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Epic Antarctica: Ocean Diamond

Explore Ushuaia before embarking on this once in a lifetime adventure. In this diverse expedition, you’ll experience the spectacular flora and fauna of the Falkland Islands before immersing yourself in the unique history and exquisite, rare wildlife of South Georgia. Onwards to a comprehensive exploration of Antarctica including a crossing of the Antarctic Circle. An epic expedition in every sense!

Sale

Selected departures only -  Book before 31 October:

17 Dec 2017 - Save 25% (all cabins except Triple) - Use Promocode XXQ25.
Terms and Conditions:
Valid on new bookings, applicable to above departure dates and selected categories only. Excludes triple cabins. Must quote the Promocodes above and provide full names at time of booking. Not combinable with any other promotion and applies to voyage only - not applicable for transfer packages, land-based programs, Adventure Options, additional hotel accommodation, pre/post tours, insurance, or flights. The right is reserved to limit, change or discontinue promotion at any time without notice. No cash value.

  • Learn about Antarctica’s unique geology, history and wildlife with an expert team of lecturers
  • See the incredible wildlife of South Georgia, often referred to as ‘the Galapagos of the Poles’; more than 30 species of breeding birds, including four species of penguin
  • Follow in the footsteps of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s perilous voyages to South Georgia and visit his gravesite
  • Explore the quaint British town of Stanley in the Falkland Islands
  • Cross the Antarctic Circle
  • Arrive in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the tango cap

Your expedition experience...

Antarctica awaits, with its geographic contradictions and overwhelming enormity. Relax on a Zodiac ride, hike glistening glaciers, share comical moments with inquisitive penguins, or witness the rugged peninsula from a sea kayak. Antarctica will surprise and delight, and never disappoint.

Adventure Options

Booking an Adventure Option on your expedition is a great way to enhance your polar experience. These options are subject to availability and fill up quickly, so be sure to book yours early. Please note, Adventure Options are weather dependent.

KAYAKING

Imagine gliding along the surface of a bay in the presence of icebergs and glaciers! Our kayaking adventures are the best way to feel at one with the sea. Taken in small groups of 16 people, multiple times per voyage, kayaking adventures are only conducted during calm weather conditions. We recommend you have some prior kayaking experience, including the capability to do a wet exit.


The kayaking adventure option is open to all levels of experience. However, we advise that kayaking in polar waters is not an activity for first-time guests. Beginners interested in kayaking, should first take an introductory kayaking course prior to their voyage. In addition, regardless of your experience, we recommend kayaking lessons for a minimum of three hours in preparation for your expedition. It is of the utmost importance that you be comfortable while kayaking in order to maximize your enjoyment and your overall experience.


STAND-UP PADDLEBOARDING
Combining surfing with kayaking or canoeing, stand-up paddleboarding will give you a very personal and unique perspective on Antarctica. Taken in small groups in good weather conditions on calm bays and harbors, with Zodiac accompaniment, paddleboarding will be offered on via sign- up onboard ship on a first-come, first-served basis.

More information about your Adventure Options, including necessary experience, physical requirements and cost available by contacting us.

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. DAY 2 — Ushuaia, Argentina and Embarkation After breakfast at the hotel, the group will transfer to the airport and board our private charter flight* to Ushuaia, Argentina. Upon arrival, you will have a little time to explore this quaint port town before heading to the pier. Embarkation will occur in the late afternoon, after which your vessel will sail down the historic Beagle Channel. This famous channel transects the Tierra del Fuego archipelago in the extreme south of South America. Expect an air of anticipation as you depart—the next time you see land you’ll be in the world’s most southern continent! DAY 3 — At Sea There are many activities to keep you engaged while we’re at sea. You can take advantage of the library of books available on your ship, hang out at the bar chatting to other travelers or spend time out on deck, admiring the sea. Your Expedition Team will also conduct a series of presentations to familiarize yourself with how to prepare for Zodiac cruises and shore landings. DAYS 4 & 5 — Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) The Falkland archipelago contains two main islands, East and West, which we will explore by Zodiac excursions and daily landings. These rugged islands have a frontier feel to them, especially at Port Stanley—the largest settlement on the islands. It’s an interesting British outpost–type place, where you may just as easily wander into a pub as you will a church or museum. With your camera at hand, our wildlife sightings in the Falklands (Malvinas) should include at least three species of penguins 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 have the most memorable time. DAYS 6 & 7 — At Sea Enroute to South Georgia you’ll cross the invisible biological boundary unique to Antarctica – the Antarctic Convergence. This meeting of oceans is what creates the abundance of krill and marine life that attract large cetaceans such as humpback whales. DAYS 8 TO 11 — South Georgia Evidence of the old whaling and sealing heydays is still found throughout the island. You’ll be surprised to learn that whale and seal populations were once decimated here, as today their populations are strong, with massive rookeries to be seen. One significant and historic site that will be of interest is the grave of the great explorer, Sir Ernest Shackleton. Visiting his grave at the settlement of Grytviken, which is also home to an old whaling station and a research station, is a day for reflecting on what it must have been like to be one of the first explorers to this unforgiving, yet beautiful environment. While South Georgia’s history is an important attraction to the islands, it is the wildlife that you and your shipmates will likely find most captivating. Often referred to as the ‘Galapagos of the Poles,’ South Georgia contains an exceptional quantity of wildlife. 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 100 thousand pairs of king penguins waddling on the beach. The next day we 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 bird and animal species. Your Expedition Team will be happy to share their knowledge of how these vulnerable relationships all play out on the island. DAYS 12 & 13 — At Sea Antarctica awaits, along with its own penguin and seal species. While you’re at sea, you can enjoy quiet time or take in presentations by the Expedition Team, who will cover everything from the history and geology of Antarctica to tips on identifying different species and what makes each of them unique. DAYS 14 TO 16 — 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. You will discover that Antarctica is a land of extremes: at one moment you’ll be overcome with a feeling of complete silence and loneliness, the next you’ll be laughing at the comical antics of a curious penguin. Glacier hikes, visits to research bases and, of course, communing with seals and penguins are sure to keep you smiling each and every day. Perhaps you’ll catch sight of the fearless penguin-eater, the leopard seal, or come eye–to–eye with a curious minke whale while on a Zodiac. Each day and each landing will present a new collection of creatures to entertain you and keep your camera busy. If you find yourself wanting more, then perhaps you’ll treat yourself by booking our kayaking Adventure Option (reserve in advance when booking your trip) or if you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed, a little shock therapy courtesy of a Polar Plunge might be what you need! DAYS 17 & 18 — The Antarctic Circle Crossing the Antarctic Circle is an impressive achievement, as most expeditions to the Peninsula do not come close to reaching this far south. With a toast to the first explorers who ventured here, you can raise a glass of champagne and take pride in knowing you’ve made it to a part of the world visited by very few people. This is raw Antarctica, home to the midnight sun, with the potential for fantastic iceberg sightings. DAYS 19 & 20 — Northbound Along the Peninsula If you haven’t had your fill of Antarctic wildlife and icebergs by now, you’ll surely be satisfied by the time we return to the Drake Passage. You will continue to journey onto land by Zodiac twice daily as you travel north along the western Antarctic Peninsula. Your Expedition Team will always be on the lookout for species of penguins, seals and whales that may have eluded you on the journey south. DAYS 21 & 22 — Crossing the Drake Passage After more than a dozen days of memorable wildlife encounters, your journey home begins. Crossing the Drake is your unofficial rite of passage, putting a final stamp of approval on your Antarctic adventure. DAY 23 — Disembarkation in Ushuaia, Argentina After breakfast aboard the ship, it is time to part ways and say goodbye to your Expedition Team. We will transfer you to the airport for your homeward flight. Please note: 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. There are nearly 200 recognized sites in the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetlands and the places mentioned above may be changed to others equally as interesting.

Luxury Expedition Ship M/V Ocean Diamond

Luxury Expedition Ship M/V Ocean Diamond

Sail aboard the Ocean Diamond, a modern, stable super-yacht and experience 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.

For full information about this vessel click here...

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Dates, Costs & Booking

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Choose Number of Berths & Category

Date Selected: 17th Dec 2017


Adult (1) US$13995
Sub total US$13995

Expedition Options

Name Description Price
Buenos Aires 4-day stopover (4-star) Buenos Aires, the elegant Capital of Argentina, is one of the largest cities in the world. This great metropolis renowned for its sophistication stands out for being the most cosmopolitan and European city in South America, displayed through its mixed architecture and diverse culture. The Tango ambience can still be felt here, from the outdoor performances in San Telmo or La Boca to the evening shows in glitzy theatres. This 4 day/3 night stopover includes 4-star accommodation with breakfast, return airport transfers, a tour of the city and an evening dinner and Tango show at one of the famed Tango houses. Note: Itinerary can be customised and based on lower or higher-standard hotels on request. *Prices are per person share twin (contact us for single or triple prices) and are subject to change and surcharge for Christmas/New Year. US$510
Sea-Kayaking in Antarctica If you have paddled the waters of New England or Alaska; if you have kayaked off the coast of California or Canada's Maritimes, you are ready for polar sea‐kayaking. Polar kayaking takes place in one of the roughest and toughest environments on Earth.  When you settle yourself in one of our kayaks, you should already be comfortable getting in and out of the boat. You should have practiced an emergency wet exit. Once you have booked your optional adventure, you receive a set of preparation notes that lists the gear supplied plus the gear you must bring with you. US$995

Essential Information

Rates and Share Bookings Prices shown are per person in US Dollars on a shared basis. If you are travelling alone and wish to share, you will be matched with someone of the same gender and pay only the share rate. If desired, Single occupancy is available at 1.7 times the twin share rate. Deposits Reservations require a deposit of 20% (minimum $1000 per person) at the time you receive a booking confirmation from Expeditions Online. A payment link will be sent to you and this may be paid by major credit card. Bookings within 120 days of departure require full payment. Final Payments Balances are due 120 days prior to departure and may be paid by bank transfer. Cancellations All requests for cancellation must be received in writing to Expeditions Online. Cancellations received 180 days or more prior to departure, are refunded less a fee of $1000 per person. If cancellation is received between 179 days and 120 days, the full deposit is forfeited. If cancellation occurs less than 120 days prior to departure, all payments are forfeited. If full payment has not yet been received, the full penalty will still apply and any unpaid balance is due immediately. We strongly recommend that you obtain adequate trip cancellation insurance. Booking Terms Please read carefully the Terms and Conditions for Expeditions Online (link at the bottom of this page). This voyage is operated by Quark Expeditions and you additionally travel under their terms and conditions as the operator as well as of the Shipping Company/transport carrier. Details will be forwarded to you at the time of booking.

Included

  • Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping.
  • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board throughout your voyage.
  • All shore landings per the daily program. Leadership throughout the voyage by our experienced Expedition Leader.
  • All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program. Formal and informal presentations by our Expedition Team and guest speakers as scheduled.
  • Photographic Journal on DVD, documenting the voyage. A pair of waterproof expedition boots on loan for shore landings. An official Quark Expeditions parka to keep. Coffee, tea and cocoa available around the clock.
  • Hair dryer and bathrobes in every cabin. Comprehensive pre-departure materials, including a map and an informative Antarctic Reader.
  • Group transfers upon disembarkation.
  • 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 USD $100,000 per person.

Excluded

  • 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 host 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.