This journey will take you further south than any other time in the season. With weather permitting, the objective of this tour is to reach Detaille Island. Viewing expansive landscapes and sizable Adelie penguin rookeries along the way.

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Special Offer

Save $800 on all cabin categories when you book by January 31st, 2019!

• Cannot be combined with other offers
• Available on new bookings only
• TravelWild reserves the right to modify or discontinue this offer at any time and without prior notification

 

Starting from $13,695

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

TripleTwin PrivateSuperiorSuperior PlusShackleton SuiteOne Ocean Suite
Feb 14, 2020 - Feb 26, 2020$14,995
$14,195
$16,295
$15,495
$17,695
$16,895
$18,295
$17,495
$19,395
$18,595
$21,995
$21,195
Feb 26, 2020 - Mar 8, 2020$13,695
 
$14,995
 
$16,195
 
$16,695
 
$17,795
 
$20,195
 

Itinerary

Day 1: Santiago (Chile) to Stanley (Falkland Islands)

We depart Santiago this morning on our special charter flight direct to Stanley, the small capital of the Falkland Islands. We are met on arrival and transfer from the airport into town. There is time to explore the town or enjoy a guided visit to nearby Gypsy Cove which provides our first opportunity for observing the local wildlife, including nesting Magellanic penguins and other seabirds. Making our way to the port, we board our expedition ship, RCGS Resolute in the afternoon. After settling into our cabins and exploring the ship, we meet our expedition team and fellow passengers. Excitement is in the air as we enjoy a welcome cocktail and cast off to explore one of the most remote regions on Earth.

Days 2-3: At Sea – Towards Antarctica

We chart a southerly course for Antarctica. The Drake Passage is rich in bio-diversity and showcases a great abundance of wildlife. We will be joined by hundreds of seabirds including the wandering albatross. Giant petrels and smaller Cape petrels are also our constant companions as we make our way south. Photographing these magnificent birds takes patience and skill and our photography expert will be on hand to show you the best techniques. Join the ship’s Captain on the bridge and learn about the operations of our modern expedition vessel. Throughout the day our onboard experts educate us with a series of presentations about the environment, the wildlife and history of the locations we hope to visit in the coming days. As we approach the coastline of Antarctica, we start to encounter icebergs and anticipate our first whale sightings.

Days 4-5: South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula Exploration

We awaken today and the magnificent snowy peaks of Antarctica's fringing islands are laid out before us. Even our experienced expedition staff, some with more than 100 journeys south, will take a moment to pause and reflect on this incredible sight. Take a deep breath – you have arrived. This is Antarctica. The McFarlane Strait makes a natural entry point into the South Shetlands. There are several landing sites in the vicinity including Half Moon Island, or the broad pebbly beach at Yankee Harbor, where we sometimes encounter Weddell seals sunning themselves. In the afternoon, we cruise along the coast of Livingston Island, which on a sunny day is a memorable experience. If the weather conditions allow, we sail the ship into the flooded volcanic caldera at Deception Island. This is a very dramatic place and history is all around us as we explore the old whaling station, with the rusted old boilers and dilapidated wooden huts. At the far end of the beach is an old aircraft hangar. This is where Australian, Sir Hubert Wilkins, made the very first flight in Antarctica in 1928. There is also an outstanding hike, high up onto the rim of the crater. Overnight we have navigated across the Bransfield Strait and aim for the broad expanse of Wilhelmina Bay. This is a known whale 'hot-spot'. It's a rich feeding ground for humpback and minke whales and we hope to encounter these gentle giants from the ship or when cruising in the Zodiacs. This is a spectacular location, featuring sweeping views of the glaciers up to the mountainous ridge of the Antarctic peninsula. Nearby lies the Errera Channel - home to several exceptional sites, including Cuverville Island with its substantial gentoo penguin rookery, Ronge Island and the snow-capped dome of Danco Island. In the soft evening light, we commence our journey south, towards the Antarctic Circle.

Days 6-8: Antarctic Circle Crossing and Southern Gerlache Coastline

We have covered substantial distance overnight as we head south. Our objective is to cross the Antarctic Circle this afternoon, hoping for a shore landing at Detaille Island. An abandoned British science station - ‘Base W’ was established in the 1950s and is in a remarkable state of preservation. For the history buffs, this is a fascinating place providing a glimpse into the harsh life of early Antarctic visitors. We toast our success on crossing the Antarctic Circle turning our gaze northwards, viewing the spectacular chain of glacier-covered peaks stretching as far as the eye can see. This coastline begs further exploration, which is exactly what we plan to do. Heading north, the peaks of Mount Shackleton and Mount Scott loom on the horizon. These towering granite sentinels mark the southern entrance to the Lemaire Channel. Nearby Pleneau Island offers more opportunities for shore landings and observation of the gentoo penguins who nest here in large numbers. Just offshore, in the shallow waters of the Penola Strait, massive icebergs run aground. Constant wind and wave action sculpt these gargantuan chunks of ice into fantastic shapes, revealing more shades of blue than you could ever imagine. For many, a Zodiac cruise here will be a highlight of the voyage. If ice conditions permit, we aim to transit the Lemaire Channel on our way north towards Paradise Harbor, which provides a continental landing opportunity. There is a wonderful hike here, up to a high point which provides jaw-dropping views. Zodiac cruising in the glacial amphitheater of Skontorp Cove is also a possibility. We navigate north through the Gerlache Strait towards Spert Island - a little visited rocky outcrop with remarkable geology. The island is crisscrossed by narrow channels which make for fantastic Zodiac cruising and sea kayaking. The cliffs are home to numerous nesting bird species and we often encounter whales here. Nearby Mikkelson Harbor also allows for another off-ship excursion. After several busy days of exploration along the Peninsula, we head north, bound for the South Shetland Islands. This is an important whale migration corridor and we expect sightings of humpbacks or the resident pod of orca that inhabit this stretch of water.

Day 9: Aitcho Islands

The adventure is not over, and we plan visits to several additional landing sites in the South Shetlands including the Aitcho Islands. There are some great hiking routes here showcasing the colorful mosses and lichens found on the island. Gentoo and chinstrap penguins nest here and on the beaches, we usually encounter seals coming and going from the surrounding waters. Fort Point situated on Greenwich Island is another favored location for a visit. Eventually, we leave the snow-covered peaks behind us, pushing northwards on our return trip to the Falkland Islands.

Days 10-11: Drake Passage – Return to Stanley and the Falkland Islands

As we make our way back to Stanley and the Falkland Islands, the educational presentations continue, and we enjoy an entertaining and memorable voyage recap by our Expedition Leader. Join our photography experts in the multimedia room and download and back up your precious images. Approaching the coast of the southern Falkland Islands in the early evening light, we enjoy a special dinner attended by the Captain of the ship.

Day 12: Arrive Stanley (Falkland Islands) – Voyage Concludes – Fly Back to Santiago (Chile)

This morning we find ourselves back in the port of Stanley. We say goodbye to our crew and after some free time in town, make our way to the airport for our return charter flight to Santiago. On arrival in Santiago, our journey comes to an end. Onward regional and international flight connections may be possible this evening. Discuss the options with your booking agent. A transfer is provided to a downtown location for those choosing to stay and explore Santiago and the delights of Chile.

RCGS Resolute

RCGS Resolute

Deckplan & Cabin Photos

Highlights

  • Cross the Antarctic Circle while enjoying daily off -ship excursions
  • In-depth exploration of the Gerlache coastline and Antarctic Peninsula visiting historic sites and science stations
  • Observe penguins, seabirds, seals and whales and learn about the environment, wildlife and ecology from polar experts

Included

  • Comprehensive pre-voyage information package including details to help you prepare for your trip
  • Transfers to the ship on embarkation day and from the ship to the airport on disembarkation
  • Shipboard accommodation in your selected cabin category with daily housekeeping. Cabins feature outside views with windows or portholes
  • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board throughout your voyage with daily afternoon tea
  • 24-hour tea, coffee, hot chocolate in bar/lounge plus in-cabin tea and coffee making facilities
  • Experienced Expedition Leader and professional expedition team of marine biologists, naturalists, historians, adventure guides and photographers
  • Daily off-ship excursions by Zodiac boat breaking into small groups for shore landings
  • Guided hikes and walks on shore of various durations for guests of all abilities
  • Visits to wildlife colonies, historic sites, places of outstanding natural beauty and science stations
  • Educational presentations and talks by polar experts in their field (i.e. marine biologists, naturalists, historians etc). Onboard or on shore
  • Resident photography guide available to assist all guests plus access to computers in the multimedia lab for image downloads, file back up and management
  • An emergency-trained medical physician onboard every voyage
  • Dedicated hospitality team including Hotel Manager, four chefs, professional bar staff and Adventure Concierge staff
  • Onboard sauna, plunge pool, Jacuzzi and fitness center including massage options (charge applies for massage and treatments)
  • Access to a well-stocked library full of polar reference books
  • End of voyage video, photos and take-home USB
  • Port fees and all permits to access visited areas

NOT INCLUDED

  • Mandatory Flight Package: $995 per person

Adventure Options

  • Kayaking: $795 per person
  • Camping: Free
 

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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