Pristine, remote and truly awesome
The power of nature and teeming wildlife, thriving despite the extremes of temperature, will leave you with everlasting memories to take home. Come ashore on isolated beaches to encounter wildlife in haunting landscapes, kayak in untouched waters with icebergs floating by, or perhaps spend a night in a tent under the stars.
Starting in cosmopolitan Montevideo, the lovely capital of Uruguay, we sail out of the Rio de la Plata into the open waters of the Atlantic. The river mouth is a very busy shipping lane, and it fascinating to track the vessels from all over the world.
We cross open sea on our way to the Falkland Islands, with their seamless horizons, vast open spaces, stunning white sand beaches and wildlife like penguins and albatrosses. The penguins here are unafraid of humans and often come close, providing great photo opportunities! Bird lovers will be thrilled with Carcass Island, with a rich variety of ducks, geese, penguins, albatrosses, caracaras and wrens.
Stanley, the capital of the Falklands, makes a wonderful starting point for excursions. The town is easy enough to discover in a day on foot, as shops, pubs, and services are all clustered around the port.
Captivating South Georgia
On board lectures will prepare you for your journey to unique South Georgia. This area offers magnificent scenery with majestic glaciers and beaches teeming with wildlife.
During our stay here, you will see elephant seals lounge on the sand, fur seal pups race in and out of the water, albatross soar overhead, and king penguins in the thousands. In Grytviken, you will see an abandoned whaling station, a whaling museum, the Norwegian Seaman’s Church, and the tiny graveyard where we can pay our respects to the great Antarctic explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton.
In South Georgia, king penguins form huge breeding colonies; with the St Andrews Bay colony boasting over 100,000 birds. Because of the long breeding cycle, colonies are continuously occupied.
As we sail ever further south, the lecture series will turn its focus on Antarctica, including an introduction to the Antarctic visitor guidelines, as we approach the coldest, driest, windiest and most remote continent on Earth.
Antarctica and the wonders of the Deep South
Antarctica is far different from anything else you will ever experience! There are no permanent human inhabitants on the continent, but it is home to millions of penguins and serves as the feeding area for thousands of whales.
Two of the highlights during our time here are Deception Island and Half Moon Island, because of the resident colonies of penguins. Enjoy beautiful vistas and the gentoo penguin colonies on Yankee Harbour, Cuverville Island, Neko Harbour and Paradise Harbour. The British base in Port Lockroy is one of the most popular sites, and offers a peek into life on a polar base in the 1950s.
When opportunities arise, we will launch our kayaks, pitch tents ashore, and take you on unforgettable hikes to explore one the most beautiful, untouched places on the planet.
Returning, we will sail through the Drake Passage, notorious among the early polar explorers, before disembarking in Ushuaia, the southernmost town in the world.