The early adventurers who ventured to Antarctica shared stories of a stunning, ice-covered realm brimming with wildlife. Delve into the incomparable splendor of the Antarctic Peninsula, where immense glaciers cascade into the ocean, penguins appear tiny against towering peaks, and humpback and minke whales thrive on plentiful krill. This expedition also encompasses the magnificent landscapes of the Chilean Fjords, featuring waterways bordered by majestic mountains.
Upon your arrival in Punta Arenas, you'll be greeted by a representative and transported to your hotel. We kindly request your arrival by 4:00 pm to ensure your participation in the essential evening briefing.
Between 10:00 am and 6:00 pm, please visit the hospitality desk in the lobby to acquire your luggage cabin tags. The team will provide embarkation details, address queries, and offer dining and last-minute shopping recommendations.
Punta Arenas, situated alongside the Straits of Magellan, holds a significant place on a historic trade route. This city reflects a captivating blend of cultural influences, from English sheep ranchers to Portuguese sailors, and serves as a testament to Chile's rich heritage. Modern Punta Arenas boasts a variety of popular restaurants and bars, where you can savor local and international cuisine (meals at your expense today).
At 7:00 pm, join your fellow expeditioners for a voyage briefing, during which we will reaffirm your transfer times for the following day, provide details about your flight to King George Island, and explain important IAATO regulations for Antarctica visitors.
Accommodation: Hotel Cabo de Hornos (or a similar option).
In the morning, we'll be transported to Punta Arenas airport for the charter flight to King George Island in Antarctica, a journey of approximately one hour and forty-five minutes, depending on the weather. Upon your arrival at King George Island, our expedition team will be there to welcome you and prepare you for the Zodiac transfer to the ship. You'll have the opportunity to get settled into your cabin before attending important safety briefings.
Please be aware that King George Island is situated in the northern region of the Antarctic Peninsula within the South Shetland Islands, making it one of the most isolated places on Earth. A clear sky with optimal visibility is essential for safe take-off and landing. In case your flight cannot proceed as planned today, we have a contingency plan in place for your itinerary. Your safety remains our top priority, and we apologize in advance for any delays resulting from this unpredictable situation. For a more comprehensive explanation, please refer to the terms and conditions.
Describing the sensation of arriving in Antarctica is a nearly impossible task. The moment you catch sight of your first iceberg and inhale the incredibly fresh, crisp air, it's an experience that will remain etched in your memory forever.
Upon reaching our destination, you'll have the opportunity to explore the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands. With approximately 18-24 hours of daylight due to our southern location, your days can be as busy as you desire. Our seasoned expedition team, with their wealth of experience in this region, will tailor your daily voyage, considering the current weather, ice conditions, and wildlife opportunities.
Typically, we embark on landings or Zodiac excursions twice a day. For these adventures, be sure to dress warmly as you join Zodiac cruises along stunning ice cliffs or amid grounded icebergs, all while keeping an eye out for whales, seals, and penguins gracefully leaping through the water. Zodiacs will transport you from the ship to land, where you can explore penguin rookeries, visit historical huts, and discover some of the most beloved spots along the peninsula.
While ashore, we aim to stretch our legs, whether it's strolling along pebbly beaches or ascending snow-covered ridgelines to reach viewpoints with towering mountains overhead and an ocean speckled with ice below. If you've chosen to participate in an optional activity, you'll have the opportunity to do so whenever conditions permit. For those enthusiastic about polar plunges, there's a chance to fully immerse yourself in the frigid polar waters, conditions permitting.
In addition to our Zodiac cruises and shore excursions, we may navigate the narrow, dramatic straits that separate offshore islands from the mainland, or we might linger in scenic bays to observe whales as they travel and feed. It's an ideal time to enjoy the observation lounge or head to the bridge, which is open at the captain's discretion, to relish uninterrupted vistas of Antarctica in all its grandeur. Listen closely for the sounds of glaciers creaking and rumbling as they carve their way from mountaintops to the sea. Take a moment to savor the wonder of this extraordinary white continent.
Savor a final morning landing in the South Shetland Islands before we commence our return journey to South America, crossing the Drake Passage.
Amidst lectures and film presentations that bring your Antarctic adventure to a close, there's ample time to relish the enchantment of the Southern Ocean and the vibrant life it harbors. This is a moment for introspection and discussions about our encounters and experiences. We hope you'll become advocates for Antarctica, sharing your stories with your family, friends, and colleagues, and championing its conservation and preservation so that others may one day have the opportunity to visit this extraordinary region.
As we near the tip of South America, and weather and timing permitting, the Captain might guide us near the iconic Cape Horn.
As we approach the tip of South America, the Captain may sail close to legendary Cape Horn, weather and time permitting. Sail through fjords and channels flanked by majestic mountains discovered by European explorers over 500 years ago. Keep a look out for seabirds and marine wildlife including dolphins, sea lions, and whales preparing to migrate to Antarctica to fatten up on plentiful krill.
In the early morning, we quietly arrive at the dock in Punta Arenas, where the disembarkation process commences at approximately 8:00 am. Bid farewell to your expedition team and fellow travelers as we all set off on our respective journeys, hopefully with a newfound appreciation of the immense power of nature. The voyage cost includes a transfer to your Punta Arenas hotel or to the airport.
Upon disembarkation, passengers with flights scheduled before 2:00 pm will receive direct transfers to Punta Arenas Airport, while those continuing their travels in this remarkable region will be provided transfers to their post-voyage Punta Arenas accommodation. Passengers with flights after 2:00 pm will have the opportunity to explore Punta Arenas and will receive details about their afternoon airport transfer while onboard.
Note: To account for potential delays, we do not recommend booking flights departing Punta Arenas earlier than 12:00 pm on the day of disembarkation.