To experience a total solar eclipse anywhere on earth is something truly spectacular, to witness such a beautiful natural phenomenon amidst stunning frozen landscapes and magnificent wildlife is truly an unforgettable experience.
Journey to the Eclipse Zone on board the spacious and comfortable Ocean Endeavour along with a team of experts in astrophysics, meteorology and photography to witness a once-in-a-lifetime event. Sail to a far less trodden eastern shores of the peninsula to explore some of the worlds most remote and rugged landscapes. Visit the historic Elephant Island and learn the incredible survival story of Sir Ernest Shackleton before immersing yourself in the sights and sounds of the Antarctic Peninsula’s penguin-abundant north-western shores.
Solar Eclipse 2021 is a truly unique itinerary and a rare glimpse of a dark Antarctica contrasted with its gleaming, icy shores.
Optional Activities :
Trip Code: ACACSEV
Travel Style: Expedition Cruise
Location: Antarctic Peninsula, Falkland Islands, South Georgia
Start your Antarctic journey by first exploring the charming streets and rugged mountain backdrop of Ushuaia, Argentina – the world’s southernmost city. Start out with a coffee and local souvenirs on the main street before hiking out of town to the foot of the martial glacier, enjoying views of the Beagle Channel that awaits you below.
Today you will begin your Antarctic voyage. Embarkation will take place late in the day so you can take in a sunset while we wave goodbye to South America. Once aboard you will have an introduction to crew and will have time to settle into your cabin.
En route to the Eclipse location, your time at sea can be filled with presentations from our onboard team of experts or enjoy photography and bird watching from the warmth of the viewing space on the Ocean Endeavour’s spacious bridge as albatross and other seabirds circle the ship and we spot for whales. On this special voyage, talks from our resident astrophysicists and meteorologists will prepare you for the incredibly rare event that lays ahead and evening programming will see a chance for a casual drink at the bar while you get to know your shipmates and guides.
During the early hours of our fifth expedition day, you will be invited onto the deck of the Ocean Endeavour to view the incredibly rare spectacle that is an Antarctic Total Solar Eclipse. During the night, our ship will have sailed well into the zone of 100% obscuration, our navigators precisely measuring longitude in conjunction with local weather events to allow a viewing for approximately 1 and a half minutes - the longest possible for the region. Also on deck will be our resident experts in astrophysics and meteorology as well as our team of photography guides to interpret this astronomical phenomenon and instruct on how best to capture a once-in-a-lifetime moment. Following the early start to the day, the ship will turn back to face the west and we’ll give you an opportunity to rest and review your photographs while we aim to reach the historic Elephant Island.
Join us on the bridge this morning as we scan the horizon for our first sighting of land since South America, when icebergs may well appear in numbers and when we first lay eyes on the continent of Antarctica. The Ocean Endeavour’s navigators will be aiming for the historic Elephant Island – a place central to the incredible survival story of Sir Ernest Shackleton and his men who used this very island as a camp and rendezvous point during the final and harrowing legs of their epic Endurance saga. Either from the ship or from zodiacs, we’ll witness Point Wild – the very place where Shackleton’s men clung to rocks for several months in anticipation of his return from South Georgia. Ashore, a monument marks this site and the incredible feat of survival that surmises their astonishing journey.
The eighth day of our voyage will see us turn south and sail toward the eastern side of Joinville Island, at the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. Far less trodden than the western shores, this area affords us time to truly explore some of the world’s most remote and rugged beaches and islands. This area is home to some of the largest Adelie penguin colonies on Earth which attracts an abundance of leopard seals and other marine fauna. On this day, we’ll be in true expedition mode as we take the opportunity to reconnoitre this remote region on our way further south.
Perhaps the most profound experience and when the sights and sounds of the Antarctic really come to life is upon visiting one’s first Gentoo penguin colony. Here, on the Peninsula’s western side, we’ll explore some of the continent’s most famous locations where tens of thousands of penguins find a rare piece of bare rock on which to nest for the summer months. At this time of year, penguins will be sharing incubating responsibilities and perhaps a few tiny penguin chicks will be appearing. Jumping out of a zodiac onto a beach laden with these vast congregations of birds makes for an unforgettable immersion into the Antarctic ecosystem and a sensory experience like none other!
In addition to the penguins, on this voyage we will be exploring glacial faces, channels and bays of the Peninsula offering us the chance to witness icebergs of every description and to get up close and personal with the various seal species that call this part of the continent home. Along the way, our expedition team will be constantly scouting for those leviathans of the ocean – the thousands of humpback whales that migrate to this part of the world at this time of year to feed on krill.
After turning north again, our voyage will take us to the rugged, windswept vistas of the South Shetland Islands. Home to some peculiar species including elephant seals and fur seals, these islands also boast a water-bound volcano, a string of scientific bases and some of the best sunsets the Antarctic has to offer – making for a fantastic way to round out our excursions and take to the deck of the Ocean Endeavour for a toast to the Antarctic at sundown.
Looking back at the 10 days of Antarctic experiences behind us, we’ll sail north across the Drake Passage with South America again in out sights. This stretch of water offers good chances to spot for orca, seabirds and whales but also a great opportunity to recap the journey with your guides, partake in workshops for photo editing or simply gaze out the window in contemplation of what the Antarctic has just delivered us. Our guides will be out on deck spotting birds and other wildlife but you can also find them in the lounge at night for a last few chances to share stories about the polar regions and swap photos of the incredible event that marked the start of our journey.
An early morning disembarkation from the Ocean Endeavour allows plenty of time to resume your exploration of Ushuaia or to make a leisurely drive to the airport for connecting flights home. Our guides will join you on the dock to farewell the ship and crew that have taken us to the last continent and back.
Why not start your Antarctic Journey with a visit to the “Paris of the south”? Discover the wonders of Buenos Aires on this 4-day itinerary. Explore a unique fusion of European elegance and Latin American energy as you explore the history of this magnificent city. Take part in a unique tango show or take a break from cities and visit the gaucho town of San Antonio de Areco. Find out more
Before embarking on your Antarctic voyage, why not experience the amazing wonders of two of South America’s most vibrant cities. A 9 Day Rio to Buenos Aires journey will be the perfect way to indulge in a mix of Latin American cultural experience and sights. From the awe-inspiring Christ the Redeemer, to the roaring cascades of Iguazu falls and the European avenues of Buenos Aires this is a spectacular way to experience this unique and dynamic corner of our world. Find out more
Begin your Antarctic experience by first exploring the dramatic and stunningly beautiful “End of the world”. Start in Buenos Aires, the capital of Tango and a vibrant, historical gem. Experience the wonders of El Calafate a land of stunning beauty and wonder located in the Patagonian steppe before finishing in Ushuaia and witnessing the incredible beauty of the Tierra del Fuego National Park. Find out more
Cabin accommodation on board The Ocean Endeavour
All meals whilst on board
All coffee, water and tea
All scheduled landings and exucrsions
Guiding and lectures by experienced expedition staff and crew
Group transfer from hotel to ship on embarkation day
Provided Total Eclipse goggles
On board experts in fields of astrophysics, photography and meteorology
International flights to/from embarkation/disembarkation city
Visa fees (if applicable)
Beverages (other than tea and coffee)
Any optional activities not mentioned as included
We appreciate that voyages to the Antarctic to have an impact on this pristine environment. In light of this, all our voyages are double carbon offset. In addition, we strive to eliminate as many single use plastics as possible from our supply chain. In choosing this voyage you are also supporting the fantastic work done by the Antarctic Science Foundation (ASF) and their work in understanding and protecting this unique destination. In addition all voyages support the Mawsons Huts Foundation (MHF). The MHF support the legacy of Sir Douglas Mawson, the legendary Antarctic explorer and scientist. As a member of IAATO we follow strict guidelines appointed by the Antarctic Treaty System to go above and beyond in support of minimizing negative impacts on this pristine landscape. We also encourage clients to look to book pre-and post- accommodation with us, where local businesses will be supported. Our clients also receive restaurant recommendations which support locally owned restaurants.
We carefully select all ships we work with and choose smaller sized vessels to create less impact. We use a highly regulated, licensed vessel which is well equipped to operate in the Antarctic’s delicate ecosystem. We view the voyage to the Antarctic as an expedition, not a sightseeing trip. Smaller ships such as ours can navigate narrow waterways and are far less polluting than the larger ships in Antarctic waters. By carrying less passengers, we have far less waste. The waste is carried back to the home port to allow for environmentally conscious waste management and disposal.
For more information on our sustainability policies, including how we are striving towards being a paperless organisation, click HERE