|1 - 2||Dunedin||Briefing and Dinner, Southland Museum, Board the Spirit of Enderby at Otago Harbour|
|3||The Snares- North East Island||Snares Crested Penguin, Snares Island Tomtit and Fernbirds|
|4 - 5||Auckland Islands||Enderby Island & Carnley Harbour|
|6||At Sea||Keep an eye on Sea Birds|
|7 - 8||Macquarie Island||See the Royal Penguin, along with King, Gentoo and Rock Hopper Penguins & Elephant Seals|
|9||At Sea||Look for cetaceans, albatross & petrels|
|10 - 11||Campbell Island||Perseverance Harbour|
|12||At Sea||Look for the commonly seen species; Albatross’, petrels & prion species|
|13||Invercargill, New Zealand||Disembark at the Port of Bluff early in the morning|
The Spirit of Enderby is a fully ice-strengthened expedition vessel, built in 1984 for polar and oceanographic research and is perfect for expedition travel. She carries just 50 passengers and was refurbished in March 2013 to provide comfortable accommodation in twin share cabins approximately half of which have private facilities. All cabins have outside windows or portholes and ample storage space. On board there is a combined bar/library lounge area and a dedicated lecture room.
Meet this evening in Dunedin for an informal get-together at the hotel for dinner and meet the fellow adventurers and expedition team on your voyage. The following morning you will be transferred to the Otago Harbour where you will embark on the Spirit of Enderby for the Galapagos of the Southern Ocean voyage.
North East Island is the largest of The Snares and staggeringly, this one island is claimed by some to be home to more nesting seabirds than all of the British Isles together. Zodiac cruising the rugged coastline learn how the islands got their name and encounter Snares Crested Penguins, Cape Petrel and Buller’s Albatross on the imposing cliffs. You are also likely to encounter Antarctic Terns, White-fronted Terns, Red-billed Gulls, Tomtits and Fernbirds.
Enderby Island is a great place to view birds and wildlife. Visit Sandy Bay, the main breeding ground for the rare New Zealand (Hooker’s) Sea Lion and just one of three breeding grounds on the Auckland Islands. There are chances to observe the Southern Royal Albatross, Northern Giant Petrel, Auckland Island Shag, Auckland Island Flightless Teal, Auckland Island Banded Dotterel, Auckland Island Tomtit, Bellbird, Pipit, Red-crowned Parakeet, Yellow-eyed Penguin and Light-mantled Sooty Albatross. Keep a lookout for the rare Subantarctic Snipe. On Derry Castle Reef there is a good chance of seeing the Bar-tailed Godwit, Turnstone and perhaps other migratory waders.
These islands have witnessed many a shipwreck in days gone by and harbour tales of castaways and coastwatchers. If weather and sea conditions are suitable energetic expeditioners are able to climb to the South West Cape Shy Albatross colony where Gibson’s Wandering Albatross nest among the tussocks above the colony.
As you make your way through an area known as the Furious Fifties in the tumultuous Southern Ocean, you will learn more about the flora and fauna as you prepare for your arrival at Macquarie Island. En route there are great birding opportunities which may include the Wandering Albatross, Royal Albatross, Black-browed Albatross, Light-mantled Sooty Albatross, Salvin’s Albatross, Grey-headed Albatross, Northern and Southern Giant Petrel, Sooty Shearwater and Little Shearwater. Endeavour to spot the Fairy Prion, Fulmar Prion and Antarctic Prion – never an easy task – but you should get some great views.
Described by one Australian explorer as “One of the wonder spots of the world” this is the only place in the world where the beautiful Royal Penguin breeds. This remote outpost supports a breath-taking concentration of wildlife. You will never forget your first experience of a noisy ‘penguin city’ where you will be witness to a thousand chattering, feeding chicks; territorial disputes; petty pilfering and courtship displays: King, Gentoo and Rockhopper Penguins can also be seen here. Meet with Park Rangers and seek out the thousands of Southern Elephant Seals lolling on the beaches and along the coast, Redpolls and Imperial Shag can often be spotted.
Keep a keen lookout for cetaceans, albatross and petrels today, relax in the ship’s bar or catch up on your reading in the library.
Spend two days exploring the island by foot taking in the panorama of rocky islets and sea stacks; once the lonely preserve of settlers and seal hunters and now returned to nature. Enjoy an easy walk to the nesting site of the Southern Royal Albatross at Col Lyall or walk across the hills to Northwest Bay and see the strange and beautiful megaherbs growing on the hills. These huge pink and yellow wild flowers have adapted well to the harsh conditions. Also seek out other wildlife such as Campbell Island Shags, Light-mantled Sooty Albatross and, on the beaches beyond, young male sea lions testing their strength.
En route to the Port of Bluff take the opportunity to relax and reflect on an amazing experience. Recap the highlights of your expedition and enjoy a farewell dinner as you complete the last few kilometres of your journey.
Your adventure ends at at the Port of Bluff. Early this morning arrive in port and after a final breakfast and customs formalities say your farewells before disembarking and transferring by complimentary coach to either a central city point or to the airport.