Embark the cruise in the afternoon and meet your expedition and lecture staff. After you have settled into your cabins we sail along the famous Beagle Channel and the scenic Mackinlay Pass.
Named after the renowned explorer, Sir Francis Drake, who sailed these waters in 1578, the Drake Passage also marks the Antarctic Convergence, a biological barrier where cold polar water sinks beneath the warmer northern waters. This creates a great upwelling of nutrients, which sustains the biodiversity of this region. The Drake Passage also marks the northern limit of many Antarctic seabirds.
As we sail across the passage, we will be out with you on deck to help in the identification of an amazing variety of seabirds, including many albatrosses, which follow in our wake. You can join the crew on the bridge and learn about navigation, watch for whales, and enjoy the view. A full program of lectures will be offered as well.
The first sightings of icebergs and snow-capped mountains indicate that we have reached the South Shetland Islands, a group of twenty islands and islets. With favorable weather conditions the crew will accompany us ashore as you experience your first encounter with the penguins and seals.
The South Shetland Islands are a haven for wildlife. Vast penguin rookeries, beaches ruled by Antarctic fur seals and Southern elephant seals make every day spent in this amazing island group unforgettable. Sailing through the narrow passage into the flooded caldera of Deception Island is breathtaking.
King George Island, the largest of the South Shetland Islands, features colonies of nesting Adélie and Chinstrap Penguins, Kelp Gulls, Blue-eyed Cormorants, Antarctic Terns and Southern Giant Petrels and is home to scientific bases of many different countries. Macaroni, Chinstrap and Gentoo Penguins as well as elephant seals await you at Livingston Island.
The Antarctic Peninsula’s remarkable history will provide you with a type of excitement often only associated with the early explorers. You will have plenty of time to explore its amazing scenery, a pristine wilderness of snow, ice, mountains and waterways, and an incredible wide variety of wildlife. Apart from penguins and seabirds you are very likely to see Weddell, crabeater and leopard seals as well as Minke, killer (orca) and humpback whales at close range.
We hope to navigate some of the most beautiful waterways (depending on the ice conditions): the Gerlache Strait, Neumayer Channel, and the Lemaire Channel, the latter are narrow passages between towering rock faces and spectacular glaciers.
We leave the Antarctic peninsula and head direction towards the sub antarctic regions.
Join our lecturers and naturalists on deck as we search for seabirds and whales and enjoy magnificent sights.
Take the chance to relax and reflect on the fascinating adventures of the past days on the way back to Ushuaia.
We arrive at the port of Ushuaia in the early morning and disembark the Cruise post breakfast.
1. Accommodation on the cruise - based on the cabin chosen at the time of registration.
2. Service of Naturalist and Photography mentor during the expedition
3. Excursions & Landings with zodiacs
4. Visitor fees in Antarctica
5. All meals during the cruise
6. Tips & Taxes
1. Flights to / from Ushuaia
2. Overnight accommodation prior to and following the trip at Ushuaia
3. Alcohol and souvenirs purchased
4. Travel insurance and cancellation insurance
5. Any expenses of personal nature and anything explicitly not mentioned in the inclusions.
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