Antarctica > Ortelius > Antarctic Peninsula – Polar Circle, Deep South Discovery and whale watching voyage

Antarctic Peninsula – Polar Circle, Deep South Discovery and whale watching voyage

Itinerary
Dates & Rates

This Polar Circle and Antarctic Peninsula cruise will take you further south of Antarctica, crossing the Polar Circe. This expedition cruise passes through waters travelled by Humpback, Minke and Fin whales. Anchoring in various spots around the region, the expedition offers the chance to hike, and dive in the iceberg-heavy waters.

Itinerary

Day 1: Embarkation in Ushuaia - In the afternoon, we embark in Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, the southernmost city in the world located at the Beagle Channel and sail through this scenic waterway for the rest of the evening.

Days 2 - 3: At Sea - 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.

Days 4 - 5: Antarctica - We will sail directly to “High Antarctica”, passing the Melchior islands and the Schollaert Channel between Brabant and Anvers Island. At Cuverville Island, a small precipitous island nestled between the mountains of the Antarctic Peninsula and Rongé Island we will attempt our first landing. It contains a large colony of Gentoo Penguins and breeding pairs of Brown Skuas. In Neko Harbour 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 to zodiac cruise between the icebergs in the inner parts of the amazing water way of Paradise Bay before taking the ship through the spectacular Lemaire Channel.

Days 6 - 8: We pass through the narrow The Gullet between Adelaide Island and the Continent - After a long night of sailing around the myriad of islands south of Lemaire Channel we find ourselves near the Antarctic Circle. We pass through the narrow The Gullet between Adelaide Island and the Continent with spectacular scenery all around. We will attempt to get permission to land at Rothera which is the primary British research station in Antarctica. Alternatively we explorer the area and make a landing one of the many islands in the area. We will try to circumnavigate Pourqoui Pas Island named after the ship of the famous French explorer Charcot. The area is spectacular with narrow fjords and high mountains with cascading glaciers all around. On Horseshoe Island we find the former British Base Y from the 1950’ies which now stands unmanned but almost fully equipped from the time it was in service. Stonington Island is home to the former US East Base (1939-41) and later the British Base E. Base E was occupied until 1975. We will attempt a landing here which will also mark our southernmost landing site of the trip. As we head north again we may attempt a landing at the small Avian Island named due to the large number of bird species found here. Among them a large colony of Adélie penguins, Antarctic shag, South Polar Skua, and Wilson’s storm petrel.

Days 9 - 11: Wilhelmina Bay - In the morning of day 9 we will find ourselves near the Antarctic Circle once again as we head north into Crystal Sound. We have an excellent chance to see Humpback whales here as we approach Fish Islands for a Zodiac cruise and possible landing. As always the scenery is unparalleled in beauty and we may well see more Adélie penguins among the myriads of icebergs large and small. Petermann and Pléneau Islands offer a great variety of bird life and some excellent opportunities to Zodiac cruise amongst icebergs with good chances to see both Leopard seal and Crabeater seals. Minke whales and Humpback whales are also most often spotted in this area along with Gentoo penguins. We aim to enter Wilhelmina Bay with truly excellent whale watching opportunities. Numerous Humpback whales often feed here and if the weather conditions allow we may try and launch the Zodiacs to experience them at closer range. At Foyn Harbour we visit the wreck of Guvernøren, and old whaling factory vessel which caught fire and burned in 1915.

Day 12: South Shetland Islands - On our final day in the Antarctic Peninsula Region we hope to land at Hannah Point, Livingston Island. He where we will find a nice variety of Gentoo Penguins, Chinstraps and southern Giant Petrels, as well as Elephant Seals hauling out on the beach. Here in the late season we may well see quite a number of Antarctic fur seals here. The sea surrounding this place is teeming with life and we have a great chance to enjoy even more Humpback whales. We will depart to the Drake Passage around noon.

Days 13 - 14: At Sea - On our way north we are again followed by a great selection of seabirds while crossing the Drake Passage.

Day 15: Disembarkation in Ushuaia - We arrive in the morning in Ushuaia and disembark.

Itinerary details

Voyage:
Antarctic Peninsula – Polar Circle, Deep South Discovery and whale watching voyage
Duration:
14 nights / 15 days
Start:
Ushuaia, Argentina
Finish:
Ushuaia, Argentina
Vessel:
MV Ortelius

Season 2017 - 2018

Dates & Rates Cabins (all Prices in US$ Dollar)
Code Date Quadruple
Porthole
Triple
Porthole
Twin
Porthole
Twin
Window
Twin Deluxe Superior
OTL32-18 Start Mar 14, 2018
End Mar 28, 2018
8,850 9,550 10,850 11,600 12,200 13,400

B =   Bilingual voyage: English (ship language) – German (second language)
C =   Camping: Group size: minimum 8, maximum 30 campers. Supplement: $US 170 per person per night.
         Camping is free of charge during “Basecamp Plancius” and “Basecamp Ortelius” voyages.
D =   Diving. Group size: minimum 8, maximum 24 divers. Supplement: $US 500 per person.
H =   Hiking. Hikes of approx. 2-3 hours or longer. The activity is free of charge.
K =   Kayaking. Group size: minimum 4, maximum 14 kayakers. Supplement: $US 430 per person.
         Kayaking is free of charge during “Basecamp Plancius” and “Basecamp Ortelius” voyages.
M = Mountaineering is free of charge during “Basecamp Plancius” and “Basecamp Ortelius” voyages.
P =   Photo Workshop is free of charge during “Basecamp Plancius” and “Basecamp Ortelius” voyages.
         Everybody can participate. 
S =   Snowshoeing. No surcharge, free use of snowshoes.
*  =  Currently under charter.

 

Included in this voyage

  • Voyage aboard the indicated vessel as indicated in the itinerary
  • All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including snacks, coffee and tea.
  • All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac.
  • Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff.
  • Free use of rubber boots and snowshoes.
  • Luggage transfer from pick-up point to the vessel on the day of embarkation, in Ushuaia.
  • Pre-scheduled group transfer from the vessel to the airport in Ushuaia (directly after disembarkation).
  • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the programme.
  • Comprehensive pre-departure material.
  • During our “Basecamp” departures, all offered activities (including camping, kayaking, snowshoe/hiking, mountaineering, photo workshop) as well as our standard included shore excursions and zodiac cruises) are free of charge.

Excluded from this voyage

  • Any airfare, whether on scheduled or charter flights
  • Pre- and post- land arrangements.
  • Passport and visa expenses.
  • Government arrival and departure taxes.
  • Meals ashore.
  • Baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is mandatory).
  • Excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges.
  • The customary gratuity at the end of the voyages for stewards and other service personnel aboard (guidelines will be provided).

 

It is agreed that if world fuel prices will reach or exceed US Dollar 120 per Barrel Brent 90 days prior to departure VAE reserves the right to levy a fuel surcharge of US $ 25 per passenger per night, to be paid by the contracting party of VAE.

All rates are quoted per person in US Dollars, based on twin occupancy. US Dollar rates apply for all sales outside Europe. 5% discount will be granted for bookings for one or more consecutive voyages (except on legs within the Atlantic Odyssey). Please note that all dates & rates are subject to change. All voyages will operate subject to a minimum of 70 participants on Plancius and 60 participants on Ortelius.

Single occupancy: All cabins 1.7 times the share price