Summary : For most travelers, visiting Antarctica is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. So, for those with the luxury of time, including the Falklands and South Georgia Island cruise just makes sense. Only the plains of the Serengeti during the migrations can compare to the wildlife spectacles offered by both South Georgia and the Falklands. On your South Georgia Island cruise you’ll see a single rookery with tens of thousands of king penguins—an astonishing sight and an indelible memory. In the Falklands, you’ll see rockhopper penguins in great number in their “hobbit shire” of the tussock grass. And, in both, you’ll have the rare opportunity to see albatross in great numbers—wandering albatross with their impressive 11-foot wing spans; and beautiful black-browed albatross—in colonies that fill the windward ledges of these southernmost islands. These, plus elephant and fur seals, pelagic birds in great numbers, and various species of whales feasting on the Southern Ocean’s seasonal bounty create unprecedented wildlife viewing experiences for you.
All departures are Photo Expeditions, see end of page for details.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Photography, Dedicated Solo Cabins, Triple/Quad Cabins
Bar tab onboard ship and crew tips now included. Subject to change.
Receive a FREE DVD chronicle of your trip, compliments of ExpeditionTrips!
$25,220 to $48,990
Depart U.S. this evening on an overnight flight to Buenos Aires.
Arrive this morning in Buenos Aires, set on the Rio de la Plata, and check in your hotel. In the afternoon, enjoy a guided overview of the city, seeing its Beaux Arts palaces, grand boulevards, and the famous balcony forever associated with Eva Peron. In the early evening gather for an informal reception and a drink at the hotel.
This morning's charter flight will bring you over Patagonia before landing in Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world. If the weather is fine, you'll have a chance to view the spectacular mountains rising out of the Beagle Channel as you enjoy lunch on a catamaran cruise. Then, you'll embark the expedition ship and set sail.
You'll awake this morning into your journey across the Drake Passage. Lying between Cape Horn and the Antarctic Peninsula, the Drake holds a unique place in maritime lore. The Drake Passage is unforgettable—a milestone in any adventurer's personal travel history—with time to hear talks preparing you for the exciting days ahead.
With long hours of daylight, make the most of your days exploring the Antarctic Peninsula and surrounding islands. Your schedule is flexible, allowing you to take advantage of the unexpected. Sail through the incomparable Lemaire Channel and land on the “White Continent,” exploring via Zodiac, kayak and on foot, and using an arsenal of tools for exploration.
As you voyage, head up to the Bridge to watch for icebergs and whales, and observe expert navigation at work as your skilled Captain and officers sail these historic waters. There will also be time to enjoy a massage in the wellness center, workout in the gym, and browse in the library. Each day your naturalists offer talks that add depth to your experience.
Explore the spectacular coastline of South Georgia Island. In keeping with the nature of an expedition, the schedule is flexible with opportunities for walking, hiking, kayaking, and Zodiac excursions. Leisurely circumnavigating the island, plan to make stops every day including visits to Grytviken, part of the extraordinary story of the Endurance and the final resting place of Sir Ernest Shackleton, as well as Stromness Bay where Shackleton, Tom Crean, and Frank Worsley finally reached aid at a whaling station. See huge elephant seals, and, on a single beach, you will visit a vast colony of tens of thousands of king penguins!
Whales beneath, birds above, as you continue on. Your naturalists will prepare you for the exciting days ahead with presentations on the wildlife and history of the Falkland Islands.
The Falklands boast the largest albatross colony in the world, irresistible Magellanic penguins in their burrows amid the green tussock grass and herds of enormous elephant seals. Stroll the photogenic tin-roofed, Victorian-style houses of Port Stanley. Visit the Anglican Cathedral with its organic archway of whalebones, and the Falkland Islands Museum.
As you sail back to Ushuaia, an albatross or two may join the escort of seabirds that cross your bow. There’s time to share photos with the onboard National Geographic photographer, catch up on the book you haven’t had a minute to read, and write emails home, saying “don’t want this to end.”
After breakfast, disembark in Ushuaia with some time to explore before proceeding to the airport for your charter flight to Buenos Aires.
Arrive in the U.S. after an overnight flight from 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. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.
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.
Lindblad-National Geographic Certified Photo Instructor:
On all departures, a certified photo instructor will be at your side and at your service to inspire and assist you. Take advantage of talks, presentations, slideshows and “laptop gallery” sharing events. All skill and interest levels are welcome; the instructors can meet you wherever you are on your journey. All you need to participate is a camera— point-and-shoot, smartphone, DSLR, whatever—and a sense of adventure. And you’re sure to return home with amazing photos.
Optional Pre-Trip Extension: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Before embarking on your expedition, take time to explore one of the world's most intriguing cities. See its famous architecture, explore the most interesting neighborhoods, visit top museums, and take in a tango performance. From $1,890 per person. (2 Days)
Optional Post-Trip Extension: Iguazu Falls
Taller than Niagara, Iguazu Falls is also twice as wide with 275 cascades spread in a horseshoe shape over nearly two miles of the Iguazu River. Situated in Iguazu National Park in northeastern Argentina, this natural sanctuary is a UNESCO World Heritage site, owing to its beautiful landscapes and subtropical forest, with 450 species of birds, including toucans and parrots, and butterflies, orchids and endangered jaguars. From $2,790 per person. (3 Days) Available after select departures.
Optional Post-Trip Extension: Easter Island
Follow your Antarctica expedition with a visit to one of the most mysterious places on earth—Easter Island. Home to the silent sentinels of a long lost culture, this tiny island is located 2,300 miles west of Chiles in the Pacific Ocean and almost 1,200 miles from its nearest island neighbor. Learn about the ancient Rapa Nui culture that grew up in isolation. Where did these people come from and why did they carve more than 500 giant moai? Learn from key archaeologists. From $4,390 per person. (4-5 Days)
One pre-voyage hotel night in Buenos Aires; ship accommodations; meals as per the itinerary; most beverages aboard the ship; shore excursions; taxes and service charges; crew gratuities; use of kayaks; parka. Subject to change without notice.
Airfare; passport and visa expenses; immigration fees; travel insurance; items of a personal nature such email and laundry; optional extensions; fuel surcharge may apply.
Photos: © Ralph Lee Hopkins (King Penguin Sunset, Elephant Seal Pups, Kayak and Whale, Shackleton's Grave, Albatross, King Penguins and Passengers); Sven-Olof Lindblad (Penguins on Ice, Kayak and Seal); Michael S. Nolan (Penguin, South Georgia Landscape, Penguins and Kayak, King Penguins, Stanley Falklands, and Seals, Zodiac and Whale)