Antarctica is a continent that is bursting with remarkable wildlife, awe-inspiring scenery and immense natural landscapes. Seeing it from the Australian side is an experience unlike any other.
Antarctica Cruises from Australia and New Zealand
There are 3 ways getting to the remote continent of Antarctica, one being the most popular and shortest way, leaving from South America. But there are two other possibilities, which are much less common but give you the possibility to see another part of Antarctica.
Leaving from Australia (Hobart) or New Zealand (Invercargill or Bluff) it will take about seven days to arrive to the white continent, which can be broken up by visits to Macquarie, Snares, Auckland and Campbell Islands, all rich in wildlife and nature.
Once having arrived to Antarctica, people will spend their time around Commonwealth Bay or the Ross Sea region.
A trip to this part of Antarctica does not only take longer but is also subsequently more expensive and there is much less choice in terms of different ships and dates.
It seems like departing from South America has much more advantages…so why visit the land of extremes from this part of the world anyways? Because the eastern side of Antarctica truly is extreme. Although we might call complete Antarctica the ‘land of extremes’, this part shows even more where the continent got this name from. While the Peninsula is already a highlight and shows Antarctica as its best, true adventurer will love the extremes of the eastern part. Being all within the Antarctic Circle it’s as remote as it possibly can get. It’s colder, windier and with higher chances of rough seas. And in addition to that, there is no one else besides the other people on your ship.
Also a trip to this side may allow you to visit fantastic places such as:
• Mount Erebus – The world’s southernmost active volcano
• Historic sites – From the heroic age of Antarctic Exploration (1897-1922) there are still preserved huts which can be visited, which have been left behind by famous explorer Mawason, Scott and Shackleton
• The Ross Ice Shelf – A 600 km long wall of ice between 15m and 50m high.
• Isolated scientific bases – including the largest in the Antarctic, the American base at McMurdo Sound
• Emperor Penguins – The birds of the deep south that rear their young in the depths of the Antarctic winter, the largest of all penguins
• Sub-Antarctic Islands – On the way south and on the return journey back north. These islands are oases of wildlife, especially birdlife which nest here in their almost countless thousands
So there are certainly many advantages visiting eastern Antarctica:
– Get the true feeling of being at the end of the world. The place is so remote, it is very unlikely to encounter anyone else!
– Extreme, extreme, extreme! Everything is bigger, windier and colder.
– So much history! Follow the adventures of Mawson, Scott and Shackleton and get so close with historical remains as only few people do.
– A unique experience….there are already not many people who visit Antarctica. Visiting this part of the continent is even more exclusive.
And then there are some ‘disadvantages’ but we think a true adventurer will possibly rather see them as advantages:
– Such trips are seen as “extreme cruises” and are really more expeditions than cruises. Conditions might not be very luxurious…
– The way to this part of the continent is long, so people will be at sea for three weeks or longer…pretty sure that at some point there will be rough seas
So if going to Antarctic Peninsula isn’t enough of an adventure already, eastern Antarctica is the place to visit, a place as exclusive, remote and extreme as it can possibly get!