What do I need to bring to Antarctica?
Antarctica is an extreme environment and although Antarctic cruises depart during the spring and summer months, the weather can change dramatically, with no warning and so you need to be prepared for conditions in this harsh region.
- A Parka, but don’t bring your own, it will be provided.
- Waterproof boots and pants
- Warm socks, gloves, scarf and a hat
- Sunscreen, sunglasses
- Zip lock plastic bags or dry sacks for carrying camera, batteries, etc.
Is it a problem if I am sea sick?
Everyone reacts differently to sea conditions whether during the crossing of the infamous Drake Passage to Antarctica, or even during calmer seas. However, our vessels are built for maximum stability and comfort to ensure that even in rough conditions, sea and motion sickness are kept to a minimum at all times.
To avoid seasickness, ask your doctor to prescribe an appropriate seasickness medicine for you and make sure you have enough for the whole trip.
Tips: If you are prone to motion sickness, it is best to avoid alcohol, tobacco, excess liquids and confined spaces.
How many people will be on the ship?
It depends on the ship but the majority of our ships carry between 50 and 150 passengers. A few of the mega-yachts and purpose-built cruise ships carry around 250 passengers.
When is the best season to go to Antarctica?
The Antarctic cruising season starts late October and runs until March. These are the only months of the year when temperatures are known to reach above 0 degrees Celsius during the day on the Antarctic Peninsula, and though the east tends to be colder, it is still more tolerable at this time of the year.
Can we go on shore in Antarctica?
Shore landings are a feature of our Antarctic cruises and one or two shore or Zodiac excursions are usually planned per day, weather conditions permitting.
What is there to do on shore?
Shore landings are mainly for wildlife watching of penguins, seals and nesting birds although itineraries often try to include a visit to a scientific base. Sometimes you can have the opportunity to do activities such as snowshoeing, skiing, hiking, mountaineering and even overnight camping.
What is there to do while on the ship?
Generally the majority of ships have a lecture theatre, library, bar and restaurant, as well as the main deck. Some ships also have a gym, sauna or a small pool.
To help you prepare for what lies ahead, you are offered a series of lectures focusing on the geology, history and wildlife of Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.
You have the opportunity to interact with the crew and expedition team, or for the more adventurous, you can stand on deck taking in the spectacular scenery and wildlife, scanning the horizon for whales, seals and seabirds, or this can be done from the comfort of the lounges and observation decks.
What is the currency used in Antarctica?
There is no currency in Antarctica but the unit of currency in Argentina is the Argentinian Peso, the main currency at the Port Lockroy Post Office is the US dollar, the UK pond and euro are also accepted. All meals are included, alcohol, laundry and souvenirs need to be paid for separately, as well as gratuities and any drinks or snacks consumed outside of mealtimes. Most cruise ships accept euros and US dollar. Major credit cards, in particular Visa and MasterCard are also widely accepted on board. If the Falkland Islands are included on your cruise, the currency of the islands is the Falkland Islands pound (FK £), although the British pond is also accepted.
What language do they speak in Antarctica?
There is no native Antarctic language as there are no indigenous inhabitants. People staying in Antarctica are usually linked to research stations and speak the language of their home countries.
What is the food like on the ships that go to Antarctica?
Food on board is excellent, professional chefs prepare a wide selection of gourmet dishes. Breakfast and lunches tend to be buffet style, with 3, sometimes 4 courses served for dinners.
Is there a laundry on board the ship?
Yes, a laundry service is available on every ship at a reasonable cost.
Is it safe to go on a cruise to Antarctica?
All our tours are 100% tried and tested to ensure that when you travel with us, you are doing so in a controlled and safe environment with trained experts. Also, one of our biggest concerns is the weather conditions to ensure you have the best adventure without risk of injuries to you or the vessel. For your safety, activities may occasionally need to be rescheduled or cancelled.