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Antarctic - South Georgia & Antarctic Peninsula (A)
South Georgia’s remote, untamed landscape is simply stunning. Marvel at the haunting cries of light-mantled sooty albatross, adorable fur seal pups learning to swim and herds of reindeer cantering across lush, grassy flats. Hike up tussock-covered slopes, past mossy streams for magnificent views of macaroni penguins, courting albatross and glaciated mountain peaks. Scattered across the mighty Southern Ocean, the tiny arc of windswept islands and harbours are some of the world’s greatest wildlife sanctuaries. Famed for its abandoned whaling stations and Shackleton’s heroic journey, South Georgia is home to literally millions of fur seals and penguins, wallows of elephant seals, herds of reindeer and nesting albatross. This remarkable voyage also includes time to explore the Antarctic Peninsula.
Voyage Options Sail to and from Ushuaia, Argentina, on some dates. Our other South Georgia voyages are two days shorter, with an option of flying one way and sailing the other. Some voyages sail from Ushuaia and return to Stanley in the Falkland Islands with an onward flight to Santiago, Chile. Other cruises operate in the reverse direction, including a flight from Santiago to Stanley, with the ship sailing into Ushuaia to finish. Day 1 Embark in the late afternoon to a warm welcome before we set sail along the Beagle Channel. Day 2 Albatrosses, giant petrels and tiny Wilsons storm petrels escort us across the Atlantic Ocean. Our naturalist and historian enliven the crossing with informative talks, and we prepare for our first landing. Day 3 We visit an outlying island in the Falkland group, greeted onshore by a fascinating mix of sea lions, elephant seals, Magellanic penguins and waterbirds. Day 4 Stanley, the Falklands’ undeniably British capital, features an excellent war museum, quirky post office, picturesque houses, welcoming shops and pubs. Days 5-6 We cross the Scotia Sea, entertained by our expert naturalist and historian, and keeping watch for kelp-skirted Shag Rocks. Days 7-10 We have ample time to explore the network of harbours along South Georgia’s spectacular northern coast, visiting wildlife havens that include the world’s largest king penguin rookeries and majestic albatross nests. Kayakers revel in paddling the coastline’s nooks and crannies, accompanied by playful seals. In Stromness and Grytviken harbours, 3000-metre peaks form dramatic backdrops to the remains of whaling stations. Kelp-strewn beaches are cluttered with basking elephant seals, feisty fur seals and a plethora of penguins. Day 11 As we cross the Scotia Sea, watch for whales, seabirds and our first icebergs. We have time to discuss South Georgia, learn about Antarctica and prepare for more landings. Days 12-13 Pack ice permitting, we step ashore on the dramatic South Orkney Islands, before crossing whale-rich waters to Elephant Island, integral to Shackleton’s survival story. Days 14-16 We visit the South Shetland Islands before sailing overnight down Gerlache Strait. Awaken to the thrill of Antarctica, where we plan to visit busy penguin rookeries, historic sites and make a continental landing. Days 17-18 Return to the realm of the albatross, as we head north across the Drake Passage. Day 19 Dawn greets us in the Beagle Channel as we motor to the dock in Ushuaia. We bid farewell and continue onward travel, or stop in Ushuaia, known as the world’s southern most town. Please note that all of our itineraries are at the mercy of weather conditions and not all landings are guaranteed. Our itineraries are flexible and will change voyage to voyage, allowing the best chance to make the most of surprising wildlife displays and unexpected opportunities.