FALKLANDS, SOUTH GEORGIA AND ANTARCTIC PENINSULA – FLY SOUTH  

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17 DAYS

ITINERARY SUMMARY
DayPlaceHighlights
Day 1SantiagoSpend the night in Santiago before your flight to Puerto Williams and King George Island
Day 2Santiago - Puerto Williams - King George IslandFly into Puerto Williams and then to King George Island. Set sail, and meet the expedition team
Days 3 - 6Antarctic PeninsulaExplore this main peninsula of the spectacular southernmost continent
Days 7 - 8At SeaEnjoy the facilities onboard, fine dining options
Days 9 - 11South GeorgiaWildlife extravaganza on the island- albatross, king and macaroni penguins.
Days 12 - 13At SeaSpend this time at your own leisure, looking for bird and marine life from the observation decks
Day 14Port StanleyWindswept landscape, Docklands Museum, five species of penguins nest here during mating season (including the rare rockhopper penguin)
Day 15New Island and West Point islandExcursions ashore, hiking, soaring cliffs, towering coastal precipices and Commerson's dolphin, afternoon tea with locals on New Island
Day 16At SeaRelax visit the spa or gym, whale watching and attend
Day 17Puerto Williams - SantiagoDisembark, farewelling fellow travellers and expedition crew, before flying back to Santiago
Antarctica and Falklands

SHIP OFFERING THIS ITINERARY

SILVER CLOUD

Spacious yet intimate, the yacht-like Silver Cloud carries 240 guests in incomparable comfort and style combining spacious ocean-view suites and private verandas with excellent dining and entertainment options. Silver Cloud epitomizes a vision of world-class cruise accommodations, cuisine, service and amenities.

The Silver Cloud is equipped with a fleet of zodiacs and expert guides to escort you on excursions from the ship.

Day 1 Santiago, Chile

santiago, chile

Spend the night in Santiago before your flight to Puerto Williams and King George Island the following day. Spend this day at your own leisure, exploring the city of Santiago or preparing for the adventure to come.

Day 2 Santiago – Puerto Williams – King George Island

Fly from Santiago to Puerto Williams, and then down to King George Island.

As the largest of all the South Shetland Island, King George is considered the gateway to Antarctica. At just 120 kilometres from the Antarctic Peninsula and the only airport in the South Shetlands, it is the connection between “real life” and “Antarctic life”. More than 10 different nations have year-round or summer-only scientific research stations on the island (considering that 90% of the island is covered by snow and ice, that is quite an achievement!). Maintaining a base on the island allows membership of the Antarctic Treaty. There is even a Russian Orthodox church, with a permanent on-site priest. The island might be home to a few international scientists, but they are very much outnumbered by the diverse wildlife that considers King George Island rightfully theirs. Adelie, Chinstrap and Gentoo Penguins all commute to and from the Antarctic peninsula from the island, while Weddell and leopard seals are regular visitors and can be spotted either in the water or on the shore. Naturally, this brings a huge amount of birdlife: skuas and southern giant petrels are regular summer residents, attracted by the warm climate (warm being a relative term, average temperature is between 1.5 and -6.5˚C). The island was named after King George III after British explorer discovered it in 1819. Since then the island has been claimed by both Chile (1940) and Argentina (1943), but remains part of British Antarctic Territory.

Embark the ship and set sail, meeting your expedition team and fellow travellers.

Days 3 – 6 Antarctic Sound and Peninsula

The Antarctic Sound is a stretch of water named after the first ship to have passed through this body of water from the Bransfield Strait to the Weddell Sea in 1902. The Antarctic eventually sank and crew and scientists had to spend quite some time in this area before they could be rescued. Sites that have to do with this story – like Hope Bay or Paulet Island – are hopefully visited if conditions allow. At Paulet, Hope Bay and Brown Bluff Adelie and Gentoo Penguins breed, as do Kelp Gulls and Cape Petrels, Snow Petrels and Skuas. The Sound’s main attractions are the spectacular tabular icebergs that come from the Larsen Ice Shelf further south.

Days 7 – 8 At Sea

seals underwater antarctica

Days at sea are the perfect opportunity to relax, unwind and catch up with what you’ve been meaning to do. So whether that is going to the gym, visiting the spa, whale watching, catching up on your reading or relaxing, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Days 9 – 11 South Georgia

South Georgia

South Georgia is a breathtaking destination of towering snow-covered mountains, mighty glaciers, and low-lying grasslands that attract an astounding concentration of wildlife. It is possible to find Southern fur seals, Southern elephant seals and a variety of albatross species including Black-browed, Light-mantled Sooty, Grey-headed and the spectacular Wandering Albatross, plus thousands of King and Macaroni Penguins. South Georgia is also linked to the early Antarctic explorers. Captain James Cook first stepped ashore in 1775, but perhaps more famous is Ernest Shackleton’s arrival in 1916 following the sinking of his ship Endurance. Shackleton’s grave and the whaling museum at Grytviken are highlights, as would be a visit to one of the King Penguin colonies at Salisbury Plain or Gold Harbour.

Days 12 – 13 At Sea

Silver Wind Ocean View

Days at sea are the perfect opportunity to relax, unwind and catch up with what you’ve been meaning to do. So whether that is going to the gym, visiting the spa, whale watching, catching up on your reading or relaxing, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Day 14 Port Stanley

Stanley, Falkland Islands

Despite it being a stalwart of Britishness, Stanley more resembles Patagonia than Portsmouth. But, despite the windswept, vast and achingly beautiful landscape of the Falkland Islands, don’t be too surprised to find the odd pub serving ales and even fish’n’chips. While landmarks such as Christ Church Cathedral, with its whalebone arch are 100% local, there is a also good smattering of imported garden gnomes and Union Jacks to remind you whose territory you are really on. The Falkland Islands’ ownership has long been a matter of controversy, ever since colonisation in the 18th century. At various points in their life they have been considered French, British, Spanish and Argentine. The Falklands War in 1982, despite only lasting for a short while, proved that the Brits clung to this remote outpost and the islands remain part of the British Commonwealth today. Margaret Thatcher, under whom the war was masterminded, remains something of a local hero as can be seen in the street signs (such as Thatcher Drive). For those who want to dig deeper into the past, the Historic Docklands Museum provides lots of information on the chequered historical and political background of the Falklands. However, the true heroes of Stanley are of course the thousands and thousands of penguins. Five species nest here during mating season (including the rare rockhopper penguin). There are virtually no barriers between you and the wildlife; allowing for a truly interactive, authentic and totally unforgettable experience.

Day 15 New Island and West Point Island

Black-browed on nest dome Alex
Royal Penguins and Southern Elephant Seals

Lying to the west of the Falkland Islands, and the humble human population here is far outweighed by the extraordinary birdlife that resides along its craggy coastline. Out in the tempestuous wilds of the South Atlantic Ocean, the island is a sanctuary of animal life – with crowds of rockhopper penguins, wrinkled seals and stern-looking albatross among its many residents. The penguins of the Falklands are a sight to see, fooling and falling on the beaches, before diving in and whipping through the waters. Home to five different species, including king penguins – who strut with their orange collars glowing against the pure white feathers of their chests. Sea lions, seals and elephant seals bark and lumber along the shoreline, while sleek orcas patrol and Peale’s dolphins cut through the waves. Settlement Rookery’s cliffs rattle with the sounds of crashing sea waves, and the echoing shouts of hollering black-browed albatross, king cormorants and rockhopper penguins. Enjoy gorgeous sweeping landscapes, littered with shipwrecks and sprinkles of colourful wildflowers. A warm welcome is guaranteed, especially when the local custom of smoko is served up – towering platters of cakes and biscuits with tea and coffee. Things haven’t always been so peaceful here, however, and you can pay a visit to the battlefields and memorials of the costly war in 1982, when the British and Argentinians clashed fiercely over these islands.

A north-westerly outpost of the scenic Falkland Islands, you’ll be welcomed ashore by the calls and cries of a huge colony of black-browed albatross. Indeed, the island was originally known as Albatross Island before being renamed to reflect its geographic location. While the albatrosses – that flash white feathers in the rugged cliffs above the waves – are the most well known residents, they are far from the only animal inhabitants of this remote, isolated land. A huge army of birdlife calls the island sanctuary home, overwhelming the tiny human population and sheep that roam West Point Island’s grasses. Meet rockhopper penguins along the coast’s boulders and imperial cormorants seen here in great numbers. Likely encounters with Magellanic penguins during your explorations. Hike the island’s quiet landscapes, and look out for endemic plants like Felton’s flower carpeting the green interior. Decorated with some of the archipelago’s most dramatic scenery, explore this wind-lashed, distant land of soaring cliffs and towering coastal precipices. Cliff Mountain is the island’s standout – a towering sandstone monolith, and the archipelago’s highest cliff, falling away to swirling waves below. Look out for Commerson’s dolphin, whales also visit and fur seals.

Day 16 At Sea

Silver Wind Outdoor Dining

Reflect on the incredible journey you have just been on as you return to South America. Spend your last day at sea reminiscing with newfound friends.

Day 17 Puerto Williams – Santiago

Disembark in Puerto Williams.

Puerto Williams is a Chilean city located on Navarino Island on the southern shores of the Beagle Channel. It claims to be the “southernmost city in the world”, however owing to its small size – 2500 residents approximately – the much larger Argentinean city of Ushuaia, which sits on the northern side of the same channel, also claims that title. The surrounding scenery is magnificent. The city itself has the dramatic backdrop called “Dientes de Navarino” (literally “teeth of Navarino”), which rival the famous Torres del Paine further to the north. The current city was established as a naval base in 1953 and honours the British-Chilean naval commander John Williams Wilson of the 16th century. Initially it served to protect territorial possessions and fishing rights of the area, as well as offering logistical support to Antarctic bases. More recently it has become a departure point for scientific and tourism trips to the Antarctic region. In contrast to the bustle and traffic of a very commercial Ushuaia, Puerto Williams offers a quieter, more relaxed experience. It charms the visitor with a small village feel, complete with rustic buildings and the homely smell of drifting wood smoke. A haven of peace at the end of the world.

Fly back from Puerto Williams to Santiago.

To book this voyage call 1300 784 794 or email contact@antarcticatravelcentre.com.au

We will tailor the perfect holiday to suit your needs.

Extend your trip to Patagonia

To make the most of your time in South America we can tailor a holiday to Patagonia to suit your voyage dates. If you have a bit more time we can create a tailor-made itinerary to some of the highlights of South America. Take a look at the Patagonia sample itineraries below and contact us to begin creating your perfect holiday.