Summary : Set sail on an extraordinary luxury expedition ship for the best of the Southern Ocean, exploring epic Antarctica, the majestic Falkland Islands and wildlife-packed South Georgia with its rookeries of king penguins. Meet penguins in person, aim to step foot on the White Continent, and hear the crackle of sea ice on this epic otherworldly adventure! Exploring the modern traveler’s final frontier, you’ll discover the iconic sights and sounds that make Antarctica one of the Earth’s most pristine, unforgettable, and coveted destinations.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Hiking, Triple/Quad Cabins
- Save $4,000 per person
- $1,500 air credit per person
- Solo traveler savings
- Offers may not be combinable; conditions may apply
$22,995 to $57,995
Arrive in Argentina's capital city and transfer to your hotel. Enjoy time at leisure before joining fellow travelers tonight for a welcome reception.
With its wide boulevards and classical buildings, romantic and exciting Buenos Aires boasts an energy all its own. Explore its best treasures with expert local guides, choosing from a selection of included excursions. Opt to explore the city on a guided tour complete with a tango demonstration; spend a full day at an authentic estancia (ranch), where you pause for an authentic lunch; or dive into a burgeoning art scene on a guided tour focused on Buenos Aires street art. Tonight, enjoy the evening at your leisure.
Fly to the port city of Ushuaia (flight not included), located at the southern tip of South America. On arrival, enjoy lunch at the Arakur resort and, time and weather permitting, take a nature walk in the Cerro Alarken Nature Reserve, or simply relax with a cappuccino and views of Ushuaia and the Beagle Channel. Later, board Le Lyrial and settle into your cabin, where you can take in views right from your own private balcony. Throughout your journey, benefit from immersive insight, with incomparable enrichment programs both aboard and on shore, and an Expedition Team that is second to none. Walk the decks and explore the common spaces as you familiarize yourself with the luxury cruiser, your home for the next 15 nights at sea. You may even want to toast to your journey in the bar with your fellow guests.
As you sail east toward the Falkland Islands, your Expedition Team begins an informal series of enlightening daily discussions on the flora and fauna, geology, and history of the region. These expert lectures span diverse topics, such as seabirds and penguins of the Southern Ocean, the formation of sea ice over thousands of years, and personal accounts of living and working in Antarctica. Photography enthusiasts can enjoy time with the resident photo coach, who is on hand to share tips and answer questions. The cool waters in these parts are rich in krill, making them a favorite with local wildlife searching for food. Alongside your naturalist guides, spot various species of whales and seabirds from the deck.
The Falklands are more than a gateway to South Georgia and Antarctica, as this remote collection of islands in the South Atlantic Ocean is home to remarkable bird life and marine mammals as well as stunning landscapes. You may hike to the largest black-browed albatross colony in the world, spot Peale’s dolphins and Commerson’s dolphins in the surrounding waters, or watch penguins in the surf as they prepare to come ashore on an expansive sandy beach.
In Port Stanley, capital of the Falklands and the center of its culture, you’ll be treated to a charming mix of colorful Victorian-era homes, well-tended gardens, and English-style pubs.
As you approach South Georgia, go out on deck and keep an eye out for whales and other wildlife. Time spent cruising is once again filled with informative lectures and casual talks with your guides, leaving your knowledge of the region greatly enriched. Scan the seas to spot marine mammals and seabirds, as the ship cruises the nutrient-rich waters past the islands of Shag Rocks.
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.
During your time cruising the Scotia Sea — rich with marine mammals and fish — your enrichment specialists recap your adventures in South Georgia. During additional, enriching lectures, learn more about the 7th Continent, from the terrain to the hardy wildlife that inhabits it. Ensuring your experience reaches far beyond that of everyday travelers, ongoing, informative discussions with your Expedition Team lend further context.
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.
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.
Disembark after breakfast and transfer to the airport for your return flight 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. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.
Mandatory Travel Insurance:
As a requirement of participation on this expedition, all passengers must purchase emergency evacuation/repatriation insurance at a minimum coverage of $100,000. Other conditions may apply based on pre-existing conditions. 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 U.S. residents with travel protection options.
Family Holiday Departure: 12/17/2019
Features a Young Explorers Guide with full curriculum based exploratory program. A fantastic learning experience for kids delivering exciting and engaging programs based on age. Photography, art and more.
New Year's Eve in Buenos Aires:
Ring in New Year's Eve with a special two-night package and festive dinner at the Park Hyatt Buenos Aires (Dec 30-31 from $1,495 per person).
Two pre-cruise hotel nights in Buenos Aires; Buenos Aires city tour or Estancia visit; pre-cruise transfer from airport to hotel; lunch at the Arakur Hotel in Ushuaia; post-cruise transfer from ship to airport; shipboard accommodations; Wi-Fi onboard ship; valet laundry service onboard ship (piece limit, excludes dry cleaning); gear to keep (parka, backpack); gear on loan (boots, walking poles, pants); all meals onboard the ship; 24-hour room service onboard ship; standard bar drinks, beer, house wine, and soft drinks onboard ship; most gratuities. Guest staying in Suites (Categories 4-9) onboard the ship receive a suite upgrade at the Hyatt in Buenos Aires and butler service onboard the ship. Subject to change without notice.
International airfare; round-trip flight between Buenos Aires/Ushuaia; passport and visa expenses; laundry other than mentioned as included; meals not mentioned as included; premium wines, spirits, liquors and champagnes; optional extensions; New Year's Eve in Buenos Aires two-night package; communication charges not mentioned as included; all items of a personal nature; required travel insurance; excess baggage charges; airport departure tax; spa charges; fuel surcharge may apply.
Photos: © A&K Image Library