This cruise provides an in-depth experience of not only the snow-drenched mountains and icebergs of the Antarctic Peninsula but also the bleakly beautiful landscapes of South Georgia and the Falkland Islands. These windswept sub-Antarctic islands are brought to life by the chattering and wheeling of birdlife: beaches are choked with penguins in their tens of thousands, and the vestiges of a human history of struggle and endeavour are everywhere to be seen.
Sail east from Ushuaia to the Falkland Islands and spend a couple of days exploring the rugged coastline and draughty plains, spotting Magellanic and gentoo penguins, maybe a nesting albatross or two. Pop into Port Stanley, the Islands’ friendly ‘retro’ capital.
South Georgia is a more savage landscape with jagged, harshly glaciated mountains. Former centre of the sealing and whaling industries, there are mournful reminders of the human struggles here, with shipwrecks and pioneering scientific stations. It was here that Shackleton scaled the unforgiving range of ice-clad peaks to seek help for his ship-wrecked crew. You may even have the opportunity to walk in his footsteps. But it is the multitude of wildlife that really stuns you here: elephant seals, King and macaroni penguins, albatross and even re-introduced reindeer abound.
Continue to the South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula where rugged, primeval mountain peaks are scoured by glaciers which calve battleship-sized icebergs into the sea, while providing rich breeding grounds for seabirds, penguins and seals.
The specific itinerary shown below, departure dates and costs are based on the Plancius. Other ships operating the same route on different dates and with different prices include Silver Explorer, Sea Spirit and Ocean Diamond. Click on the Departure Schedule tab above for more information.