Antarctica East and West: Peninsula in Depth (with Buenos Aires flights)
» Jan 24 2018 – Feb 12 2018 (20 DAYS)
» EMBARKATION: Ushuaia
» DISEMBARKATION: Ushuaia
EXPEDITION IN BRIEF
- Get to know Antarctica intimately during this 20-day trip
- Venture into the Weddell Sea on the remote east coast of the Antarctic Peninsula
- Cross the Antarctic Circle at 66°33′ S
- See a penguin colony of over 100,000 breeding pairs on volcanic Paulet Island
- Step back in time to experience Antarctic exploration in abandoned yet perfectly preserved bases
- Day 1 – Buenos Aires, Argentina.
- Day 2 – Fly to Ushuaia, Argentina. Embarkation.
- Days 3 and 4 – Crossing the Drake Passage
- Day 5 – Elephant Island
- Days 6 to 8 – Weddell Sea
- Days 9 to 15 – Antarctic Peninsula and Antarctic Circle
- Days 16 and 17 – South Shetland Islands
- Days 18 and 19 – Drake Passage
- Day 20 – Disembark in Ushuaia and fly to Buenos Aires
This epic 20-day expedition brings you to a side of the Antarctic Peninsula even the luckiest of travelers don’t often see. You’ll experience the best of polar travel, including abundant wildlife, important historical sites, and ice—lots of ice. Embarking from Ushuaia, Argentina, you’ll traverse the legendary Drake Passage to arrive at Elephant Island, which gave Ernest Shackleton’s crew refuge in 1916. From this significant start you’ll move on to see enormous penguin colonies up close; zodiac cruise among icebergs that look like art; walk around and explore historic and operating scientific bases; sail across the imaginary but important line of the Antarctic Circle; and take a zodiac ride to see humpback and killer whales—all the while surrounded by the spectacular scenery of Antarctica.
ITINERARY DAY BY DAY
Day 1 – Buenos Aires, Argentina
Upon arriving in this splendid city, known for its soaring architecture and rich European heritage, you will independently transfer to the group hotel (pre-night hotel included).
Day 2 – Ushuaia, Argentina, and embarkation Day
After breakfast at the hotel, the group will transfer to the airport and board our private charter flight to Ushuaia, Argentina.
Upon arrival, you will have a little time to explore this quaint port town before heading to the pier.
Embarkation will occur in the late afternoon, after which your vessel will sail down the historic Beagle Channel. This famous channel transects the Tierra del Fuego archipelago in the extreme south of South America. Expect an air of anticipation as you depart—the next time you’ll see land you’ll be in the world’s most southern continent!
Days 3 and 4 – Crossing the Drake Passage
The waters of the Drake Passage are unpredictable, so hope for clear skies and a calm ocean. You’ll have plenty of time to gaze out at the sea, get to know your fellow shipmates and chat with your Expedition Team.
You will spend this time preparing for the exciting days ahead, with numerous educational and informative lectures presented by your Expedition Team. You’ll learn about everything from safety procedures to the history of whaling in Antarctica.
Day 5 – Elephant Island
Mountainous and ice-covered Elephant Island is the first land you’ll visit following the crossing. Named by early explorers for the elephant seals that dotted its shoreline, the island is best known as the refuge for Ernest Shackleton’s crew. Point Wild, the site of the crew’s camp, is an Antarctic Historic site.
Days 6 to 8 – Weddell Sea
Battered with ocean currents all year long, the remote east side of the Antarctic Peninsula is completely different to the more commonly visited west coast. Here, you’ll see mile-long tabular icebergs formed over hundreds or even thousands of years and broken off of ice shelves further south.
Days 9 to 15 – Antarctic Peninsula and Antarctic Circle
Travel around the Peninsula includes a variety of experiences. Glaciers, penguin colonies and breaching humpback whales will highlight your days, while friendly seals are plentiful in these waters. You can also expect to encounter what is arguably the most formidable Antarctic predator, the leopard seal.
You’ll have drinks to celebrate crossing the Antarctic Circle, and you may visit the Vernadsky Lounge, the Peninsula’s southernmost bar. A sure highlight is Wilhelmina Bay—one of our expeditions once spotted 50 whales in three hours! We’ll spend a full seven days exploring as many sites as we can, ensuring you the most comprehensive Antarctic experience possible.
Days 16 and 17 – South Shetland Islands
Places such as Half Moon Island or Livingston Island support huge numbers of nesting chinstrap, gentoo and even some macaroni penguins. Giant and cape petrels, blue-eyed shags and kelp gulls nest in the cliffs. You will explore the busy penguin and seabird rookeries and marvel at the huge elephant seals that wallow along the shore.
Days 18 and 19 – Drake Passage
Use your second passage across the Drake to put your newfound Antarctic knowledge to use; spend time on deck, spot icebergs and name seabirds. Enjoy presentations by our onboard experts and bond with your shipmates.
Day 20 – Disembark in Ushuaia and Fly to Buenos Aires
After disembarking, you will get a little taste of Patagonia, touring Tierra del Fuego National Park before transferring to the airport for the return group charter flight to Buenos Aires.
CABINS & PRICES
|Twin Porthole Cabins||USD 17,695
USD 20,695 Plus*
USD 20,695 Plus (2)**
|Twin Window Cabins||USD 18,595
USD 23,995 Plus*
USD 23,995 Plus (2)**
|Upper Deck Twin||USD 21,995|
|Superior Twin||USD 22,495|
|Top Deck Twin||USD 23,495|
|Suites||USD 25,495 Junior
USD 26,995 (Owner’s)
All rates per person in USD
*Twice the space of the Twin Porthole or Twin Window, with one bathroom.
**Twice the space of the Twin Porthole or Twin Window, with two bathrooms. Complimentary wine with dinner on Ocean Endeavour.
- Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping
- All breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks on board
- All shore landings per the daily program
- Leadership throughout the voyage by our experienced Expedition Leader
- All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program
- Formal and informal presentations by our Expedition Team and special guests as scheduled
- A photographic journal documenting the expedition
- Waterproof expedition boots on loan for shore landings
- An official Quark Expeditions® parka to keep
- Coffee, tea and cocoa available around the clock
- A hair dryer and bathrobes in every cabin
- Comprehensive predeparture materials, including a map and an informative Antarctic Reader
- All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program
- All luggage handling aboard the ship
- Emergency evacuation insurance to a maximum benefit of US$500,000 per person
- Mandatory transfer package*
- International airfare
- Passport and visa expenses
- Government arrival and departure taxes not mentioned above
- Meals ashore unless otherwise specified
- Baggage, cancellation, interruption and medical travel insurance—strongly recommended
- Excess-baggage fees on international flights
- Mandatory waterproof pants for Zodiac cruising, or any other gear not mentioned
- Laundry, bar, beverage and other personal charges unless specified
- Phone and Internet charges
- Voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for shipboard staff and crew
- Additional overnight accommodation
- Optional adventure activities
- Arrival transfer in Buenos Aires on Day 1
*Buenos Aires transfer package includes:
- One night’s hotel accommodation in Buenos Aires, with breakfast
- Group transfer from the hotel to the airport in Buenos Aires
- Charter flight from the Buenos Aires international airport to Ushuaia, and return
- Group transfer from the Ushuaia airport to the ship, and return
- Combined airport transfer and express bus tour of Tierra del Fuego National Park after disembarkation
Package cost: USD 950