Summary : Steeped in Shackleton and whaling lore, covered mostly in glaciers, South Georgia explodes with life: king, gentoo, and macaroni penguins, enormous elephant seals and a thriving fur seal population. On South Georgia you can observe one of the world’s great wildlife spectacles—tens of thousands of stately king penguins on a single beach. See the human face of the region in the Falklands, reminiscent of Great Britain, with grazing sheep, tea and crumpets. And in this privileged place, the albatross reveal the beauty of their mysterious lives.
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
Just-Released Offer Free international airfare
Receive a FREE DVD chronicle of your trip, compliments of ExpeditionTrips!
$16,990 to $34,820
Depart on an overnight flight to Buenos Aires, Argentina’s capital.
Check into your hotel before having a guided overview of the city, seeing its Beaux Arts palaces 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.
Settle into shipboard life, listening to informal discussions from your naturalist staff to prepare you for the wildness ahead in the Falklands. Spend time on deck and on the bridge, scanning for seabirds, notably the albatross.
Each Falkland Island is a variation on the theme of topographical beauty with white-sand beaches, vaulting cliffs, windswept moors and the sunlit yellows and sage greens of waving tussock grass. While the Falklands boasts a human population (3,000 people in total; 2,500 of whom live in the capital, Stanley) the animals—specifically thousands of irresistible gentoo, rockhopper and Magellanic penguins, as well as magnificent albatross with 11-foot wingspans and curious fur seals—vastly outnumber them and constitute a major draw for wildlife enthusiasts and photographers. Take your camera and binoculars to walk along beautiful white-sand beaches, meander through tussock grass or sit atop a cliff and ponder the views.
During your days at sea, learn about the fascinating history of Antarctic exploration, as well as the flora, fauna and geology of South Georgia. A lookout is kept to identify the seabirds that follow in your wake: wandering albatross, prions and black-browed albatross.
Explore the spectacular coastline of South Georgia Island. In keeping with the nature of an expedition, your schedule is flexible with opportunities for walking, hiking, kayaking, and Zodiac excursions. Leisurely circumnavigating the island, the plan is to make stops every day. This includes 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!
With whales beneath and birds above, head out on deck or up to the Bridge to observe expert navigation at work as our skilled Captain and officers sail these waters. There’ll also be time to relax and enjoy a massage in the wellness center, work out in the gym, browse in the library, and hear talks on all that you have seen from our expedition team.
Your journey across the South Atlantic Ocean takes you once more to the island archipelago that teems with nature and wildlife. Your afternoon visit to the capital, Stanley, offers a chance to see the human face of the islands, to meet the hospitable locals, and perhaps hoist a drink at a local pub. Stroll around the remote colonial town, visiting the southernmost Anglican cathedral in the world, which graces the nation’s paper money; it’s a simple yet beautiful structure with an unusual treasure: an arch made of the giant jaw bones of two blue whales erected in the yard.
After breakfast, disembark in the Falklands' capital city of Stanley, and transfer to the airport at Mount Pleasant for your private charter flight to Santiago.
Connect with your overnight flight home, arriving the next day on Day 19.
This itinerary is subject to change. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.
ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends at least $200,000 Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage for trips 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 on an extension curated to provide the very best that Buenos Aires has to offer. From $1,890 per person. (2 Days)
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-cruise hotel night in Buenos Aires; transfers between airport and ship if booked on group flights; shipboard accommodations; kayaking; certified photo instructor; video chronicle of your trip; parka; all meals onboard ship; most beverages onboard ship; crew gratuities. Subject to change without notice.
Airfare transportation; extensions; passport and visa expenses; baggage/accident/cancellation insurance; immigration fees; items of a personal nature such as premium alcoholic beverages, Internet, and laundry; optional extensions; fuel surcharge may apply.
Photos ©: Ralph Lee Hopkins (King Penguins Water, Falklands Floral Landscape, Albatross); Michael S. Nolan (Hikers/Landscape, King Penguins/Landscape, Stanley Village, Penguin Sunset, Fur Seal, Rockhopper Penguins)