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. Gain a deep understanding of the region with enriching lectures as you sail with an award-winning Expedition Team, experienced service staff and crew, and one of the best personnel-to-guest ratios at 1 to 1.3. Learn about the fascinating life of one of Antarctica's greatest explorers, and set off for exciting shore excursions in swift Zodiacs (sturdy inflatable boats), where closer views of the land and wildlife reveal the remarkable biodiversity of the Southern Ocean.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Hiking, Triple/Quad Cabins
- Save $4,000 per person
- $1,500 air credit per person
$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.
Today the ship arrives in the remote Falkland Islands. Spend the day exploring the Falklands. This may include a visit to Stanley, the tiny colorful capital of the Falkland Islands, where you may stroll its charming streets and explore its surrounding wilderness areas; or the southeast islands of Sea Lion and Bleaker, home to unspoiled wildlife habitats.
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.
South Georgia is a nearly submerged continuation of the Andes mountain range, and your days here are spent exploring its glacier-carved coves and rugged shores. While weather and ice conditions determine the schedule, stops may include Eleshul Bay to see nesting, wandering albatrosses as well as Salisbury Plain, St. Andrews Bay and Gold Harbour, all three of which are home to vast colonies of king penguins and Southern elephant seals. You may also visit Ernest Shackleton's gravesite in Grytviken with your onboard historian at your side, an expert on the great explorer's life.
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.
Conditions permitting, your itinerary calls for landings on the Antarctic Peninsula and a number of South Shetland Islands, which may include Half Moon, Penguin and Deception. You may also visit Cuverville and Goudier Islands, and sail through Paradise Bay and the Lemaire Channel, called "Kodak Alley" for its photogenic scenery. Further adventures may include a visit to Wilhelmina Bay, noted for its prolific humpback whale activity. As you cruise along Antarctica, scan the seas daily for these gentle giants, all from the comfort of your private balcony and the outer decks of your ship.
Bid farewell to Antarctica as the ship points north for the return to Ushuaia. Enjoy more opportunities to observe birds and marine life while reflecting on an incredible journey with fellow guests and new friends.
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