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Antarctica, Falklands, and South Georgia

Antarctica Cruise

Summary : Embark on a voyage featuring the abundant wildlife and spectacular scenery of the Antarctic Peninsula, Falkland Islands and South Georgia, including classic sites of historic and scientific interest. As many as a million penguins nest in the Falklands every summer, representing five of the world’s seventeen species – king, gentoo, rockhopper, Magellanic and macaroni. Observe abandoned whaling stations, and operational research stations. Encounter humpback, orca and minke whales; albatross and herons; as well as elephant, fur and weddell seals. Along the journey, your team of experienced guides and lecturers will bring to life the region's remarkable history. In Antarctica, the silence is so perfect that every breath taken is triumphant!

Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Photography, Triple/Quad Cabins

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Itinerary
Day 1
Ushuaia, Argentina

Welcome to Ushuaia, the world’s southernmost city and starting point of your expedition. Upon your arrival at the airport, transfer to your included hotel. For the rest of the day you are free to explore the city.

Day 2
Ushuaia, Argentina / Embark

Arrive at the ship via group transfer in the afternoon. Explore the ship and get comfortable in your home away from home for the extraordinary adventure to come. Savor the anticipation of your Antarctic dreams coming true as the ship slips its moorings and sails toward a true wilderness where wildlife abounds. The scenery as you sail through the Beagle Channel on your first evening is wonderful; there's already the possibility of marine mammal encounters.

Day 3
South Atlantic Ocean

After transiting the Beagle Channel and passing the islands of Tierra del Fuego, head northeast toward the Falkland Islands. Keep a lookout for marine mammals such as dolphins and whales.

Day 4 – 5
Falkland Islands

The remote and sparsely-populated Falkland Islands are a birders’ paradise. Visit one or more of the isolated outer islands where large colonies of penguins and albatross are easily accessible. The Falklands are also a great place to observe marine mammals. Fur seals and elephant seals can be found on sandy beaches while the waters in and around the archipelago are home to various whale and dolphin species. Route and exploration opportunities are dependent on weather among these windswept islands.

Visit Stanley, the charmingly British capital of the Falkland Islands. Attractions within pleasant walking distance along the waterfront promenade include the Falkland Islands Museum, the governor’s house, a cathedral with impressive whalebone arch outside, a war memorial, quality gift shops, pubs.

Day 6 – 7
Southern Ocean

From the Falkland Islands, head east toward South Georgia, passing the remote, seabird-covered pinnacles known as Shag Rocks on the way. You'll also cross the Antarctic Convergence, the biological boundary of the Southern Ocean. Briefings, bio-security procedures, and lectures will prepare you for arrival in South Georgia.

Day 8 – 12
South Georgia

This is expedition cruising at its most authentic. Your route and exploration opportunities in South Georgia are heavily dependent on the weather conditions encountered. Your experienced captain and expedition leader decide the itinerary and continually adjust plans as conditions and opportunities warrant. You can be sure that the best possible advantage will be taken of the circumstances presented by Nature in this wild and remote corner of the world.

South Georgia is a scenic wilderness and an unrivaled paradise for subantarctic wildlife viewing. The islands are said to host upwards of 100 million seabirds, including numerous species of albatross, penguins, prions, petrels, and terns. On beaches such as those at Salisbury Plain and St. Andrews Bay, over 100,000 elephant seals and three million fur seals jostle for space among innumerable penguins including stately king penguins and sprightly macaroni penguins.

The bountiful waters surrounding South Georgia are also inhabited by an increasing number of whales. The historical whaling station of Grytviken is now home to the excellent South Georgia Museum managed by the South Georgia Heritage Trust. This is also the final resting place of Ernest Shackleton, the legendary polar explorer.

Your days in South Georgia are filled with memorable excursions, sumptuous meals, presentations by experts, and enough incredible scenery and wildlife to fill your camera and overwhelm your emotions.

Day 13 – 14
Southern Ocean

After an amazing time in South Georgia, the ship will proceed southwest toward the Antarctic Peninsula. Pelagic seabirds including the majestic albatross are common in these waters and can readily be viewed from panoramic open decks or from exterior stateroom windows and balconies.

Day 15 – 18
South Shetland Islands / Antarctic Peninsula

The wilderness of Antarctica is subject to unpredictable weather and ever-changing ice conditions, which dictate the route and exploration opportunities. This is a real expedition with excellent wildlife viewing, amazing scenery, and excursions via Zodiac.

The Antarctic Peninsula region contains some of the world’s most impressive scenery and some of Antarctica’s best wildlife viewing opportunities. Protected bays and narrow channels are surrounded by towering mountain peaks covered in permanent snow and immense glaciers. Icebergs of every size and description complete an image of incomparable beauty. Waters rich with krill are home to a variety of whale and seal species. The whole area is alive with penguins foraging at sea and forming large nesting colonies at special places on land. The area is also home to Antarctic research stations of various nationalities. Some stations have a gift shop and post office.

The South Shetland Islands are the northernmost islands in Antarctica and will likely be your first sighting of land. This wild and beautiful island chain contains numerous landing sites with abundant wildlife and historical significance. Among them is Elephant Island, where men from Shackleton’s famous Endurance expedition spent the winter.

Farther south, on the Antarctic Peninsula, the vast Gerlache Strait area contains sheltered bays, accessible wildlife, and stunning scenery.

Day 19 – 20
Drake Passage

From Antarctica head north through the Drake Passage toward South America. Presentations and workshops, as well as a range of onboard recreation facilities, ensure that these days at sea are not idly spent. This is also the time for the End of Voyage ceremonies including a slideshow and farewell dinner.

Day 21
Ushuaia, Argentina

After breakfast say farewell in the city of Ushuaia, where your journey started. A group transfer to the airport or to the town center is provided.

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.

Bilingual Departure:
English/German

Mandatory Travel Insurance:

All guests are required to have comprehensive travel insurance coverage including medical, evacuation, cancellation and trip interruption. Proof of coverage is required prior to embarkation. ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends at least $200,000 Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage which includes coverage for cancellation, trip disruption, baggage and personal property. ExpeditionTrips can assist U.S. residents with travel protection options. Other conditions may apply based on pre-existing conditions.

Kayaking:

Space is limited. Sign up at the time of booking to secure your spot. You must book your spot before you join the vessel for your voyage. Weather permitting, sea kayakers will have the opportunity to paddle through tranquil waters filled with glittering icebergs and porpoising penguins while surrounded by magnificent glaciers and mountains. Participants must be at least 18 years old, in good health, have appropriate physical fitness, and have previous kayaking experience.

Photography Program:

Learn and practice your photography alongside an experienced professional. An expert Photographer will be on hand to answer your questions and give advice, both in the form of on-board lectures and workshops on shore. Explore the key elements of photography in a fun and relaxed setting, with plenty of opportunities for questions and feedback. Learn how to see light in a new way and experiment with the techniques of composition and framing.

Special Guest Lecturer:
Falcon Scott, artist and grandson of Captain Robert Scott (11/7/2018 departure)
Falcon Scott is Captain Scott's only grandson, and son of Sir Peter Scott, a well known wildlife conservationist, founder of the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, and co-founder of WWF. As Captain Scott's main family representative, Falcon was involved with events in 2012 to celebrate the Centenary of the Terra Nova Expedition, including a visit to the South Pole with the American Antarctic Program. He is an artist, and during recent years has been inspired to capture the beauty of Antarctic landscapes and wildlife. Please contact ExpeditionTrips for details.

Included:
Group transfers from airport to Ushuaia hotel on the day prior to departure; 1 pre-voyage hotel night in Ushuaia (if a single traveler reserves a shared cabin aboard the ship, they will automatically receive shared hotel accommodations on the pre-cruise night at the hotel); group transfer to the ship on day of embarkation; group transfer to airport or central location upon disembarkation in Ushuaia; shipboard accommodations; scheduled landings/excursions; meals on board ship; coffee/tea station 24 hours on ship; welcome and farewell cocktail on ship; a pair of rubber boots on loan for shore landings; expedition parka (yours to keep); port fees; digital Voyage Log. Subject to change without notice.

Not Included:

Airfare; visa and passport fees (if applicable); luggage, medical and trip cancellation insurance; excess baggage charges; soft drinks and alcoholic beverages other than those mentioned as included; kayaking; personal expenses such as laundry, and onboard communications (telephone calls, faxes, and e-mail service); gratuities to shipboard personnel; fuel surcharge may apply; emergency evacuation insurance; pre- or post-cruise travel.

Photos: © Poseidon Expeditions

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