The Great Austral Loop: Antarctica

From Buenos Aires - Ushuaia to Ushuaia - Buenos Aires
  • All Antarctic Cruises
  • South Georgia & The Falkland Islands
  • Luxury Antarctica
  • Small Ship Cruising
  • Wildlife and Nature
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Tour Description

An exceptional luxury polar expedition cruise to the Falkland Islands, the wildlife mecca of South Georgia and the white continent of Antarctica.

Fly to Buenos Aires, Argentina to begin your epic journey in the Paris of the South. Included in your adventure are flights from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia, from there you set sail to discover the most beautiful sights of these southern lands! Navigate to the Falkland Islands, where you will explore landscapes scattered with moss and lichen, white-sand beaches and turquoise waters. In the Falkland Islands look out for black-browed albatross, snowy albatrosses, Magellanic penguins, Gentoo penguins and southern rockhopper penguins.

Next heading to South Georgia with its impressive glaciers and black-sand beaches. Here is where you will find large colonies of King Penguins and come up close to huge elephant seals. Head further south and cruise around the legendary land of Antarctica following the footsteps of the past and present explorers. The White Continent continues to exert a strong fascination today. Be awed by drifting icebergs, ice floe, glaciers and snow-capped mountains in the Antarctic Peninsula. There will be plenty of wildlife spotting; humpback whales, Gentoo penguins, Adélie penguins, chinstrap penguins, leopard seals, crabeater seals and Weddell seals. Days will be filled outings and shore visits in zodiac inflatables with a team of experienced naturalist guides. Onboard you will be able to relax in comfort and style on your well appointed ship. 

After much fun and amazement exploring these regions, we move cruise back to Ushuaia, then fly to Buenos Aires, ending a journey you will never forget!

Viva's Best Bits...

With so much wildlife to be discovered, getting up close to nature is truly an amazing experience - see multiple penguins species, seals, whales and more!

Cruising in comfort onboard a luxury ship will add to your experience in Antarctica - enjoy fine dining, chic style and the naturally relaxing ambiance of a veritable private yacht.

Offering both hiking and zodiac explorations allowing you close encounters to drifting icebergs, ice floe, glaciers and snow-capped mountains

Tour Itinerary

Day 1
Arrive Buenos Aires

Meet and greet at the hotel by our local representative. Check-in from late morning.
Lunch on your own and time at leisure in the afternoon.
Dinner.
Overnight at the hotel in Buenos Aires

Day 2
Fly Buenos Aires to Ushuaia - Embarkation Day

An early morning breakfast will be served before leaving to the airport for you flight Buenos Aires – Ushuaia.

Transfer to the airport.
Flight Buenos Aires/Ushuaia in economy class. Approximate flight duration: 3 hours, 30 min.
Meet and greet at the airport (English-speaking assistance).

Depending on your choice made when booking your cruise (options not combinable):
You will be transferred to a restaurant for lunch.

OR Tierra del Fuego tour (additional charge)

When booking the cruise, guests willing to visit the Tierra del Fuego National Park will be able to sign up for an optional group excursion, with extra cost. If you decide to do so, please note that immediately upon arrival at Ushuaia airport, you will leave towards the Park where you will have lunch before starting the tour.
Created in 1960, the park which covers 63 000 hectares (155 670 acres) is located in the south west of the Tierra del Fuego Province on the Beagle Canal. One of his entries stands slightly over 6 miles from Ushuaia.
Mountainous landscapes, lagoons, bogs, and rivers draw a picturesque scenery reinforced by the southern position of the park itself. The Darwin Mountains, which represent the southern part of the Andes Mountains are mainly responsible for such landscape. The Park is only partly accessible to the public and this tour will provide you with the opportunity to discover the local flora and sub-Antarctic landscapes. If you get lucky, you may encounter beavers, dams, birds, wild orchids, etc… This is a true paradise for Nature Lovers!
Lunch will be served in a local restaurant within the Park.

(Please note that the Tierra del Fuego excursion is subject to a minimum of participants: if this number is not reached, our operator will not be able to guarantee the departure – In this case, you will be given the option to join the “Lunch in Ushuaia” programme.)
At the end of your visit, you will return to Ushuaia and the port, for embarkation on your vessel.

Embark on your cruise this afternoon

Day 3
At Sea

During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

All meals included

Overnight onboard your cruise ship in your selected cabin

Day 4
New Island and Grave Cove

New Island:
This island with its distinctive jagged relief is located on the western edge of the Falkland Islands and is home to a tiny village of two families. Step onto the golden sand of its flower-lined beaches, beside which an old stone house still stands, and you'll feel like you've entered a natural paradise. A narrow pathway weaves around typical Falkland moorlands. Follow it and in under 20 minutes you'll find yourself at the heart of a colony of southern rockhopper penguins, black-browed albatross and imperial shags. It's the perfect opportunity to watch the albatross swoop down from the cliffs and skim the waves that crash against the rocks on the exposed side of the island.

Grave Cove:
Make your way through the turbulent Woolly Gut strait and emerge in the stillness of Grave Cove. Located in the northern edge of the Falkland Islands, this bay owes its name to the vestiges of whalers’ graves that overlook the beach. As you step off the boat and onto the white-sand beach, you might find yourself escorted by a few hospitable Commerson's dolphins, elegantly adorned in black and white. A stroll along the grassy dunes will lead you to a vast plain of lush green grass, tended by a few sheep. On the other side of the island you'll find one of the largest gentoo penguin colonies in the area. With some luck, you'll also glimpse a sea lion scouring the waves for his next meal.

All meals included

Overnight onboard your cruise ship in your selected cabin

Day 5-6
At Sea

During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

All meals included

Overnight onboard your cruise ship in your selected cabin

Day 7-9
South Georgia

Aboard your ship, discover South Georgia, a region formed by an underwater mountain chain that extends from the Andes to the Antarctic Peninsula. All the wildlife of the Far South can be found there: king and Gentoo penguins, elephant seals, fur seals… You might get the chance to discover the majestic glaciers of Gold Harbour and the vast plains of Fortuna Bay. If you are fortunate enough to land at Salisbury Plain, you can expect a wonderful spectacle: more than 300,000 king penguins, which you will recognise by the bright orange mark on their head and neck, have taken up residence there.

All meals included

Overnight onboard your cruise ship in your selected cabin

Day 10-11
At Sea

Day at sea. Indulge in one of the services or activities on board. Look out for a variety of wildlife from the deck. Take part in one of the lectures on board. Or sit back and relax with a book

All meals included

Overnight onboard your cruise ship in your selected cabin

Day 12-14
Antarctica Peninsula

Succumb to the magic of a place unlike any other. To this day, the mythical Antarctic Peninsula still holds real fascination and promises its visitors unforgettable moments. Throughout your adventure in this icy realm, you will find yourself in the heart of a spectacular decor in subtle shades of blue and white, surrounded by exceptional wildlife. Penguins, humpback whales, seals and giant petrels are at home here, as are elephant seals, fur seals, Antarctic minke whales, and orcas. Depending on which sites you will be lucky enough to visit, you may get the chance to observe them and share with them the beauty of these extreme parts.

Each day, based on ice conditions, the Captain and the Expedition Leader will suggest Zodiac® outings or landings to discover the infinite riches of the Antarctic Peninsula. Glaciers, ice floe, tabletop icebergs, mountain peaks that plunge straight into the sea, volcanic beaches, research stations, enchanting bays, and vestiges of the whaling industry: these are the faces of the Antarctic that will likely reveal themselves to you, in a hushed and surreal atmosphere. You will sail in the wake of Jean-Baptiste Charcot, Adrien de Gerlache and Sir Ernest Shackleton, great Antarctic explorers who, from the 19th century, set out to conquer these remote and uninhabited lands.

All meals included

Overnight onboard your cruise ship in your selected cabin

Day 15-16
Drake Passage

If there is one place, one sea, one waterway dreaded by tourists, researchers and hardened seafarers alike, it is undoubtedly Drake Passage. Situated at the latitude of the infamous Furious Fifties winds, between Cape Horn and the South Shetland Islands, it is the shortest route to connect Antarctica to South America. Seasoned navigators will tell you that you must earn your visit to the White Continent! As the Antarctic convergence zone where cold currents rising up from the South Pole meet warmer equatorial water masses, Drake Passage harbours a very diverse marine fauna. Don't forget to look to the sky to catch a glimpse of elegant albatross and Cape petrels, playfully floating about in the wind around your ship.

All meals included

Overnight onboard your cruise ship in your selected cabin

Day 17
Disembarkation Ushuaia - Fly to Buenos Aires

Arrival back into Ushuaia this morning, and transfer to the airport for your departing flight to Buenos Aires. Services end upon arrival into Buenos Aires Airport.

We recommend you stay at least 1 night in Buenos Aires post-cruise, as we are unable to confirm the flight times until closer to travel.

Need help with pre or post cruise travel arrangements? Interested in extending your stay to visit other amazing destinations in Latin America. Be sure to ask your travel adviser for more details

What’s Included

Accommodation
  • Included Copy 20 15 nights in a cabin onboard
  • Included Copy 20 1 night pre-cruise hotel in Buenos Aires
  • Included Copy 31 Cabin upgrades available
Food
  • Included Copy 20 All meals whilst on board
  • Included Copy 20 Open bar & room service 24 hours (conditions apply)
  • Included Copy 20 Dinner on Day 1 at hotel
Fees & Services
  • Included Copy 20 All tours mentioned with professional English speaking guide (subject to weather conditions)
  • Included Copy 20 Parker to keep & boots to Loan while on the cruise
  • Included Copy 20 Return charter flight from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia
  • Included Copy 20 Lectures and information sessions hosted by our naturalist-guides
  • Included Copy 31 Kayaking - Additional charges apply
  • Included Copy 7 Personal expenses such as laundry, on board communication (telephone calls, faxes, email)
  • Included Copy 7 International flights, Travel Insurance, Gratuities / Tips are not included
Transportation
Le Lyrial

260 (200 in Antarctica) Passengers

L'Austral

264 (200 in Antarctica) Passengers

Activities

  • Included Shore landings with experienced guides
  • Included Lectures and information sessions hosted by naturalist-guides
  • Included Opportunities to hike in Antarctica
  • Included Explore the magic of Antarctica with a sea kayak adventure - Selected departures
  • Included Witness the magical landscapes of Antarctica, Falklands and South Georgia
  • Included Magellanic, Chinstrap, Gentoo, southern rockhopper Adelie & king penguins!
  • Included Explore the icy waters by zodiac
Click here for dates & prices
Duration

17 days

Price from

$18,599 USD

Per person, sharing

Based On Lowest Cabin

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