A Typical Day in Antarctica

By Stewart_Campbell / 28 November 2018

A Typical Day in Antarctica

What is it like during a typical day on an Antarctica cruise? Well no two days are alike, however here is a pretty good example of an 'average' day on expedition...

Around 0700 (7.00AM), the Expedition Leader will make a short announcement over the public address system, informing you of the ship’s current location, heading, planned destination and importantly, the weather conditions outside. Early risers may have been up on deck or bridge checking out the surroundings and enjoying the soft morning light. Others may have already completed a workout in the gym, enjoyed some stretching or yoga, or been mixing up a fresh fruit smoothie in the lounge to start the day.

The dining room is open for breakfast at around 0730 and you are invited at your leisure to come and enjoy a hearty breakfast. The Expedition Leader will inform you of the activities for the day announcing the locations we are planning to visit as well as timings for our shore visits.

Following breakfast you return to your cabin and start preparations for the morning excursion. Dress appropriately, grab your camera and shore bag and make your way to the expedition mudroom where you’ll put on your PFD (life jacket). Make your way to the gangway, down the stairs, into the zodiac and off you go – on another exciting excursion.

Zodiac disembarkation in Antarctica

Off ship excursions may last for three or four hours. There are plenty of great options to choose from, or you might choose to sample ALL the activities we have planned. Yes, you can enjoy a walk on shore, spend some time with the naturalist guides observing the penguins as they come and go from the rookeries, AND enjoy a zodiac cruise around the icebergs looking for leopard seals. Or, you might like to stretch your legs on a hike for several miles in the company of our adventure guides. The choice is yours.

Sometime around 1230 to 1300, we wind up the morning’s activities, make our way back to the landing site and return to the ship via zodiac. A delicious lunch awaits and you are invited to come and enjoy a range of tasty options in the dining room. Some guests prefer to enjoy lunch in the ship’s lounge, or on the outer decks – and it’s easy for the galley to prepare special lunch boxes to ‘take-away’.

During lunch the Captain will re-position the vessel to a new location and this could take several hours. For some guests, this is an opportunity to catch up on the journal entries, download photos and recharge camera batteries. Mingle with other guests and staff on the outer decks, the lounge or up on the bridge watching the Captain and officers navigate the ship to our next location.

By mid-afternoon, the ship will be in position and a second excursion will be offered. The sequence this afternoon follows much the same theme as the morning. We always suggest you mix up your experiences off the ship. If you hiked this morning, why not enjoy a zodiac cruise this afternoon? Or get creative with your camera and learn about image composition from our expert photographer.


Because of the twilight, we may not return to the ship until early evening, between 1730-1830. Many guests enjoy meeting in the bar prior to dinner and the cocktail of the day is always a popular choice during happy hour.

Around 1930-2000, guests are invited to the dining room for a delicious three course meal. The dining room is abuzz with guests and expedition staff sharing their experiences from the day. The Expedition Leader will make a short presentation to re-cap the day and discuss plans for the following day.

The activities for the evening on board the ship will be announced. This may include an impromptu photography workshop in the multimedia room, a ‘fireside chat’ in the bar with one of the expedition team members, or a documentary movie running on the big screen in the main presentation theatre.

Some guests will head out onto the outer decks to enjoy the soft twilight and soak in the incredible views. Others may enjoy the thrill of a hot Finnish sauna. Or retreat to the quiet space of the ship’s library to read more about the environment and wildlife from one of the many reference books. If you feel like a nightcap in the bar, perhaps a hot chocolate or herbal tea – that’s another great way to finish the day on board the ship. 


Otherwise, call it a night and head back to your cabin and rest up in the knowledge that tomorrow will offer just as many fantastic experiences as the day just passed.

Have a look at just a few of the following suggested expeditions to experience your own days in Antarctica!


Classic Antarctica Cruise: MV Ushuaia

A small ship cruise to the Antarctic Peninsula & South Shetland Islands aboard the M/V Ushuaia

FROM 5730.00
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Antarctica Small Ship Expedition: Ocean Nova

A boutique 10 day adventure cruise to Antarctica. Sail to the beautiful Antarctic Peninsula on the small expedition ship Ocean Nova

FROM 6595.00
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Antarctica's Ross Sea: Heritage Adventurer

Explore Antarctica's seldom-seen and spectacular Ross Sea, with its mountains, ice-shelves, abundant wildlife and fascinating history

FROM 31500.00
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Celebrating Antarctica: Seaventure

Explore Antarctica in peak season on board Super-Ice-Class MS Seaventure, discover the great white continent’s striking shores and endless vistas

NOW 11381.00
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Remote Weddell Sea Explorer: Ortelius

A rare and incredible expedition to South Georgia, South Sandwich Islands - Neuschwabenland, Vahsel Bay, Larsen Ice Shelf, Paulet & Devil, Elephant Is

FROM 24700.00
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Antarctica and Weddell Sea: Ocean Victory

Once-in-a-lifetime voyage to the seventh continent. Experience incredible wildlife, stunning mountains and gigantic icebergs in 11 action-packed days

NOW 9601.00
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Classic South Georgia: M/V Ushuaia

A 22 day expedition to the remarkable sub-Antarctic paradise of South Georgia and the Antarctic Peninsula aboard the M/V Ushuaia

FROM 9990.00
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Classic Antarctica Air-Cruise: Magellan Explorer

An 8 day adventure flying to Antarctica and sail on the state-of-the-art Magellan Explorer, with just 69 passengers

FROM 17995.00
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