Falkland Islands, South Georgia and Antarctica

Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia & the Falkland Islands

Starting from $16,995

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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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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 $16,995

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

Main Deck TripleTwin Semi PrivateTwin PrivateSuperior CabinShackleton SuiteOne Ocean Suite
Dec 28, 2019 - Jan 13, 2020$16,995
$16,195
$19,395
$18,595
$21,495
$20,695
$22,895
$22,095
$24,795
$23,995
$26,695
$25,895

Itinerary

Day 1: Punta Arenas (Chile) – Falkland Islands

Our journey commences this morning in the southern Chilean city of Punta Arenas. We meet at a central location before transferring to the airport for our scheduled flight to Stanley in the Falkland Islands. (This flight is included in the price of your voyage). After a short 90-minute journey we are met on arrival and transferred to the pier. Stanley is currently home to just over 2,000 residents and is reminiscent of a rural town in coastal Britain. It is charming with brightly colored houses, pretty flower-filled gardens, a quaint cathedral and several local pubs. There is time to explore the town before ship embarkation. 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, dinner and cast off for the adventure of a lifetime.

Day 2: Sea Lion Island and Bleaker Island

Overnight we have navigated down the eastern coast of 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. Weather permitting, we may have time to visit neighboring Bleaker Island - another settlement on the exposed southeastern coast of the Falklands - equally rich in wildlife.

Days 3-4: At Sea – Towards South Georgia

We chart a southeasterly course bound for South Georgia. The seabirds once again join us in the Southern Ocean. Our educational presentations continue and are always popular. History is a key theme of this voyage and the epic story of Sir Ernest Shackleton and the HMS Endurance expedition is central to any trip to South Georgia. Perhaps you will pick up some valuable tips from our onboard photographic guide, learning about image composition, the subtle polar light and all the basics of good camera craft. We will also learn about Polar conservation - a theme particularly close to the hearts of our guides and crew.

Days 5-8: Exploration of South Georgia

South Georgia has often been called the ‘Serengeti of the Southern Ocean’ – and as we approach the deep bays of this rugged, rocky outcrop, you will begin to see why. Launching the Zodiacs we begin our exploration of the island, in the vicinity of Elsehul Bay. Large numbers of fur seals and the much larger elephant seal will line the dark sand beaches. Living in the tussock grass, king penguins and their chicks may number up to 100,000 birds in some locations, including Salisbury Plain, St Andrews Bay and Gold Harbour. The island is also home to large numbers of nesting albatross as they fill the skies above, coming and going from the nest. South Georgia is a thrilling location for history lovers and the rusting relics of the early whaling industry are all around us. We hope to observe several of the old stations at locations including Leith, Husvik and Stromness. A highlight is a visit to Grytviken – the largest of the whaling stations, situated at the head of Cumberland Bay. It is here we visit the gravesite of Sir Ernest Shackleton. For many, being in the presence of the great explorer will be a highlight of the trip. An excellent museum at Grytviken, maintained by the South Georgia Heritage Trust and the restored church built by the original Norwegian whalers provides a fascinating glimpse into the past.

Days 9-11: At Sea – Towards Antarctica

Weather and ice will dictate our crossing of the Scotia Sea from South Georgia to Antarctica. As with all of our itinerary planning, our Expedition Leader and Captain will make a decision based on the sea and ice conditions at the time. The South Orkney Island group represent the peaks of a submarine mountain range called the Scotia Arc, connecting South Georgia to the South Shetland Islands. Often shrouded in fog and surrounded by ice much of the year, a chance to visit these islands doesn’t come often. As we edge ever closer to the frozen continent, large icebergs announce our arrival in Antarctic waters. If conditions allow, we hope to see the dark cliffs of Elephant Island appear on the horizon. Shackleton and his men were encamped here for many months, having lost HMS Endurance in the thick sea ice, far to the south in the Weddell Sea in 1915. From the tiny beach at Point Wild, Shackleton and six companions set off on the rescue mission to South Georgia, aboard the tiny lifeboat, James Caird. To this day, the epic ocean crossing is considered one of the greatest in history. If conditions allow, we will attempt a landing at Point Wild on Elephant Island.

Days 12-16: South Shetland Islands and Antarctica Peninsula

Around 60 miles off the coast of the Antarctic mainland we find the South Shetland Island chain. Possible landing sites could include King George Island, Half Moon Island or Yankee Harbor. Weather conditions permitting we sail the ship into the flooded volcanic caldera of Deception Island. There are some outstanding hikes at these locations and the old whaling station and aircraft hangar at Deception Island beg for further exploration. After so much anticipation, we enter the icy waters of the Antarctic Peninsula in the vicinity of Mikkelson Harbor or Cierva Cove. Snow covered mountains soar from the dark waters. Along the shoreline in the bays and harbors of the Peninsula lives an incredible abundance of wildlife. Large rookeries are home to chinstrap, Gentoo and Adelie penguins. Seals live on the ice floes, including the powerful leopard seal that we hope to encounter. Gulls, skuas and cormorants are also found nesting and feeding at many sites along the Antarctic Peninsula. We explore by Zodiac boat and on shore where a range of exciting activities await. Locations we hope to visit include Wilhelmina Bay, Orne Harbor, Cuverville Island and the Errera Channel. Join the photographic guide taking pictures of stunning icebergs. Or enjoy a hike to the top of a snowy mountain saddle with one of our adventure guides. If the opportunity presents itself, visit a science base or an old historic hut. The sea kayakers may paddle up to several miles from the ship, offering a truly memorable experience. As our voyage comes to an end we chart a course for King George Island. Tonight we celebrate our voyage with a special dinner attended by the Captain of the ship.

Day 17: King George Island (Antarctica) – Return to South America, overnight in Punta Arenas

This morning we say goodbye to our expedition team and transfer ashore by Zodiac. We walk from the shore landing site past the Chilean research station and up towards the airstrip where we board our special charter flight. This flight takes a little over two hours and is included in the price of your voyage. Upon arrival in Punta Arenas, a transfer from the airport into town is provided.

IMPORTANT NOTE: This itinerary includes a complimentary post-voyage hotel night in Punta Arenas for all guests returning from voyages that conclude at King George Island. This evening is at your leisure. Punta Arenas is home to some cozy restaurants, cafes and bars – including the historic ‘Shackleton Bar’ at the Hotel Jose Nogueira – a fitting location to reflect on your journey to Antarctica.

Day 18: Punta Arenas – Depart

After breakfast and check-out, make your own way to the airport for your onward journey. (We recommend you book flights after midday). Otherwise, why not continue your exploration of Patagonia. Just a few hours north, lies the celebrated Torres del Paine National Park – home to towering peaks, glaciers and spectacular wilderness - a paradise for hikers and nature lovers.

Akademik Vavilov

Akademik Vavilov

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 from central meeting point in Punta Arenas to the airport (Day 1) and from the airport to a downtown hotel on arrival back from Stanley (Day 17)
  • Charter flight from Punta Arenas (Chile) to King George Island (Antarctica). Scheduled flight from Stanley (Falkland Islands) back to Punta Arenas
  • Shipboard accommodation in your selected cabin category with daily housekeeping. Cabins feature outside views with windows or portholes that open on each deck
  • 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 well-stocked polar reference library
  • End of voyage video, photos and take-home USB
  • Port fees and all permits to access visited areas

Adventure Options

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