Antarctica, South Georgia and the Falkland Islands

 

Overview

Location: Antarctica
Destination: Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia & the Falkland Islands
Starting at: $11,995

 

Description

Three of the world's greatest wildlife destinations await you at the Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia and the Falkland Islands. The amazing wildlife is reason enough to join this expedition, but the surreal scenery, exploration history and on-board camaraderie all add to this "trip of a lifetime" experience!

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Ship

Akademik Vavilov Akademik Vavilov
Expedition Ships
Capacity: 92

Cabin description & deck plan

 
 
 

Rates & Dates Prices are per person and shown in USD.

TRIPLE SharedTWIN Semi-privateTWIN PrivateSUPERIOR PrivateSHACKLETON SUITE PrivateONE OCEAN SUITE Private
Nov 3, 2014 - Nov 21, 2014$11,995
$11,245
$13,695
$12,945
$15,495
$14,745
$16,295
$15,545
$17,195
$16,445
$19,495
$18,745
Dec 28, 2014 - Jan 15, 2015$13,895
 
$16,595
 
$18,295
 
$19,395
 
$20,095
 
$22,695
 
Feb 6, 2015 - Feb 24, 2015$13,895
 
$16,595
 
$18,295
 
$19,395
 
$20,095
 
$22,695
 
 

Itinerary

PLEASE NOTE: The November 21–December 10, 2014 cruise includes one extra day for a total of 19 nights.

Day 1: Ushuaia

Today is the first day of our adventure. As we board the vessel in Ushuaia, the world's southernmost city near the tip of Argentina, and start to become familiar with our "home" for the next 18 days we cannot help but wonder about the exciting journey ahead of us. In the early evening, we set sail and begin our voyage leaving behind Ushuaia and charting a course through the Beagle Channel.

Day 2: At Sea

Our guests have the chance to spend plenty of time with our onboard polar experts. They will be educating us as we go on the wonders of Antarctica. Sailing northeast, we will likely be joined by swooping seabirds including the wandering albatross, who we will come to know well on this journey.

Days 3–4: Falkland Islands

Arriving in the Falklands overnight, by morning we are all excited to make our first shore excursion. Our plan will be to explore the islands of the West Falkland Archipelago, home to a profusion of seabirds and migratory birds including the black-browed albatross. Our first penguin sightings will be on the island of West Point with its bustling rookeries of rockhoppers. On Carcass Island, we will observe nesting Magellanic penguins along with oystercatchers, geese and the flightless steamer duck who is a permanent Falkland resident. The next day we will make a stop in Stanley, the capital of the Falkland Islands. As we wander through the charming streets of brightly painted houses, we will learn how this quiet harbour was once a major port in the 19th century for ships attempting to round the formidable waters of Cape Horn. We will also make a stop in Stanley's famed philatelic museum with its impressive collection of historic stamps.

Days 5–6: At Sea

Now we sail southeast bound for the island of South Georgia. These days at sea are never dull. Much of our time is spent scanning the horizon in search of whales and other marine mammals as well as seabirds. Our friendly onboard experts continue to fill minds with heroic stories of some of the earliest daredevils to explore Antarctica. We will also learn about Polar conservation—a theme particularly close to the hearts of our One Ocean Expeditions' guides and crew. The anticipation grows particularly as we cross the Antarctic Convergence and notice a dramatic drop in temperature.

Days 7–9: South Georgia

Majestic snow-covered mountains greet us on the island of South Georgia—the most rugged island in this region. We will cruise the protected waters of the eastern coast looking for suitable landing spots such as Salisbury Plain and St Andrews Bay. The highlight of both these excursions is the mind-boggling abundance of king penguin adults and young that live in these locations by the hundreds of thousands, covering every inch of the shore. That is not the only wildlife on display. Fur seals can be seen poking their heads above the water, skuas and giant petrels swoop in the skies above, and the albatross our constant companion is never far away. We hope to explore an old whaling station at Grytviken (Greet-vik-in) and visit the grave of the most famous Antarctic explorer, Sir Ernest Shackleton.

Days 10–12: Sea and South Orkneys

As we cross the Scotia Sea, sailing ever closer to Antarctica, we hope to visit the South Orkney Islands. Linked to the Antarctic Peninsula by an enormous sub-marine mountain range these islands, often shrouded in mist, are protected by large icebergs and sea ice. If we are lucky, there will be an excursion to Coronation Island to observe penguins nesting in moss beds alongside graceful snow petrels. We may also stop at the remote island of Laurie and visit the Argentinean meteorological station located there.

Days 13–16: South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Mainland

Elephant Island, en route to the South Shetland Islands, will be our next destination if conditions are suitable. Here, we will learn more about the famous Antarctic adventures of Sir Ernest Shackleton. This island was a place of refuge in 1916 for Shackleton and his crew after his ship was destroyed by pack ice in the Weddell Sea.

Next, we will spend some time cruising among the South Shetland Islands just off the Antarctic Peninsula. Dazzling wildlife sightings await us on our excursions to some of these islands including King George, Half Moon, Barrientos or Livingston. Adélie, chinstrap and gentoo penguins thrive here, as do several species of seal. We even hope to see the gentle humpback whale dining on krill off King George Island.

Weather permitting, we will visit the flooded volcanic caldera of Deception Island. With rugged scenery, great sites of geologic interest and an overwhelming display of whaling and scientific exploration history, Deception Island is a perfect museum of natural and exploration history. For those wanting to stretch their legs, a spectacular hike to the crater rim offers a challenge. Finally, after so much anticipation, we will arrive at the Antarctic mainland in Paradise Harbour or Hope Bay. The scenery here from the colossal icebergs to the seemingly endless Antarctic ice sheet is truly breathtaking. Weather permitting, we hope to undertake a shore excursion and set foot on the White Continent itself.

Day 17–18: Drake Passage

As we leave this magical place and make our way back, heading again across the Antarctic Convergence and the Drake Passage before rounding Cape Horn, we have no doubt that time will be spent sharing and reflecting on the wonderful experiences of the last few days. Sailing up the Beagle Channel, we celebrate the conclusion of our Polar expedition at a special dinner.

Day 19: Ushuaia

In the early morning, we will arrive back in Ushuaia. It is time to say farewell to your crew and fellow travelers. Guests will be transported to their hotels or to the airport for return flights home.

Included

  • Voyage as outlined in the itinerary
  • All meals during the voyage
  • All Zodiac excursions
  • Extensive program of educational presentations from experienced team of naturalists
  • On board welcome reception and dinner and farewell dinner
  • Afternoon tea with fresh snacks each afternoon
  • Coffee, tea, hot chocolate throughout the day
  • Onboard medical officer
  • Access to our special programs on board (such as hiking, photography)
  • Overnight camping—please note that this activity is free of charge, we provide all the necessary equipment and gear and you can decide once on board if you wish to participate – no pre booking required. Camping is only available on some departures
  • Rubber boots are available in many sizes as are rain jackets and bib pants
  • Use of multimedia station. We have a multimedia room where you can download your photos at the end of the day if you wish
  • Foul weather gear set—rain jacket, bib pants and Lacrosse gumboots (wellington boots) Or SeaLine water proof backpack, Bushnell waterproof binoculars and Lacrosse gumboots (wellington boots) (Carrying Wellington boots in your luggage can add to weight limit imposed by the airlines
  • Transfers from the meeting point in Ushuaia to the pier to board the ship on Day 1 and transfers from the pier to the meeting point or airport on the last day of the cruise

Adventure Options

  • Camping: Free
  • Sea Kayaking: $795 per person
  • PLEASE NOTE: Kayaking must be pre-booked and paid for before departure. Space is limited and prior experience may be required.

Highlights

  • Visit three diverse and spectacular biomes including the temperate Falkland Islands, sub–Antarctic South Georgia and the frozen Antarctic continent
  • Encounter hundreds of thousands of stately king penguins on the beaches of incomparable South Georgia
  • Experience abundant wildlife including seabirds, seals and even some of the great whales at close range
  • Explore the spectacular Antarctic wilderness in a casual atmosphere of like–minded travelers
  • Cruise in comfort along towering icebergs, serrated maritime mountains and luminous glaciers
  • Zodiac landing craft allow visitation on remote shorelines and otherwise inaccessible areas
  • The ship's "open bridge policy" allows observation of its sophisticated navigation equipment and provides an excellent location to view wildlife the landscape (subject to weather and critical navigation maneuvers)
  • Expert lecturers and naturalist guides

 

PLEASE NOTE: Due to the nature of expedition cruising, itineraries are subject to change due to weather, ice conditions, natural and cultural events, wildlife viewing opportunities and other logistical considerations. In general, a ship's crew will endeavor to complete the itinerary provided, but the ultimate decision lies with the ship's captain and expedition leaders.

 
 
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