SOLAR ECLIPSE: FALKLANDS, SOUTH GEORGIA & ANTARCTIC PENINSULA

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23 DAYS

ITINERARY SUMMARY

DayPlaceHighlights
1Buenos Aires, ArgentinaExplore Buenos Aires, embark Silver Wind
2 & 3At SeaRelax, unwind and enjoy the many facilities on board
4Puerto MadrynGolfo Nuevo, spot plenty of wildlife
5Puerto DescadoWildlife lover's paradise, see dolphin's, penguins and extraordinary birdlife
6At SeaRelax, unwind and enjoy the many facilities on board
7 & 8Falkland IslandsFour species of penguins, black-browed albatross, numerous bird species and dramatic Falklands scenery
9 & 10At SeaRelax, unwind and enjoy the many facilities on board
11-13South GeorgiaMillions of penguins, hundreds of seals, giant glaciers
14At SeaRelax, unwind and enjoy the many facilities on board
15Scotia SeaTotal Solar eclipse
16Elephant IslandShackelton Monument
17-19Antarctic Peninsulapenguins, seals, whales and dramatic scenery
20South Shetland IslandsMany species of penguins, hike the luna landscape
21 & 22Drake PassageSea Birds, onboard lectures
23Ushuaia, ArgentinaAfter Breakfast disembark for your onward journey.
ATC_Silver Wind Buenoa Aires - Ushuaia

SHIP OFFERING THIS ITINERARY

SILVER WIND
Silver Wind Exterior

The Silver Wind is a is a modern and comfortable ship which has undergone refurbishments in December 2018 with a second planned for summer 2020 after her original build in 1995. Timelessly elegant and luxurious, the Silver Wind is enabled to comfortably carry 254 passengers (only 240 for Polar region voyages) across her 6 passenger decks. Her new and improved strengthened ice-class hull makes for adaptable sailing through the Polar Regions with ease for whatever the conditions may bring.

Day 1 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires, Argentina
Overview:

Glamorous and gritty, Buenos Aires is two cities in one. What makes Argentina’s capital so fascinating is its dual heritage—part European, part Latin American. Plaza de Mayo resembles a grand square in Madrid, and the ornate Teatro Colón would not be out of place in Vienna. But you’ll know you’re in South America by the leather shoes for sale on cobbled streets and impromptu parades of triumphant soccer fans. Limited-production wines, juicy steaks, and ice cream in countless flavors are among the old-world imports the city has perfected. Embark the Silver Wind.

Days 2-3 At Sea

Silver Wind, Pool Side

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 simply topping up your tan, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Day 4 Puerto Madryn

Whale, Silversea ONLY

Overlooking the vast Golfo Nuevo, the northern Patagonian town of Puerto Madryn is one of Argentina’s top whale-watching spots. Puerto Madryn welcomes visitors to enjoy its wonderful wildlife, traditional tea shops, and sheep-rearing ranches known as estancias. Taste some of Argentina’s tenderest and juiciest steak cuts, or piles of seafood, in the waterfront restaurants of the town’s promenade, as you fuel up ahead of the natural adventures of a lifetime. An astonishing array of animals call the protected Valdes Peninsula home. See penguins wandering, sea lions yawning lazily, and playful guanacos galloping here. Head to the beaches of Estancia San Lorenzo, to hear the racket made by hundreds of Magellan penguins.

Day 5 Puerto Deseado

Silversea Only, Rockhopper Penguins

Discover the impressive flora and fauna of the region for yourself, with a boat ride on the Deseado River’s winding flow – which culminates at the spectacular estuary. Forming a beautiful nature reserve, tiny Commerson’s dolphins mill in the salty water of this immense, drowned river valley – which cuts into the rusty terrain, and wind-shaped scenery. There is something of a Martian feel to the desolate, rocky landscape, and the river begs to be explored further by kayak. Admire the acrobatics of the Commerson’s dolphins and meet the extraordinary birdlife of this region too. Slicked back, yellow-haired rockhopper penguins and Magellanic penguins leap from boulder to boulder, as they nest in the dunes and hop across scrubby beaches and islands. Learn more of the town’s fishing heritage origins and drop in on the pretty old railway building – which now houses a quaint museum – as you immerse yourself in this remote and wonderful Argentinian wildlife hotspot.

Day 6 At Sea

Gym Silver Wind

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 simply topping up your tan, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Day 7 New Island & West Point Island, Falkland Islands

king penguins

Remote and raw, New Island lies 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.

long-tailed-meadowlark-on-gorse-west-point-island-falklands

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 the rockhopper penguins who scamper and burrow along the coast’s boulders, as well as the imperial cormorants who rest here in great numbers. You’re also liekly to encounter 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 to the waters to spot Commerson’s dolphin chasing each other around the island’s wave-washed footprint. Whales also visit, as well as the fur seals who you may spot lounging around West Point Island’s inviting shores.

Day 8 Stanley, Falkland Islands

Stanley, Falkland Islands

A true haven for wonderful, diverse wildlife watching, Stanley invites you ashore to soak in the untouched beauty of the Falkland Islands. Rolling farms and animal-covered coves and cliffs unravel nearby, while reminders of the war that scarred these islands in 1982 also reveal themselves on closer inspection. The Falkland Islands – a tiny, southerly outpost of the United Kingdom – lie a long way from the nearest land at Patagonia, and their isolated location has helped to maintain this unblemished, unhurried world of wonderful animals and wind-whipped scenery. The ghostly, rusting wreck of the Lady Elizabeth ship welcomes you into port – and is a reminder of the historically treacherous nature of these 740 islands’ remote location. Stanley sits as the capital, and even here there’s a quiet village ambience, as you wander quaint streets below colourful roofs. The small cathedral has an unusual decoration outside – a dramatic archway constructed from the giant jawbones of a blue whale. While Stanley oozes quiet appeal, you’ll quickly want to head out into the ‘Camp’ – the local word for practically any part of the Falklands except for Stanley. Home to thousands of Gentoo and Magellanic penguins, you can meet their larger siblings – the tuxedo-clad king penguins, who rest on the shores. With five varieties of penguins living here, or dropping in during migrations, it’s one of the best places in the world to see the flightless birds squawking and waddling adorably. Cape Dolphin is the perfect position to spot exciting marine mammals cruising offshore, and you’re just as likely to bump into the island’s penguin and elephant seal populations here too. With varied birdlife filling its skies and sweeping over the waves, the scale and diversity of animals close to Stanley makes for a truly awe-inspiring visit.

Days 9 & 10 At Sea

Silver Wind Bar

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 simply topping up your tan, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Days 11-13 South Georgia

Fortuna Bay King Penguins

Charcoal-black mountains ladled with snow, giant glaciers and thriving wildlife combine to make South Georgia one of the great natural islands. Adventure to these far flung lands – where the animals are in charge and humans come a distant second. Here you’ll witness a cacophony of calling birds, natural set pieces like elephant seals clashing and thrashing, and crowds of colourful king penguins stretching out as far as the eye can see. An overseas territory of the UK, these isolated, subantarctic islands once formed a remote whaling centre – and you can still visit the former whaling stations. Nowadays the giants of the sea are free to cruise the icy waters uninhibited.

Written into explorer history due to its links with Ernest Shackleton’s tale of Antarctic exploration, shipwreck and survival, the Endurance’s crew were saved when he reached the salvation of these shores in 1916 – before returning to collect the remaining sailors from Elephant Island. A museum commemorates the legendary mission, and you can see the memorial to Shackleton that stands over his final resting place on this fabled island. South Georgia’s colonies of king penguins – with vivid bursts of yellow and orange around their necks – stand, squabble and curiously investigate, enjoying the isolated respite of this island. They’re joined by smaller penguin species like Macaroni penguins, and other glorious birdlife like the majestic wandering albatrosses, which you can see gliding on gusts of wind, over the choppy waves.

Day 14 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 simply topping up your tan, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Day 15 Total Solar Eclipse

Solar Eclipse

Calling all skywatchers, umbraphiles and astronomers! Extremely rare and very exciting, a full solar eclipse is a bucket list experience if ever there was one. Scheduled for 4th December, 2021 the next eclipse will take place only in Antarctica and we will be positioned in the small path of totality for maximum effect. This experience is not available for the average cruisers; imagine being surrounded by brilliant light one minute, then complete blackout the next, before enjoying the mysterious shadow-play as we wind back to the blinding white of Antarctica. Watch how the curious wildlife will react to the eclipse, making sure to note their behaviour and let the onboard naturalist know. Other onboard expedition staff will share their insightful knowledge in order to help you gain a better understanding of this phenomenal phenomenon

Day 16 Elephant Island

Elephant Island

Promising thrilling adventure, legendary tales and immaculate Antarctic beauty, Elephant Island is perhaps Antarctica’s best-known location. The exploits of its early explorers have immortalised this harsh, monochrome island in the tomes of human history. Believed to take its name from the elephant seals that early explorers spotted lolling on its rocks, the volcanic island was not properly explored until 1916 – when Ernest Shackleton and his men were stricken by the weather and sought salvation on its shores. Their story of survival, stranded in this barren land, is one of humanity’s most evocative and inspiring accounts. Elephant Island is written deep into the legend of Antarctic exploration, and you’ll discover Shackleton’s tale for yourself as you arrive in the island’s icy realm. The remarkable, slowly flowing Endurance Glacier – which you’ll see on arrival here – takes its name from their ship, The Endurance.

Days 17-19 Antarctic Peninsula

Cinzia - Kayaking with Seals

The Antarctic Peninsula region contains some of the world’s most impressive scenery and some of Antarctica’s best wildlife viewing opportunities. Protected bays and narrow channels are surrounded by towering mountain peaks covered in permanent snow and immense glaciers. Icebergs of every size and description complete an image of incomparable beauty. Waters rich with krill are home to a variety of whale and seal species. The whole area is alive with penguins foraging at sea and forming large nesting colonies at special places on land. The area is also home to Antarctic research stations of various nationalities, some with a gift shop and post office.

Silversea - Antarctica

Farther south, on the Antarctic Peninsula, the gorgeous Gerlache Strait area contains sheltered bays, accessible wildlife, and stunning scenery. Places with names like Paradise Bay are the epitome of everything Antarctic: glaciated mountains, towering icebergs, feeding whales, seals on ice floes, and bustling penguin colonies. At the southern end of Gerlache Strait is the famous Lemaire Channel, also known as “Kodak Gap” because of the photogenic way the mountainous sides of the narrow channel are reflected in calm waters strewn with icebergs.

The wilderness of Antarctica is subject to unpredictable weather and ever-changing ice conditions, which dictate your route and exploration opportunities. This is a real expedition. The expedition team will exploit every opportunity to experience excellent wildlife viewing, amazing scenery and excursions via Zodiac

Day 20 South Shetland Islands

Adelie penguins taking the plunge

Lying close to the northwestern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, separated by the Bransfield Strait, the South Shetland Islands fall under the jurisdiction of the Antarctic Treaty, suspending claims on their sovereignty. Several countries maintain research bases here, and with plump elephant seals, and crowds of Gentoo, Chinstrap and Adelie Penguins also calling the islands home, it can even feel a little crowded at times. King George Island is the largest and most hospitable island, hosting the majority of the research stations – some of which are populated all-year-round by tiny, hardy crews. Don’t be fooled though, these islands offer extraordinary adventure in one of the most remote locations on earth. The triple peaks of Mount Foster tower above the archipelago, and you’ll feel your heart pumping a little quicker, as you sail into the core of Deception Island’s magnificent collapsed volcano caldera. Hike the luna landscapes within, and even dip into the improbably warm, geothermally-heated waters of Pendulum Cove.

Days 21-22 Crossing the Drake Passage

Gull

Sailing the legendary Drake Passage is an experience that few are ever lucky enough to experience. Enjoy your two days at sea as you lap up the last of the luxury and comfort of the Silver Wind.

Day 23 Ushuaia

Ushuaia

After breakfast we say farewell in the city of Ushuaia. A group transfer to the airport or to the town centre is provided. As you look back on your wonderful experience in Antarctica, you may already be looking forward to your next incredible adventure to the ice!

To book this voyage call 1300 668 112 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.