Falklands, South Georgia & Antarctica

Antarctica, South Georgia & Falklands

Duration: 19 Days / 18 Nights

Starts: Ushuaia, Argentina

Ends: Ushuaia, Argentina

Please note: The itinerary is a guide only. Our exact route and program will vary to take best advantage of local weather and ice conditions and opportunities to view wildlife. Changes will be made by the Captain and/or Expedition Leader to facilitate the best results from the prevailing conditions. A daily program sheet will be issued on board. Flexibility is the key to success.

Itinerary

On this extraordinary 19-day voyage, follow in the wake of courageous explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton to Antarctica and the South Shetlands before heading via Antarctic Sound and Weddell Sea to South Georgia and Falkland Islands.

Departing Ushuaia in Argentina, we cross the mighty Drake Passage en route for the South Shetland Islands. Here we will make Zodiac landings at penguin rookeries, research stations and fascinating lookouts. Continuing southward, we will explore the Antarctic Sound with its mighty tabular icebergs and enter the Weddell Sea in search for wildlife.

Sailing onwards between Elephant Island and South Georgia offers a small glimpse into the passage made famous by Shackleton 100 years ago, when he navigated the 1300 km course through open seas of Drake Passage in an effort to save his stranded crew. South Georgia is one of world’s greatest natural wonders. Wildlife-packed beaches, active research stations, former whaling stations and a visit to Shackleton’s final resting place are on our agenda.

On our last leg towards Argentina, we will pay a visit to the fascinating Falkland Islands. The capital of Port Stanley with its quaint English architecture will be our first call before venturing further west for Zodiac landings and wildlife observations on pristine and sheltered beaches.

After leaving the Falklands, the last seadays can be spend bird watching from the top deck and attending lectures, workshops and photo re-caps in one of the ship’s lounges.

Day 1: Ushuaia, Argentina

Arrive in Ushuaia, Argentina – the world’s southernmost city. In the afternoon, we board our ship. Our journey begins as we navigate through the calms of Beagle Channel, a strait in the Tierra del Fuego Archipelago.

Day 2-3: At Sea. Drake Passage, King George Island

Sailing onward, we cross the famed Drake Passage – a body of water that marks the intersection of the cold Antarctic with the warmer Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Drake Passage is known for strong westerly winds and heavy sea. While this passage may be challenging, you can rest confidently aboard our expedition vessel, which is purpose-built with stabilizers, powerful engines and a highly qualified crew. The most spirited sailors consider Drake Passage a lifetime achievement – and soon you can tick it off on the list yourself!

In the Drake, the excitement builds as Antarctic wildlife comes into view with our first sight of seals, penguins and albatrosses. Having crossed the Drake, we will explore the sub-Antarctic islands of the South Shetland chain and be marveled by the captivating landscapes we will encounter along the way. Weather permitting, we hope to make our first landfall on King George Island before continuing further south to the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula.

Day 4-7: Antarctic Sound and Weddell Sea

Over the coming days, we will begin the exciting Antarctic experience at the very tip of the Continent. During these days in the Antarctic Sound, named in 1902 after the Swedish vessel Antarctic, the captain and the expedition team will keep a watchful eye on the mighty tabular icebergs, born from the floating Larsen Ice Shelf further south. We aim to have both continental and island landings on the shores of Antarctic Sound and Weddell Sea, always on the lookout for some of the unusually large penguin colonies, which have recently been observed.

The itinerary and activities over the next few days depend on weather and ice conditions. The route and shore landings will be determined by the Captain and Expedition Leader and communicated to the guests through regularly scheduled briefings.

Day 8-13: Drake Passage and South Georgia

From the Weddell Sea we continue our journey into the open sea, just as Ernest Shackleton and his men did more than hundred years ago. Having lost their ship Endurance deep south in the Weddell Sea they moved slowly north on ice floes and later in open lifeboats until they reached Elephant Island. From here started one of the most remarkable boat journeys in the polar history, when Shackleton and five of his men for two weeks navigated the 720 nautical miles to South Georgia to call for recovery of the stranded crew on Elephant Island. We on the other hand will reach the mighty South Georgia after just a few days at sea!

South Georgia offers stunning wildlife experiences with a wealth of breeding penguins, sea birds, sea lions and seals, all seeking shelter in this oasis amidst the roaring Southern Ocean. Previous whaling history pops up in most of fjords we will explore – not least in Grytviken the only inhabited settlement on this mountainous island. Grytviken is also the last resting place for Ernest Shackleton, after he died on yet another Antarctica voyage in 1922. We will explorer the fjords of the north coast for 2-3 days and take as many shore landings as time and the swelling sea will allow us.

Day 14-15: South Atlantic, approaching Falkland Islands

Days at sea are great for participating in lectures and other activities hosted by the expedition team, reading books in the ship library and watching the ubiquitous storm petrels and albatrosses from top deck. Or just to relax.

Day 16-17: Port Stanley and Falkland Islands

During the morning we approach Falkland Islands and in the early afternoon the ship will cast anchor the sheltered natural harbor of Port Stanley. Utilizing our Zodiacs, we will land in town center, and take a leisurely stroll through the streets of Stanley.

On the following day we will make landings – weather permitting – at two of the islands’ many magnificent wildlife spots.

Day 18: At Sea toward South America

We are now into the last leg of this adventurous voyage, heading back to Ushuaia.

Day 19: Ushuaia, Disembarkation

After a hearty farewell to vessel and crew, we disembark in the morning after breakfast.

Itinerary length: 19-20 days

INCLUSIONS
  • 19-day cruise with accommodation in a shared double stateroom featuring ensuite facilities
  • All Zodiac landings and excursions as per itinerary
  • Expedition parka
  • Rubber boots on loan
  • Guiding and lectures by our expedition leader and team
  • English-speaking expedition team
  • Free photo workshop from experienced photographer onboard
  • Full board on the ship - breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks
  • Free tea and coffee 24 hours daily
  • Welcome and farewell cocktails
  • Digital visual journal link after voyage, including voyage log, gallery, species list and more!
  • Taxes and port fees
EXCLUSIONS
  • Extra excursions and activities not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Single room supplement and cabin upgrades
  • Meals not on board the ship
  • Beverages (other than coffee and tea)
  • Tips for the crew (we recommend USD 14 per person per day)
  • Personal expenses
  • Transfers to/from the ship
  • Anything not mentioned under ’Inclusions’

CONTACT US FOR MORE INFORMATION!