Antarctica & Falklands Expedition - Northbound

From Buenos Aires to Buenos Aires
  • All Antarctic Cruises
  • Antarctic Peninsula
  • Argentina
  • Small Ship Cruising
  • Wildlife and Nature
  • Expedition
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Tour Description

Embark on a late summer expedition to explore both the Falklands and Puerto Madryn and experience Antarctica when whale watching is at its best.

You’ll be in Antarctica for five days in its late summer months. Beautiful sunsets and sunrises will paint the ice and snow in shades of gold, orange and pink, accentuated by snow algae in bloom. This is prime time for whale-watching, and you’ll get to see penguins in their final stage of molting. The Expedition Team will host lectures, take you on landings and on sea activities to really discover the frozen continent. We don’t have a set itinerary here, as Antarctica is known for changeable weather and sea ice. Instead, we’ll adjust our plans according to the elements to take you to the best places available. 

After experiencing Antarctica and returning via the Drake Passage, you can contrast its icy wilderness with three days in the green and grassy Falklands. Visit the charming capital Stanley with its English red busses, restaurants and charming pubs, and discover the variety of wildlife living on the more remote parts of the islands. Then, it’s on to warm and inviting Puerto Madryn for its beaches and nearby nature reserve before returning to Buenos Aires where your expedition cruise ends.

 

Viva's Best Bits...

"Not only will you witness amazing wildlife, like penguin colony visits, the Citizen Science programme will allow you to assist with live scientific research!, Tara, Team Viva

Landings & activities led by our professional English-speaking Expedition Team; hike, walk, camp, photograph, and cruise Antarctica, witness glaciers, icebergs, seal, penguins and other outstanding wildlife!

Cruise Antarctica on a hybrid-powered expedition ship. Emissions are cut by sailing with electrical propulsion. Innovative sustainable technology reduces fuel consumption and CO2-emissions on the ships by 20 percent. Travel more sustainably

Tour Itinerary

Day 1
Buenos Aires

If you thought romance was long dead, you’ve yet to experience Buenos Aires. The sophisticated yet down-to-earth Argentine capital thrives on its strong traditions: proud football fans, cultured theatre scene and seductive tango. During the day, wander past French and Italianate buildings in Recoleta, finding shade from the summer sun in the resplendent plazas and parks of Palermo where fleets of parrots and songbirds roost. At night, feast on steak in San Telmo before heading to a local bar, club or confitería on Avenida Corrientes for a late-night milonga fuelled by traditional tango dancing.

By adding a few days to your vacation, you can also join an optional trip to explore wild Patagonia.


Day 2
Buenos Aires Ushuaia

To get you to your ship as soon as possible, your plane leaves Buenos Aires early in the morning, taking you to the southern port city of Ushuaia on the shores of the Beagle Channel. From the plane, you might be granted views over Lago Fagnano and of snow-capped Monte Darwin in Alberto de Agostini National Park to the west.

Hybrid-powered expedition ship MS Fridtjof Nansen will be here waiting to start your adventure together. You’ll get to know the ship well over the next few weeks and fondly see it as your comfortable home away from home. After boarding, you’ll attend a meeting with the Expedition Team who will take you through some key health and safety principles. Enjoy a welcome dinner, your first of many delicious meals on board, before finishing the day with a stroll on deck looking for stars up above.

Day 3-4
The Drake Passage

Spending two days sailing the Drake Passage may seem like a test of your patience but believe us when we say the time will fly by. Not only are there albatross, petrels, humpback, and fin whales to watch for, but our expert Expedition Team will also do what they do best: prepare you for the adventures ahead.

You’ll attend lectures from the Expedition Team to learn about the history, environments and challenges of the places we plan to visit. You will learn what it takes to be an Antarctic ambassador and how to explore the frozen habitats safely and sustainably while observing IAATO regulations. Our special rubber boots for landings are just one of the precautions we take. The Expedition Team will also introduce Citizen Science programmes which will help you understand more about intricate ecosystems while contributing to current scientific research. Meanwhile, our onboard photographer may be sharing some useful tips on how to take the best pictures.

If your brain feels like it’s ready to burst, joining some included activities like art classes can be a great way to relax. Or maybe you want to blow off some steam in the sauna. Keep fit in the indoor gym and put on your running shoes to test the 150-metre-long outdoor running track. Say goodbye to any lingering stress with therapies in the Wellness Area or maybe enjoy a healthy snack in one of our three onboard restaurants.

Day 5-9
Antarctica

Welcome to Antarctica. This vast continent is almost entirely ice and snow. Ice shelves are the size of countries and icebergs tower over our ship as big as buildings. Glaciers cascade down through the mountains, crumpling towards the shoreline where they crumble ice into the water. When we arrive here, summer is coming to an end, and you can look forward to seeing these landscapes beautifully illuminated by breathtaking sunsets. This is also the best time of year to see penguins in their final stage of moulting and to spot different species of whales as they gorge on krill.

During your five days here, we plan to visit several possible sites in the South Shetlands and on the Antarctic Peninsula, based on when and where conditions are at their best. But this is no passive sail-by. The Expedition Team has big plans for you, as they will take you on ice-cruises and on landings ashore, bringing you to historic and scenic sites and to penguin colonies at a respectful distance. You may even get the chance to go kayaking with them among the icebergs, in an optional activity. They will also continue their lecture programme and you’ll likely also be busy cataloguing the various wildlife you spot as part of a Citizen Science project.

The thing about expedition cruising is that the itinerary is not set in stone, allowing us to be flexible and adaptable, doing whatever is best at each specific point in the voyage. Having sailed these waters for so many years, we know all the possible landing sites and when we should go to maximise the experience for everyone

Day 10-11
Northbound

Join the Expedition Team as they continue their lecture programme covering topics such as the history of the great explorers, marine biology, wildlife, oceanography and climate change. You might also get to spend time examining seawater samples taken in Antarctica, allowing you to study another kind of wildlife at the cellular level. Scout for wildlife from deck, relax in the Explorer Lounge & Bar or just watch the scenery glide by from the outdoor hot tubs or heated infinity pool. As we get closer to the Falklands, the ship is usually followed by different bird species, such as gulls, fulmars, petrels and even albatross.

Day 12-14
Falkland Islands

With green grass, white sands and farms, the Falklands are a world away from the barren white wilderness of Antarctica. Similar to Antarctica though, we will spend our three days exploring the islands with no exact itinerary, allowing the Captain and Expedition Team to pick out the best spots for each day based on the conditions at the time.

This is a paradise for birds, like ducks, geese, albatrosses, caracaras and wrens, not to mention the four different species of penguins to found here – king, rockhopper, Magellanic and gentoo. The latter normally hang out in large colonies around the islands, which you might be able to spot from the ship or even visit during one of our landings.

Stanley, the capital of the archipelago, is on the island of East Falkland and easy for the ship to access. Small enough to be explored on foot, it comes complete with familiar English red buses, inviting restaurants and pubs full of friendly locals.

Included Excursions:

Stanley - Community Walk
Take this self-timed walk through the highlights of Stanley's Capital.

Day 15
At sea

As we set out for another day at sea, there are new lectures and presentations from the Expedition Team to listen in on. Maybe you want to spend some time going through your pictures from Antarctica and the Falklands, or exchange experiences with your fellow travellers. And if you haven’t already, looking at the scenery and watching for wildlife from the scenic sauna isn’t a bad way to spend the day. Not bad at all…

Day 16
Puerto Madryn

Puerto Madryn was founded by Welsh immigrants in 1865, and late summer temperatures might make you want to visit the inviting beaches in the area. Puerto Madryn is also the gateway to dramatic Valdes Peninsula, and we hope to invite you on an optional excursion here to explore a stunning nature reserve that has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage site. Here, you will get the chance to see marine mammals like fur seals, elephant seals, sea lions, and whales like the Southern right whale, baleen whale and orcas. There are also at least 180 species of birds living on the peninsula, so get those binoculars out and start looking for new favourite birds. If birds aren’t really your cup of tea, this is also a nice place to walking around, eat and shop for local arts and crafts.

Day 17-18
Final sailing days

Your adventurous expedition cruise is coming to an end, and you can tick Antarctica, the Falklands and Puerto Madryn off your bucket list. You will feel the temperature rise as we make our way north, so head out onto the outer decks and enjoy some sun by the infinity pool or in the outdoor gym.

Take the opportunity to spend time with your new friends in the Expedition Team too. They are never short of fascinating facts and interesting stories with which to regale you with. Enjoy a farewell dinner on the last evening and watch the stars mirrored in the water beneath the ship one last time before going to bed.

Day 19
Disembark Buenos Aires

Sadly, all good things must come to an end, and the same goes for your expedition cruise. It has been 19 days since the last time you were in Buenos Aires, but having experienced so much during that time, it will probably feel like it’s been much longer. This is your second chance to get a feel for the exotic Latin city which seems to pulsate to the rhythm of tango. If you don’t feel like dancing, you can also enjoy an optional programme to the famous Iguazu Falls, one of the largest and most impressive waterfalls in the world.

Whether you are carrying on your adventure or headed for home, we bid you farewell and wish you many more adventures in the years to come. Who knows, maybe we’ll see you on one of our expeditions to other destinations we explore, or perhaps Antarctica we tempt you back one more time…

What’s Included

Accommodation
  • Included Copy 20 Expedition cruise in a cabin of your choice
  • Included Copy 20 Overnight in Buenos Aires before the expedition cruise, including breakfast
  • Included Copy 31 Cabin upgrades available
Food
  • Included Copy 20 Coffee and tea included throughout the day
  • Included Copy 20 Breakfast, lunch and dinner including beverages (house beer and wine, sodas, and mineral water)
  • Included Copy 31 À la carte restaurant Lindstrøm included for suite guests
  • Included Copy 20 Complimentary reusable water bottle to use at water refill stations on board
Fees & Services
  • Included Copy 20 Transfer from the hotel in Buenos Aires to Buenos Aires airport before the expedition
  • Included Copy 20 Transfer from Ushuaia airport to the ship, including a brief tour of the town
  • Included Copy 20 Range of included excursions
  • Included Copy 20 English-speaking Expedition Team who organise and accompany activities on board and ashore
  • Included Copy 20 Complimentary Wind- and water-resistant jacket
  • Included Copy 20 Loan of boots, trekking poles, and equipment neededfor optional and included activities
  • Included Copy 20 Free Wi-fi on board for all guests. Limited connection due to remote location. No Streaming
  • Included Copy 20 Use of the ship’s hot tubs, panoramic sauna, outdoor and indoor gyms and outdoor running track
  • Included Copy 31 Gratuities not expected
  • Included Copy 20 Flight in economy class from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia
  • Included Copy 31 Optional activities booked onboard: camping, kayaking, snowshoeing, hikes, Stanley walk
  • Included Copy 20 Citizen Science programme allows guests to assist with live scientific research
  • Included Copy 7 International flights, Travel Insurance, additional pre/post cruise arrangements not included
Transportation
MS Fridtjof Nansen

500 in Antarctica (530) Passengers

Activities

  • Included Hiking opportunities, Zodiac cruising, shore landings in Antarctica
  • Included Citizen Science programme allows guests to assist with live scientific research
  • Included Professional onboard photographer gives top tips and tricks for the best photos
  • Included Gym, hot tubs and panoramic sauna to relax at end of the day!
  • Included Visit Stanley, Falkland Islands, and have a drink at a friendly pub
  • Included Explorations on Zodiacs
  • Included Options to snowshoe, camp, hike or kayak in Antarctica
Click here for dates & prices
Duration

19 days

Price from

$10,226 USD

Per person, sharing

Based on Lowest Cabin

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