Small Group Safari

Extraordinary Antarctica

Explore the earth’s last great wilderness on your extraordinary journey to the Antarctic Peninsula and the icy Weddell Sea. You’ll take home incredible stories, photographs and memories, and with a little bit of luck, you can say you’ve crossed the Antarctic Circle. Search for wildlife and admire huge tabular icebergs from your zodiac or hike up the summit of Danco Island to take in the stunning 360-degree views.

Duration 22 days
Price From $15,344
When Jan - Feb 2019
Destination Antarctica

Safari Overview

Virtually uninhabited and scarcely touched by humans, Antarctica is a land of extremes. This remote continent is the coldest, driest and most magical place on earth. Heading south from the Falkland Islands, you’ll feel the noticeable drop in temperature as you cross the Antarctic Convergence halfway across the notoriously rough Drake Passage. Prepare yourself for an extraordinary adventure with plenty of wildlife sightings and exhilarating activities. Be one of only a few that, with a bit of luck, can say you’ve crossed the Antarctic Circle. Spend your days hiking on the ice, learn about the history of the legendary Antarctic explorers or watch in wonder as penguins splash into the water.

What makes this trip extraordinary?

  • Travel further than most visitors to Antarctica as you explore the Falkland Islands, the Antarctic Peninsula, the Antarctic Circle and the Weddell Sea.
  • Take in the views and the absolute silence of the wildest continent on earth.
  • Watch abundant wildlife and experience penguin colonies with up to 100,000 penguins.
  • Be one of the few people to cross the Antarctic Circle.
  • Witness the vast sweep of the Antarctic icecap as you sail into the remote Weddell Sea.

The unimaginable beauty of this white desert will take your breath away.

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Day by day

Day 1

Puntas Arenas - Falkland Islands

From the Patagonian city of Punta Arenas in Chile, you’ll take a 90-minute flight to the Falkland Islands in the South Atlantic, where you’ll land in Stanley, the islands’ capital. This charming and colourful seaside town still boasts many signs of its British heritage. You’ll have time to explore the town on foot before boarding your expedition vessel and setting course for Antarctica. Excitement is in the air as you leave the Falklands behind for this once-in-a-lifetime experience!

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe D

Days 2-3

Drake Passage

Spend two days at sea as you cross the infamous Drake Passage on your way to King George Island and the Antarctic Peninsula. This stretch of the South Atlantic Ocean is rich in wildlife and hundreds of seabirds, including the wandering albatross which will follow the ship as you sail south. Don’t forget your camera and binoculars - there will be plenty of opportunities for you to practice your photography skills. If you’re lucky you may even get some great whale and dolphin shots. Your onboard experts will educate you with a series of presentations about the wildlife, history and environments that you will experience in the coming days. This is a perfect time to get to know your fellow passengers or spend time on the bridge to learn more about the ship.

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe B, L, D

Days 4-5

KING GEORGE ISLAND & ANTARCTIC PENINSULA

Your ship is positioned on the northern tip of King George Island as you wake up in the morning. It is hard to describe the feeling you get when you first look out the window and see this magical place. Take in this moment and think about how you will describe it to your friends and family at home. After breakfast you’ll explore the northern tip of King George Island in a zodiac, an inflatable boat. Take in the spectacular views of icebergs in the evening light as you continue your journey south. By the next morning (weather permitting) you’ll explore Wilhelmina Bay, also dubbed “Whale-mina Bay” for its large numbers of humpback whales.

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe B, L, D

Days 6-8

Antarctic Circle

Today you make your way to the ultimate objective, the Antarctic Circle! Be one of few to cross this off your bucket list. A possible landing site for this day is Detaille Island in the Crystal Sound, where you can visit an abandoned British research station. This vicinity marks your ship's turnaround, and heading north again you’ll continue to explore the Antarctic Peninsula with potential stops on Winter Island, Petermann Island, the Lemaire Channel and more.

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe B, L, D

Days 9-10

Antarctica

Paradise Harbour gives you the opportunity to step foot on the continent of Antarctica for the first time. Your day in Neko Island, named for the Norwegian whaling ship that operated here between 1911 and 1924, gives you a real taste of the wonders of Antarctica. Gentoo penguins, leopard seals and minke whales are frequently seen in the area, and with a little luck they will put on a spectacular show for you. The next morning you’ll arrive at Deception Island to explore this dramatic volcanic caldera and learn about Sir Hubert Wilkins, who made the very first flight to the island in 1928.

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe B, L, D

Day 11

KING GEORGE ISLAND

On this day you’ll arrive back at King George Island, where you will say goodbye to many of your fellow travellers as they disembark the ship and board their flight back to South America. Later in the day new guests are welcomed aboard the ship and you are ready for the second leg of your extraordinary journey. Relax on the ship or go ashore to explore the local area as you wait for the new passengers to arrive.

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe B, L, D

Days 12-14

Antarctic Peninsula

The weather will continue to determine your route as you sail back into the Antarctic Peninsula and the Gerlache coastline. This huge ‘playground’ offers a great variety of landing sites such as Port Charcot, Orne Harbour and Danco Island. Hiking up the summit of Danco Island will reward you with stunning 360-degree views of the surrounding area.

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe B, L, D

Day 15

ANTARCTIC SOUND - WEDDELL SEA

On this day you set course for Antarctic Sound, the gateway to the icy Weddell Sea, sailing past the South Shetland Islands. It won’t be your first time cruising these waters, but there is still a lot to see! A sizable chinstrap penguin rookery on Half Moon Island or the Weddell seals at Yankee Harbour are only two examples of the wonderful wildlife that call this area home. If the weather permits, you’ll get another chance to visit Deception Island, with the novel opportunity of taking a warm bath by digging into the beaches' black sand, heated underneath by thermal activity.

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe B, L, D

Days 16-17

WEDDELL SEA

When you sail into the Antarctic Sound you can see the Antarctic icecap for the first time. This is a breathtaking sight! The region is home to impressive Adélie penguin rookeries, some containing more than 100,000 individuals. Sailing through the Weddell Sea, you’ll start to notice a huge increase in tabular icebergs and sea ice. You can get a greater appreciation for the true size of these icebergs by cruising around them in your zodiac. You’ll also get the chance to explore historic remnants from pioneering expeditions in the area.

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe B, L, D

Day 18

ELEPHANT ISLAND

Today you’ll leave the Weddell Sea behind and start your journey north to Elephant Island. Point Wild on the island’s north coast will be your likely landing point, depending on weather conditions. The point has an important historic connection, as this is where Sir Ernest Shackleton and his men camped for four months under upturned lifeboats after their ship, the HMS Endurance, was crushed by ice in the Weddell Sea in 1916. Learn more about the history as you explore the area of Elephant Island.

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe B, L, D

Days 19-21

SOUTHERN OCEAN

Enjoy the final days of your extraordinary journey at sea as the ship sets course toward the Falkland Islands. Your experienced expedition staff will recap the incredible adventures you’ve had so far, and you’ll be able to share your favourite moments with fellow passengers. The spectacular seabirds will once again follow you on your journey, providing you with excellent photo opportunities. Arriving into the Falkland Islands overnight, you’ll have time to explore the West Falkland archipelago after breakfast. 80% of the black-browed albatross population nest on West Point Island, which is also home to charismatic rockhopper penguins.

Overnight: Akademik Ioffe B, L, D

Day 22

Falkland Islands - Chile

In the early morning your ship will be navigated into the port in Stanley. After your last breakfast onboard you’ll have time to explore the historic town before making your way to the airport for your return flight to Puntas Arenas, Chile. Your extraordinary voyage is now over, but the memories you’ve made will last a lifetime!

Trip Details

Dates and Prices

This is a small group departure leaving on set dates.

2019 Departure  Ship Price
Jan 12 - Feb 2           Akademik Ioffe          
From £11,895 per person

Note that prices exclude international flights.

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