South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula

South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula | Ocean Albatros | Antarctica Tours South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula | Ocean Albatros | Antarctica Tours

The Ocean Albatros is an ice-classed ship that takes passengers on expeditions to Antarctica and the sub-Antarctic islands. The cruise includes crossing the Drake Passage, visiting the South Shetland Islands, and exploring the Gerlache Strait. Passengers have the opportunity to make Zodiac landings at penguin rookeries, research stations, and lookouts. The journey is packed with pristine nature sightings and incredible wildlife, and depending on weather conditions, the ship may also pass close to Cape Horn.

This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience the beauty and wonder of Antarctica. You will get to see penguins, seals, whales, and other wildlife in their natural habitat. You will also learn about the history and science of Antarctica from the ship's expedition team.

10 Day Antarctica Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Ushuaia, embarkation

Ushuaia is the southernmost city in the world. You can explore this lively Patagonian town or take a walk in the nearby forests. Consider a trip into Tierra del Fuego's raw, natural landscape. Tierra del Fuego, the island, is an ideal hiking destination with its rugged mountains and glaciers. It also has flower-filled fields, boggy wetlands, and meadows. We board the vessel that is waiting for us to arrive in port.

Our expedition starts after our safety drill. We navigate the Beagle Channel, named for Charles Darwin’s ship. The steeply-sided Strait that divides Tierra del Fuego in southern Argentina and Chile has served as the starting point of thousands of explorations. As we enter the Drake Passage, keep an eye out for dolphins and whales.

Day 2 & 3: At sea - crossing the Drake Passage southbound

We continue sailing and cross the famous Drake Passage, the waterway that separates Patagonia from the Antarctic Peninsula. Drake Passage, also known as the Roaring Fifties for its strong winds and rollicking weather conditions is a famous passage. Although this is a challenging passage, our expedition ships are equipped with powerful engines, stabilizers and highly qualified crews. Drake Passage is a life-long achievement for the most adventurous sailors. You will make it twice.

We will use our days on the Drake Passage to prepare for our trip to Antarctica. Your Expedition Leader will give you a comprehensive briefing on safety and how to minimize your impact in this wilderness. He will also provide you with tips and hints for wildlife viewing, and our exploration plans. The Expedition Team is dedicated to helping you biosecure clothing and equipment, which helps to preserve Antarctica's fragile ecology. They will also share tailored lectures about Antarctic exploration history and wildlife.

On the third day, we will enter the Antarctic Convergence. Watch the temperature plummet while sailing southwards in Antarctic waters. This abrupt cooling marks the intersection between the cold waters of Antarctica and the warm waters of the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean. The sea will cool, bringing with it a plethora of wildlife. This is some of the biologically most productive waters on Earth. Expect to see penguins as well as albatrosses, and possibly seals and even whales. We may land on South Shetland Islands, a beautiful archipelago north of Antarctic Peninsula, weather permitting. This will mark the beginning of our journey on The Last Continent.

Day 4 to 7: South Shetland Islands & the Antarctic Peninsula

In the coming days we'll enjoy an exciting and safe Antarctic adventure that explorers from yesteryear only dared to dream about.

The South Shetland Islands are the starting point of our Antarctic journey. The South Shetland Islands are the southernmost part of Antarctica and most vulnerable to the Southern Ocean's fury. It is one of the most diverse in wildlife because of its large Gentoo Penguin and Chinstrap Penguin colonies, as well as an abundance of seabirds, including predatory Giant Petrels. As we travel further south, the ice-covered mountains of Livingstone Island, Greenwich Island and King George Islands will give us an idea of what to expect. The South Shetland Islands offer a variety of landing sites, including the rusty ruins and black sand of Deception Island. Other options include the busy penguin colonies on Aitcho Island and Half Moon Island or Yankee Harbour's old sealers anchorage.

In the Gerlache area, we will spend the next few days exploring the Antarctic Peninsula further south. The region can be icy so the exact itinerary will depend on the careful planning of the Captain and Expedition Leader. We will, however, aim to see the most beautiful sites in this stunning region.

Gerlache Strait, which is composed of the "spine" of Antarctic Peninsula as well as a number of mountainous and glaciated islands, comes to most people's minds when they think about Antarctica. On a Zodiac Cruise in Paradise Bay, you can marvel at massive icebergs. On Cuverville Island, be moved as penguins fiercely defend their nests and tenderly care for their eggs. Hike over active glaciers in Neko Harbour to see ice waterfalls into the clear, blue water. Visit the historic Damoy Point huts, which have been lovingly renovated and are open to everyone. On a Zodiac Safari in Wilhelmina Bay, you can feel the water spray from a humpback's blow. On a Lemaire Channel ship cruise, you can marvel at the breathtaking scenery. The Antarctic Peninsula is home to endemic animals, fascinating history, and stunning natural beauty.

The Expedition Team will also be available to provide additional information and to expand upon our past experiences. This will ensure that guests make the most of their journey.

All human activities in Antarctica are subject to Mother Nature's whims. We will do everything we can to maximize the opportunities for exploring off the ship, but the safety of the guests and the crew are our first priority. Our guests are asked to embrace the spirit of expedition and to be flexible. In harsh weather, you can learn more about Antarctica from the Expedition Team or enjoy our luxurious vessels. You may even be able to relax in hot tubs or have a massage.

Day 8 & 9: At sea - crossing the Drake Passage northbound

As we leave Antarctica behind, we spend two days on the sea as our ship makes its way back northwards across the Drake Passage to the welcoming beaches of Ushuaia and the Beagle Channel. Our guests will have the opportunity to reminisce about their journey during our two days at sea. Enjoy a cocktail at the Nordic Bar with new friends. Learn from our Expedition Team's passion and knowledge during the lectures held in the Shackleton lounge. Or simply watch the albatross fly northwards.

Join the captain and officers for a Farewell Cocktail Party. Then, our onboard camera will show you photos and videos of your Antarctic experience.

Day 10: Back to Ushuaia and disembarkation

We will return to the Ushuaia pier in the early morning on the last day of our journey. After the pristine whiteness of Antarctica, trees, grass and an active city might seem odd to you. It's time to say goodbye to your crew and the Albatros Expedition Team after a delicious breakfast. Descend the gangway to return to land and cherish the memories from the trip of a life-time.

Itinerary Map

South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula

10 Day Antarctica Itinerary Includes

  • Embarkation shuttle transfer to the vessel from Ushuaia city centre
  • Shuttle transfer after disembarkation from the ship to Ushuaia city centre or airport
  • All Zodiac landings and excursions, as per itinerary, guided by our Expedition Team
  • Expedition parka
  • Rubber boots loan scheme
  • Briefings and lectures by our Expedition Leader and Team
  • English-speaking Expedition Team
  • Full board on the ship - breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks
  • Complimentary house wine, beer and soda at dinner (selected labels and brands, served at our a-la-carte dinners)
  • Free tea and coffee available 24 hours
  • Taxes and landing fees
  • Special photo workshops
  • Welcome and Farewell Cocktail Parties

10 Day Antarctica Itinerary Does not Include

  • Extra excursions and activities not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Single room supplement and stateroom upgrades
  • Meals not on board the ship
  • Beverages (other than coffee and tea)
  • Tips for the crew (we recommend USD 14 per person per day)
  • Personal expenses (e.g. Albatros Polar Spa services, Albatros Ocean Boutique purchases)

10 Day Antarctica Itinerary Highlights

  • Crossing the Drake Passage
  • Visiting the South Shetland Islands
  • Exploring the Gerlache Strait
  • Making Zodiac landings
  • Learning about the history and science of Antarctica

Meals Included

  • Breakfast Served Daily
  • 9 Dinners
  • 10 Lunches
 | Falkland | Black-browed Albatross
 | Scoresby Sund | Icebergs floating
King George Island | South Shetland Islands |  Antarctica

10 Day Antarctica cruise activities

Sea Kayaking
Under full instruction from your sea kayaking guide, experience true tranquillity as you paddle through clinking ice floes and realise the enormity of the surrounding scenery. Look out for breaching whales, lounging seals and penguins zipping alongside your kayak. Some experience is required.
Ice Camping
Camp out on the ice and experience the silence which blankets the continent by night. This is your chance to completely connect with this ethereal ice world – wrap up warm and embrace the Antarctic elements.
Get a spring in your step when you slip on a pair of snowshoes in Antarctica. Enabling you to easily scale gentle slopes, this unique activity allows you to access hard to reach places and seek out the most impressive views.
Learn to capture wildlife and landscape shots in a small group photography program, including critiquing sessions and editing classes. Plus, Explorer Boat excursions with a dedicated photography expert on landings.
Explorer Boats
Achieve the best views and photographs from a forward facing Explorer Boats. They allow you to sit comfortably and securely while crackling through the ice-strewn waters. Look out for wildlife such as penguins, seals and whales as you cruise.
It doesn’t get more serene than complimentary yoga classes to the tune of glacial scenery. Join the most unique exercise setting in the world after a day of exploration. Classes are regular but are dependent on weather conditions and swell.
South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula
10 Days
From $6,695.00 per person

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Book your 10-day Antarctic tour now and create memories to last a lifetime!