ANTARCTIC EXPLORER EXPRESS
|Day 1||Arrive Punta Arenas||Day at leisure|
|Day 2||Fly Punta Arenas to King George Island||Embark on the Greg Mortimer|
|Days 3 - 9||Antarctic Peninsula||Explore the Peninsula by zodiac and ship. Make landings on the continent and visit Penguin Rockeries|
|Day 10||Fly King George Island to Punta Arenas||Disembark the Greg Mortimer|
|Day 11||Punta Arenas||Farewell your fellow travellers|
The Greg Mortimer is a new purpose built, polar expedition vessel taking 120 guests. This vessel has been designed in close consultation with Antarctic expedition specialists and is the first expedition cruise ship designed with the ULSTEIN X-BOW hull. This cutting edge nautical technology allows for gentle travel and motion at sea, improved comfort and safety on-board, reduced vibrations, lower fuel consumption and emissions and ‘virtual anchoring’ which means the ship can float anchor-less while launching the Zodiacs without disturbing delicate sea floor areas. There are four sea-level launching platforms for fast and efficient access to and from Zodiacs.
Arrive in Punta Arenas, where you will be met and transferred to your downtown hotel (preferred flights only). Overlooking the Straits of Magellan, the city sits astride one of the world’s most historic trade routes. Today, Punta Arenas reflects a great mix of cultures, from English sheep ranchers to Portuguese sailors, and it remains an utterly fascinating testament to Chile’s rich history. Tonight, gather to meet your fellow expeditioners and a briefing on the first leg of the expedition – your flight to Antarctica!
This morning you will be transferred to Punta Arenas airport for your early morning charter flight to King George Island, Antarctica (weather permitting). The flight will take approximately one-and-a-half hours. On arrival into King George Island your expedition team is on hand to greet you for your Zodiac transfer to board the Greg Mortimer. You’ll have time to settle into your cabin before the important briefings.
NOTE: King George Island is located at the northern part of the Antarctic Peninsula in the South Shetland Islands and is one of the most remote places on Earth. A clear sky with perfect visibility is required in order for the plane to take off and land safely.
Over the next few days a host of choices are open to you, and depending on ice and weather conditions, the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula is yours to explore. The experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their expertise to design our voyage from day to day. This allows you to make the best use of the prevailing weather, ice conditions and wildlife opportunities.
Because you are so far south, you will experience approximately 18-20 hours of daylight and the days can be as busy as you wish. Generally the crew will try for two landings or Zodiac excursions each day; cruising along spectacular ice cliffs; following whales that are feeding near the surface; and landing on the continent and its off-shore islands to visit penguin rookeries, seal haul outs, historic huts, and a few of our other favourite spots along the peninsula.
There will be plenty of time for sleep when you get home! During this voyage, there will be an opportunity to camp ashore (weather and time permitting). This will give you the chance to sample the style of adventure that Scott, Shackleton and other legendary Antarctic explorers experienced, although with slightly better equipment and in more comfort! Rest assured the warm and comfortable ship with its hot showers will only be a short distance away!
As you approach Frei Base on King George Island, it is time to farewell Antarctica and your amazing adventure before boarding the return flight to Punta Arenas, Chile. On arrival at the Punta Arenas airport, you will be transferred to your downtown hotel (preferred only).
NOTE: King George Island is located at the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. This is one of the most remote place on Earth. A clear sky with perfect visibility is required in order to take off and land safely.
After breakfast, bid a fond farewell to your fellow passengers as you all continue on your onward journeys, hopefully with a newfound sense of the immense power of nature.