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In Depth Antarctica & Patagonia Southbound | MS Fram

22 Days FROM USD 9,755

Overview

Journey from Chile’s stunning fjords to Antarctica’s wild peninsula. This cruise allows you to experience the remote regions of Patagonia and Antarctica in one expedition, with opportunities for ice cruising, shore landings and additional optional activities in Antarctica. In Chilean Patagonia, you will have the chance to visit the majestic Torres del Paine National Park and you will cruise right into the Chilean fjords to see Cape Horn. This exciting expedition starts in the colourful city of Valparaiso in Chile and ends in the most southerly city in the world of Ushuaia in Argentina.

Optional Activities :

Trip Code: ACHUAPCS

Location: Antarctica, Chile

Ship: FRAM

CRUISE ITINERARY

Your Antarctica and Patagonia expedition cruise begins in colourful Valparaíso, known as the 'Jewel of the Pacific'. Built on steep hillsides overlooking the ocean, you'll love discovering this friendly UNESCO-listed city.

Filled with exciting smells, sounds and people, it’s an exhilarating maze of alleyways and barrios, colourful houses and mercados packed with local produce. Take it all in on a funicular ride up to Cerro Alegre and Concepción. If you'd like to explore more of the region, you can join our optional Pre-Programme to tour the extraordinary Atacama Desert before you embark MS Fram.

Arrive in Valparaiso and Embark

Over the next two days at sea, you'll learn more about the wonders we'll encounter during our trip.

Our Expedition team are experts in fields from oceanography and geology to ornithology and history. Get stuck in with fascinating lectures, hands-on presentations in the Science Center, and learn about our Citizen Science projects.

It's also the perfect time to unwind. With three excellent restaurants, a pool, hot tubs and wellness centre – not to mention our Explorer Lounge & Bar – you’ll have everything you need to relax, recharge, and get ready for adventure.

At Sea - Orientation & Discovery - Days 2-3

Set among the lush vegetation of Chiloé Island, Castro is Chile’s third oldest city and home to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites – Iglesia San Francisco and Iglesia de Señora de Gracia de Nercón.

You can enjoy terrific views of the city’s colourful palafitos – stilt houses along the waterfront – from the nearby hills, so keep your camera ready. For local culture, head to the Regional Museum and the Museum of Modern Art.

Bring your binoculars as Chiloé is an important habitat for bird species like Green-backed Firecrowns and Chilean flamingos. It’s also home to penguins, Black-necked swans, Ringed Kingfishers and Silvery Grebes.

Castro's Chilotan charm

We cruise south towards Puerto Natales, the capital of Última Esperanza. The iceberg-studded waters of Patagonia are captivating, with stunning shades of blue, from the brightest aquamarine to the deepest midnight hues.

As we sail, there's a good chance you’ll see whales, seabirds, penguins and more. Take in the scenery from the panoramic sauna or on-deck hot tubs and pool, enjoy locally sourced cuisine, or relax in the Explorer Lounge.

Our Expedition Team will be on hand with fascinating lectures on local history and wildlife, and our onboard photographer can help with tips on landscape photography.

The Waters of Patagonia

After cruising through Patagonian waters, we arrive at the enchanting village of Puerto Edén in Bernardo O’Higgins National Park.

This tiny village sits at the end of a deep fjord. It’s only accessible by sea, and the ferry that connects it to the mainland only visits once a month. There are no roads here – just wooden boardwalks connecting houses and shops.

Among its 250-strong population, you’ll meet some of the last remaining members of the indigenous Kawéskar, giving you a fascinating insight into Patagonian culture. The unique community is designated a Living Human Treasure by UNESCO.

Remote Puerto Eden

Our expedition cruise continues to Puerto Natales, where we'll spend the night. You can opt to go hiking in Torres del Paine National Park – an incredible experience well worth doing.

The rugged landscape has steppe, forest and desert, punctuated by glaciers and lakes. Guanacos, rheas and pumas roam freely. Look out for Chilean Flamingos and you may even spot the mighty Andean condor.

Puerto Natales is a popular hub for hikers and adventurers, with many eateries, bars and outdoor shops. Visit the artisan village at Etherh Aike; enjoy a gin tour at the Last Hope Distillery; or stroll the photogenic waterfront.

Puerto Natales & Torres Del Paine Days 7-8

We cruise south along the Chilean coast through the ruggedly beautiful, broken island chains of the fjords of Magallanes Province. Isolated islands and hidden bays create a rich haven for wildlife.

From deck, you can scan for colonies of Magellanic Penguins. If you’re lucky, you might also spot elephant seals and whales. Or you can get hands on in the Science Center and study ice samples under the microscopes.

Your day’s activities will be decided by your Expedition Team. If the conditions are right, we'll take to the water in our small expedition boats for a closer look, or you might join a guided hike on a glacier.

Exploring Chile's fjords

After cruising through the Beagle Channel, we’ll pass the southernmost tip of South America, Cape Horn. Once treacherous for sailors, today we'll round it in comfort. Conditions can still be changeable, but if weather allows, we'll even attempt to land there.

From here, we'll navigate the legendary Drake Passage towards Antarctica. En route, you'll find out what lies ahead and how to make your visit as safe and as sustainable as possible.

In the Science Center, the Expedition Team will give lectures about Antarctica’s animals, history, geology, as well as the impact of climate change and plastic pollution. You can also get involved in our Citizen Science projects.

Rounding Cape Horn Days 10-11

Nothing prepares you for your first sight of Antarctica’s immense, frozen beauty. Icebergs, sculpted by nature, float in the straits. Gentoo and chinstrap penguins court while Adélie penguins nest. Countless seabirds wheel overhead. Nature is in charge.

You’ll spend an exciting seven days busily exploring several of more than 20 possible landing sites, on and around the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands. Wherever we go and whatever we do, each day will offer something different and thrilling.

We might sail into a flooded volcanic caldera or land in icy bays, where remnants of whaling paraphernalia lie abandoned. You may also get a chance to go kayaking among icebergs and seals, or snowshoe to penguin colonies on optional activities.

Bird enthusiasts should look skywards for Antarctic seabirds such as skuas, jaegers, petrels and terns. Through Citizen Science projects and onboard lectures you'll learn more about polar exploration, this precious habitat, and how we can all protect it.

Antarctica: Another World - Days 12-18

After seven days expedition cruising in Antarctica, it’s time to head back. Your mind will be full of lasting sights and sounds – and your camera’s memory cards loaded with impressive images as well.

It’s sad to leave, but recapping your experiences with your Expedition Team and fellow guests brings a pleasure all its own – whether you’re satisfying your curiosity in the Science Center, relaxing in the Explorer Lounge, or sharing a delicious meal as the waves roll by.

You can also unwind from all the excitement with some pampering in our Wellness Centre. Make the most of the sauna, pool and hot tubs too before we arrive in Punta Arenas.

At Sea: Relax and unwind - Days 19-21

Your Antarctica and Patagonia expedition cruise comes to an end in Punta Arenas. You'll catch a flight back to Santiago de Chile, taking with you a wealth of fantastic memories that will no doubt endure.

If you're not ready to end your adventures just yet, why not extend your trip and join our Post-Programme to Easter Island. Enjoy a tour of this UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its mysterious statues of giant heads in Rapa Nui National Park.

Arrival in Punta Arenas
DOWNLOAD ITINERARY PDF

Pricing per person & date

In Depth Antarctica & Patagonia Southbound | MS Fram from USD 9,755
Departing Ending Duration
13 Oct 2023 03 Nov 2023 22

Important Information

    • Transfer in Ushuaia from ship to airport
    • Economy flight from Ushuaia to Buenos Aires
    • A rich program of included activities on all voyages designed to immerse you in the destinations you visit, including ice-cruising and onshore exploration with the Expedition Team. 
    • Professional Englishspeaking Expedition Team  an international handpicked team of highly educated experts of various academic fields with profound knowledge of the region we sail in. 
    • Complimentary wind- and water-resistant jacket.
    • Loan of boots, trekking poles, and equipment needed for optional and included activities. 
    • All meals including beverages (ship beer and wine, sodas and mineral water in all restaurants)
    • Coffee and tea included throughout the day.
    • Early riser and afternoon treat offered in addition to breakfast, lunch and dinner 
    • Gym, hot tubs and panoramic sauna
    • Free Wi-fi on board for all guests. Be aware that we sail in remote areas with limited connection.

     

    Exclusions

    • International flights
    • Travel insurance
    • Luggage handling
    • Optional Excursions and Gratuities
  • 2 (light adventure)
  • Available upon request

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

    All inclusive package contains return flight from Australia/New Zealand to South America as well as additional days prior to and after your departure. Contact us for more information.

     

  • Season and availability

SPEAK TO A SPECIALIST

Sustainability

Chimu Adventures undertakes a number of sustainability measures within its operations including:

1) Only using local guides and office staff to both maximise local employment opportunities and minimise carbon footprints. Local guides also ensure you benefit from the intimate knowledge, passion and culture of the country you’re visiting.

2) Where possible, using locally owned and operated boutique hotels to maximise the return to the local community.

3) Chimu’s “Pass it on” programme has provided funding to hundreds of local community projects in Latin America. Our aim is to empower local communities, helping them to develop their own infrastructure for the future. Since 2006, we have been working with Kiva (a well-known Non-Governmental Organisation), providing hundreds of loans to local businesses all over South America.

4) In our pre tour information we provide a range of tips and advice on how to minimise your impact on both local environments and communities.

5) Chimu Adventures’ offices also take a number of sustainability measures including carbon offsets for company vehicles and most staff travel. Chimu Adventure’s internal processes are also structures to create a paperless office and to reduce waste. There are also internal programmes to help staff minimise their carbon footprint such as our staff bike purchase assistance plan which encourages office staff to commute to work via bicycle. Currently almost half of our office based staff commute to work via bicycle.

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