Falklands, South Georgia & Antarctic Peninsula

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

This Antarctic cruise takes you to the wildlife sanctuaries of the Falkland Islands and South Georgia, then on to the Antarctic Peninsula. Join our onboard photography workshops, capture the region's untouched beauty and meet the fascinating fauna that inhabits this unique polar world: get up-close with one of the world's largest king penguin rookeries at Salisbury Plain in South Georgia, watch male elephant seals fight for territory in the Falklands, or spot humpback whales on Zodiac excursions! Around the Antarctic Peninsula cruise among majestic icebergs and at the foot of soaring glaciers to photograph the incredible convergence of life in the water, on land and in the air.

Our Antarctica cruise ship is warm and comfortable and our expert crew of naturalists and historians will entertain you with amazing lectures that compliment your Antarctica tour. Your vessel is designed with a special X-BOW that will cut through the swell and make a quicker passage through the waves. Journeys by Zodiac will allow you to touch down on the ice and experience the natural inhabitants up close. After a busy day of activities relax in the heated saltwater open air swimming pool and jacuzzis and watch the stunning polar landscapes drift by.

Viva's Best Bits...

Very unique opportunity: In South Georgia, retrace Shackleton’s legendary mountain crossing on skis on on foot! Ask for more details!

"Do something cool and different, ask about snorkeling in Antarctica! Or try snowshoeing - walking up gentle slopes a breeze, allowing you to explore places others struggle to reach in boots alone" Tara, Team Viva

This comfortable expedition vessel with a bow specially designed for polar waters will get you up close with the wildlife in no time!

Tour Itinerary

Day 1
Ushuaia

Arrive in Ushuaia, where you will be met by a representative and transferred to your downtown hotel. Evening at leisure

Day 2
Ushuaia

This morning, enjoy a leisurely breakfast at the hotel before exploring Ushuaia on a half-day city tour.

Ushuaia, capital of Tierra del Fuego is located at the shores of the Beagle Channel and surrounded by the Martial Mountains giving you a unique landscape in Argentina, which is the combination of mountains, sea, glaciers and forests. On this introductory tour, you will visit “La Mision” neighbourhood, the old Government House, and the upper area of the city, which offers beautiful panoramic views of Ushuaia and the Beagle Channel. During the excursion you will see the antique houses that belonged to the first families settled in Ushuaia. The excursion ends with a visit to the Old Prison Museum before transferring to the pier for embarkation at approximately 4.00 PM.

After embarkation, you’ll have time to settle into your cabin before our important mandatory briefings. As the ship pulls away from port, we’ll gather on the deck to commence our adventure with spectacular views over Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego. This evening, get to know your fellow expeditioners and friendly expedition team and crew at a welcome dinner.

(Breakfast and dinner included. Lunch is at own expense)

Day 3
At Sea

As we commence our trip across the South Atlantic Ocean, we make the most of our time getting comfortable with the motions of the sea. Our expedition team prepare you for our first landing with important wildlife guidelines and biosecurity procedures, and start our lecture program to help you learn more about Antarctica’s history, wildlife and environment.

Our wildlife experiences begin as we enjoy watching and photographing the many seabirds, including majestic albatrosses and giant petrels following in our wake. They rise and fall skilfully, using air currents created by the ship to gain momentum.

Day 4-5
Falkland Islands

The Falklands~Malvinas comprises two large islands (East and West Falkland), with over 700 islands scattered off the coast. All but seven of these are uninhabited, with windswept coastlines, white sand beaches and crystal clear water. These beautifully barren islands are true wildlife havens, sheltering an impressive diversity of birdlife, including the largest black-browed albatross colony on earth. The cold, nutrient-rich waters surrounding the islands make this a prime location for spotting marine life.

There are many beautiful areas to explore across the Falklands~Malvinas, each offering a unique perspective on this magnificent archipelago. Your experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their expertise to design your voyage from day to day, choosing the best options based on the prevailing winds, weather and wildlife opportunities.

We generally make landings or Zodiac excursions twice a day. Even though we’re north of the Antarctic Convergence it can be quite chilly here, so you’ll want to layer up before joining Zodiac cruises into rocky coves or along sea cliffs, keeping watch for seals, sea lions, dolphins and porpoising penguins. Zodiacs will also transport you from the ship to land, where you may be able to visit albatross colonies, penguin rookeries and perhaps even have a traditional English ‘tea and scones’ at a local cottage.

We also aim to land in historic Stanley, the capital of the Falklands~Malvinas. This charming town has a distinctly British character, with terraced town houses, pioneer cottages and even an iconic red telephone box! Colourful buildings house cosy cafes, English pubs, souvenir shops, a post office and the fascinating Historic Dockyard Museum, with displays on the maritime history of the Falkland Islands, natural history and links to Antarctica.

Day 6-8
At Sea

Between the Falklands~Malvinas and South Georgia, you will be entranced by the ceaseless flight of the many seabirds that follow our wake, skillfully using the air currents created by the ship to gain momentum. On this leg, we are usually travelling into the prevailing weather so it is difficult to estimate our precise arrival time in South Georgia. Our lecture program will continue highlighting all of the incredible sights we have witnessed over the past few days. You will have ample time to enjoy observing the sea birds, whale-watching from the observation areas, or simply relaxing with a book.

If time and weather conditions permit, we may pass close to Shag Rocks, a fascinating group of jagged rocky islets protruding from the sea, in the proximity of South Georgia.

Day 9-12
South Georgia

As you near the rugged island of South Georgia, spare a thought for Captain James Cook, who arrived here in 1775 and believed it to be the northern tip of a great southern continent! In fact, it is a small island only 176 km (110 mi) long, but with a 3,000 m (9,842 ft) snow-capped mountain range, some of the world’s largest congregations of wildlife and a truly fascinating human history, South Georgia is an island of incredible riches.

On approach, jagged mountain peaks rise steeply, while seabirds are often spotted soaring around the ship. You’ll sail down the east coast, taking in the spectacular glaciated scenery and enjoying a little shelter from the prevailing westerly winds. This enchanting coastline is yours to explore!

Your experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their local knowledge to plan your voyage from day to day, choosing the best options based on the prevailing weather, sea state and wildlife opportunities.

We generally make landings or Zodiac excursions twice a day. Make sure you layer up before joining Zodiac cruises around craggy coves and along the rocky coastline in search of nesting penguins, seal haul-outs and bird cliffs. Remember to keep an eye out for South Georgia’s kelp forests as well - these remarkable underwater ecosystems are quite mesmerising as their fronds sway back and forth on the water’s surface.

Zodiacs will also transport you from ship to shore, where you can visit some of the largest king penguin colonies on earth, take a guided walk among fur seals and elephant seals (making sure you listen to your guides and keep your distance!) and wander along pebbled streams and grassy glacial outwash plains. We also hope to visit the remnants of South Georgia’s thriving whaling stations and pay our respects to Sir Ernest Shackleton, whose incredible voyage of survival is synonymous with this island. If you have chosen an optional activity, you’ll have the option to do that whenever conditions allow.

In addition to Zodiac cruises and shore excursions, we may ship cruise through fjords with towering cliffs of ancient stone, or into deeply indented bays towards dramatic glacier fronts. This is a great time to find a comfy spot in the observation lounge or make your way to the bridge to enjoy uninterrupted views of South Georgia’s majestic coast.

Day 13-14
At Sea

En route to the Antarctic Peninsula we'll head across the Scotia Sea, following the route that Shackleton and five of his men took in order to find help for the rest of their crew. On 24 April, 1916, they piled into the James Caird, the most seaworthy of their open boats, to attempt this perilous journey to South Georgia - some 1,290 km / 801 mi. distance. Shackleton hoped to reach South Georgia in two weeks. There he would enlist the help of the whalers to return to Elephant Island and rescue the men who had been left behind. As excitement builds for our arrival to Antarctica, be out on deck or from the open bridge to spot large iceberg.

“Nearly always there were gales. So small was our boat and so great were the seas that often our sail flapped idly in the calm between the crests of two waves. Then we would climb the next slope and catch the full fury of the gale where the wool-like whiteness of the breaking water surged around us.” - Ernest Shackleton

Day 15-19
Antarctic Peninsula

It’s almost impossible to describe the feeling of arriving in Antarctica. Spotting your first iceberg and taking a deep breath of some of the most fresh, crisp air on earth is an experience that will stay with you forever.

Once we arrive, the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands are ours to explore, and we have a host of choices available to us. Because we are so far south, we will experience approximately 18-24 hours of daylight and the days can be as busy as you wish.

Your experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their expertise to design your voyage from day to day, choosing the best options based on the prevailing weather, ice conditions and wildlife opportunities.

We generally make landings or Zodiac excursions twice a day. You’ll want to rug up before joining Zodiac cruises along spectacular ice cliffs or among grounded icebergs, keeping watch for whales, seals and porpoising penguins. Zodiacs will also transport you from the ship to land, where you can visit penguin rookeries, discover historic huts and explore some of our favourite spots along the peninsula.

While ashore we aim to stretch our legs, wandering along pebbly beaches or perhaps up snow-covered ridgelines to vantage points with mountains towering overhead and ice-speckled oceans below. If you have chosen an optional activity, you’ll have the option to do that whenever conditions allow, and of course keen polar plungers will have the chance to fully immerse themselves in polar waters - conditions permitting!

In addition to Zodiac cruises and shore excursions, we may ship cruise some of the narrow, dramatic straits separating offshore islands from the mainland, or linger in scenic bays to watch whales travelling or feeding. This is a great time to enjoy the observation lounge or make your way to the bridge for uninterrupted views of Antarctica in all its splendour. Keep an ear out for the creak and deep rumble of glaciers as they carve their way from summit to sea, and take a quiet moment to experience the wonder of this incredible white continent.

Day 20
At Sea

On our return sailing to Ushuaia, you may choose to spend your time editing photos, enjoying the onboard facilities, or listening to an informative lecture.

Day 21
Ushuaia

During the early morning, we sail along the Beagle Channel, before quietly slipping into dock in Ushuaia, where we begin disembarking at around 8.00 am. Farewell your expedition team and fellow travellers as we all continue our onward journeys, hopefully with a newfound sense of the immense power of nature. A transfer to either downtown Ushuaia or to the airport is included in the cost of the voyage.

What’s Included

Accommodation
  • Included Copy 20 One night’s hotel accommodation with breakfast in Ushuaia on Day 1
  • Included Copy 20 Onboard accommodation during voyage including daily cabin service
Food
  • Included Copy 20 All meals, snacks, tea and coffee during voyage
  • Included Copy 20 Beer, house wine and soft drinks with dinner
  • Included Copy 20 Captain’s Welcome and Farewell reception including four-course dinner, house cocktails & house beer
Fees & Services
  • Included Copy 20 All shore excursions and Zodiac cruises, walks, photography & polar plunge
  • Included Copy 20 Half day city tour in Ushuaia on Day 2
  • Included Copy 20 Educational lectures and guiding services from expedition team
  • Included Copy 20 A 3-in-1 waterproof polar expedition jacket (to keep)
  • Included Copy 20 Complimentary use of muck boots during the voyage
  • Included Copy 20 Comprehensive pre-departure information
  • Included Copy 20 Port surcharges, permits and landing fees
  • Included Copy 7 Travel insurance or emergency evacuation charges
  • Included Copy 7 International flights, Gratuities, Laundry, bar, beverage and other personal charges
  • Included Copy 31 Add on kayaking, snorkelling or snowshoeing
  • Included Copy 31 Add on Shackleton Crossing in South Georgia by Foot
  • Included Copy 31 Add on Ski/Snowboard Touring
Transportation
Greg Mortimer | Arctic & Antarctic Cruise Ship

160 (120 in polar regions) Passengers

Sylvia Earle | Arctic & Antarctic Cruise Ship

138 Passengers

Activities

  • Included Sea kayaking, snorkelling and snowshoeing (available at additional cost)
  • Included Lectures on wildlife, our environment, history and destinations
  • Included Birdwatching, whale and mammal spotting, visits to penguin colonies...
  • Included Shackleton Crossing in South Georgia ( please ask us for details)
  • Included Ski/Snowboard Touring (available at additional cost, please ask us for details)
  • Included Photographer onboard to help you get the best out of your shots
  • Included Zodiac cruising through stunning landscapes
  • Included Landings & walks in the Antarctic Peninsula, Falklands & South Georgia
  • Included Take a polar plunge...if you dare!
Click here for dates & prices
Duration

21 days

Price from

$26,200 USD

Per person, sharing

Based On Lowest Cabin

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