontier. Explore shorelines teeming with penguins and seals alongside leading naturalists, go behind the scenes of an environmental research station and chat with on board experts in the evening about the day's discoveries.
Activities : Birding, Culture
$999,999,999 to $0
Arrive this morning and transfer to your hotel, where immediate check-in has been arranged with time to relax before an optional half-day city tour. Meet fellow adventurers this evening for a welcome cocktail reception.
Fly to the charming seaside town of Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world. On arrival, enjoy lunch at a local restaurant and — time and weather permitting — the opportunity to take a guided trek in the Cerro Alarken Nature Reserve or to simply enjoy downtown Ushuaia. Later, arrive at the ship and settle in for your first night on board. Wander the decks, relax in the lounge and mingle with fellow travelers in anticipation of your voyage.
The southward journey toward Antarctica is an exciting one. Fast-flowing southern ocean currents squeezing between land masses give the Drake Passage, the small strip of sea between the tip of South America and Antarctica, some of the world's roughest waters. An important trade route in the 19th and early 20th centuries, its stormy waters and icy conditions often made the journey around Cape Horn a difficult one. Le Boreal's stabilizers help handle it much easier. The krill-rich waters are a particular favorite with marine mammals and seabirds. Join Le Boreal's naturalists on the deck to look for various species of whales and abundant seabirds. Later in the evening, chat with experts about the wildlife spotted and discuss the next day’s itinerary.
As the Antarctic Peninsula and its offshore islands appear on the horizon, a sense of excitement and expectation begins to build. Shore excursions are carefully planned by the captain and expedition leader to take full advantage of each day's possibilities. On most days, two landings are scheduled. Head out in swift and versatile Zodiacs accompanied by lecturers, to a number of penguin-filled islands in the South Shetlands, which may include Half Moon, Penguin and Deception. Other possible island visits just off the continental coastline may include Cuverville, Paulet or Goudier.
Weather permitting, sail through stunning Paradise Bay and the Lemaire Channel referred to as "Kodak Alley,". Possibilities for exploration include a scientific research station, the remains of a turn-of-the-century whaling and sealing station, a sheltered beach teeming with basking elephant seals or simply circumnavigating colossal icebergs that serve as floating homes to seals and penguins. Return to the ship to relax and chat over cocktails in the cozy, comfortable lounge and enjoy dinner in the dining room. Afterward, you may choose to recap the day's discoveries with your naturalist guides or enjoy time on deck, taking photos in the stunning low light characteristic of Antarctica’s long, ethereal twilight.
Bid farewell to wondrous Antarctica and begin your cruise back to Ushuaia. The ship's return through the Drake Passage is an interlude for recap and reflection, with time to compare notes with your lecturers on the wildlife, history and geology of the White Continent. While cruising through this historic passage, named in honor of Sir Francis Drake's voyage in the 16th century, watch for whales and seabirds such as skuas and albatrosses. The latter are an especially beautiful sight to behold — these birds boast a wingspan of 11.5 feet on average, using their powerful wings to glide through the air for hours at a time in search of food.
Disembark after breakfast and transfer to the airport to board your flight home via Buenos Aires.
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:
As a requirement of participation on this expedition, all passengers must purchase emergency evacuation/repatriation insurance at a minimum coverage of $50,000. 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.
One-night pre-cruise hotel in Buenos Aires; accommodation and meals on the ship; arrival transfer to the starting hotel regardless of day of arrival; transfer to the airport on the day of debarkation; local bottled water during sightseeing; complimentary standard bar drinks, beer, house wine, soft drinks, coffee drinks, juices and bottled water (excluding premium wines, liquors and Champagnes) while on board; hotel taxes; cabin categories 6-8 include butler service; parka; and gratuities except to the Tour Director/Extension guide/safari driver-guides. Subject to change without notice.
International air transportation; round-trip charter flight between Buenos Aires/Ushuaia; passport or visa expenses; reciprocity and other border fees; laundry; meals, beverages or sightseeing not included in itinerary; premium wines, liquors and champagnes; communication charges; all items of a personal nature; transfers to meet flights on days other than those specified; travel insurance; excess baggage charges; airport departure tax; Argentinian Reciprocity Fee; fuel surcharge may apply.