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Antarctica, Falklands, and South Georgia

Antarctica Cruise Information

Summary : Tour the beautiful Falkland Islands to view huge populations of rockhopper, gentoo, and Magellanic penguins, as well as the regal black-browed albatross. Witness the vast penguin colonies of South Georgia—king, macaroni, gentoo, and chinstrap—as well as large numbers of elephant and fur seals crowding the beaches. Set foot on the Antarctic continent and revel in the incredible scenery of snowcapped peaks, mighty glaciers, and glistening icebergs—a photographer’s dream. Learn about early polar exploration and whaling history, including a visit to the burial site of Sir Ernest Shackleton.

Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking

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Itinerary
Day 1 – 2
Depart USA / Buenos Aires / Ushuaia, Argentina

Board your independent flight via Buenos Aires, arriving in Ushuaia the next day. Transfer to Arakur Ushuaia Resort & Spa with the rest of the day at leisure. Gather at the hotel this evening for a welcome dinner and overnight.

Day 3
Ushuaia / Embark

Today, enjoy a boat trip on the Beagle Channel and disembark in Tierra del Fuego National Park for nature hikes surrounded by dramatic scenery. Board the Island Sky this afternoon and set sail for the Falkland Islands.

Day 4
At Sea

Attend lectures on the natural and historical highlights ahead.

Day 5
Saunders Island, Falkland Islands

On Saunders Island, you will find colonies of gentoo, rockhopper, and Magellanic penguins, as well as nesting Black-browed Albatross.

Day 6
Stanley, Falkland Islands

Step ashore in Stanley, capital of the Falkland Islands and enjoy a short tour of this British-flavored town.

Day 7 – 8
Cruising the South Scotia Sea

Lecturers recap your experiences and prepare you for your visit to South Georgia. On deck, join naturalists in search of the seabirds and marine mammals that flourish in these nutrient-rich waters.

Day 9 – 11
South Georgia

Often referred to as the ‘Serengeti of the Southern Ocean’, South Georgia is one of the planet’s most significant biological hotspots. Imagine tens of thousands of King penguins—stretching as far as the eye can see from the ocean to the base of alpine peaks—and going ashore at pivotal historic sites from the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration. It is simply spectacular and not to be missed.

Landing sites on South Georgia are varied and are largely determined by the weather and sea conditions on your voyage. Whatever sites you visit—such as Grytviken, Salisbury Plain, St. Andrews Bay, Gold Harbor, Fortuna Bay, and Stromness—you’ll have wildlife encounters unrivaled anywhere else on earth.

Day 12 – 13
At Sea

Naturalists recap your memorable visit to South Georgia and introduce you to the history, geology, and wildlife of the Antarctic Peninsula and its surrounding islands.

Day 14
Elephant Island

Today arrive at Elephant Island, made famous by the Shackleton expedition. Awesome glaciers, speckled with pink algae, create a dramatic backdrop. Weather permitting, enjoy a Zodiac cruise around the island and the opportunity to view a thriving chinstrap penguin colony.

Day 15 – 18
Antarctic Peninsula / South Shetland Islands

As you navigate historic waterways and visit prime sites along the Antarctic Peninsula and neighboring South Shetland Islands, the goal is to attempt 1-2 excursions per day. Your Captain and Expedition Leader continually monitor weather and ice conditions, working together to insure you experience the best of Antarctica whether you’re exploring Paradise Bay, the Lemaire Channel, Port Lockroy, Deception Island, or the many other locations available for landings and Zodiac cruising in the region.

Sailing in the wake of the 19th century’s great explorers—Sir Ernest Shackleton, Adrien de Gerlache, Robert Falcon Scott, and Roald Amundsen (to name just a few)—you’ll photograph the same towering mountain peaks they saw, hear raucous penguin colonies as you go ashore, see dazzling shades of blue and white as you navigate bays with impressive ice sculptures, and gain a new perspective of what it takes for wildlife—from penguins and giant petrels to elephant seals and humpback whales—to thrive in the beauty of this environment.

Day 19 – 20
Drake Passage

The forecast for conditions across the Drake Passage will determine when you’ll say a fond farewell to Antarctica and sail back to South America. Enjoy the ship’s amenities as the coastline drifts out of view, take time for bird watching and searching the horizon for whales, and enjoy final presentations by the expedition staff as you relax and reflect upon your Antarctic adventure.

Day 21 – 22
Ushuaia, Argentina / Disembark / Buenos Aires / USA

Disembark in Ushuaia and transfer to the airport for your flight to Buenos Aires, connecting with your independent overnight flight.

Notes

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. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.

Travel Insurance:
Emergency medical coverage to a maximum benefit per paying passenger of $25,000 is included in the cost of this expedition, as well as evacuation coverage to a maximum benefit per paying passenger of $100,000. ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends at least $200,000 Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage which includes coverage for cancellation, trip disruption, baggage and personal property. Other conditions may apply based on pre-existing conditions. ExpeditionTrips can assist U.S. residents with travel protection options.

Included:
One pre-cruise hotel night in Ushuaia; arrival and departure transfers on group dates; shipboard accommodations; boat trip on the Beagle Channel and visit to Tierra del Fuego National Park; parka; gear on loan (boots - sizes not guaranteed); $80 gear certificate; welcome dinner at Ushuaia hotel; all meals onboard ship; most beverages onboard ship (soft drinks, beer, and wine with lunch and dinner); gratuities; limited medical expense coverage and emergency evacuation insurance*. Subject to change at any time.

Not Included:
All air transportation; excess baggage charges; airport arrival and departure taxes; transfers for independent arrivals and departures; passport and/or visa fees; accident/baggage/cancellation and additional travel insurance; items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar charges and alcoholic beverages other than those listed as included, email/Internet/fax/telephone charges; fuel surcharge may apply.

*Emergency Medical & Evacuation Insurance:
Emergency medical coverage to a maximum benefit per paying passenger of $25,000 is included in the cost of this expedition, as well as evacuation coverage to a maximum benefit per paying passenger of $100,000. Insurance is underwritten by National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, PA. The policy will contain reductions, limitations, exclusions and termination provisions. All coverages may not be available in all states. Please note this coverage does not cover you against trip cancellation or for additional days of travel prior to and/or after the expedition trip dates. ExpeditionTrips strongly advises all clients to purchase travel insurance which includes trip cancellation and interruption coverage for the entire duration of your trip.

Photos by Sam Crimmin and Jim Wilson

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