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Antarctic Express - Fly South 2014-15

Trip Length

Trip Code

9 days PPFS14

Countries Visited

Antarctica, Argentina, Chile

Start City

End City

Punta Arenas Ushuaia
Antarctic Express - Fly South 2014-15

This Peregrine journey takes us to one of the world's most awe-inspiring destinations. The journey starts from Punta Arenas where the group meets and flies south to King George Island avoiding the Drake Passage. You will then board the vessel and after making shore visits on our way through the South Shetland Islands we arrive at the Antarctic Peninsula, on the continent of Antarctica, to be immediately dazzled by perhaps the most dramatic scenery to be found anywhere on earth. Sailing aboard our well-appointed expedition vessel, we witness Antarctic nature in all its glory. These areas boast an extraordinary abundance of wildlife, including five species of seals and massive rookeries of gentoo, Adelie and chinstrap penguins as well as a profusion of seabirds ranging from albatross to skuas. Another wildlife highlight may well be observing a variety of magnificent whales in close proximity as they crest the surface of the waves. On the 'White Continent', we also see remarkable landscapes of ice.

Weather, ice and other mitigating factors may result in changes to our itinerary and alteration to certain shore excursions.

Antarctic Express - Fly South 2014-15


Day to Day Itinerary

Day 1: Punta Arenas, Chile

Meals included: 1 dinner

Make your way to Punta Arenas, Chile. The city is situated at the tip of South America, on the north bank of the Strait of Magellan. Please arrive in the early afternoon. Quark Expeditions will transfer the group to a local hotel to spend the night. After an informative briefing, enjoy a welcome dinner with your traveling companions. Arrival Transfers:Please note an arrival transfer from the airport is included in your voyage fare. Full details will be sent with your final joining instructions. Accommodation: 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: Embarkation Day - Punta Arenas & King George Island

Meals included: 1 breakfast, 1 lunch, 1 dinner

A quick flight of less than 4 hours from Punta Arenas lands on King George Island in the South Shetlands. En route, from your bird's eye view, bid the Drake Passage a fond Bon Voyage. You've saved time and worry by choosing this Antarctic Express expedition. After exploring that portion of the island where the Chilean Research Base, Presidente Eduardo Frei Montalva and the Russian Base, Bellingshausen, are located, you are transferred to the ship by Zodiac. By late afternoon, you will have embarked on your Antarctic adventure.

PLEASE NOTE: Luggage allowance is 15kg checked baggage plus 5kg carry on.

Day 3-5: Antarctic Peninsula & South Shetland Islands

Meals included: 3 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners

Deception Island, Paradise Harbour and Gerlache Strait … these are the names that conjure iconic images of the Antarctic Peninsula: towering glacier-capped mountains rising from a brilliant blue sea, dotted with ice floes. You’ll visit penguin colonies, listen for calving glaciers, and visit historic sites and research stations. The included parka is perfect attire for the changeable Peninsula weather. Pack waterproof pants, binoculars and a camera, too. Photo opportunities abound in Antarctica. Changing conditions mean each expedition is different, and your Expedition Team will make the most of whatever weather, ice or wildlife conditions present themselves to make sure you have an unforgettable visit. Here are just a few of the things you might find yourself doing:

• Sitting quietly on a pebbled beach, waiting for a curious penguin chick to approach

• Taking a "polar plunge" in the icy waters of Neko Harbour

• Listening to the boom and crack of a calving glacier near Petermann Island

• Zodiac cruising among majestic icebergs in Pleneau Bay, or past rocky beachheads crowded with fur and elephant seals

• Scrambling to the top of a craggy hill for an unforgettable view of Port Lockroy

• Watching in awe as humpback, Minke and other whales breach or spyhop right before your eyes

Day 6-7: Crossing the Drake Passage

Meals included: 2 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners

The Drake is legendary for its high winds and rolling seas, but you may in fact get calm weather. No matter the condition, you will benefit from having developed your sea legs in the preceding days during your visit to Antarctica. Our Expedition Teams will available on deck, on the ship’s bridge to help you spot the majestic wondering albatross and a number of whale species. A series of illustrated and engaging presentations on subjects such as marine biology, polar history, and glaciology will be delivered as part of our shipboard education program.

Day 8: Disembarkation - Ushuaia, Argentina

Meals included: 1 breakfast

After a final breakfast aboard the ship, say goodbye to your crew as we disembark in Ushuaia. We’ll transfer you to the hotel (included) to check in and then you’ll have a chance to explore the town on your own to shop, sightseeing and sample some Argentinian cuisine.

Day 9: Ushuaia

Check out of your hotel and depart for home to share your unforgettable memories with your friends and family.


Your Trip

What's Included

Transport

Non-included Meals

Some meals are included on your trip (except for North America trips - please refer to your day-to-day itinerary). However, sometimes we think you'll benefit from getting out and discovering the local cuisine. So when a meal is not included, it's a great opportunity to try something new. For group trips, ask your leader for tips on where to get the best meal, or you might decide to dine out as a group and experience the fun together.

Not Included


What to know

Vaccinations

Vaccinations may be required for this trip. Please talk to your doctor about the up-to-date information for this region.  We're travel experts, not doctors and defer to the medicos when it comes to inoculations.

Visas and Permits

Please ensure that you have all required visas for your trip – this is your responsibility. Rules and regulations governing the issuance of visas are constantly changing, and vary for different nationalities and you should check visa requirements with your travel agent or relevant consular authority well before travel.

Antarctica
No visas are required to visit the Antarctic continent or its offshore islands. However, you will need to have your passport with you on the ship, as port authorities will wish to inspect passports on departure from Ushuaia or Punta Arenas and also again at the end of your voyage. To facilitate matters, our ground operators in Ushuaia or Punta Arenas will usually collect your passport prior to departure in order that all passengers’ passports may be kept together for the duration of the voyage. After completion of port formalities on the return to Ushuaia or Punta Arenas, they will be handed back to you prior to your disembarkation from the ship. For most departures, your ship departs for the Antarctic continent from the port of Ushuaia, the world’s southernmost city, at the southern tip of Argentina. At the time of printing, no visas for Argentina are required by holders of Australian, New Zealand, British, Canadian, U.S.A. or European passports. Passengers holding passports issued by other countries should carefully check the situation with their travel agent or Argentinean consular authorities. For Fly/Cruise itineraries departing from Punta Arenas (Chile) or if your flight to Ushuaia travels via Santiago, tourist visas are required for Chile for some nationalities. Please check with your travel agent. For the voyages scheduled to visit the Falkland Islands, visitors from Britain, the Commonwealth, North America, Chile and the European Community do not need visas as at the time of printing. Visitors should check their particular situation with us, their travel agent, the nearest British Consulate, or contact the Travel Co-ordinator at the Falkland Island Government Office in London (tel: 020 7222 2375).

Argentina
IMPORTANT: Australians, Americans, British, Canadians and New Zealanders, do not currently require a visa for Argentina. For all other nationalities please reconfirm your visa requirements with your travel agent. Please note that when entering Argentine Territory, the following citizens must pay a "reciprocity fee": Australians USD100, Canadians USD75 and Americans USD160. The fee will be valid for multiple re-entries within a period of one year as of the date of first entry. Payment must be made entirely ONLINE and fees can no longer be paid on arrival at any airport. This fee also needs to be paid online if you are crossing the border into Argentina by land. This price is subject to change and the price on the below website will have the up to date costs.

How to pay the reciprocity fee online:
• Visit www.migraciones.gov.ar or www.provinciapagos.com.ar and register to start the process
• Fill out the form with the corresponding personal and credit card information
• Print the payment receipt
• Present the printed receipt at Immigration Control on arrival in Argentina. The receipt will be scanned by the Immigration officials, the information will be checked, and entry to the country will be registered

Chile

Australians, Americans, Canadians, New Zealanders or British do not currently require a visa for Chile. For all other nationalities please reconfirm your visa requirements with your travel agent. If you are entering Chile at Santiago International Airport as a tourist, some nationalities are required to pay a reciprocity fee (Australians US$95, Canadians US$132, Americans US$140). The fee does not apply to travellers arriving at other airports or entering the country via land borders.

Insurance

You are required to have travel insurance before heading off on a Peregrine trip. Insurance can be organised by your Peregrine representative or your travel agent.

Responsible Travel

Our Responsible Travel ethos is at the heart of everything we do, from getting the basics right like respecting local cultures and the environment, to initiating projects that make positive contributions to communities, to our staff’s fundraising efforts and offsetting our carbon emissions.
Please visit our Responsible Travel (http://www.peregrineadventures.com/rt) page for more information.

Customs and Culture

Our Pre Departure Information or Travel Dossier (provided upon booking a trip) provides tips on how you can show respect for the local customs and culture in the country you are travelling in. Your leader will also help steer you though the complexities of local cultural norms.

Pre Departure Information
The information listed above is a brief description of some things you may need to consider when booking a trip. Once a tour is booked you will be provided with a link to your Travel Dossier which will contain detailed Pre Departure information.

Further Reading

Antarctica

1912: The Year the World Discovered Antarctica - Chris Turney:  To the Ends of the Earth: the Transglobal Expedition - Ranulph Feinnes:  Scott and Amundsen - Roland Huntford:  Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage - Alfred Lansing

Argentina

On Heroes and Tombs-E Sabato Kiss of the Spider Woman-M Puig Argentina: A City and a Nation-J Scobie Gaucho’s and the Vanishing Frontier-R Slatta Peron & the Enigma of Argentina-T Martinez

Chile

Crisis in Allende’s Chile-E Kaufman The Pinochet Decade-P O’Brien & J Roddick


Important Information

These Trip Notes should be read in conjunction with Peregrine’s Antarctica pre-departure information that is provided to you shortly after booking (or which can be requested prior to booking).

1. Budgeting: in addition to funds for onboard expenses, it is sometimes possible to purchase souvenirs such as books, t-shirts, stamps, postcards, windcheaters, caps and similar items at some of the research stations in the Antarctic Peninsula area. Mail can sometimes be posted from these stations as well. Transactions are usually in US dollars cash.

2. Clothes: please read our Antarctic pre-departure information carefully. Although you don’t need to make expensive, specialist-clothing purchases for this trip, you will need clothes that adequately protect against cold and wet conditions. (Sea spray is common on board Zodiacs). It is recommended that you have warm, waterproof clothing available for use upon arrival in Ushuaia, to protect yourself against the inclement weather.

3. Motion sickness: the waters of the Drake Passage can be some of the roughest seas in the world, although at other times they are so smooth that it is referred to as the 'Drake Lake'! Although our vessels are among the most stable ships in their class, we will still inevitably encounter motion. Unless you are certain you are impervious to the problem, you should take precautions against seasickness. Your doctor can advise you as to the best methods for avoiding this uncomfortable condition.

4. Gratuities: we suggest you allow the equivalent of US$11-13 a day for gratuities for the crew and expedition staff. This is usually collected just prior to the end of the cruise. If you wish, the amount can be paid by Visa or MasterCard.

5. Sea kayaking: there are separate Trip Notes for the sea kayaking option. Please note that this option must be booked prior to your departure from home and it cannot be booked on the ship. Some prior experience is required.

6. Camping: if you chose to camp on the continent, we’ll provide all the required gear such as tents or bivouac (or 'bivy') sacs and sleeping bags. This excursion is managed with strict environmental regulations - a portable toilet is used and absolutely everything is transported back to the ship afterwards. Please note that this option must be booked prior to your departure from home, it cannot be booked on the ship. Spaces are limited.

Peregrine Voyage Documentation
Once you have booked your voyage to the Polar regions with Peregrine, you will be required to complete a series of online forms. You will be sent a link via email (my polar forms) which will take you to an enrolment form, cruise contract, medical form, arrival/departure information form and expedition parka size order form. These forms must be completed.

Argentinean Reciprocity Fee (visitor visa)

This will now be done entirely ONLINE, effective October 31, 2012.

The rates are USD160 for Americans, USD100 for Australians and USD75 for Canadians, for single entry.

How to pay the reciprocity fee online:
• Visit www.migraciones.gov.ar or www.provinciapagos.com.ar and register to start the process
• Fill out the form with the corresponding personal and credit card information
• Print the payment receipt
• Present the printed receipt at Immigration Control on arrival in Argentia. The receipt will be scanned by the Immigration officials, the information will be checked, and entry to the country will be registered

Contingency Plan for 2012-2014 Antarctic Express (Fly South & North and Cruise South, Fly North) Programs.

Quark Expeditions will make every effort to ensure the Antarctica Express programs takes place, but due to weather conditions, flying in this region can be difficult and is beyond the control of Quark Expeditions. We strongly recommend that all expedition guests purchase a travel insurance policy including trip delay, cancellation and interruption insurance. Please ask your Polar Travel Advisor about travel Insurance.
In the unlikely event that the charter flight is unable to fly on Day 2 due to weather delays, Quark Expeditions will provide an additional night hotel accommodation in Punta Arenas and a ½ day tour.
On Day 3 should the charter flight not be able to take off by 1400hrs, Quark Expeditions will officially cancel the voyage and provide letters for all clients to submit to their travel insurance providers under trip delay/Interruption and cancellation clause.

QUARK AND PEREGRINE EXPEDITIONS WILL NOT OFFER PASSENGERS A REFUND IN THE EVENT OF TRIP CANCELLATION. QUARK EXPEDITIONS WILL NOT OFFER PASSENGERS COMPENSATION IN THE EVENT OF A DELAY.

IF THE CHARTER FLIGHT IS NOT ABLE TO TAKE OFF BY 1400 HRS ON DAY 3. Quark Expeditions will make every effort to assist passengers with rebooking hotels or flights, but this will be at the cost of the passengers, and Quark Expeditions strongly recommends that all clients contact their insurance provider prior to changing any reservations.

Passengers on board the ship during these delays will remain on board with no additional cost until the time the charter flight is able to operate. Quark Expeditions advises all clients to book changeable airlines tickets along with cancellation and interruption insurance to assist with additional airline change fees. We advise all passengers to have flexible travel arrangements upon disembarkation of the voyage if delays arise. Quark Expeditions will not be held responsible for any change/cancellations fees due to weather related delays or any other delays arising from force majeure.

About this Information

The information provided here is given in good faith and has been compiled with all reasonable care. However, things change and some of the information may become out of date. Please keep this in mind when you read it and check with us if you want to be sure about something. The document was correct at time of printing, but you can check online for the most up to date version.  If you have any queries, please contact your travel agent or our staff in Australia. We are here to help you!

Last Updated

6 January 2014


General Contact Details

Peregrine AdventuresPhone: 1-800-663-5132
E-mail: sales@peregrineadventures.com
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