Antarctica, South Georgia and the Falkland Islands

Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia & the Falkland Islands

Starting from $15,095

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This is one of our most far-reaching polar expedition and includes visits to three different locations. The sub-Antarctic Falkland Islands and the island of South Georgia are home to a proliferation of unique wildlife and birdlife. There are penguin rookeries, beaches covered in fur seals and elephant seals and seabirds, including many of the albatross species. Both locations feature a fascinating history and stunning scenery.

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Special Offer

Save $1,200 on all cabin categories when you book before May 31st, 2019! Offer also includes a pre-voyage hotel stay in departure city!

• 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 $15,095

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

TripleTwin PrivateSuperiorSuperior PlusShackleton SuiteOne Ocean Suite
Oct 20, 2019 - Nov 7, 2019$15,095
$13,895
$19,795
$18,595
$20,895
$19,695
$21,395
$20,195
$22,995
$21,795
$25,195
$23,995

Itinerary

Day 1: Punta Arenas (Chile)

Our journey commences in the southern Chilean port city of Punta Arenas. We gather at a central meeting point and transfer to the wharf where we embark our expedition ship. After settling into our cabins and exploring the ship, we meet the expedition team and fellow passengers. Excitement is in the air and we enjoy a welcome cocktail and dinner. We chart a course through the Straits of Magellan and are on our way, bound for Antarctica – and what promises to be an incredible adventure.

Days 2-4: At Sea – Towards 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 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 encounter more icebergs and anticipate our first whale sightings.

Days 4-6: South Shetland Islands and Antarctica Peninsula

Excitement is in the air as the magnificent snowy peaks of the South Shetland Islands are laid out before us. Depending on ice and weather conditions, we enter the South Shetlands via the McFarlane Strait, with an objective of Half Moon Island, or nearby Yankee Harbor. Arriving on shore, a sizeable rookery of chinstrap penguins act as a very noisy welcoming committee and we hope to observe our first substantial elephant seal colony here. There are some good hiking options along the rocky beach to a high point. Otherwise, observe the chinstraps at close proximity as they establish their nests. Overnight we cross the Bransfield Strait and are now along the coastline of continental Antarctica. Our itinerary is deliberately flexible to account for early season ice conditions, and to take advantage of optimal snow conditions at several of our favorite landing sites. Our planned exploration starts in the vicinity of Mikkelson Harbor and neighboring Cierva Cove – both beautiful locations and the perfect introduction to Antarctica. Both spots provide excellent Zodiac cruising and it is fascinating to observe the very beginning of the penguin breeding cycle and the courtship rituals that take place. We keep our eyes out for the powerful leopard seal, which we frequently find hauled out on the ice floes around here. We continue our journey and are now on our way to Antarctic Sound - the gateway into the icy Weddell Sea. Depending on the seasonal ice conditions, we visit a number of outstanding locations on the way into the Weddell. Our plan is to 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. The Aitcho Islands provide some great hiking routes 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 possible location for a visit.

Days 7-8: Antarctic Sound, Weddell Sea and Elephant Island

Our next objective is to enter the icy Weddell Sea, through the broad channel that separates the continent of Antarctica from Joinville Island. At first, we are awe-struck by the sheer size of the tabular icebergs in this area and their presence always makes for exciting navigation on the ship. This region is also home to some of the largest Adelie penguin rookeries found in Antarctica. After several busy days of exploration along the Antarctic Peninsula, South Shetlands and Antarctic Sound, we head for Elephant Island – a location forever connected to the story of Sir Ernest Shackleton and the HMS Endurance expedition a century ago. On the windswept north coast, exposed to the swells of the South Atlantic is Point Wild. It was here that Shackleton and his exhausted men camped under their upturned boats more than a century ago – pondering their chances of survival. Shore landings here are often notoriously tricky due to strong winds and pounding surf on the rocky beach. This is a thrilling location for anyone with a passion for polar history.

Days 9-11: Scotia Sea – Towards South Georgia

As we depart Elephant Island we cannot help but ponder the journey made by Shackleton and his four companions – as they attempted the near impossible – navigating 800 nautical miles in a 30 foot converted lifeboat across the tempestuous Scotia Sea to South Georgia. We make a much easier time of the crossing in our modern expedition ship. Onboard experts keep us busy with fascinating presentations and lead lively discussions throughout the day. The great pelagic seabirds are sure to keep us company – and we anticipate excellent sightings of albatross and giant petrels soaring on the winds of the South Atlantic Ocean. Anticipation builds as the mountainous peaks appear on the horizon, marking our arrival at South Georgia.

Days 12-14: Exploration of South Georgia

We spend the next three days exploring the coastline of South Georgia. Dark sand beaches, tussock covered hinterland and a backdrop of towering peaks and glaciers are a feast for all the senses. South Georgia has often been called the greatest wildlife show on Earth. Seals cover the beaches, seabirds fill the skies and living in rookeries of immense sizes are the majestic king penguins. Our aim is to visit a number of these vast colonies – where naturalists estimate that more than 100,000 adult and juvenile penguins live in close proximity. Locations could include Gold Harbor, Royal Bay, St Andrews Bay and Salisbury Plain. Dotted along the coastline are the rusting relics of the early whaling era. The largest of these locations is Grytviken. Here we find a fascinating museum and a beautifully restored Norwegian Lutheran Church. Adjacent to the old whaling station lies a small cemetery. This is the final resting place of Sir Ernest Shackleton – who was laid to rest here in 1922. For many onboard, being in the presence of the great polar explorer is a highlight of the trip. We continue our journey along the coastline, hoping to visit Stromness – another former whaling station – and the final destination of Shackleton and companions Frank Worsley and Tom Crean, having made the near impossible traverse across the interior of South Georgia against all odds.

Days 15-17: At Sea – Towards the Falklands

By now we are in sensory overload, our cameras full of images and our journey towards the Falkland Islands commences. The spectacular seabirds, including several albatross and petrel species, are our constant companions soaring above the ship. The onboard educational program continues, and our experts recap our remarkable journey to date. These days provide a good opportunity to catch up on journal entries, sort through your images at the multimedia station and catch some rest after a busy two weeks of activity.

Day 18: Falkland Islands

We wake to the sight of landfall in the Falkland Islands. Approaching Sea Lion Island, we first note the very barren and windswept landscape, exposed to the prevailing weather that originates in the Drake Passage. We launch the Zodiacs and go ashore to view the incredible diversity of wildlife found at this location. Three species of penguin including gentoo, Magellanic and rockhopper, as well as southern elephant seals and South American sea lions, are known to inhabit the area. King cormorants and striated caracaras are just some of the bird species we expect to see. As we cruise along the coast of the Falklands, bound for Stanley, we enjoy a special dinner attended by the ship’s Captain.

Day 19: Arrive Stanley (Falkland Islands) – Voyage Concludes, Fly Back to Santiago

This morning we pass through ‘the Narrows’ and into the port of Stanley, the capital of the Falkland Islands. We say goodbye to our crew and after some free time to explore the town, make our way to the airport for our special charter flight to Santiago - Chile's stylish capital city. 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

  • Fantastic glaciated scenery of the Antarctic Peninsula and South Georgia
  • Outstanding wildlife observation on shore, Zodiac cruising and from the ship
  • Visits to historic sites and science stations
  • Learn about the environment, wildlife, history 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: $495 per person

Adventure Options

  • Kayaking: $795 per person
  • Camping: FREE (weather permitting)
 

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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