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Antarctic Peninsula Basecamp

Crossing the Antarctic Convergence and heading into the Southern Ocean via the fabled Drake Passage, this voyage will explore the spectacular wildlife and vast expanses of the Antarctic Peninsula. Our vessel will become our home - a warm and comfortable haven to return to after adventuring ashore. The Antarctic Peninsula offers you the most dramatic scenery and largest variety of wildlife imaginable. In the southern summer, large ice-free areas provide breeding grounds for very large numbers of seabirds, penguins and seals. From King George Island and Penguin Island we will sail down to the beautiful Paradise Bay, where we make our first landing on the Antarctic mainland. The narrow and spectacular Lemaire Channel is surrounded by mountains and glaciers and a popular passage for several species of whales. In the Antarctic Peninsula Minke whales, and sometimes Orca and Humpback whales, can be spotted as well as the ferocious-looking Leopard Seals.

Inclusions

11 breakfasts, 10 lunches and 11 dinners
Comfortable cabin accommodation and use of all public areas on cruise
Specialist expedition staff
All shore excursions from the ship including the use of Zodiacs
Lectures, videos, slide and film shows and guide services
Medical services (there is a resident medical officer and infirmary on board)
Port taxes and port charges imposed by government authorities
Pre-departure information
Pre-scheduled group transfer from the vessel to the airport in Ushuaia (directly after disembarkation).
All activities (camping, hiking, kayaking, climbing and snowshoeing) are complimentary, however pre-booking is required due to limited numbers.
Hightlights
The most wildlife-rich part of Antarctica - penguins, whales, seals, sea birds
Narrow sheltered waterways and fjords
Spectacular mountains rising directly out of the sea
Historic sites
Active scientific stations
Great variety of terrain over short distances
Icebergs and active glaciers
Kayaking through Antarctic waters (optional)
Camp overnight on the ice (optional)
Climbing glaciers and higher view points (optional)
Photography Workshop, Snowshoeing & Hiking (optional)
Tour Provider World Expeditions
Number of Days
12
Price From
AUD $8,400
Start Location
Ushuaia, Antarctica
End Location
Antarctica
Age Range
Avg. 30+
Group Size
1 to 114
Tour Style
Standard
Tour Themes
Polar, Small Marine/Cruise
Physical Rating
Mild
Tour departure dates
StartEndAvailabilityPrice
18 Dec 201929 Dec 2019AvailableAUD $8,400
29 Dec 201909 Jan 2020AvailableAUD $8,400
ItineraryExpand
Day 1
You will be warmly greeted by the crew and expedition staff as you embark Plancius in the afternoon. Sailing down the Beagle Channel, we will settle into shipboard life and enjoy our first meal on board.
Days 2-3
During these two days, we will sail across the Drake Passage. When we cross the Antarctic Convergence, we will arrive in the circum-Antarctic up welling zone. In this area we may see Wandering Albatrosses, Grey Headed Albatrosses, Black-browed Albatrosses, Light- mantled Sooty Albatrosses, Cape Pigeons, Southern Fulmars, Wilson's Storm Petrels, Blue Petrels and Antarctic Petrels. Near the South Shetland Islands, we will glimpse at the first icebergs.
Days 4-9
We will sail directly to "High Antarctica", passing the Melchior islands and the Schollaert Channel, between Brabant and Anvers Island. Places you might visit include: Neumayer Channel The vessel may position itself here, launching its multiple basecamp activities from the protected waters around Wiencke Island. You can enjoy the splendors of this alpine environment at sea with Zodiac and kayaking trips, or if you're in the mood for a walk, there are possible snowsh hikes and soft-climb mountaineering options farther inland. Naturally, favorable weather conditions determine the possible activities. Pl neau & Petermann Islands If the ice allows it, you can sail through the Lemaire Channel in search of Ad lie penguins and blue-eyed shags. There's also a good chance you'll encounter humpback and minke whales here, as well as leopard seals. Kayaking, glacier walks, and more ambitious mountaineering trips are the potential activities of this location. Neko Harbour An epic landscape of mammoth glaciers and endless wind-carved snow, Neko Harbour offers opportunities for a Zodiac cruise and landing that afford the closest views of the surrounding alpine peaks. Paradise Bay You have the chance to make camp here like a true polar explorer (but with a better tent), enjoying a supreme overnight Antarctic adventure. Errera Channel Possible sites in this area include Danco Island and Cuverville Island, but also the lesser known (though equally picturesque) Orne Island and Georges Point on Rong Island. On your last day of near-shore activities, you pass the Melchior Islands toward the open sea. Keep a sharp lookout for humpback whales in Dallmann Bay. You might also shoot for Half Moon Island, in the South Shetlands, with further chances for activities.
Days 10-11
In the Drake Passage, we will have again a chance of seeing many seabirds, and to take advantage of the knowledge of our lecture team.
Day 12
During the early morning we will cruise up the Beagle Channel, before quietly slipping into dock in Ushuaia. It is a busy time, with people saying farewell to our crew and others who have shared the intensity of being in a magnificent white wilderness. We will head off in our different directions, hopefully with a new found sense of the power of natural forces.