11 days

Antarctic Explorer: From Buenos Aires 2015 - 2017

Antarctic Explorer: From Buenos Aires 2015 - 2017

Antarctica’s seabirds

The presence of silence in Antarctica

The epic icebergs and landscape of the Antarctic Peninsula

Touring icebergs by kayak

Ushuaia

‘Slicing the silence’, voyage to Antarctica

Argentina's capital Buenos Aires

Whales

South Shetland Islands

Cruise the Beagle Channel

Camping in tents on Antarctica

Light of the Antarctic

Seals

Seals and seabirds of the Beagle Channel

Trip rating
  • This expedition offers the chance to discover the best of the Antarctic Peninsula, the last continent’s most northern region. You’ll be delighted by penguins, seals and whales as they accompany you on your journey along the Antarctic coastline. Landing on the continent itself is a memorable highlight, where you’ll explore the iconic sights that make this one of the world’s most pristine, exotic and unforgettable natural environments.

     

     

    Optional Extra - Sea Kayaking

    Imagine gliding along the surface of a bay in the presence of icebergs and glaciers. Our sea-kayaking adventures are the best way to feel at one with the sea. Taken in small groups of 10-16 people, multiple times per voyage, sea-kayaking adventures are only done during calm weather conditions. Although kayaking is open to all levels of experience, it is essential that participants have some prior experience, including the ability to do a wet exit. Beginners interested in kayaking should first undertake an introductory kayaking course. Regardless of your level of experience, it is advisable to have some recent practice before commencing your voyage so that you are comfortable while kayaking.

     

    Optional Extra - Camping

    Camping is an available option on select departures. The crew will determine the best spot and conditions to undertake this adventure and all equipment is provided. Spend the night under the Antarctic sky with your shipmates. Numbers are limited.

     

    Optional Extra - Snowshoeing

    A novel way to experience the beauty of the polar landscape, and discover remote alcoves and hidden valleys. The rewards of walking atop the snow are well worth the effort, as we're able to visit new places that may be inaccessible on foot. This traditional means of transport across the snow comes from the indigenous people of North America. While you can appreciate a connection with the past, the snowshoes we use today are much lighter and more forgiving than the old wood-weave snowshoes used during the days of the North American fur trade.

     

    Optional Extra - Mountaineering

    Geared towards our fitness–conscious adventurers, mountain climbing in Antarctica is among the most rewarding and addictive of outdoor endeavours. Climbing in Antarctica is a special experience. Our mountaineering adventures are challenging full-day activities that can last up to five hours. You are required to complete a fitness waiver to participate.

     

    Optional Extra - Cross-Country Skiing

    Cross-country skiing is one of the most efficient ways to travel over snow or ice-covered ground. Travel in Antarctica the same way that pioneering explorers like Amundsen and Shackleton did. Each trip takes a few hours, so it is imperative that you are in good physical shape. Ideally, you’ll have cross-country skiing experience to partake in this activity, however exceptions may be made for those deemed physically capable. While the essential gear will be provided, you will be responsible for bringing extras such as additional warm clothing and a pair of good sunglasses.

     

    Optional Extra - Stand-Up Paddleboarding

    Combining surfing with kayaking or canoeing, stand-up paddleboarding gives you a personal and unique perspective on Antarctica. Taken in small groups in good weather conditions on calm bays and harbours, with Zodiac accompaniment, paddleboarding is offered via signup on-board the ship on a first-come, first-served basis.

     

    Included Option - Photography

    Antarctica is one of the most photogenic destinations in the world. Penguins amble across pebbled beaches, whales spy-hop from the blue sea and sparkling icebergs tower in this serene, yet dramatic environment. Whether you own a serious SLR or a simple point-and-shoot, our on-board photography expert provides you with hands-on instruction and technical tips to ensure that you capture the best of your Antarctica experience.

     

    More information about your Adventure Options, including the physical requirements and cost of each option is available by contacting Peregrine. Please note that not every option is available on every departure.

     

    Possible Landings and Wildlife Sightings - Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands

    CUVERVILLE ISLAND

    A gentoo penguin rookery is situated on the north end of the island on a rocky beach. Depending on the time of season you visit, you may see them building nests or attending to their chicks. Giant petrels and kelp gulls also breed on the island.

     

    DAMOY POINT

    If you're lucky enough to mail a postcard in Antarctica, you’ll likely pass through Damoy Point. This is the northern entrance to the harbour on which Port Lockroy is located.

     

    DANCO ISLAND

    This small island, 1.6 km (one mile) in length, is easy to explore and home to gentoo penguins. Visit the marker of a former British Antarctic Survey hut and watch out for a variety of seabirds such as snowy sheathbills, kelp gulls and blue-eyed shags.

     

    ENTERPRISE ISLAND

    Located in Wilhelmina Bay, this island was once used by whalers. A Zodiac cruise around the island passes by a wrecked whaling ship.

     

    LEMAIRE CHANNEL

    This strait runs between Booth Island and the Antarctic Peninsula, and is one of the most scenic locations on the western coast, especially during sunrise and sunset. The 11 km (6.8 mile) channel may become impassable when ice fills the narrow passageway, so we’ll hope for clear waters.

     

    MELCHIOR ISLANDS

    This is a group of low islands in Dallmann Bay, on which you may see male fur seals haul-out at the end of the breeding season to recuperate from their battles for supremacy.

     

    NEKO HARBOUR

    This bay was once used by the floating whale factory ship Neko. You may see some whale vertebrae used by resident gentoo penguins as shelter from the wind. There's an unmanned refuge hut here, erected by Argentina. Climb past the hut and up a steep slope for spectacular views of the glacier-rimmed harbour.

     

    PETERMANN ISLAND

    Here, near the Lemaire Channel, you can stand ashore and see the southernmost breeding colony of gentoo penguins. Adelie penguins, shags and south polar skuas also inhabit the island. The dome of the island rises 200 meters (650 feet) above the sea, offering a challenging hike for panoramic views.

     

    PORT LOCKROY

    Journey to Port Lockroy if weather permits. The harbour is on the west side of Wiencke Island. A secret base was built here during the Second World War as part of Operation Tabarin. It's now designated as a historic site, featuring a museum and the world's southernmost post office. Proceeds from your purchases here support the preservation of historic sites from the Heroic Age of Exploration.

     

    WATERBOAT POINT

    At low tide this historic point is connected to the Antarctic mainland. Zodiacs can be used to explore the area when the tide is in. Two scientists studying penguin behaviour lived in a water boat on the point from 1921-22. The remains of their camp have been designated as an Antarctic historic site.

     

    AITCHO ISLANDS

    This is a group of small islands, some still unnamed, situated in the northern entrance of the English Strait. You can often spot a great mix of wildlife here, including at the established rookeries of gentoo and chinstrap penguins. Southern elephant and fur seals are frequently hauled-out here too.

     

    BAILY HEAD

    Also known as Rancho Point, this area is a rocky headland on the southeastern shore of Deception Island. Chinstrap penguins build nests on slopes leading to a high ridge, which dominates a natural amphitheater and provides a superb setting for landscape photography.

     

    HALF MOON ISLAND

    This crescent-shaped island was known to sealers as early as 1821. Unlike the sealers who liked to keep their best locations secret, we’re happy to bring you ashore on this impressive island. Many Antarctic birds breed here, including chinstrap penguins, shags, Wilson’s storm-petrels, kelp gulls, snowy sheathbills, Antarctic terns and skua.

     

    HANNAH POINT

    Macaroni, chinstrap and gentoo penguin rookeries are located on the point, which is on the south coast of Livingston Island. Due to the rather congested area available to the nesting penguins, you can only visit here from 10 January onwards.

     

    PENDULUM COVE

    Hot geothermal waters are found along the shoreline of this cove, which was named after observations made in 1829 by a British expedition. You may see yellow algae and boiled krill floating on the surface because of the scalding hot water.

     

    PENGUIN ISLAND

    Antarctica has two flowering plants, both of which you can find on Penguin Island: Deschampsia antarctica and Colobanthus quitensis. Chinstrap penguins, fur seals and southern elephant seals use the island for breeding purposes.

     

    ROBERT POINT

    A nice spot for Zodiac cruising, this point was known to sealers as early as 1820. Chinstrap penguins, kelp gulls and pintado breed here, and whales may be seen in the surrounding waters.

     

    TELEFON BAY

    Your expedition team will point out where the most recent evidence of volcanic eruption on Deception Island can be seen.

     

    TURRET POINT

    Chinstrap and Adelie penguin rookeries are found on this point, which is situated on the south coast of King George Island. The beaches are often crowded with southern elephant, fur, and Weddell seals hauled-out on the rocks.

     

    WHALER'S BAY

    To reach Whaler’s Bay, sail through the narrow passage of Neptune’s Bellows. The bay was used by whalers from 1906 to 1931 and is part of a protected harbour created by a circular flooded caldera, known as Deception Island. Along with waddling penguins and lounging seals, you’ll see the rusty remains of whaling operations on the beach. Watch for steam rising from geothermally-heated springs along the shoreline.

     

    YANKEE HARBOUR

    Gentoo penguins have established a rookery on this harbour, which is situated on the southwest side of Greenwich Island. You can also see an abandoned Argentine refuge hut and a huge glacier stretching along the east and north sides of the bay. An abandoned try-pot is all that remains of the sealing activity that brought men thousands of miles to seek their fortune.

     

    IMPORTANT REMINDER: Embracing the unexpected is part of the legacy – and excitement – of expedition travel. When travelling in extremely remote regions, your expedition staff must allow the sea, ice and weather conditions to guide your route and itinerary details. The above is a tentative outline of what you might experience on this voyage; please be aware that no specific itinerary can be guaranteed.

     

     

    Why we love it

    • Journey through the historic Beagle Channel, looking out for rare birdlife from deck with the help of your expedition team
    • Get up close to an incredible range of wildlife, such as minke, humpback and orca whales or gentoo, Adelie and chinstrap penguins
    • Few people ever get the opportunity to set foot on the Great White Continent, but you'll be one of them
    • A diversity of possible landing sites and activities allows you to see the spectacular Antarctic Peninsula from multiple perspectives
    • Optional activities such as sea kayaking or polar ice camping can take your adventure to the next level. Book early, as these sell out fast
    • A polar plunge in the Antarctic sea is the most invigorating swim you're ever likely to take

    Itinerary

    Day 1 - Buenos Aires, Argentina

    • Welcome to Argentina. Transfer from the airport to the hotel and begin your Antarctic Explorer adventure with an overnight stay in Buenos Aires. Meet your leader and shipmates for a welcome meeting this evening at the hotel. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask reception where it will take place. We'll be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so ensure you bring these details to provide to your leader. If you're going to be late, please inform hotel reception.
    • If you have time during the day, explore the boulevards, galleries and European architecture of Buenos Aires. In the evening, you may like to head out for a steak dinner with your new travel companions.
    • Notes: A transfer from Buenos Aires airport to the hotel is not included, and neither are any meals. If you arrive earlier or wish to extend your stay and need accommodation, please ask Peregrine or your agent for details and costs.

    Day 2 - Ushuaia - Embarkation Day

    • In the morning take a private charter flight from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia, which should take around three hours. On arrival, explore the town before meeting your shipmates for embarkation. Cruise through the Beagle Channel, which transects the Tierra del Fuego archipelago. The channel is rich with birdlife, so keep an eye out for penguins, cormorants, petrels and black-browed albatross. Members of the expedition team will help you spot wildlife from the deck.
    Breakfast | Dinner

    Day 3-4 - Crossing the Drake Passage

    • Sail into the Drake Passage. This wide channel separates the bottom of South America from the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, and was named after the English explorer, Sir Frances Drake. We hope for smooth sailing through the waterway, but be prepared for possible rough seas. On-board presentations and safety briefings by the expedition team will provide you with an insight into the locations you'll be visiting.
    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 5-8 - South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula

    • Welcome to the Antarctic Peninsula. The next few days form the core of your Antarctic adventure, as you take regular Zodiac excursions from the ship to explore different bays, channels and landing sites each day. Visit penguin rookeries, scout for humpback and minke whales and search for a number of the southern seal species, including the cunning leopard seal.
    • Let the majesty of the Peninsula’s mountains enchant you as you scramble up snowy pathways to vantage points offering 360° views of your surroundings. At Orne Harbour, you might visit a chinstrap penguin colony high up on a ridge or go for a mountain hike. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, take a 'polar plunge' in the icy waters of Neko Harbour. Changing conditions mean that each voyage is different, but your expedition team will make the most of whatever conditions occur to ensure you have a truly fulfilling trip.
    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 9-10 - Drake Passage

    • Wind down your Antarctic adventure with a voyage back across the Drake Passage. This is another great opportunity to look out for wildlife from the deck with a hot drink in your hand. You will also be able to attend more presentations by onboard experts focusing on the history and wildlife of the Antarctic region.
    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 11 - Disembarkation in Ushuaia and fly to Buenos Aires, Argentina

    • This morning arrive into Ushuaia where your cruise comes to an end. After a shipboard breakfast and a short excursion to Tierra del Fuego National Park, you'll be transferred to the airport for your charter flight back to Buenos Aires. As the flight will arrive into Buenos Aires at approximately 5 pm, we recommend that you book your onward flights only after 8 pm in case of possible delays.
    Breakfast
  • What to Know

    What's Included

    • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board throughout your voyage.
    • All shore landings according to the daily program.
    • Leadership throughout the voyage by our experienced expedition leader, including shore landings and other activities.
    • All Zodiac transfers and cruising according to the daily program.
    • Formal and informal presentations by our expedition team and guest speakers as scheduled.
    • Downloadable photographic journal documenting the voyage.
    • A pair of waterproof expedition boots on loan for shore landings.
    • An expeditions parka to keep.
    • Coffee, tea and cocoa available around the clock.
    • Hair dryer and bathrobes in every cabin.
    • Comprehensive pre-departure materials including an informative Antarctic Reader.
    • All luggage handling aboard ship.
    • Emergency evacuation insurance for all passengers to a maximum benefit of US$100,000 per person.
    • One night pre-voyage hotel accommodation with breakfast in Buenos Aires as indicated in the itinerary.
    • Group transfer from Buenos Aires hotel to the airport.
    • Return charter flights from Buenos Aires (EZE) to Ushuaia (USH).
    • Group transfer from Ushuaia Airport to the ship on embarkation day.
    • Group transfer from the ship to Ushuaia Airport on disembarkation.
    • Excursion to Tierra del Fuego National Park on disembarkation day.

    Not Included

    • Any airfare unless otherwise specified in the itinerary.
    • Passport and visa expenses.
    • Government arrival and departure taxes.
    • Any meals ashore with the exception of breakfast at the joining hotel before embarkation.
    • Baggage, cancellation and medical travel insurance.
    • Excess baggage charges.
    • Laundry, bar, beverage and other personal charges unless specified.
    • Telecommunications charges.
    • The voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for shipboard staff and crew.
    • Airport arrival transfer in Buenos Aires on Day 1.
    • Compulsory waterproof pants for zodiac cruising.

    Safety Information

    Safety is paramount on a Peregrine voyage. Due to new International Security Regulations, you will not be able to approach the ship on your own. You will have to arrive with the rest of the group, accompanied by a Peregrine representative. Full details of embarkation/disembarkation procedures will be supplied with your final documentation. On board you will be asked to participate in the obligatory lifeboat drill. We will also conduct important briefings on landing procedures and Zodiac operations.

    All ships operating in Polar waters must comply with a variety of regulations, codes and industry standards.  All our ships adhere to regulations set by IMO (International Maritime Organisation) including ISM Code (Safety Management System), ISPS Code (for ship and port security), SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) and MARPOL (Maritime Pollution Prevention).  IN addition, Quark Expeditions is a full member of IAATO (International Association of Antarctic Tour Operators) and a full member of AECO (Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators).

    Quark Expeditions have also been externally audited for it's health and safety programme and have been awarded the British Standard BS8848, the only expedition cruise company to have this accreditation.

    PETTY THEFT AND PERSONAL SAFETY - BUENOS AIRES

    Wile travelling, there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities.  We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares.  Be particularly vigilant on public transport.  Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair or on the floor and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.

  • Our Ships

    Ocean Endeavour

    Ocean Endeavour

    Welcome to the Ocean Endeavour

    Departure Dates for the Ocean Endeavour

  • From our Blog

    Ride the rainbow: five of South America's most colourful destinations

    You’d need a pretty extensive colour wheel to capture the full spectrum of South America. The continent tends to manifest its passion and bravado in visible ways. 

    There’s that flash of Quechua pink and purple in Peru, a swirl of Argentine crimson or the eye-popping glitter of Rio’s...

    Read on...

    Snow, serenity or survival: what's Antarctica really like?

    Every traveller has a different sense of value, but I am confident that not a single one who has returned from Antarctica would ever question whether it was worth it. And what with it being the 100 year anniversary of Ernest Shackleton’s incredible feat of survival, there’s surely no better time...

    Read on...

    Photography tips for Antarctica: Part 2

    This is Part 2 of Peter Lemon's blog about photography in Antarctica. Read Part 1 here.

    There can be stunning photo opportunities in Antarctica – massive icebergs and glaciers below skies of wonderful colours and variations and huge penguin rookeries with their extraordinary levels of activity and...

    Read on...

    Image of the week: Antarctica

    White noise

    The silence in Antarctica is deafening. Confused? You’ll understand once you’ve been there. It’s something to do with the wide open spaces and all that white. You’ll get a shiver up your spine the first time you hear an iceberg calving – and again every...

    Read on...

    Inside knowledge: A travel expert tells all

    Glenyce Johnson is the Managing Director of Peregrine, and she's also one of our most passionate travellers. Glenyce has been to over 100 countries, and her next big challenge will be to tackle the Camino Trail in Spain next year.

    I sat down to chat with Glenyce and was swept up in her world of...

    Read on...
From US $6295
*Per Person

Select a trip date below

Trip Start Dates
Trip Duration
Guaranteed Departure Start Date
Trip Selected:
Price: US $
Start:
End:
Discount price: US $

*Please note: To receive the discounted price for this departure, please enter the Promo Code at Step 4 of the booking form.

No Code available
View all departures

Trip at a glance

Trip Code PPBU15
Start City: Buenos Aires
End City: Buenos Aires
Style: Polar

Contact an expert

855-832-4859We'll call you

Simply enter your details and we'll call you back within the next business day.