Polar Circle Antarctic Peninsula 12 daysAboard: MV Plancius
On this expedition to the Antarctic Peninsula, the chance to cross the Antarctic Circle is a huge draw. Activities such as polar diving and kayaking are available as well as zodiac cruises and landings giving you the chance to set foot on the continent and experience its majesty up close.
This expedition offers unique opportunities to experience Antarctica, its environment and wildlife - truly a once-in-a-lifetime adventure.
- Crossing the Antarctic Circle
- Penguins and other birdlife
- Marine mammals
- Spectacular scenery
- Historic sites
- Optional activities including polar diving, camping on ice and kayaking available
- Luggage transfer to ship and group transfer from ship
- Full board accommodation on board
- All zodiac excursions and landings with expert guides
- Programme of expert lectures
- Loan of rubber boots
So much to experience
Too much to choose from? This is where we come in
Take advantage of our vast experience, passion and expertise to help you hand craft the perfect Antarctica adventure for you.
Mike lives and breathes adventure travel and has a wealth of experience in some of the most exciting and inspirational destinations in the world. His expertise and first-hand experience afford him the skills to help build holidays to remember.
Simon’s deep passion for and first-hand knowledge of a vast range of destinations all over the world gives him the ideal skills to help you create a truly unforgettable wildlife inspired adventure to the most exciting places on the planet.
With countless travel experiences and an enduring hunger for adventure, Zoe knows exactly what’s needed to craft a holiday of a lifetime. Her experience and generosity of spirit are legendary and she’ll help you build an itinerary that will make all your dreams come true.
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All our itinerary holidays are fully customisable
Your Antarctica expedition will begin in Ushuaia, Argentina, where after having arrived independently you will embark your ship in the afternoon. As you settle in to your cabin, your ship will sail through the scenic waterway of the Beagle Channel. You may want to spend some time on deck capturing the sight of the city fading into distance behind you and looking out for the seabirds that follow the ship.
At Sea - Drake Passage
During these two days we will sail across the famous Drake Passage, encountering a variety of seabirds along the way. You may want to spend some time on deck in search of bird sightings including wandering, grey-headed, black-browed and the beautiful light-mantled sooty albatross, southern fulmars, Wilson's storm, blue, Cape and Antarctic petrels. There may also be whale sightings, and your programme of entertaining and informative lectures and presentations will begin, along with safety and bio-environmental briefings for your time in Antarctica. As we pass the Antarctic Convergence and sail close to the Shetland Islands we will spot the first of many icebergs.
Antarctic Peninsula & Circle
Welcome to Antarctica, a land of superlatives! Enchanting scenery, unique wildlife encounters and thrilling adventures await as we spend 6 days exploring by Zodiac and on foot to get up close to the action. At this time of year you can expect numerous humpback whale sightings, as well as a hive of wildlife activity on the beaches with countless penguin chicks and leopard seals.
Your exact itinerary here will be determined by weather and ice conditions with your captain choosing each day which areas to visit for optimum experiences. Although the itinerary is flexible the likely route will take us first to the South Shetland Islands where we aim to explore Livingston Island where you will find a wide variety of gentoo and chinstrap penguins on Hannah Point, as well as southern giant petrels and elephant seals hauling out onto the beach. Here we will also visit Deception Island to see the hot springs and an abandoned whaling station that is the habitat of a wide variety of bird species including cape petrels, kelp gulls, brown and south polar skuas, and Antarctic terns, Wilson’s storm petrels and black-bellied storm petrels.
On the Peninsula itself there are numerous areas we may visit and there will be ample opportunities for Zodiac excursions, optional kayaking and polar diving, and of course stepping foot on the white continent. Sites we may visit include Cuverville Island, a small precipitous island nestled between the mountains of the Antarctic Peninsula and Rongé Island, where we will find a large colony of gentoo penguins and breeding pairs of brown skuas. In Neko Harbour we may have the opportunity to set foot on the Antarctic Continent in a magnificent landscape of huge glaciers calving at sea level. Zodiac cruising and kayaking offer spectacular ways of enjoying the landscape surrounded by ice encrusted alpine peaks.
In Paradise Bay with its myriad icebergs we may again have the opportunity to set foot on the Antarctic Continent. Again, we may offer an opportunity for a zodiac cruise in the inner parts of this amazing waterway. In this area, we have good chances to see Humpback whales and Minke whales. For those who have chosen to participate in the optional camping on ice activity this is most likely to be the area chosen for this excursion. If the ice conditions allow, we will sail through the spectacular Lemaire Channel to the Pléneau and Petermann Islands where we are likely to find Adélie penguins and Blue-eyed shags. Kayaking in this area is a wonderful experience as you may be lucky enough to float by the humpback and minke whales which are frequently found here along with leopard seals.
As we push further south we will sail along the Argentine Islands to the ice-packed Crystal Sound and from here we will cross the Polar Circle, a significant achievement that will be celebrated with delight! We may make a landing at an abandoned British research station on Detaille Island before turning back northwards to the Fish Islands where we will encounter one of the southernmost Adélie penguin and blue-eyed shag colonies in the Antarctic Peninsula. Returning north we will visit the Melchior Islands which offer a beautiful landscape rich with icebergs. Leopard seals, crabeater seals, and whales are often found here, and there are excellent opportunities for kayaking and diving.
Please note: kayaking, Polar diving and camping on ice incur an additional cost and should be booked in advance. Zodiac cruises and land visits are included in your package.
As our exhilarating time in Antarctica comes to end it’s time to head back north through the Drake Passage where again the ship will be followed by a vast array of seabirds. Enjoy the last presentations from your team of noted naturalists and take the time to dissolve all of the unforgettable memories you will have made on your once in a lifetime expediton.
As we sail back through the scenic Beagle Channel and arrive in Ushuaia in the early morning it’s sadly time to say goodbye to your crew and fellow shipmates. After breakfast you will disembark and a group transfer will be provided to the airport for onward or homewards journeys.
A view from Above
Plancius was built as a Dutch oceanographic research vessel and refurbished as a passenger ship in 2009. It has ice strengthened bow and stern and is ideal for polar sailing. There is a mixture of suites and cabins, all with window or porthole. Some have private facilities and some shared. There are twin, triple and quadruple cabins suitable for sharing. Public areas are a spacious observation lounge and bar, library, lecture theatre and dining room along with plenty of outside deck space and an open-bridge policy. Rubber boots are supplied for all passengers.
we work hard to earn passionate reviews from our clients.
Now that I am back from my odyssey voyage, I thought I would let you know that after all that planning it really did exceed my expectations – we managed landings everywhere even on Tristan da Cuhna and had great bird sightings. The guides all knew what they were talking about too and made sure I got some great photos – still sorting them all out! Thanks for everything and see you at Birdfair!Dave Martin
Overall I think that it was an excellent trip that was well worth the price paid and I would have no hesitation recommending your company to others.Steve Sutton
Just a quick note to express my sincere thanks to you and all your staff for making this an epic adventure of immense proportions. Everything went smoothly, pickups, hotels and most of all the expedition itself. Truly a mind blowing experience unlike any I have ever taken.Mr J Borg, Malta
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