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Crossing the Circle via Falklands & South Georgia

23 Days FROM USD 22,295

Overview

This comprehensive journey sees you crossing the Antarctic Circle, further south than most travellers venture and takes you to explore the wildlife rich Falkland Islands and South Georgia. Stunning scenery, a wide variety of landscapes, unprecedented wildlife viewing opportunities and a taste of the history of Antarctic exploration - this cruise encompasses it all! 

 

 

Optional Activities :

Trip Code: ACTSFSG

Location: Falkland Islands, South Georgia, Antarctica

Ship: Ocean Endeavour

CRUISE ITINERARY

You may arrive in Buenos Aires at any time during Day 1 of the itinerary. Upon your arrival at this splendid city, known for its soaring architecture and rich European heritage, you will independently transfer to the group hotel
(pre-night hotel included).

Arrive Buenos Aires

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.

Fly Buenos Aires to Ushuaia & Embarkation

As we sail towards the Falkland Islands, the Expedition Team will make a series of presentations with information on how to prepare for Zodiac excursions and shore landings. There is plenty to do on board including a well-stocked library, a bar where you can meet your fellow travellers and the opportunity to spend time out on deck scanning the horizon for wildlife.

The team of lecturers and specialists will also teach you about the local flora and fauna that await you in the Falklands.

At Sea

The Falkland Islands, a British Overseas Territory, is an archipelago that lies 490kms east of Patagonia in the South Atlantic Ocean. Surrounded by decades of controversy, the Falkland Islands (or Islas Malvinas as they are known in Argentina) have been settled and claimed by France, Spain, Britain and Argentina. The islands have much to offer with a wide variety of spectacular wildlife, beautiful rugged scenery as well as an interesting history. Five species of penguin breed on the islands (gentoo, king, macaroni, magellanic and rockhopper).

There are two main islands in the Falklands archipelago - East Island and West Island, which we explore by Zodiac and shore landings. Port Stanley is the largest settlement on the islands, established in the 1840’s. It is an interesting town with a British outpost feel, with colourful houses, pubs, a church and a museum.

The Falkland Islands also offer plenty of wildlife sighting opportunities and you may see at least three species of penguins and two endemic bird species - Cobb’s wren and the Falkland’s flightless steamer duck.

Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) - Days 4 & 5

Leaving the Falklands, we chart a course for South Georgia, stunningly beautiful and with more wildlife than virtually anywhere else on the planet. We cross the Antarctic Convergence, an invisible biological boundary unique to Antarctica, where the meeting of oceans creates an abundance of krill and marine life that attracts large cetaceans, such as humpback whales.

At Sea - Day 6 & 7

South Georgia has been a British Overseas Territory since 1775. It is the largest island in the territory and one of the wildest and most remote places on earth with dramatic scenery of snow-capped mountains, huge glaciers, deep fjords and low-lying grassland. In the 19th century South Georgia was a prominent whaling base, but whaling ceased in the 1960’s and the only remnants are museums and well-preserved buildings. South Georgia teems with wildlife due to the currents that bring nutrients to the island from the Atlantic. Huge numbers of penguins and seals breed here.

During our time on South Georgia we visit the grave of the great explorer, Sir Ernest Shackleton, in the whaler’s cemetery in the settlement of Grytviken. Grytviken is also home to an old whaling station and a research station, giving you an insight into the history of South Georgia.

The wildlife on South Georgia is captivating and it abounds in exceptional quantities, which is why South Georgia is often referred to as the “Galapagos of the South”. There are rookeries with a hundred thousand pairs of king penguins waddling on the beach and thousands of fur seals and elephant seals.

The landscapes of South Georgia from the grasslands and mountains to the beaches, all play an important role in the breeding and survival of different bird and animal species. The Expedition Team will explain how these vulnerable relationships all play out on the island.

South Georgia - Day 8 to 11

Setting sail again, we cross the Scotia Sea bound for Antarctica, with its own penguin and seal species. Enjoy some quiet time scanning the horizon for wildlife as you reflect on your days on South Georgia, or take in the presentations that will cover topics ranging from the history and geology of Antarctica to identification of different species. If weather conditions are favourable, a landing at the South Orkney Islands may mark your official landing on Antarctica.

At Sea - Day 12 & 13

As we reach Antarctica you will be in awe of the pristine wilderness of snow, ice, glaciers, mountains and waterways stretching out before you. Our time spent here will be filled with unforgettable experiences - glacier hikes, visits to research stations, Zodiac cruises and of course incredible wildlife viewing. From chinstrap, gentoo and Adélie penguins to crabeater, leopard, Weddell and fur seals, to minke, orca and humpback whales and a plethora of seabirds - the list is endless. Each day and each shore landing will present a new collection of wildlife and vistas.

For the more adventurous you may like to book a kayaking adventure option (reserve in advance at time of booking your trip) or take a polar plunge!

South Shetland & Antarctic Peninsula- Day 14 to 16

Continuing south we aim to cross the Antarctic Circle, a point further south than most expeditions reach, a part of the world visited by few people and an impressive achievement. We make a champagne toast to the first explorers who ventured this far south. There is the potential for sightings of impressive icebergs in this part of Antarctica, home to the midnight sun.

The Antarctic Circle - Day 17 & 18

After crossing the Antarctic Circle we head north towards the Drake Passage and Ushuaia. More wildlife and icebergs await as we continue our daily programme of shore landings and Zodiac cruises. Keep on the lookout for any species of penguins, seals and whales that may have eluded you on the journey south.

Northbound Along the Peninsula - Day 19 & 20

We cross the Drake Passage that bears the name of the 16th century English explorer Sir Francis Drake. We will again cross the Antarctic Convergence, a meeting of cold polar water flowing north and warmer equatorial water moving in the opposite direction. This mixing pushes nutrient rich waters to the surface attracting a variety of seabirds, whales and other species and providing more wildlife viewing opportunities.

Crossing the Drake Passage - Day 21 & 22

We will arrive in Ushuaia in the morning after breakfast. After disembarkation, we will taste a little of Patagonia by touring Tierra del Fuego National Park before we transfer to the airport for the return group charter flight to
Buenos Aires.

Disembark in Ushuaia & Fly to Buenos Aires
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Pricing & date

Crossing the Circle via Falklands & South Georgia from USD 22,295
Departing Ending Duration
15 Feb 2020 08 Mar 2020 23
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Important Information

  • Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping

    All meals, snacks, soft drinks and juices on board

    Beer and wine during dinner

    All shore landings per the daily program 

    Leadership throughout the voyage by experienced Expedition Leader

    All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program 

    Formal and informal presentation by Expedition Team and special guests as scheduled 

    A photographic journey documenting the expedition 

    Waterproof expedition boots on loan for shore landings

    Parka to keep

    Coffee, tea and cocoa available around the clock 

    A hairdryer and bathrobes in every cabin

    Comprehensive predeparture materials, including a map and an informative Antarctica Reader

    All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program 

    All luggage handling aboard the ship 

    All gratuities 

    Emergency evacuation insurance to a maximum benefit of US$500,000.00 per person 

    Group transfer in Ushuaia from the airport to the pre-expedition hotel on Day 1

    One night's pre-expedition hotel accommodation in Ushuaia, with breakfast 

    Group transfer from the hotel to the ship on embarkation day 

    Group transfer upon disembarkation in Ushuaia from the ship to the local airport 

     

    EXCLUSIONS: 

    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 

    Excess baggage fees on international flights

    Mandatory waterproof pants for Zodiac cruising, or any other gear not mentioned above 

    Laundry, bar, beverage and other personal charges unless specified

    Phone and internet charges

    Additional overnight accommodation 

    Optional adventure activities

  • 2 (light adventure)
  • Available Upon Request

  • This itinerary is subject to change according to climactic conditions. 

  • Season and availability.

SPEAK TO A SPECIALIST

Talk to one of our Destination Specialists to plan your South American adventure and turn your dream into a reality. With exceptional knowledge and first hand experience, our consultants will assist in every way possible to make your journey the most memorable it can be, matching not only the itinerary, but the accommodation and activities to suit your style of travel and budget.

Sustainability

As a member of IAATO we follow 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 boats 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