20 days

Antarctic Peninsula, Falkland Islands & South Georgia

Antarctic Peninsula, Falkland Islands & South Georgia

Antarctica’s seabirds

Cruise the Beagle Channel

The albatross; bird-watching in the Falklands

‘Slicing the silence’, voyage to Antarctica

Light of the Antarctic

Shackleton

The king penguins of Salisbury plains

Shop for fine wool in Stanley

The rolling hills ‘camp’ of the Falklands

Whales

Ushuaia

The breeding grounds of South Georgia

South Shetland Islands

Seals and seabirds of the Beagle Channel

The epic icebergs and landscape of the Antarctic Peninsula

The presence of silence in Antarctica

Touring icebergs by kayak

Seals

The grave of Shackleton

Trip rating
  • This extended expedition encompasses the wildlife paradise of South Georgia, the remote Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas), as well as the extraordinary beauty of the Antarctic Peninsula. You’ll experience a great diversity of environments and landscapes, which will provide unprecedented wildlife viewing opportunities. Join us for the quintessential Antarctic experience for polar travellers!

     

    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 practise before commencing your voyage so that you are comfortable while kayaking.

    Optional Extra - Camping

    Camping is an option available on select departures.  The crew will determine the best spot and best conditions to undertake this adventure and all equipment is provided.  You will spend the night under the Antarctic sky with your intrepid 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’ll be 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.

    More information about your Adventure Options, including 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 - Falkland Islands

    CARCASS ISLAND

    The 5 mile (8 km) island northwest of West Falkland is owned by Rob and Lorraine McGill. It is a  picturesque island, where songbirds nest amongst the luxuriant growth that covers the gently rolling landscape. The island is named for a Royal Navy ship, HMS Carcass, which arrived in 1766.

    NEW ISLAND

    The most southwesterly island in the archipelago is about 8 miles (13 km) long and half a mile (800 m) wide. The western side of the island is a cliff 600 feet (183 m) high, while the eastern side slopes to the sea. The ownership of the island is held by Tony Chater and Ian Strange. Both men have turned their portion of the island into nature reserves.

    STANLEY

    The deep-water harbor of Stanley was the economic mainstay of the community since the Port’s  completion in 1845. Sailing ships damaged while rounding Cape Horn called in for expensive repairs. The questionable vessels used to carry fortune seekers to the gold fields of California and Australia often called at Stanley as well. Stanley is as lively as it gets in the Falklands (Malvinas) and the future of the  port may be bright if hydrocarbon deposits off the coast prove to be abundant.

    WEST POINT ISLAND

    The Napier family has owned the island since the 1860s. Black-browed albatrosses nest in colonies on  cliffs along the water’s edge on the western side of the island. Rockhopper penguins share the cliffs, while Commerson’s dolphins are often seen in the water surrounding the island.

    Possible Landings and Wildlife Sightings - South Georgia

    DRYGALSKI FJORD

    This is a photogenic and dramatic fjord, with sharp and jagged peaks rising out of the sea. Glaciation  never reached the peaks of this fjord, giving it a unique landscape.

    GOLD HARBOUR

    The backdrop to this harbor is the hanging Bertrab Glacier. King and gentoo penguins call this home, as  do rowdy elephant and fur seals.

    GRYTVIKEN

    Only a handful of people live, albeit temporarily, on South Georgia, a United Kingdom overseas territory. Two of them are curators of the South Georgia Museum, located in the former whaling station manager’s villa. The church was built for the whaling community and is the only building in Grytviken that is still used for its original purpose.

    PRION ISLAND

    Robert Cushman Murphy named this island for the species of petrels seen on the island. Birders will be  pleased to know that wandering albatross are also known to nest on the island.

    SALISBURY PLAIN

    One of the largest king penguin rookeries on the island is located on Salisbury Plain. The Murphy and  Lucas Glaciers flank the plain, creating a perfect backdrop for photographers.

    ST. ANDREW'S BAY

    Thousands of breeding pairs of king penguin nest at St. Andrew’s Bay. It is the largest king penguin  rookery on South Georgia and is a wildlife spectacle to behold. Reindeer introduced by Norwegian whalers are known to feed on the grass in the area.

    STROMNESS

    This abandoned whaling station was in full operation the day that Ernest Shackleton and his companions  staggered in after a 36-hour trek across the island. There is a small cemetery here, with the graves of 14 whalers.

     

    Possible Landings and Wildlife Sightings - Antarctic Peninsula

    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 arrive, you may see them building nests or attending to their chicks. Giant petrels and kelp gulls breed on the island.

    DAMOY POINT

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

    DANCO ISLAND

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

    ENTERPRISE ISLAND

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

    LEMAIRE CHANNEL

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

    MELCHIOR ISLANDS

    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

    Little evidence remains that this bay was once used by the floating whale factory ship Neko. You might  see some whale vertebrae used by resident gentoo penguins as shelter from the wind. There is 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. The dome of the island rises 650 feet (200 meters) above the sea, offering a challenging hike for panoramic views. Adélie penguins, shags and south polar skuas also inhabit the island.

    PORT LOCKROY

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

    WATERBOAT POINT

    Of historic interest, you may venture to this unique point, which at low tide is connected to the Antarctic mainland. Zodiacs are used to explore the area when the tide is in. Two scientists studying penguin behavior lived in a water boat on the Point from 1921-22. The remains of their camp have been designated an Antarctic historic site.

    AITCHO ISLANDS

    This is a group of small islands, some still unnamed, situated in the northern entrance of English Strait. You can often spot a great mix of wildlife here, with gentoo and chinstrap penguins having established rookeries. 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 that dominates the 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 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 January 10 onwards.

    PENDULUM COVE

    Hot geothermal waters are found along the shoreline of this cove, named for 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 be happy to point out that it is here where the most recent evidence of volcanic eruption on Deception Island can be seen.

    TURRET POINT

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

    WHALER'S BAY

    To reach Whaler’s Bay it is necessary to sail through a narrow passage called 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 rusting remains of whaling operations on the beach. Watch for steam that may rise from geothermally heated water springs along the shoreline.

    YANKEE HARBOUR

    Gentoo penguins have established a rookery on this harbour, situated on the southwest side of Greenwich Island. Here you can see an abandoned Argentine refuge hut and a large glacier that stretches along the east and north sides of the bay. An abandoned sealing try pot is all that remains of the activity that brought men thousands of miles in tall ships to seek their fortune.

    Important reminder: Embracing the unexpected is part of the legacy – and excitement – of expedition travel. There are no guarantees that we can achieve everything we set out to accomplish. A measure of flexibility is something all of us must bring to a voyage.

    Itinerary

    Day 1 - Ushuaia, Argentina

    Your gateway for this expedition is Ushuaia, Argentina. Nestled within the Tierra del Fuego archipelago, Ushuaia offers you a small-town feel but has many shops, museums, cafes and restaurants to enjoy before your voyage. If you’re feeling adventurous, the nearby national park and Martial Glacier offer plenty of hiking and outdoor activities.

    Arrival Transfers: Please note an arrival transfer from the airport on Day 1 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 - Ushuaia - Embarkation Day

    Embarkation will occur in the late afternoon, after which the vessel will sail down the historic Beagle Channel. This historic channel transects the Tierra del Fuego archipelago in the extreme south of South America. Historic visitors who have traversed this channel include Charles Darwin, who journeyed through this region in the famous HMS Beagle. As we continue south, travellers will keep watch on deck for seabirds, seals and dolphins that can approach the vessel.

    Breakfast | Dinner

    Day 3 - At Sea

    As we sail to the northeast we have the chance to enjoy a series of presentations that include talks on wildlife, ice and polar history, which will undoubtedly create enormous anticipation for our upcoming adventures. On deck the first sightings of albatross and petrels are likely to add to our sense of excitement, whilst our team of experts will be on hand to help us spot whales and identify the various other seabirds. There are many activities to keep you engaged while you are at sea. You will be prepped on safety procedures for your Zodiac cruises and shore landings. You’ll also be given instructions for getting the most out of your optional kayaking adventures, a truly intimate way to experience Antarctica.

    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 4-5 - Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)

    Upon arrival in this archipelago your cameras will get their first real workout capturing the abundant wildlife and the rugged feel of the Falklands (Malvinas). The archipelago contains two main islands - East and West, which we will explore by Zodiac excursions and daily landings.
    Port Stanley is often a favourite landing site as the town offers a unique British outpost feel to it, complete with a bit of a ramshackle charm. You’ll be free to explore the town, grab a pint at the local pub or visit the numerous churches and museums.
    In terms of wildlife, the archipelago is home to Magellanic, gentoo and rockhopper penguins. If lucky, you may even spot king penguins here as well! You can expect to see black-browed albatross and two endemic bird species - Cobb’s wren and the Falkland’s flightless steamer duck.

    Your team of lecturers and specialists will be sure to educate you on the local flora and fauna so that you get the most out of your time in the Falklands.

    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 6-7 - At Sea

    Leaving the Falklands, our journey continues southeast towards the island of South Georgia. We have a chance to learn more about Antarctic conservation as well as the fascinating history of the area, as our on-board presentations continue. Of course, there is ample time to scan the seascape from the top deck in search of marine mammals and seabirds.

    Sailing south, you’ll officially enter Antarctic waters by crossing the invisible biological boundary called the Antarctic Convergence. Encircling the continent, cold Antarctic waters meet and mix with the warmer waters of the Indian, Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, creating the abundance of krill and marine life that attracts whales and seals to this part of the world. Expedition staff will be sure to keep you posted when you cross this invisible, yet important line.

    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 8-11 - South Georgia

    This remote outpost was a popular stop for many historic Antarctic expeditions and was once a haven for hunting whales and elephant and fur seals. Today, South Georgia Island wildlife populations have rebounded, but you’ll still see remnants of those old whaling stations and other abandoned outposts.

    One significant and historic site that will be of interest is the grave of the great explorer, Sir Ernest Shackleton. You can visit his grave at the settlement of Grytviken, which is also home to an old whaling station, a museum, gift shop, church and a research station of approximately 20 scientists and support personnel.

    While South Georgia’s history is an important attraction to the islands, it is the wildlife on South Georgia that you and your shipmates will surely find most captivating. Often referred to as the 'Galapagos of the Poles', each landing you make on South Georgia will open your eyes to a new wonder of wildlife.

    One day you may see rookeries with a hundred thousand pairs of king penguins waddling on the beach. The next day you may visit another beach with thousands of fur or elephant seals. The grasses, mountains and beaches of South Georgia all play an important role in the breeding and survival of different species on the island, this fragile and symbiotic relationship is something that your expedition team will share with you during your time here.

    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 12-13 - At Sea

    Say goodbye to the king penguins, as your next destination is Antarctica! Your days at sea are filled with seminars from your expedition team, who will prepare you for the wildlife that will be greeting you upon your arrival. In between presentations, spend time chatting with your shipmates over a drink at the bar. If conditions allow, we may attempt landfall on the South Orkney Islands, which are officially in Antarctica.

    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 14-17 - South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula

    The most common reaction to arriving at the white continent is a sense of reverence and awe. The experience is hard to put into words, as few places are as untouched, unique and enduring as Antarctica. You will discover that Antarctica is a land of extremes. At one moment you’ll be overcome with a feeling of complete desolation and silence, at the next moment you’ll be inspired by nature as a calving glacier crashes into the brilliant blue sea or a penguin comes waddling by to inspect your footwear.

    Your expedition team will take care of you at each landing, whether it is trekking up a glacier, visiting a research station or consorting with penguin colonies. Chinstrap, Adélie and gentoo penguins are found here, along with Weddell, fur, crabeater and leopard seals. Curious whales, such as minkes, are often attracted to Zodiacs as well, giving you a chance to get within reaching distance of these majestic animals. Each day and every landing will present a new collection of creatures to entertain you and keep your camera shutter busy.

    As exciting as the Zodiac excursions and landings are, perhaps you’ll treat yourself to an extra special Antarctic experience by partaking in an optional (at extra cost) kayaking excursion or going for a swim in Antarctic waters!

    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 18-19 - Crossing the Drake Passage

    After more than two weeks of endless wildlife encounters, your journey home begins. Crossing the Drake Passage is your unofficial rite of passage, completing your Antarctic adventure.

    Enjoy some final moments mingling with your fellow travellers. The noisy, busy, populated world awaits your return, so savour the silence of the sea as long as you can.

    Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 20 - Disembarkation in Ushuaia, Argentina

    After breakfast aboard the ship we arrive back in Ushuaia, travellers are transferred to the airport for the homeward flight. Please do not book flights before 12.00pm.

    Transfers: If you are extending your stay and would like a transfer from your Ushuaia hotel to Ushuaia Airport, please contact Peregrine or your agent.

    Breakfast
  • What to Know

    What's Included

    • One night pre-expedition hotel accommodation with breakfast in Ushuaia as indicated in the itinerary.
    • Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping.
    • 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.
    • All Zodiac transfers and cruising according 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.
    • A waterproof 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 miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program.
    • All luggage handling aboard ship.
    • Emergency evacuation insurance for all passengers to a maximum benefit of US$100,000 per person.
    • Group transfers in Ushuaia from the airport to any local hotel. Day 1 or the day before, only.
    • Group transfers from a designated location in Ushuaia to the ship on embarkation day.
    • A group transfer upon disembarkation in Ushuaia from the ship to the local airport.

    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.
    • Telecommunications charges.
    • The voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for shipboard staff and crew.
    • Compulsory Waterproof pants for zodiac landings.

    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.

  • Our Ships

    Ocean Diamond

    Ocean Diamond

    Sail aboard the Ocean Diamond, a modern, stable super-yacht and experience Quark's Antarctica. Carrying a maximum of 189 passengers, this outstanding vessel features numerous adventure options plus onboard amenities such as a massage and wellness program and a well-stocked polar library. The Ocean Diamond is staffed with experienced captains, officers, expedition leaders, and guides.

    Departure Dates for the Ocean Diamond

    • 22 Nov 2015 - 11 Dec 2015
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Trip at a glance

Trip Code PPAPF15
Start City: Ushuaia
End City: Ushuaia
Style: Polar

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