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VIP Antarctica Charter with John Key | Ocean Albatros

Discount on selected cabin categories C, D and E only.  Valid for sale until 30 Oct 23. See further conditions below.**

13 Days
Save Up To 30%

WAS From USD 12,740   Now From USD 8,918

Trip Code: ACVEACV

DIFFICULTY RATING: 2 (light adventure)

Start: Buenos Aires, Argentina

Finish: Buenos Aires, Argentina

SHIP: Ocean Albatros


Argentina, Antarctic Peninsula

DestinationDeparture Date



All meals onboard the ship and selected meals in Buenos Aires 


Economy Flights between Buenos Aires and Ushuaia with transfers, Expedition ship in Antarctica


2 Nights Hotel in Buenos Aires, 1 night in Ushuaia & Cabin onboard Ship

Enquire Now

Included SightseeingIncluded Sightseeing

Buenos Aires - Half day tour & traditional tango show 

Antarctica - Daily zodiac rides and guided nature walks 


Travel with a fascinating special guest, former NZ Prime Minister Sir John Key, on a brand-new luxury expedition ship, to the world’s wildest, most remote continent.

Having played golf with Obama, chatted with Xi Jinping, stayed with the Queen at Balmoral, camped on Antarctica’s Mt Erebus, and attended the funeral of Nelson Mandela, Sir John’s stories and anecdotes are sure to captivate and make the journey even more special.

The adventure will include visits to penguin rookeries, shore landings, and the famous Gerlache Strait, where humpback whales breach and 3,000ft ice cliffs rise straight out of the still water.

During the voyage, you’ll have the opportunity to learn about the history, ecology, and wildlife of the region from the onboard team of expert naturalists and guides. You’ll also have the opportunity to set foot on the Antarctic continent, and to participate in activities such as kayaking, snowshoeing and zodiac excursions, as well as wildlife watching and photography. 

Sir John Key joins the VIP Antarctica charter for his third trip to Antarctica – a destination that he says is one of the very few that he would jump at the chance to revisit.

“There is an enormous amount to love about Antarctica, its beauty, its serenity, its remoteness, its history and its inhabitants, but most of all I love the special feeling of being so privileged to visit a place so few people ever get to experience” he says.

With a maximum capacity of just 194 passengers, this cruise will offer an intimate and personalized experience, and ensure guests have plenty of opportunities to mingle with Key himself.

From world figures such as Angela Merkel and David Cameron, to iconic All Black legends Richie McCaw and Dan Carter, Sir John has spent time with many of the world’s most influential figures, and says he is looking forward to meeting new people on the VIP Antarctica expedition in November.

“I am incredibly excited about the opportunity to revisit a place I love, a place I never thought I would get a chance to see again in my lifetime. And I’m also very excited about being part of the VIP cruise - making new friends, having new experiences and getting to do the polar plunge!” says Sir John.

The trip includes a pre-cruise package including 2 nights in Buenos Aires, 1 night in Ushuaia with transfers and sightseeing, plus internal flights within Argentina.


**Please note 2 for 1 promotion is valid on new bookings until 30 Oct 23. Promotion only applies to cabin categories C, D & E. Subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time. You must book the full charter package to receive the discount. Please enquire for full terms & conditions. 


Arrive in Buenos Aires

Welcome to Buenos Aires, the birthplace of the tango, and like the dance itself, it is captivating, seductive and bustling with energy. Atmospheric old neighbourhoods are filled with romantic restaurants and Buenos Aires' European heritage is evident in its architecture, boulevards, and parks. On arrival at Ezeiza International Airport, your driver will be waiting to transfer you to your hotel in one of Buenos Aires’ most elegant, historic, and picturesque neighbourhoods, Recoleta, where you will be free to relax for the rest of the day.

Explore Buenos Aires & Tango Show

Join a half-day city tour where you will discover the history and essence of Buenos Aires. Highlights include Plaza de Mayo, San Telmo, La Boca, famous for its colourful houses and tango dancers on the streets, and finish up with a wander through Recoleta Cemetery, one of the world’s most famous and exclusive cemeteries.
Spend the rest of the afternoon relaxing before being collected from your hotel and transferred to experience a traditional tango show with dinner, a dance that originates from this city and is famous around the world. (B,D)

Arrive in Ushuaia

A transfer will take you to the airport for your flight to Ushuaia (Flight included, 1 piece carry on, 1 piece check in luggage 15kg), the most southerly city in the world and the capital of Tierra del Fuego (Land of Fire). After your transfer has dropped you at the hotel, the day is at leisure and you are free to explore, maybe making a few last minute purchases from the many shops or artisan markets, or relax in a café. Avenida San Martin is the main street and there are some excellent museums to visit or you may prefer to wander the streets taking in the town’s dramatic setting, with views of the mountains to the north and the Beagle Channel to the south.

Embarkation in Ushuaia

You have a free morning to explore the quaint city or local countryside. Alternatively, consider a day trip off the beaten path to the raw, natural archipelago of Tierra del Fuego. It's a hiker's paradise with rugged snow-capped mountains, glaciers, flower-filled meadows and boggy quagmires. In the afternoon, board the Ocean Albatros and navigate through the calms of Beagle Channel, a strait in the Tierra del Fuego Archipelago. The ship will be buzzing with excited explorers as we start our epic Antarctica journey.

Crossing the Drake - Day 5 & 6

Sailing onward, we cross the famed Drake Passage - a body of water that marks the intersection of the cold Antarctic with the warmer Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Drake Passage is known for rollicking conditions and strong westerly winds, called the Roaring Fifties. While this passage may be challenging, you can rest confidently aboard our expedition vessel, Ocean Albatros, which is purpose-built with stabilizers, powerful engines and a highly-qualified crew. The most spirited sailors consider Drake Passage a lifetime achievement, and you will complete the crossing twice!

In the Drake, the excitement builds as Antarctic wildlife comes into view. Weather permitting, we will catch our first sight of seals and penguins! The area is also well-know for its abundance of birds.

South Shetland Islands - Day 7 & 8

Over the next two days, we will begin the exciting Antarctic experience our ancestors only dreamed of. During these days we will explore the sub Antarctic islands of the South Shetland chain and be marveled by the captivating landscapes we will encounter along the way.

Weather permitting, our projected landfalls include: King George Island; Deception Island, an extinct volcano with waters warm enough for a polar swim; and Half Moon Island with nesting Wilson's storm petrels and chinstrap penguins.

The itinerary and activities over the next few days depend on weather and ice conditions. The route and shore landings will be determined by the captain and expedition leader and communicated to guests through regularly scheduled briefings.

Antarctic Peninsula - Day 9 & 10

As the white shimmer of Antarctica looms on our horizon, the presence of wildlife multiples by tens of thousands with many species of lively penguins, inquisitive seals, nesting birds and the spray of marine mammals.

Wildlife abounds along our projected route along the Antarctic Peninsula: leopard, fur and Weddell seals of Cuverville Island; humpback whales of Gerlache Strait; Paradise Bay; the dramatic Lemaire Channel's orcas and much more.
The itinerary and activities over the next few days depend on weather and ice conditions. The route and shore landings will be determined by the captain and expedition leader and communicated to guests through regularly scheduled briefings.
Please note that all the outings and landings rely on weather, sea and ice conditions being favourable both for the ship to access the areas, as for the zodiacs and kayaks to manoeuvre under adequate conditions, ensuring the safety of all our passengers and staff.

Crossing the Drake - Day 11 & 12

We depart Antarctica and spend two days at sea on our way back to the calms of Beagle Channel and Ushuaia, Argentina. En-route, we will cross Drake Passage and cruise past Cape Horn, a legendary maritime landmark and the southern tip of South America.

During our time at sea, a variety of activities will be arranged on board which will provide the perfect opportunity to socialize with fellow travelers equally passionate for discovering the world, enjoy the lectures by our expedition on board, visit our shop or relax at leisure on our ship’s facilities, designed to provide a comfortable, relaxing time.

Disembarkation in Ushuaia

This morning you will arrive back in Ushuaia for the conclusion of your Antarctic journey. Take this time to say farewell to your fellow passengers and newfound friends. Reflect on the incredible memories you have made together, and gather inspiration for the next adventure to come.

You will be transferred to the airport for an afternoon flight back to Buenos Aires, where your tour will finish on arrival at the airport.
(Flight included to either AEP or EZE airport depending on flight schedules, 1 piece carry on, 1 piece check in luggage 15kg)

**Please keep in mind, the itinerary and outdoor activities during each voyage are solely dependent on weather and operational conditions to ensure the safety and quality of experience of our guests. The route and shore landings will be determined by the captain and expedition leader and communicated to guests through regularly scheduled briefings. We reserve the right to modify the landings and locations visited during a voyage based on weather and local conditions and climate to ensure a safe and delightful experience for all our guests and staff. Our trips are expeditionary in nature, and thus changes to timings are commonplace due to the environment we operate in as well as wildlife opportunities and locations.



  • Travel alongside Sir John Key and hear first-hand his fascinating anecdotes, from the time he camped on Antarctica’s Mt Erebus, to his experiences staying at Balmoral with the Queen, and attending Nelson Mandela’s funeral. His experiences have given him a unique perspective on the world and its issues, and the potential for better relationships and outcomes.

  • Explore spectacular, other-worldly landscapes teeming with wildlife in Antarctica and the South Shetland Islands

  • Set foot on the great white continent, an experience so few have had before, with plenty of opportunities to explore on the ice

  • Cruise aboard a brand new ship – the Ocean Albatros launches in May 2023 and features all the luxury comforts of a modern cruise vessel (from heated pool to high quality restaurants), while being small enough to access narrow inlets and disembark passengers quickly onto Zodiacs for excursions

  • Enjoy the smoothest possible ride across the Drake Passage, with the X-Bow®-Infinity class of the Ocean Albatros providing high stability in rough weather

Ocean Albatros

Ocean Albatros

Deployed in November 2022 the Ocean Albatros features the latest in X-Bow hull technology. With a total of 95 comfortable staterooms and suites, all with unobstructed views, the Ocean Albatros is one of the most popular expedition vessels in polar waters. Featuring two restaurants, a wellness area, Nordic bar, an open deck dining facility, modern lecture lounge and a number of other state-of-the-art amenities, the Albatros provides the ultimate expedition experience. Boasting 50% less emissions than traditional polar vessels, the Albatros provides peace of mind in regard to comfort and sustainability for our guests.  The Albatros also comes with a unique panorama sauna and a total of 12 dedicated solo travel cabins without single supplement.

Ice Class: Length: 104.4m
Breadth: 18.4mMax
Draft: Cruising
Electricity: Passenger

View Ship Details


We believe that appropriate accommodation should add to the authentic travel experience, as well as providing utmost enjoyment. For that reason our accommodation is scrutinised by our staff on the ground frequently, ensuring the properties adhere to our high standards. This key will help you understand the levels of accommodation available on this tour.


Comfortable properties with dependable facilities and service.


Comfortable properties with dependable facilities and service.


Luxurious properties with impeccable facilities and service.


Optional Activities vary for each itinerary. Limited spaces available. Contact your Destination Specialist for pricing & availability.


Experience the unforgettable thrill and serenity of kayaking in Antarctica as part of a small, expertly guided paddling group.

Learn More


Fall asleep amid the snow-capped mountains as you watch the colours of the Antarctic twilight bounce off the ocean and surrounding glaciers.

Learn More


For photography enthusiasts of any skill level. You will receive expert advice on taking and producing amazing photos of Antarctica.

Learn More

Pricing per person & date

VIP Antarctica Charter with John Key | Ocean Albatros from USD 8,918
Departing Ending Duration
23 Nov 2023 05 Dec 2023 13

Important Information


    2 nights’ accommodation at the Sofitel in Buenos Aires including breakfast daily
    Buenos Aires city tour, and evening tango show
    Transfers in Buenos Aires and Ushuaia
    Return flight from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia
    1 night accommodation at the Wyndham Hotel in Ushuaia including breakfast
    10 day / 9 night Antarctica cruise onboard the Ocean Albatros
    Full board on ship; breakfast-lunch-dinner, from dinner on day 1 to breakfast on last day
    English speaking expedition team during voyage
    Information briefings and lectures by expedition team in English
    Presentation by our special guest and the opportunity to mingle with him throughout the cruise
    Shore landings and Zodiac cruises
    Boots on loan in all assorted sizes, suitable for shore landings
    Parka to keep
    Special VIP package in all Premium, A and B cabins: Unlimited access to specialty restaurant Deck 8, wine and fruit and stocked minibar upon arrival, free laundry, free pressing, Julius Meinl Espresso machine, upgraded amenities hair and lotion products
    Photographic trip-log shared after the voyage via an online link
    Captain’s Welcome & Farewell Cocktail Receptions (sparkling wine; non-alcoholic beverages)


    International flights
    Passport and Visa fees (if applicable) 
    Excess baggage fees on international flights
    Mandatory waterproof pants for Zodiac landings and excursions 
    Laundry, bar, spa services and other personal charges, unless specified
    Voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for expedition staff and shipboard crew
    Any additional overnight accommodation 

  • 2 (light adventure)
  • Available upon request, contact us for more detail. 

  • Please note this itinerary may be subject to change depending on weather and ice conditions. 

  • Availability at time of booking.


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