Day 1 - Ushuaia, Argentina Step aboard your home-away-from-home and settle in to your comfortable cabin. There is time to greet fellow passengers, meet the staff and explore the ship before we leave Ushuaia for our evening cruise down the Beagle Channel. Day 2 - Drake Passage We cross the Drake Passage, accompanied by albatross, petrels, fulmars and prions. Our polar experts speak about Antarctica’s unique wildlife and history and prepare us for landings with environmental and Zodiac briefings. Day 3 - Antarctic Convergence and South Shetland Islands Spirits soar as air and water temperatures fall, marking our crossing of the Antarctic Convergence. All eyes are peeled for the first iceberg, the first penguin and the first glimpse of land, the mercurial sea stacks outlying the South Shetland Islands. If conditions allow, we go ashore this afternoon. Days 4-9 - Antarctic Peninsula We explore the Peninsula’s west coast, with time to watch the frenzied activities of penguin parents and chicks as the summer days begin to shorten. Watch for imperial cormorant chicks bravely making their first flights from sea cliffs. Zodiac cruise amongst icebergs and floes replete with basking Weddell and leopard seals and revel in the unparalleled beauty of vast, Antarctic landscape. Besides landing on wildlife-rich offshore islands, we make a continental landing, possibly hiking up for spectacular views. As we continue south, ice conditions govern our movements. Whether we cross the Circle via the ‘inner route’ or the Bellingshausen Sea, we celebrate in style. With luck we reach magnificent Crystal Sound, pass through the Gullet and steam on to Marguerite Bay, where relatively few have gone before. Orcas, humpbacks and minkes feed in the channels. We may visit historical Stonington, Pourquoi Pas and Detaille islands before turning north to warmer climes. Day 10 - King George Island/Punta Arenas, Chile We arrive at mountainous King George Island. If time and weather permit we explore penguin and seal-rich waters of Fildes Bay and visit the surprising Trinity Church at Bellingshausen Station, before catching our charter flight back to Punta Arenas in Chile. On arrival into Punta Arenas we will be transferred to our hotel, where tonight’s accommodation is included. Day 11 - Punta Arenas, Chile Enjoy breakfast with your fellow expeditioners in the hotel before saying your farewells and continuing with your own arrangements. Please note that all of our itineraries are at the mercy of weather conditions and not all landings are guaranteed. Our itineraries are flexible and will change voyage to voyage, allowing the best chance to make the most of surprising wildlife displays and unexpected opportunities. Reverse itinerary The above itinerary is for the first Across the Antarctic Circle departure and includes a flight from King George Island, Antarctica to Punta Arenas, Chile and one night accommodation post-voyage. The second departure operates in reverse starting in Punta Arenas with one night accommodation pre-voyage and a flight to King George Island, Antarctica, ending in Ushuaia. Please contact us for a detailed itinerary.
Polar Pioneer is a small and sturdy expedition ship and a regular in polar waters. Built in Finland in 1985 as an ice- strengthened research vessel, she was refurbished in 2001 to provide a comfortable range of triple, twin and suite cabin options for a maximum of 54 expeditioners. Her excellent reputation for polar expedition cruising is due to her strength, maneuverability and size, allowing her to access areas where larger vessels simply can’t reach.
|Buenos Aires 4-day stopover (3-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 3-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 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$450|
|Kayaking option Antarctica||US$995|
|Santiago 4-day Stopover (4-star)||Santiago - 4 days/3 night Chile’s charming capital is nestled on an inland plain, with the snow-capped Andes towering in the background. It is one of the most modern cities on the continent, yet still retains a colonial influence with many beautiful historical buildings and plazas. It is also a city surrounded by fertile wine-producing valleys and world-class ski resorts, and is within an hour’s drive of the Pacific Ocean. Enjoy the fabulous museums, shops and restaurants. Your 3 night stay includes 4-star accommodation with breakfast, airport transfers, a half day private city tour and a shared full day tour to Viña del Mar and colourful Valparaiso on the coast. Prices shown are per person twin share and subject to change (contact us for single or triple pricing and other hotel standards). Itinerary can also be customised please contact us for details.||US$650|
|Polar Scuba Diving - Polar Pioneer||US$975|