ANTARCTIC CIRCLE VOYAGE
ANTARCTIC CIRCLE VOYAGE
12 Day Cruise from US$12,895
USHUAIA - ANTARCTICA
12 DAYS 17 - 28 JANUARY 2020

CROSS THE CIRCLE AND AN EXPERIENCE THE HEIGHT OF THE ANTARCTIC SUMMER

From January onwards, seasonal ice conditions give us our best chance of achieving our objective of crossing the Antarctic Circle. Here we witness sweeping landscapes, sizable Adelie penguin rookeries and we hope to see the large tabular icebergs that have drifted north from the Bellingshausen Sea. We always anticipate exciting ice navigation on this expedition. Our aim is to make landfall at Detaille Island – below the Antarctic Circle, where we venture on-shore to explore an old science base. We then navigate north into the Gerlache region and plan on visiting a working research station, more historic sites, and we enjoy a Zodiac cruise through the spectacular ‘iceberg graveyard’ at Pleneau Island.

Our program of off-ship excursions provides an exciting selection of activities to choose from – including short or long hikes ashore, visits to historic sites and wildlife colonies, Zodiac cruising looking for whales and seals or simply photographing the incredible icebergs. These activities are enjoyed in the company of our onboard team of wilderness guides, naturalists, marine biologists, historians and photographers. We transit the Lemaire Channel and work our way into the northern reaches of the Gerlache Strait – home to dozens of outstanding locations which beg further exploration. A final highlight on this voyage will be a visit to the enchanting South Shetland Islands, home to some of our favourite landing sites.

Tour Highlights
  • Cross the fabled Antarctic Circle visiting remote historic locations and wildlife colonies
  • In-depth exploration of the Gerlache coastline and Antarctic Peninsula
  • Visits to historic sites and science stations
  • Learn about the environment, wildlife and ecology of Antarctica from polar experts

Tour Information
  • Where
    :

    USHUAIA – ANTARCTICA

  • When
    :

    17 – 28 JANUARY 2020

  • What
    :

    CRUISE, NATURE AND WILDLIFE

ON THIS TRIP
  • Zodiac excursions
  • Onshore hiking options
  • Wildlife observation
  • Photographer-in-Residence
  • Sea kayaking available
  • Camping on shore
  • Whale watching
  • Educational presentations
  • Active Cruising & Wellness
Itinerary

Our journey to Antarctica commences this afternoon in Ushuaia, in southern Argentina. We gather at our central meeting point, transfer to the pier and embark our expedition ship. After settling into our cabins and exploring the ship, we meet our expedition team and fellow passengers. Excitement is in the air as we enjoy a welcome cocktail and dinner and cast off, bound for Antarctica and the adventure of a lifetime.

We chart a southerly course and can reach our goal of the Antarctic Circle due to the capabilities of our expedition vessel – RCGS Resolute. Her superior speed ensures a swift crossing of the Drake Passage on our way south of the circle. This  stretch of water is rich in its bio-diversity and showcases an abundance of wildlife. We will be joined by hundreds of seabirds including the celebrated wandering albatross. Giant petrels and smaller Cape petrels are also constant companions as we make our way south. Photographing these magnificent birds takes patience and skill and our photography expert will be on hand to show you the best techniques. Later, perhaps join the ship’s Captain on the bridge and learn about the operations of our modern research vessel. Throughout the journey our onboard experts educate us with a series of presentations about the environment, the wildlife and history. The presence of icebergs announces our arrival into Antarctic waters.

We awaken today, and the magnificent snowy peaks of continental Antarctica are laid out before us. We plan to navigate via Matha Strait and will attempt a shore landing at Detaille Island, below the Antarctic Circle. An abandoned British science station – ‘Base W’ was established in the 1950s and is in a remarkable state of preservation. For the history buffs this is a fascinating place providing a glimpse into the harsh life of early Antarctic visitors. We toast our success on crossing the Antarctic Circle turning our gaze northwards, viewing the spectacular chain of glacier-covered peaks stretching as far as the eye can see. This coastline begs further exploration.

Overnight we have navigated north towards the low-lying Yalour Island group. We hope to visit a working scientific base to learn of the important climate-related research happening here. A hike over the snowy saddle of nearby Winter Island allows us to stretch our legs and explore the old British Antarctic Survey hut. Petermann Island is home to a sizable Adelie penguin rookery. Adelies – the smallest of the Antarctic penguins nest here and share the location with Gentoo penguins and Imperial cormorants.

The view to the north of Mount Shackleton and Mount Scott is impressive. These towering granite sentinels mark the southern entrance to the Lemaire Channel. Nearby Pleneau Island offers more opportunities for shore landings. Just offshore, in the shallow waters of the Penola Strait, massive icebergs run aground. Constant wind and wave action sculpt these gargantuan chunks of ice into fantastic shapes, revealing more shades of blue than you could ever imagine. For many, a Zodiac cruise here will be a highlight of the voyage.

We aim to transit the Lemaire Channel on our way north towards Paradise Harbour. This may be the first opportunity to step foot on the continent of Antarctica itself. Nearby Neko Harbour offers another continental landing. Both locations offer great hiking opportunities up to panoramic view points. For the sea kayakers, the paddling opportunities here are endless. Expect to be in full sensory overload by this time of the voyage. It is somewhere in this vicinity we hope to offer camping.

Orne Harbour is another beautiful location we hope to visit and the hike up to a rocky knoll provides stunning views and great access to a chinstrap penguin rookery. At Cuverville Island, there is a large Gentoo penguin colony which we observe at close quarters. Leopard seals are often sighted cruising the shallows along the landing site. For the kayakers, a full circumnavigation of the island is a possibility. We navigate into Willhelmina Bay – a known location for large numbers of humpback whales which we view in close proximity from the ship or when out Zodiac cruising. After several busy days of exploration along the Peninsula, we head north across the Bransfield Strait, bound for the South Shetland Islands. This is an important whale migration corridor and we expect sightings of humpbacks, or the resident pod of Orca that inhabit this stretch of water.

By morning we arrive in the South Shetland Islands. The adventure is not over and if the weather conditions allow, we sail the ship into the flooded volcanic caldera at Deception Island. This is a very dramatic place and history is all around us as we explore the old whaling station, with the rusted old boilers and dilapidated wooden huts. At the far end of the beach is an old aircraft hangar. This is where Australian, Sir Hubert Wilkins made the very first flight in Antarctica in 1928. There is also an outstanding hike, high up onto the rim of the crater.
After leaving Deception Island, we cruise along the coast of Livingston Island which in a sunny day is a memorable experience. There are several other landing sites in the South Shetlands including Half Moon Island, or the broad pebbly beach at Yankee Harbour, where we sometimes encounter Weddell seals sunning themselves. This is another great spot for a hike or a zodiac cruise. Hannah Point, with its elephant seal colony and nesting Antarctic petrels is another possibility. In the evening, we navigate north through the McFarlane Strait and into the Drake Passage.

As we make our way back to South America, the educational presentations continue and we enjoy an entertaining and memorable voyage recap by our Expedition Leader. Join our photography experts at the multimedia stations and download your precious images. If weather conditions allow, we hope to make a rounding of Cape Horn. This fabled stretch of water is home to legendary tales of exploration and early navigation. It is a fitting place to reflect on a wonderful expedition. Approaching the entrance to the Beagle Channel in early evening light, we enjoy a special dinner attended by the Captain of the ship.

(TUESDAY, 28 JANUARY, 2020)

In the early morning, we arrive into Ushuaia, Argentina. It is time to say farewell to your crew and fellow travellers. Guests will be transported to their hotels or to the airport for return flights home. It will be possible to connect to flights through to Buenos Aires or other destinations in South America. Otherwise enjoy a night in town or venture further afield to explore the highlights of Patagonia.

 

Pricing and Inclusions
Pricing and inclusions

    << EARLYBIRD PRICES >> Buy by 15 November 2018*

     

    CABIN TYPEPER PERSON
    Triple Share$12,895
    Twin Private$14,195
    Superior$15,395
    Superior Plus$15,895
    Shackleton Suite$16,995
    One Ocean Suite$19,395

    * USD$800 discount included in the price.

    • Everyone who has travel with One Ocean Expeditions is a One Club Member, and entitled to this program and all its benefits
      (Up to 30% discount + Cabin upgrade)
    • Single travellers can choose to share with another traveller (matched based on gender and age) and pay the above prices.
      Sole use of a cabin has a 50% surcharge, and 100% for Suites.

    INCLUSIONS

    • Comprehensive pre-voyage information package including details to help you prepare for your trip
    • Transfers to the ship on embarkation day and from the ship to the airport on disembarkation
    • Shipboard accommodation in your selected cabin category with daily housekeeping. Cabins feature outside views with windows or portholes
    • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board throughout your voyage with daily afternoon tea 24-hour tea, coffee, hot chocolate in bar/lounge plus in-cabin tea and coffee making facilities
    • Experienced Expedition Leader and professional expedition team of marine biologists, naturalists, historians, adventure guides and photographers
    • Daily off-ship excursions by Zodiac boat breaking into small groups for shore landings
    • Guided hikes and walks on shore of various durations for guests of all abilities
    • Visits to wildlife colonies, historic sites, places of outstanding natural beauty and science stations
    • Educational presentations and talks by polar experts in their field (i.e. marine biologists, naturalists, historians etc). Onboard or on shore
    • Resident photography guide available to assist all guests plus access to computers in the multimedia lab for image downloads, fi le back up and management
    • An emergency trained medical physician onboard every voyage
    • Dedicated hospitality team including Hotel Manager, four chefs, professional bar staff and Adventure Concierge staff
    • Onboard sauna, plunge pool, Jacuzzi and fitness centre including massage options (charge applies for massage and treatments)
    • Sea Kayaking programme available (additional charge of US$795pp) – must be reserved at the time of booking your voyage and you must have some prior paddling experience
    • Access to well-stocked library full of polar reference books
    • End of voyage video, photos and take-home USB
    • Port fees and all permits to access visited areas

     

    NOT INCLUDED

    • Any international or local airfare unless otherwise specifi ed in the voyage itinerary
    • Visa and passport expenses
    • Pre or post-cruise hotel accommodation unless otherwise specifi ed in the itinerary (or pre-arranged)
    • Pre or post-cruise transfers unless otherwise specifi ed in the itinerary (or pre-arranged)
    • Personal expenses on board such as alcoholic beverages, bar charges or laundry expenses
    • Telecommunication charges (i.e. email, satellite phone)
    • Baggage, cancellation or medical travel insurance related expenses (travel insurance is mandatory on all voyages)
    • A voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for expedition staff and ship crew (suggested amount – US$15-20 per day)

     

TRAVELLER’S TALES
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