Enjoy the ultimate White Christmas on the 7th continent! Cross the infamous Drake Passage and cruise to the South Shetlands. Cross to the stunning Antarctic Peninsula where coves, icebergs and ice floes compete for your attention with numerous seals, birds and whales. The stunning scenery includes historic sites to visit, and multitudes of animated penguins to watch.
Enjoy a hearty, late afternoon welcome in Ushuaia from our friendly staff and Russian crew. You have time to settle into your cabin and explore the ship before our evening departure. Excitement lifts as we set sail down the Beagle Channel, keeping watch for Magellanic penguins, dolphins and albatross.
Our Drake Passage crossing offers excellent bird watching from the outer decks or the warmth of the bridge. Learn about Antarctica from our naturalist’s informative talks, and about safety and environmental guidelines from expedition staff. We have time to meet fellow travelers, chat, read and prepare for the days ahead. Keen eyes watch for icebergs, while king cormorants fly by, and the appearance of penguins and fur seals around us heralds our approach to the South Shetlands.
An overnight passage along Gerlache Strait delivers us to the stunning Antarctic Peninsula, an ethereal wonderland of vast proportions. Aboard robust Zodiacs, we explore penguin rookeries, historic sites and scientific stations. We celebrate our Christmas enthusiastically; the atmosphere among fellow expeditioners is like that of an extended family.
Zodiac cruising brings us close to intricately shaped icebergs and seals basking on ice floes whilst our kayakers glide into secluded bays. We focus on immersing ourselves in nature, even camping out one night if conditions allow. Thanks to the small number of expeditioners on our voyage, spontaneity and flexibility enhance our enjoyment. After all, bubble netting humpbacks demand a wakeup call, even at midnight!
We arrive at mountainous King George Island, the largest of the South Shetland Islands. Time and weather permitting, we explore Fildes Bay and visit the Russian Orthodox Trinity Church at Bellingshausen Station, before catching our charter flight back to Punta Arenas in Chile and being transferred to our overnight accommodation.
After breakfast, we bid farewell to fellow expeditioners before continuing on with your own arrangements.
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.