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Antarctic Peninsula (10 - 11 days)

Antarctic Peninsula

This classical voyage includes the highlights of the Antarctic Peninsula

 

The peninsula consists of an 800 kilometres (500 mile) long mountain chain, the highest peaks rising to approximately 2,800 metres (9,186 feet), and numerous off-lying islands. The Peninsula offers the most dramatic scenery and biggest variety of wildlife in Antarctica. Visitors are easily overcome by sensory overload by the huge amount of ice-bergs. - See more at: http://www.oceanwide-expeditions.com/destinations/destination/antarctic-peninsula/#sthash.Eszl52i7.dpuf

The peninsula consists of an 800 kilometres (500 mile) long mountain chain, the highest peaks rising to approximately 2,800 metres (9,186 feet), and numerous off-lying islands. The Peninsula offers the most dramatic scenery and biggest variety of wildlife in Antarctica. Visitors are easily overcome by sensory overload by the huge amount of ice-bergs.

Highlights include
* South Sheltand Island
* Deception Island
* Vernadsky station
* Rugged Mountains

Wildlife highlights include: Humpback, Minke and Fin whales, Crabeater, Weddell & Leopard Seals, Gentoo & Chinstrap penguins

Departure Dates 2016

November 18 - 29 (10 nights)
December 28 - January 8 (11 nights)

Departure Dates 2017

January 8 - 18 (10 nights)
February 5 - 15 (10 nights)
March 17 - 26 (whale watching) (9 nights) $ 6,500 for twin window

Per person tour cost from Ushuaia:
$ 8,900 USD twin porthole cabin
$ 9,250 USD twin window cabin
Reduction for Triple & Quadruple cabins

 


Itinerary

Depart/Returns: Ushuaia - Ushuaia

Day 1
In the afternoon, we embark in Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, the southernmost city in the world located in the shadow of the Andes and right at the Beagle Channel shore. We’ll sail through this scenic waterway during the afternoon.

Day 2 & 3
During these two days we sail across the Drake Passage. When we cross the Antarctic Convergence, we arrive in the circum-Antarctic up welling zone. In this area we may see Wandering Albatrosses, Grey Headed Albatrosses, Black- browed Albatrosses, Light- mantled Sooty Albatrosses, Cape Pigeons, Southern Fulmars, Wilson’s Storm Petrels, Blue Petrels and Antarctic Petrels. Near the South Shetland Islands, we spot our first icebergs. The Master of the vessel may decide to sail the narrow English Strait between Robert Island and Greenwich Islandif the conditions are favorable. Then we might be able to do our first landing in Antarctic waters in the late evening of the third day at Aitcho Island at the South Shetlands. If the conditions do not allow us to manoeuvre through the English Strait then we continue sailing South of Livingston.

These volcanic islands or the South Shetlands are windswept and often shrouded in mist and fog, but do offer subtle pleasures. There is a nice variety of flora (mosses, lichens and flowering grasses) and fauna, such as Gentoo Penguins, Chinstrap Penguins and southern Giant Petrels.

Day 4 - 7
A typical itinerary in the Antarctic Peninsula could be as follows. This is a sample only; the final itinerary will be determined by the Expedition Leader on board.

We may start our first day with a landing at Half Moon Island, where we will find a variety of Chinstrap Penguins. Seals often haul out on the beach. Later on, we sail to Deception Island. Deception is a sub-ducted crater, which opens into the sea, creating a natural harbor for the ship. Here we find hot springs, an abandoned whaling station, thousands of Cape Pigeons and many Dominican Gulls, Brown and South Polar Skuas and Antarctic Terns. Wilson’s Storm Petrels and Black-bellied Storm Petrels nest in the ruins of the whaling station in Whalers Bay.

On our way further South we will sail across the Gerlache Strait to Cuverville Island, a small precipitous island, nestled between the mountains of the Antarctic Peninsula and Danco Island. It contains a large colony of Gentoo Penguins and breeding pairs of Brown Skuas. In Neko Harbor and Paradise Bay with its myriad icebergs and deep cut fjords, we have the opportunity to set foot on the Antarctic Continent. We shall have the opportunity for zodiac cruising between the icebergs in the inner parts of the fjords. In this area we have good chances to see Humpback Whales and Minke Whales. We sail through the spectacular Lemaire Channel to Petermann Island offering Adelie Penguins and Blue-eyed Shags. We also try to land at Pleneau Island with Elephant Seals and fair chances to encounter Humpback, Minke and Fin Whales.

A visit to one of the scientific stations in Antarctica will give you an insight about the life of modern Antarcticans working on the White Continent. Further south we may visit the Ukrainian Vernadsky Station, where we will receive a warm welcome from the station crew. Sailing north through the Neumayer Channel we arrive at the Melchior Islands with a very beautiful landscape and again possibilities for zodiac cruising among the icebergs, where we may encounter Leopard Seals, Crabeater Seals and whales. In the Neumayer Channel, we may visit the British research station and Port Lockroy’s post office on Goudier Island. Close to Port Lockroy we can also offer a landing on Jougla Point where Gentoo Penguins and Imperial Shags abound.

Day 8 - 9
Returning through the Drake Passage, we will have chances of seeing many seabirds and enjoying lectures from our expedition team.

Day 10
We arrive in the morning in Ushuaia and disembark.

Programs may vary depending on local ice and weather conditions and in order to take advantage of opportunities to see wildlife.