Antarctic Peninsula Including South Shetland Islands Adventure Cruise

   
 

Antarctic Peninsula Including South Shetland Islands Adventure Cruise

BY ADVENTURESMITH EXPLORATIONS

UPDATED

3 months ago

DURATION

10 Days

SEASON

Nov 18 - Nov 27, 2016 & Dec 07 - Dec 16, 2016

RATES

USD 6,500.00 per person

EXPIRES

Dec 05, 2016
Antarctic Peninsula Including South Shetland Islands Adventure Cruise
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DESCRIPTION

This Antarctic Peninsula Cruise includes landings on the Antarctic Peninsula as well as the South Shetland Islands, the 335-mile-long chain of islands located about 500 miles from Tierra del Fuego and about 75 miles from the Antarctic Peninsula. This volcanic archipelago consists of 11 major islands and numerous smaller ones. Visit Deception Island and Half Moon Island, among other key sites in this 80% glaciated archipelago, to scout out penguins, sea birds and seals. On board the 114-passenger M/V Plancius or 116-guest M/V Ortelius, you will share the experience with other adventurous voyagers to the final frontier, Antarctica.

ADDITION RATE INFORMATION

From: $6500 per person. Rates vary by season and cabin. Please see website for full details on rates.

ITINERARY

Day 1: Ushuaia, Argentina
Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

In the afternoon, embark in Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, the southernmost city in the world located at the Beagle Channel, and sail through this scenic waterway for the rest of the evening.

ACCOMMODATIONS: Plancius or Ortelius

MEALS: dinner

Days 2-3: The Drake Passage
Drake Passage, Antarctica

During these two days you will sail across the Drake Passage. This famous passage is notorious for its high winds and rolling seas. Crossing it is as much a part of the Antarctic experience as penguins and krill. All the great explorers have braved the Drake Passage.

After crossing the Antarctic Convergence, arrive in the circum-Antarctic up-welling zone. This area is home to varieties of albatrosses, cape pigeons, southern fulmars, and petrels. Near the South Shetland Islands, glimpse our first icebergs. If the winds are favorable we might do our first landing in Antarctic waters in the evening of the third day at Aitcho Island or Penguin Island at the South Shetlands. These volcanic islands are windswept and often shrouded in mist and fog, but do offer subtle pleasures. There is a nice variety of flora (mosses, lichens and flowering grasses) and fauna, such as gentoo penguins, chinstrap penguins and southern giant petrels.

ACCOMMODATIONS: Plancius or Ortelius

MEALS: breakfast, lunch and dinner

Days 4-7: Antarctic Peninsula & South Shetland Islands
Antarctic Peninsula, Antarctica

Sail directly to “High Antarctica”, passing the Melchior islands and the Schollaert Channel between Brabant and Anvers Island. On Cuverville Island, a small precipitous island, nestled between the mountains of the Antarctic Peninsula and Danco Island, will be a large colony of Gentoo Penguins and breeding pairs of Brown Skuas. If landing on Danco Island, observe Chinstrap Penguins and possibly Weddell and Crabeater Seals. In Neko Harbour there is the opportunity to set foot on the Antarctic Continent in a magnificent landscape of huge glaciers calving at sea level. Enjoy the landscape surrounded by alpine peaks during zodiac cruises. In Paradise Bay again with its myriad icebergs and deep cut fjords, there is the opportunity to set foot on the Antarctic Continent again. Enjoy the opportunity for zodiac cruising between the icebergs in the inner parts of the fjords. In this area there are good chances to see Humpback Whales and Minke Whales.

Sail through the spectacular Lemaire Channel to Pleneau and Petermann Island to find Adelie Penguins and Blue-eyed Shags. In this area there are good chances to encounter Humpback Whales, Minke Whales and Fin Whales. A visit to one of the scientific stations in Antarctica will give you an insight about the life of modern Antarcticans working on the White Continent. Further south we may visit the Ukrainian Vernadsky Station, for a warm welcome from the station crew. Sailing north through Neumayer Channel, hopefully permission is granted to visit the British research station and post office Port Lockroy on Goudier Island. Close to Port Lockroy there may be a landing on Jougla Point with Gentoo Penguins and Imperial Shags.

Heading North through the Gerlache Strait, arrive at the South Shetland Islands. Sail to Deception Island which is a sub-ducted crater, which opens into the sea, creating a natural harbor for the ship. Here we find hot springs, an abandoned whaling station, thousands of Cape Pigeons and many Dominican Gulls, Brown and South Polar Skuas and Antarctic Terns. Wilson’s Storm Petrels and Black-bellied Storm Petrels nest in the ruins of the whaling station in Whalers Bay. The ship braves its entrance into the crater through the spectacular Neptune’s Bellow into the ring of Deception Island. Enjoy the opportunity for a long walk and kayak trip which will depend on site availability and weather conditions.

Leave from here and sail to Half Moon Island, to find a variety of Chinstrap Penguins. Seals often haul out on the beach. These volcanic islands of the South Shetlands are windswept and often shrouded in mist and fog, but do offer subtle pleasures. There is a nice variety of flora (mosses, lichens and flowering grasses) and fauna, such as Gentoo Penguins, Chinstrap Penguins and Southern Giant Petrels. The voyage continues through a narrow Strait to the open sea with direction Ushuaia.

ACCOMMODATIONS: Plancius or Ortelius

MEALS: breakfast, lunch and dinner

Days 8-9: The Drake Passage
Drake Passage, Antarctica

The journey continues back across the Drake with time to reflect on what we have experienced, looking through photos and talking with the naturalists about all the wildlife and history of Antarctica.

ACCOMMODATIONS: Plancius or Ortelius

MEALS: breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 10: Ushuaia, Argentina
Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

Arrive in the morning in Ushuaia and disembark after breakfast. Transfer to airport for flights returning home or trip extension.

ACCOMMODATIONS: n/a

MEALS: breakfast

Other Locations Visited:
South Shetland Islands, Antarctica

WHAT'S INCLUDED

  • All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including snacks, coffee and tea
  • Free use of rubber boots and snowshoes
  • Pre-scheduled group transfer from the vessel to the airport in Ushuaia (directly after disembarkation)
  • All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac
  • Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff
  • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program
  • Comprehensive pre-departure material

NOTES

Read this itinerary as a guide only; exact route and program varies according to ice and weather conditions - and the wildlife encountered. Flexibility is the key to the success of this expedition. Visits to research stations depend on final permission.

Activities: Daily excursions from the boat will be made in zodiacs. Hiking time for most landings will be a couple of hours roundtrip with lots of time to stop to study, photograph and enjoy the flora and fauna. Snowshoes are free of charge. Various add-on activities are available on the Antarctic Peninsula Including South Shetland Islands Cruise, depending on departure date/season. For the 2015/16 and 2016/17 seasons, the following may be available: camping $180pp (max 30 campers), scuba diving $530pp (max 24 divers), kayaking $465pp (max 14 kayakers). Contact AdventureSmith Explorations to for details on which activities are available on your specific departure date.


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Related Categories
Adventure Cruises
Antarctic Peninsula Adventure Cruises
Antarctica Adventure Cruises
Argentina Adventure Cruises
Drake Passage Adventure Cruises
South Shetland Islands Adventure Cruises
Tierra del Fuego Adventure Cruises
Ushuaia Adventure Cruises

Polar Expeditions
Antarctic Peninsula Polar Expeditions
Antarctica Polar Expeditions
Argentina Polar Expeditions
Drake Passage Polar Expeditions
South Shetland Islands Polar Expeditions
Tierra del Fuego Polar Expeditions
Ushuaia Polar Expeditions

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