|Day 1||Ushuaia, Argentina||Transfer from airport, overnight hotel|
|Day 2||Embarkation Ushuaia||Beagle Channel|
|Days 3-4||At Sea||Crossing the Drake Passage|
||South Shetland Islands||Penguins, seals, albatross, whales and dramatic Antarctic scenery|
||Crossing the Circle||Crystal Sound, Detaille or Horseshoe Island, Antarctic Circle|
|Days 10-12||Antarctic Peninsula||Gerlache Strait, Neko Harbor, Paradise Harbor, Lemaire Channel|
|Days 13-14||At Sea||Drake Passage|
|Day 15||Ushuaia||Farewell your fellow expeditioners|
Arrive in Ushuaia today and explore some of the sights including museums, Argentinean leather markets, or visit the nearby National Park Tierra del Fuego. In the evening there is an optional briefing which is a great opportunity for you to ask questions and to meet some of your fellow travellers.
This morning, you are free to explore Ushuaia or unwind at the hotel until your mid-afternoon transfer to the ship. On board, you’ll be greeted by our Expedition Team and the Ship’s Officers. A safety and orientation briefing will be followed by the Captain’s welcome dinner. After dinner, you will have free time to take in the scenery as the ship sails through the Beagle Channel, past Magellanic Penguin, Rock Cormorant, and Sea Lion colonies.
As the ship gets ever closer to the white continent, numerous members of the expedition team will hold presentations on everything Antarctic, from wildlife to history. Eventually, you will cross the Antarctic Convergence where you will notice a distinct drop in temperature as the ship travels into the waters of the Antarctic Ocean.
Those interested in Citizen Science can take part in Sea Bird sighting surveys, or help collect salinity samples and weather data along the way. You are likely to witness some spectacular sights, from icebergs to an array of seabirds and whale species. If you’re lucky, you may see some of them fully breach from the sea.
In the waterways of the Antarctic Peninsula, the expedition team will aim to have guests spend as much time as possible exploring by inflatable Zodiac boats and marveling up close at nature’s glory. Your Expedition Leader and Captain will create a flexible itinerary based on weather, ice, and opportunity. You may visit the most scenic bays and channels of the Peninsula with stops at penguin rookeries, seal wallows, bird colonies and whale feeding areas, as well as sites of historic and scientific interest. Your first sight of land will likely be that of the South Shetland Islands. These highly volcanic islands offer amazing abundance and beauty. You may visit Half Moon Island nestled inside Livingston’s eastern shore, or if conditions permitting, visit historic Deception Island. Being further north, sub-Antarctic species are more commonly found here, including Chinstrap penguins and Southern Elephant seals.
As the ship sails south across the Bransfield Strait, you will cross the Antarctic Circle. From your most southerly point (south of the Antarctic Circle), the ship will make its way back north, cruising through the narrow waterways and channels of the Antarctic Peninsula.
Spectacular waterways such as Crystal Sound, or the living museums of Detaille or Horseshoe Island are some of the less visited places of the Antarctic Peninsula. These waters are significantly further south making sea ice more common. The ice ultimately directs what adventures you will have in these lesser traveled waterways but that is all part of the adventure.
The ship will now head Southwest and enter Gerlache Strait and Trinity Coast. Here you may explore picturesque Neko Harbor, sheltered Paradise Harbor, or Wilhelmina Bay, the striking Lemaire Channel, the wildlife-filled Penola Channel, or the majestic Neumayer Channel. You may be able to stop at an active scientific base such as Poland’s Arctowksi or Ukraine’s Vernadskiy as well as a historic base such as U.K.’s Port Lockroy or Wordie House. Adelie, Chinstrap and Gentoo Penguins abound, and Weddell and Crabeater seals are often found hauled out to rest along with predatory Leopard seals and the assertive Antarctic Fur Seal. Minke and Humpback whales are frequent visitors in the late season and Orca sightings are also common.
As you leave this magical place and the ship heads towards South America the educational program will continue as well as looking for wildlife at sea. Sailing back to Ushuaia through the Beagle Channel, celebrate the conclusion of our expedition with a special slideshow.
After breakfast farewell your expedition team and fellow travellers as you disembark in Ushuaia. You will be transferred to the airport or to downtown Ushuaia.