Antarctic Peninsula

Prime Season Antarctica

Duration: 9 Days / 8 Nights

Starts: Ushuaia, Argentina

Ends: Ushuaia, Argentina


Storied and sought for centuries, the great White Continent beckons intrepid modern-day explorers from all over the world. Experience incredible wildlife, stunning scenery and gigantic icebergs on this one-of-a-kind voyage to the Antarctic Peninsula in the peak of the southern summer!

Join us onboard our purpose-built, ice-class expedition vessels, to experience the majesty and wonder of Earth’s last frontier up close and personal. Our state-of-the-art vessels enable us to get closer to nature, with a fleet of Zodiac landing craft, a team of experienced expedition guides, and the Antarctic Peninsula as our spectacular destination.

Departing Argentina’s southernmost city of Ushuaia, we cross the mighty Drake Passage en-route to the South Shetland Islands. The unique X-Bow design of our expedition vessels offers exceptional stability at sea, giving you a smoother ride across some of Earth’s most challenging waters.

This voyage departs at the peak of the brief southern summer, arriving in Antarctica while wildlife activity is at its peak. Expect to see adorable freshly hatched penguin chicks being carefully guarded by a parent, while hundreds of other penguins come and go with bellyfuls of food for their offspring. Watch these fascinating birds vigorously defend their territories, while keeping watch for predatory skuas overhead. Meanwhile in the frigid yet productive sea, humpback whales feast on the bountiful summer krill, gorging after their long migration southward, while orca patrol the waters on their never-ending hunt for prey.

Our first destination is the South Shetland Islands, a rugged chain of spectacular wildlife-rich islands off the northernmost tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. From here we will delve deeper into the inlets and bays of the Antarctic Peninsula, entering the famous Gerlache Strait, where glittering ice cliffs and precipitous peaks rise straight out of the icy water. Icebergs, glaciers, mountains and rugged snowfields characterise this wildly beautiful alien landscape. While wind, sea and ice conditions will dictate the exact locations we will visit, we will make Zodiac landings to allow guests to set foot on land and experience penguin rookeries, spectacular landscapes and historical sites, and aim to Zodiac cruise in breathtaking areas filled with giant icebergs, whales and seals. While wildlife sighting are of course subject to the whims of Mother Nature, we always aim to show our guests the best of the White Continent. Jaw-dropping scenery and landscapes are guaranteed!

Day 1: Arrival in Ushuaia, Embarkation

Arrive in Ushuaia, Argentina – the world’s southernmost city. Explore this vibrant Patagonian city, or stretch your legs in the surrounding forests. Alternatively, consider a day trip off the beaten path into the raw nature of Tierra del Fuego. The island of Tierra del Fuego is a hiker’s paradise with rugged snow-capped mountains, glaciers, flower-filled meadows and rich boggy wetlands. In the afternoon, we board our vessel, waiting to welcome us in port.

After our mandatory safety drill, our expedition begins as we navigate through the calm waters of the famous Beagle Channel (named for Charles Darwin’s legendary ship). This steep-sided strait divides southern Tierra del Fuego between Chile and Argentina, and has been the jumping-off point for thousands of expeditions into the unknown of the deep South. Watch out for whales and dolphins as we sail off the edge of the map into the tempestuous Drake Passage.

Day 2-3: At Sea – Crossing the Drake Passage Southbound

Sailing onward, we cross the famed Drake Passage – the body of water separating Patagonia and the Antarctic Peninsula. The Drake Passage is known for rollicking conditions and strong westerly winds, nicknamed the Roaring Fifties. While this passage may be challenging, you can rest comfortably aboard our expedition vessels, which are purpose-built with stabilizers, powerful engines and manned by a highly-qualified crew. The most spirited sailors consider Drake Passage a lifetime achievement – and you will complete the crossing twice!

Our days in the Drake Passage will be put to good use preparing for our arrival in Antarctica – your Expedition Leader will brief you comprehensively on how to stay safe and minimise your impact on this precious wilderness, as well as briefing you thoroughly on our plans for our time spent exploring, including hints and tips for wildlife watching. Our dedicated Expedition Team will assist you to biosecure your clothing and equipment (a vital process to protect Antarctica’s delicate ecology), as well as sharing tailored lectures on Antarctic exploration history, wildlife, geology, glaciology and more!

We will cross into the Antarctic Convergence on the third day of our voyage – watch the mercury plummet as we sail southwards into Antarctic waters, an abrupt cooling that marks the intersection of Antarctic waters with the warmer waters of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. As the sea cools, wildlife multiplies; these are some of the most biologically productive water on Earth, so expect to see petrels, albatrosses and potentially penguins, seals and whales in abundance. Weather permitting, we may be able to make landfall in the South Shetland Islands (a small but spectacular archipelago to the north of the Antarctic Peninsula) on the afternoon of our second day in the Drake Passage, marking the start of our exploration on the Last Continent.

Day 4-6: South Shetland Islands & the Antarctic Peninsula

Arriving in Antarctica in the height of summer is an unparalleled experience. Enter a world where the mountains themselves are bright glittering white, and wildlife has no fear of humans.

We will begin out time on Antarctica in the South Shetland Islands. This chain of rugged rocks marks the northernmost point of Antarctica, and the most exposed to the fury of the Southern Ocean. Because of this, it is also one of the richest in terms of wildlife, with large Gentoo and Chinstrap Penguin colonies, and an abundance of large seabirds such as predatory Giant Petrels. The ice-clad mountains of Livingstone, Greenwich and King George Islands give us a glimpse of what is to come as we venture further south.

The following days will be spent exploring further south on the Antarctic Peninsula in the Gerlache Strait region. This region is typically icy, so our exact route will be subject to careful planning by the Expedition Leader and Captain – however, we will aim to visit a range of sites which showcase the best of this staggeringly beautiful region. Consisting of the ‘spine’ of the Antarctic Peninsula and a large number of glaciated and mountainous islands, the Gerlache Strait is what comes to mind when most people think of Antarctica.

Arriving at the peak of the brief southern summer, wildlife activity is at its most frenetic. Watch Gentoo penguins squabble over the tiny pebbles used to build their nests, scamper up snowy hills to their partners and feeding their tiny freshly hatched chicks. Marvel at the tender care these birds take over their offspring, carefully guarding them against frigid Antarctic winds and the predatory skuas, which patrol overhead.

As the ocean warms during the fleeting summer, gentle giants arrive from warmer climes. Pods of elegant humpback whales frolic in the crystalline waters of the Antarctic Peninsula, feasting on the krill which blooms in these waters each summer. And where there are whales, hunters are not far behind – pods of orcas, intelligent and cunning, patrol these waters on their never-ending search for prey.

These krill-rich waters also attract throngs of seals. Weddell seals can often be seen hauled out on the snow, snoozing after diving deep in search of prey. Groups of crabeater seals gambol in the shallows, gorging on krill, while serpentine leopard seals patrol the shoreline of penguin colonies, waiting for prey to venture nearby.

At this point in the summer, there is no true night; spectacular sunsets merge into breathtaking sunrises, and the weather is as kind as it gets in Antarctica, offering superlative opportunities to explore. While wind, ice and sea conditions will dictate our precise destinations and timings, our plans will be explained to guests during regularly scheduled evening briefings with your Expedition Leader; these nightly sessions are also an excellent opportunity to hear from your knowledgeable Expedition Team, who will explain and expand on our experiences to ensure guests get the most from their voyage.

Day 7-8: At Sea – Crossing the Drake Passage Northbound

We eventually depart Antarctica, and spend two days at sea on our way northwards back across the infamous Drake Passage towards the more welcoming shores of the Beagle Channel and Ushuaia, Argentina. During our time at sea, a variety of activities will be arranged on board to provide our guests with the chance to reflect on their voyage. Relax with an expertly crafted cocktail in the Bar in the company of new friends, soak up the knowledge and passion of our Expedition Team during lectures in the Lounge, or simply enjoy the flight of the albatross which accompany us northwards.

During your last evening onboard, join the Captain and Officers for the Farewell Cocktail Party, followed by a presentation of photos and video by our onboard photographer – the ideal opportunity to re-live your Antarctic adventure.

Day 9: Back to Ushuaia and Disembarkation

On the morning of the final day of our voyage, we will arrive back at the pier of Ushuaia, Argentina. Trees, grass and a busy city may seem strange to you after the white wilderness of Antarctica! After a hearty breakfast, it is time to bid a fond farewell to the Crew and Expedition Team, and descend the gangway back to dry land with memories of the voyage of a lifetime.

  • 9-day cruise with accommodation in a shared stateroom featuring ensuite facilities
  • Shuttle transfer from city centre to ship/from ship to city centre or airport (Ushuaia)
  • 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
  • Special photo workshops
  • Full board on the ship - breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks
  • Complimentary house wine, beer and soda at dinner (selected labels and brands, served at our a-la-carte dinners)
  • 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
  • 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
  • Anything not mentioned under ’Inclusions’