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Antarctica

Ultimate Wildlife Cruise–20 Day South Georgia & Falkland Islands MS Island Sky

Tour:
20 Days
Price From:
16,995
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SINGLE SUPPLEMENT
Single travelers staying in a room by themselves will be charged this additional single supplement fee, as all of our regular prices are otherwise based on double occupancy.

SINGLE SHARE OPTIONS (if available)
If you are traveling alone and wish to share a room, we will make every effort to find you a roommate of the same gender, in which case you will not have to pay the single supplement fee. The single supplement will be charged until we are able to confirm a roommate for you. If we are able to match you with a roommate, the single supplement will be refunded. In the event that we cannot find a share for you, you will be required to pay the single supplement fee.

New: Click the Singles Find a Share' icon below or check our "Community" page to connect with other single travelers looking to share.

Rating:
Easy to Moderate

Antarctica

Ultimate Wildlife Cruise–20 Day South Georgia & Falkland Islands MS Island Sky

Highlights

  • Lectures on photography, wildlife, and ecology related to the areas we will be visiting
  • 150 glaciers into spectacular fjords and ringed by islands
  • See nesting Grey headed Albatross up close. A sight that few can hope to see in a lifetime of travel.
  • Nesting Gentoo Penguins
  • Hundreds of thousands of pairs of King Penguins
  • Macaroni Penguins
  • The world's largest seal, the Southern Elephant Seal, by the thousands creating one of the densest concentrations of life on the planet with thousands of females and young pups nursing
  • More Black-browed Albatross than anywhere else on earth, at least a quarter million birds!

20-Day Ushuaia Deparutres at a Glance

  • Complimentary Pre-Arrival Day Depart home
  • DAY 1 Ushuaia
  • DAY 2 Embarkation
  • DAY 3 Southern Ocean
  • DAY 4 West Falklands
  • DAY 5 Stanley, East Falkland
  • DAY 6-7 Southern Ocean
  • DAY 8-11 South Georgia
  • DAY 12-13 Scotia Sea
  • DAY 14-17 Antarctic Pninsula and South Shetland Islands
  • DAY 18-19 Drake Passage
  • DAY 20 Ushuaia disembarkation

Ultimate Wildlife Cruise–20 Day South Georgia & Falkland Islands MS Island Sky

Note about expedition cruising: Due to the expeditionary nature of our voyage, specific stops cannot be guaranteed. Flexibility is paramount in expedition travel; the following itinerary depends on the conditions at the time of travel. We strive to land often and stay as long as possible, abiding by the Guidelines for Responsible Ecotourism from IAATO.

Detailed Itinerary South Georgia and Falkland Islands

Complimentary Pre-Arrival Day International Flights to Ushuaia, Argentina

Don’t sweat flight delays or missed connections when you begin your adventure a day early by taking advantage of our optional free pre-arrival night at the beautiful Arakur Hotel & Resort, a member of the Leading Hotels of the World. Enjoy the spa, wander the trails, or unwind and soak in the surroundings.

DAY 1 Ushuaia, Argentina

Today is all yours: explore some of the sights that Ushuaia has to offer, from museums to Argentinean leather markets, or continue relaxing at the lovely Arakur. Our optional evening briefing is a great opportunity for you to ask questions and to meet some of your fellow travelers.

DAY 2 Embarkation

After a complimentary buffet breakfast, you’re free to explore Ushuaia or unwind at the resort until our mid-afternoon transfer to the ship. On board, you’ll be greeted by our Expedition Team and the Ship’s Officers. A concise safety and orientation briefing will be followed by the Captain’s welcome dinner. After dinner, relax and take in the scenery on our early evening sail through the Beagle Channel, past Magellanic Penguin, Rock Cormorant, and Sea Lion colonies.

DAY 3 Southern Ocean

Among the wildlife spotting opportunities as we sail south are the albatrosses, prions, and petrels that frequently follow the ship. Our Expedition Team will be out on deck as well, looking for the whales and dolphins that can be seen in the area. Our experts will begin their presentations with informative and entertaining talks on the wildlife, history, and geology of The Falkland Islands and Southern Ocean. Helpful briefings on environmental regulations and expedition safety will also be held in our comfortable lounge.

DAY 4 West Falkland Islands

The westernmost settled outposts in the Falklands are remote farms that have been family-owned for six and seven generations. The sheep graze alongside albatross colonies and Rockhopper, King, and Magellanic penguin rookeries while striated caracaras patrol overhead and upland geese graze at the water's edge. A visit to one of these homesteads often includes an invitation for cakes and a cup of tea.

DAY 5 Stanley, East Falklands

Chosen for its sheltered harbor and access to abundant fresh water and peat for fuel, Stanley is easy to discover on foot as most shops and services are centered on the port. The museum, the post-office featuring first day covers, plenty of shops with locally made wool items, and Stanley's lively pubs will all be available. It is possible to experience the wildlife of the Falklands from the town including sea lions and Peale's and Commerson's dolphins in the harbor or bird life in nearby Gypsy Cove.

DAY 6-7 Southern Ocean

There will be plenty of wildlife spotting as we make our way east across the Antarctic Convergence and officially enter Antarctic waters. Shipboard presentations will continue, featuring the exciting history and abundant wildlife of South Georgia.

DAY 8-11 South Georgia

Its unique position inside the Antarctic Convergence yet outside the limit of the yearly sea ice, makes this 3,755 square kilometer island home to tens of millions of breeding penguins, seals and seabirds. Magnificent mountain scenery, glaciers galore, a rugged coastline punctuated with castellate and tabular icebergs, a rich historical tapestry, and an astounding array of wildlife are all available to us as we travel down South Georgia's leeward coast.

Landing sites feature huge Elephant seals, aggressive Fur seals, Gentoo penguins, albatross, petrels, skuas, and gulls. King penguins from fuzzy little chicks to fattened adults can be seen in the hundreds of thousands. We will visit historic Grytviken whaling station, home of the whaling museum, Norwegian seaman's church, the active British Antarctic Survey station plus the tiny graveyard where the great Antarctic explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton is buried.

DAY 12-13 South Georgia

Heading farther south, we continue our informative presentations and wildlife watch as the icebergs become more and more plentiful.

DAY 14-17 Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands

In the waterways of the Antarctic Peninsula, we will hope to make as much time as possible to explore by inflatable Zodiac boats and marvel up close at nature’s glory. Our Expedition Leader and Captain will create a flexible itinerary based on weather, ice, and opportunity. We will aim for the most scenic bays and channels of the Peninsula with stops at penguin rookeries, seal wallows, bird colonies and whale feeding areas, as well as sites of historic and scientific interest.

The trip may include picturesque Neko Harbor, sheltered Paradise Harbor, the Humpback Whale favored Wilhelmina Bay, the striking Lemaire Channel, the wildlife-filled Penola Channel, or the majestic Neumayer Channel. We may stop at an active scientific base such as Poland’s Arctowksi or Ukraine’s Vernadskiy as well as a historic base such as U.K.’s Port Lockroy or Wordie House.

Adelie, Chinstrap and Gentoo Penguins abound, and Weddell, Crabeater and Elephant Seals are often found hauled out to rest along with predatory Leopard Seals and the assertive Antarctic Fur Seal. Minke and Humpback Whales are frequent visitors in the late season and Orca sightings are also common.

DAY 18-19 Drake Passage

As we leave this magical place and make our way north, heading again across the Antarctic Convergence and the Drake Passage, we will continue our presentation series and wildlife spotting. Sailing back to Ushuaia through the Beagle Channel, we celebrate the conclusion of our expedition with a special slideshow.

DAY 20 Ushuaia Disembarkation

Morning disembarkation lets you catch a flight to Buenos Aires or stay in Ushuaia for more sights and adventure.

 

Antarctica Lodging

ANTARCTICA SHIPS

MS Island Sky

SHIP SERVICES

  • World-Class Cuisine - Great expeditions require great food! Our team of world-class chefs offer breakfast, lunch and dinner menus that change daily. They have boat-loads of creativity, so you are sure to experience a variety of remarkable cuisine throughout your voyage.
  • Live Entertainment
  • 24-hour tea and coffee station
  • Complimentary Wine or Beer with Dinner
  • Voyage Photographer
  • On-board MD and Facilities
  • Dedicated Passenger Service Manager
  • Pre-voyage hotel night
  • Complimentary Expedition Jacket

SHIP FACILITIES

  • Elevator
  • Library - A large collection of polar books and DVDs in a quiet cozy place for reading and relaxation.
  • Lounge - Offers great opportunities for socializing and observing fantastic landscapes with audiovisual facilities.
  • Bar - After a day of activities and explorations passengers are always welcome at a bar staffed by a professional bartender.
  • Upgraded WiFi Internet
  • Panoramic Top Deck Observation Platform
  • DVD Movie Library

ALL SUITE FEATURES

  • Every suite has an exterior view
  • 14 suites have balconies
  • Nearly all suites can be configured with your choice of one queen or two twin beds
  • Sitting area with sofa and side chair
  • Flat-screen TVs player in every suite
  • Telephone
  • Upgraded WiFi Internet access
  • Independent temperature controls
  • Mini-Bar
  • Marble-appointed bathroom with fine toiletries
  • Hair dryer
  • 220 square feet or more
  • Sofa can be converted to bed for third person

CABIN OPTIONS

Owner's Cabin 34 square meters (about 385 square feet), two room suite with sitting room and bedroom; Includes a 110 sq. ft. (10.2 square meters) balcony, en suite Champagne & Chocolates on Arrival, complimentary mini-bar, and en suite Nespresso machine.

Penthouse Suites 30 square meters (about 325 square feet); Suites with private balcony and sitting area, en suite Champagne & Chocolates on Arrival, complimentary mini-bar, and en suite Nespresso machine.

Veranda Suites 24 square meters (about 260 square feet); Suites with private balcony and sitting area, en suite Champagne & Chocolates on Arrival, complimentary mini-bar, and en suite Nespresso machine.

Deluxe 22 square meters (about 240 square feet); Suites with bow & side windows and sitting area, en suite Champagne & Chocolates on Arrival, complimentary mini-bar, and en suite Nespresso machine available upon request.

Promenade Suites 20.4 square meters (about 220 square feet); Suites with window and sitting area, en suite Champagne & Chocolates on Arrival, complimentary mini-bar, and en suite Nespresso machine available upon request.

Window Suites 21 square meters (about 225 square feet); Suites with picture window and sitting area.

Triple Suites 21 square meters (about 225 square feet); Suites with window and sitting area.

(Please note that the third berth is suitable for persons up to 5'10" in height.)

 

SHIP SPECS

Crew: 75

Guests: 114

Length: 90.6 m (297 ft)

Width: 15.3 m (50 ft)

Tonnage: 4 200 GRT

Class: B.V. Ice Class 1C

Stabilization: Blohm & Voss Stabilization System with wave-anticipation roll technology.

 

Antarctica Activities

At a Glance

We emphasize spending the maximum amount of time possible in the field, both on land and cruising in zodiacs. Our unique flexible wildlife format means that we have enough leaders so that instead of keeping participants in large, tight guided groups, we are able to intersperse guides in the area visited so that travelers are able to roam freely.

 

Antarctica Wildlife

Prolific & Likely Sightings

Mammals: European Hare, Antarctic Fur Seal, South American Fur Seal, Southern (Australasian) Fur Seal, South American Sea Lion, Leopard Seal, Weddell Seal, Southern Elephant Seal, Reindeer (Caribou), Southern Right Whale, (Common) Minke Whale, Fin Whale, Humpback Whale, Hourglass Dolphin, Orca (Killer Whale), Sperm Whale, Southern Bottlenose Whale

Birds: Upland Goose, Kelp Goose, Ruddy-headed Goose, Falkland (Flightless) Steamer-Duck, Crested Duck, Chiloe Wigeon, Blue-winged Teal, Yellow-billed Pintail, South Georgia Pintail, Silver Teal, Yellow-billed Teal, Silvery Grebe, King Penguin , Adelie Penguin, Gentoo Penguin, Chinstrap Penguin, Magellanic Penguin, Macaroni Penguin, Rockhopper Penguin, Gray-headed Albatross, Black-browed Albatross, Sooty Albatross, Light-mantled Albatross, Southern Royal Albatross, Northern Royal Albatross, Wandering Albatross, Southern Giant-Petrel, Northern Giant-Petrel, Southern Fulmar, Cape (Pintado) Petrel, Snow Petrel, Kerguelen Petrel, Soft-plumaged Petrel, White-headed Petrel, Atlantic Petrel, Blue Petrel

OCCASIONAL
Birds: Broad-billed Prion, Antarctic Prion, Slender-billed Prion, White-chinned Petrel, Great Shearwater, Sooty Shearwater, Wilson's Storm-Petrel, Gray-backed Storm-Petrel, Black-bellied Storm-Petrel, Common Diving-Petrel, South Georgia Diving-Petrel, Magellanic (Rock) Cormorant, South Georgia Shag, Imperial Cormorant (King), Black-crowned Night-Heron, Variable Hawk, Snowy Sheathbill, Blackish Oystercatcher, Magellanic Oystercatcher, Two-banded Plover, Rufous-chested Dotterel, Least Seedsnipe, White-rumped Sandpiper, South American Snipe, South Polar Skua, Brown (Antarctic) Skua, Brown (Subantarctic) Skua, Parasitic (Arctic) Jaeger, Brown-hooded Gull, Dolphin Gull, Franklin's Gull, Kelp Gull, Arctic Tern, South American Tern, Antarctic Tern, Short-eared Owl, Striated Caracara, Southern Caracara, Peregrine Falcon (ssp. Cassin's), Blackish (Tussock Bird) Cincloides, Dark-faced Ground-Tyrant, Black-crowned Monjita, Cobb's Wren, Sedge Wren, Austral Thrush, Correndera Pipit, South Georgia Pipit, White-bridled (Black-throated) Finch, Long-tailed Meadowlark, Black-chinned Siskin

Rare or Endangered Possible Sightings

Mammals: Commerson's Dolphin, Peale's Dolphin

 

Antarctica Guides

Hayley Shephard, Expedition Leader

Hayley Shephard

Hayley Shephard - Expedition Leader

Currently on the shortlist for the World Guide Awards, Hayley has spent 13 years adventuring in Antarctica, and still feels privileged to walk amongst the penguins, float on a sea of bergy bits, or await the surface of a Humpback while surrounded by glaciers, icebergs and rugged mountain peaks.

Once a school teacher specializing in outdoor education and environmental science, Hayley decided to extend her classroom to the wonderful world of the wild. Mother Nature has been teaching her ever since. Hayley’s motto is, “Live your dreams, follow your passions.”

In BC, Canada Hayley keeps in the company of Orca and Humpback whales, Grizzly and Black bears. She relishes in the Polar bear and Beluga whale capital of the world working as a guide in Churchill, Manitoba. Originally from the Kapiti Coast in New Zealand, she now calls Vancouver Island home. In her spare time, Hayley likes to take extended sea kayaking adventures around Vancouver Island and Haida Gwaii. She once attempted the world’s first solo sea kayak journey around South Georgia Island to help raise awareness for the Albatross, about which a book and documentary were made.

Hayley looks forward to sharing with you her passion, admiration and respect for this polar region. It will change you. Are you ready?

Brandon Harvey, Expedition Leader

Brandon Harvey

Brandon Harvey - Expedition Leader

For more than a decade Brandon has been demonstrating his proficiency in developing the impeccable safety-standards, exceptional guest experiences and engaging education programming that have been the focus of his career.

Brandon has explored the Arctic extensively with expeditions to Russia’s Chukotka/Wrangel Island, the Northwest Passage, High Arctic Canada, Greenland and Northern Norway and Svalbard. Brandon has also spent over 15 seasons working the remote coast of British Columbia and SE Alaska. He is as a certified 60-ton captain/vessel engineer, a certified sea kayak guide and professional photographer and videographer. Brandon is also a passionate marine ecologist specializing in marine mammals and climate science, with a Masters of Environment and Management.

For more than a decade Brandon has demonstrated his proficiency in developing the impeccable safety-standards, exceptional guest experiences and engaging education programming that have been the focus of his career – most recently, as Operations Manager for Maple Leaf Adventures, an award‐winning ecotourism company operating small-ship cruises in British Columbia and Alaska. As Polar Latitudes’ Director of Expedition Operations, Brandon spends six months of the year as a member of the home team; planning, organizing and staffing Polar Latitudes voyages each season.

Annette Bombosch, PhD, Marine Mammals

Annette Bombosch, PhD, Marine Mammals

One of Annette’s favorite occupations is spotting and photographing whales, together with the enthusiastic Polar Latitudes’ team. You will see her most excited when humpbacks are nearby!

Born in Germany, Annette studied Marine Biology and obtained a Masters in Marine Conservation in New Zealand. There, she had the once-in-a-lifetime chance to visit Antarctica as part of a postgraduate certificate offered by the University in Christchurch. Camping at the base of Mount Erebus – the same region used as base camp by early explorers such as Scott and Shackleton – Annette caught the “polar bug”. Returning from New Zealand, she conducted her PhD at the German Polar Research Institute. Here, she studied the habitat suitability of Antarctic whales and participated in several multi-week expeditions to the Southern Ocean on board the German research icebreaker RV Polarstern.

Annette has been working on various expedition cruises to Svalbard, Greenland, the North Pole, the Falklands, South Georgia and Antarctica. For Annette, visiting South Georgia is one of the very special moments in life, given its history of whaling and polar exploration. Annette speaks German and English and is looking forward to spending her Antarctic summer with you, sharing her passion for marine mammals day and night.

 

Antarctica Departures

Antarctica-Ultimate Wildlife Cruise–20 Day South Georgia & Falkland Islands MS Island Sky

Feb 12, 2019 - Mar 03, 2019 20-days $16,995 ISK (See Cabin Pricing Below)
Dec 18, 2019 - Jan 06, 2020 20-days $17,595 ISK (See Cabin Pricing Below)
Jan 23, 2020 - Feb 11, 2020 20-days $17,595 ISK (See Cabin Pricing Below)
Feb 23, 2020 - Mar 13, 2020 20-days $14,295 ISK (See Cabin Pricing Below)

2019 Cabin Pricing:
$16,995 Triple Suite
$20,795 Porthole Suite
$22,995 Window Suite
$23,995 Promenade Suite
$24,295 Deluxe Suite
$26,995 Veranda Suite
$29,695 Penthouse Suite
$32,295 Owner's Suite

2020 Cabin Pricing:
$17,595 Triple Suite
$21,795 Porthole Suite
$23,995 Window Suite
$25,595 Promenade Suite
$25,795 Deluxe Suite
$27,995 Veranda Suite
$30,795 Penthouse Suite
$32,995 Owner's Suite

*Special reduced prices for February 23, 2020 departure.
**All prices listed are per person based on double/triple occupancy according to the cabin.

 

Antarctica FAQ

Antarctica Facts for Visitors

Climate

Typical daytime temperatures for the Antarctic Peninsula during the summer are -2º to 4ºC (28º to 39ºF). However, the weather is quite changeable, and you may encounter different conditions not only in a single day but even on a single landing. Also, strong winds can make it feel considerably colder (as low as -18ºC/0ºF), so you must be dressed for windy and wet conditions at all times. The only thing we can guarantee about the weather is that it will be unpredictable.

Health and Safety

Although there will be a licensed English-speaking physician on board, the vessel’s medical facility is a basic infirmary and full medical facilities may be days away. It is therefore imperative for your own safety that you are in good health and have taken all appropriate precautions. Our medical form will help you to determine whether or not your health level is appropriate. Please be honest with us and with yourselves as you complete this form. Our ships are far from barrier free. Doors leading to the decks are heavy and narrow with high sills. Decks are often slippery with hazards such as pipes, drains, and equipment. The ship’s elevator may be closed in rough seas, requiring you to use the stairs to get to meals, presentations etc. If you have mobility issues or walk with assistance devices, carefully consider your participation in the voyage. Getting in and out of Zodiacs and walking on sometimes rocky and icy terrain can also be challenging. Our Expedition team members can help you into the Zodiac and on to shore, but cannot escort you once on shore as they have other duties. The Expedition Leader and Captain reserve the right to limit the landing participation of people with limited mobility.

Flights

Airfare is not included in trip costs. Detailed flight information and the contact information for our recommended flight ticketing agent is included in the Trip Materials we will send after you sign up; if you need help, she can help you arrange your flights.

We include one hotel night in the embarkation city on Day 1 of the trip, so you may book your flights to arrive at any time on the start date for your trip, or of course, you may choose to arrive a few days early to explore the city. To facilitate this, we’ll add an additional night immediately prior to the group night at no extra charge.

Our estimated disembarkation time from the vessel is 8:00 a.m. (0800 hrs) on the last day of the trip, with an included group transfer to the airport following disembarkation. Therefore we expect to be at the airport ready to check in about 9:00am, but this is subject to weather conditions in Ushuaia as well as sea conditions en route. Therefore, if you intend to fly out of Ushuaia on the day of disembarkation, we recommend booking your return flight as late in the day as possible. Try to avoid any flights departing before noon (1200 hrs). Arrival delays can occur and Wild Planet Adventures cannot be held responsible for any costs incurred due to delayed disembarkation.

Travel Insurance

Emergency Medical and Evacuation Insurance is required for this tour. 

Seasickness

While in the Antarctic Peninsula area, seasickness shouldn’t be a problem for anyone save the most extremely sensitive people. It is best to be prepared for the Drake Passage crossing however. Motion sickness medication is preventative not curative. Please be prepared and bring your own medication and start taking it as soon as the ship leaves port – don’t wait until you feel sick! Patch style medication and suppositories work best. Oral medication won’t work if you can’t “keep it down”, so again, take it immediately after embarking, don’t wait to see how you feel without it. Also, the best advice we can give you is this: EAT. It may sound counter-intuitive but the sensation of nausea is much worse on an empty stomach. Eat a little something at every meal, stay hydrated and rested, take your medication and you’ll be fine.

Trip Materials

Detailed information about your specific tour will be sent to you after you make your reservation with us. These trip materials include information about flights, packing, entry and departure requirements, airport transfers, gratuities, etc. Please take a moment to read this important informtation upon receipt.

Conditions

Smoking policy: Smoking is permitted in designated outside areas only.

Itinerary route: The itinerary route, stops and plans are subject to change by unforeseen circumstances beyond our control, such as weather, wildlife sightings, or road conditions.

Medical conditions and travel risks: Travel to remote places is exciting, but it is important to understand and accept the risks, both medical and logistical. Minor medical problems can usually be treated, but due to the fact that we often travel to locations far from medical facilities, there can be no expectation for immediate medical treatment or evacuation, even in cases of trauma. Anyone with health problems needing close medical supervision should not consider going on this trip. Bring enough medication for the duration of the trip for any chronic medical needs, since pharmacies are usually not available. When you send your tour deposit and signed reservation form, you certify to us that you do not knowingly have any physical or other conditions that would create a risk for yourself or for other trip participants.

This Trip's Exclusive Wildlife Features:

Choose Your Antarctica Travel Style! Any of our wildlife adventures are also available as fully customizable private trips, honeymoons or family wildlife adventures.
CONTACT US | EMAIL US | CHAT NOW | RESERVE A TRIP | 1-800-990-4376
We're Wild for Wildlife...
  • Twice to 4x the landings: Up to 14 landings in 8 landing days of this 18 day cruise, conditions permitting
  • Minimum of 14 expedition leaders, ranging from world-renowned naturalists, wildlife photographers, historians, ecologists, lecturers and wildlife guides
  • More landings and more destinations = more wildlife encounters!
  • Unique flexible wildlife format
  • The Most in-depth wildlife experience possible
We're Wild for Wildlife...
  • Twice to 4x the landings: Up to 14 landings in 8 landing days of this 18 day cruise, conditions permitting
  • Minimum of 14 expedition leaders, ranging from world-renowned naturalists, wildlife photographers, historians, ecologists, lecturers and wildlife guides
  • More landings and more destinations = more wildlife encounters!
  • Unique flexible wildlife format
  • The Most in-depth wildlife experience possible
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