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Antarctic Explorer Express | Sylvia Earle

9 Days FROM USD 9,356 20 % off!

Overview

The younger sibling to our fully-grown Antarctic Explorer voyage, the exciting Antarctic Explorer Express is a condensed version of the longer itinerary. For travellers shorts on time, but eager to see the highlights of Antarctica, a short trip to the Antarctic Peninsula could be just what you're looking for.

By flying across the Drake Passage in at least one direction combined with plenty of time in the Antarctic Peninsula, our Antarctic Explorer Express voyages are tailored for travellers seeking a quick adventure to the frozen continent. Enjoy Zodiac excursions to explore rugged coastlines, where unexpected appearances from curious whales is known to occur. Ample daylight means you can pack plenty of thrills into your trip, from kayaking to the icy chill of a polar plunge. 

After you've fly out from Frei Base on King George Island, from the northern tip of Antarctica, taking you quickly back to Punta Arenas, Chile where your included hotel room awaits. Enjoy a relaxing breakfast with your travel companions the next morning before continuing your trip home. 

Optional Activities : Kayaking, Snorkelling

Trip Code: ACAEEXA

Travel Style: Expedition Cruise

Location: Antarctic Peninsula

Ship: Sylvia Earle

Flights: International flights are not included. Ask us about booking your flights to/from South America to save money by creating an 'airpass'.

CRUISE ITINERARY

Having made your way to Ushuaia, you will be met by a representative of Aurora Expeditions and transferred to our group hotel. This evening, enjoy a light refreshment as you meet your fellow expeditioners at a Welcome Reception.

Arrive in Ushuaia

This morning, please ensure your cabin luggage is fitted with cabin tags clearly labelled with your name and cabin number. Your luggage will be collected from your hotel and transferred directly to the port for clearance and delivered to your cabin ahead of your arrival on board. Please keep any valuables or personal items with you throughout the day. Enjoy free time after check-out, meeting back in the hotel lobby at 2.00 pm to commence a short sightseeing tour of Ushuaia.

Ushuaia, capital of Tierra del Fuego is located at the shores of the Beagle Channel and surrounded by the Martial Mountains giving you a unique landscape in Argentina, which is the combination of mountains, sea, glaciers and forests. On this brief introductory tour, you will visit “La Mision” neighbourhood, the old Government House, and the upper area of the city, which offers beautiful panoramic views of Ushuaia and the Beagle Channel. During the excursion you will see the antique houses that belonged to the first families settled in Ushuaia. The excursion ends with a visit to the Old Prison Museum before transferring to the pier for embarkation at approximately 4.00 pm.

If you choose to not participate in the sightseeing tour, you will need to make your own way to the Prison Museum carpark by 3.45 pm to re-join the group for the transfer to the pier for embarkation.

After embarkation, you will have time to settle into your cabin before our important mandatory briefings. As the ship pulls away from port, we will gather on the deck to commence our adventure with spectacular views over Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego.

Embarkation

As we commence the Drake Passage crossing, we make the most of our time getting comfortable with the motions of the sea. Our expedition team prepare you for our first landing with important wildlife guidelines and biosecurity procedures and start our lecture program to help you learn more about Antarctica’s history, wildlife and environment.

Our wildlife experiences begin as we enjoy watching and photographing the many seabirds, including majestic albatrosses and giant petrels following our vessel. On sea days, you may can enjoy the facilities on board the vessel including the gym, wellness centre or the relaxing in one of the observation lounges.

Nearing the South Shetland Islands and the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula on the afternoon of day four, the excitement is palpable with everyone converging on one of the observation decks watching for our first iceberg.

The ocean takes on a whole new perspective once we are below the Antarctic Convergence and are surrounded by the surreal presence of floating ice sculptures. The memory of your first big iceberg sighting is likely to remain with you for a lifetime. Time and weather permitting, we may attempt our first landing in Antarctica by late afternoon.

Drake Pasage: Days 3-4

It is almost impossible to describe the feeling of arriving in Antarctica. Spotting your first iceberg and taking a deep breath of some of the most fresh, crisp air on earth is an experience that will stay with you forever.

Once we arrive, the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands are ours to explore, and we have a host of choices available to us. Because we are so far south, we will experience approximately 18-24 hours of daylight and the days can be as busy as you wish.

Your experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their expertise to design your voyage from day to day, choosing the best options based on the prevailing weather, ice conditions and wildlife opportunities.

We generally make landings or Zodiac excursions twice a day. You will want to rug up before joining Zodiac cruises along spectacular ice cliffs or among grounded icebergs, keeping watch for whales, seals and porpoising penguins. Zodiacs will also transport you from the ship to land, where you can visit penguin rookeries, discover historic huts and explore some of our favourite spots along the peninsula.

While ashore we aim to stretch our legs, wandering along pebbly beaches or perhaps up snow-covered ridgelines to vantage points with mountains towering overhead and ice-speckled oceans below. If you have chosen an optional activity, you will have the option to do participate in the activity whenever conditions allow, and of course keen polar plungers will have the chance to fully immerse themselves in polar waters - conditions permitting! The polar plunge can take place at any time during the voyage, so listen out for the announcement from the expedition team and get ready for the most exhilarating dip of your life!

In addition to Zodiac cruises and shore excursions, we may ship cruise some of the narrow, dramatic straits separating offshore islands from the mainland, or linger in scenic bays to watch whales travelling or feeding. This is a great time to enjoy the observation lounge or make your way to the bridge (open at the captain’s discretion) for uninterrupted views of Antarctica in all its splendour. Listen out for the creak and deep rumble of glaciers as they carve. Take a quiet moment to experience the wonder of the pristine paradise of the splendid white continent.

Antarctic Peninsula: Days 5-7

As we approach Frei Base on King George Island, it is time to farewell Antarctica and our amazing adventure before boarding our flight (approximately one hour and forty-five minutes) to Punta Arenas, Chile. There is time for reflection and discussion about what we have seen and experienced. We hope you become ambassadors for Antarctica telling your family, friends and colleagues about your journey to this magical place, advocating for its conservation and preservation so that they might one day visit the region to experience what you have been lucky to see and do here.

In Punta Arenas airport, you will be transferred to our group hotel for an overnight stay.

Accommodation: Hotel Cabo de Hornos (or similar)

Note: King George Island is located at the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula in the South Shetland Islands and is one of the most remote places on Earth. A clear sky with perfect visibility is required for safe take-off and landing. We apologise in advance for any possible delays.

Fly King George Island to Punta Arenas

After breakfast, bid a fond farewell to your fellow travellers as we continue our onward journeys, hopefully with a newfound sense of the immense power of nature (breakfast included). A transfer to the airport is included in the voyage fare.

Punta Arenas
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Pricing per person & date

Antarctic Explorer Express | Sylvia Earle from USD 9,356
Departing Ending Duration
10 Feb 2024 18 Feb 2024 9

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES

Kayaking

Kayaking

Snorkelling

Snorkelling

Important Information

  • All airport transfers mentioned in the itinerary. 
    One night’s hotel accommodation including breakfast, in Ushuaia on Day 1.  
    Charter flight King George Island to Punta Arenas on Day 8.   
    One night’s hotel accommodation including breakfast, in Punta Arenas on Day 8.  
    Onboard accommodation during voyage, including daily cabin service.  
    All meals, snacks, tea and coffee during voyage.  
    Beer, house wine and soft drinks with dinner.  
    Captain’s Welcome and Farewell receptions including four-course dinner, house cocktails, house beer and wine, non-alcoholic beverages.  
    All shore excursions and Zodiac cruises.  
    Educational lectures and guiding services provided by Expedition Team.  
    Complimentary access to onboard expedition doctor and medical clinic (initial consultation).  
    One 3-in-1 waterproof, polar expedition jacket.  
    Complimentary use of Muck Boots during the voyage.  
    Comprehensive pre-departure information.  
    Port surcharges, permits and landing fees. 
    Gratuities for ship’s crew. 

    Exclusions

    International or domestic flights – unless specified in the itinerary.  
    Transfers – unless specified in the itinerary.  
    Airport arrival or departure taxes. 
    Passport, visa, reciprocity and vaccination fees and charges.  
    Travel insurance or emergency evacuation charges.  
    Hotel accommodation and meals – unless specified in the itinerary.  
    Optional excursions and optional activity surcharges.  
    All items of a personal nature, including but not limited to alcoholic beverages and soft drinks (outside of dinner service), laundry services, personal clothing, medical expenses, wi-fi, email or phone charges.  

  • 2 (light adventure)
  • Available upon request, contact us for more details.

  • Please note that the itinerary is subject to weather and ice conditions.

  • Departure date, seasonality and availability

SPEAK TO A SPECIALIST

Talk to one of our Destination Specialists to find the perfect Antarctica expedition cruise and turn your dream into a reality. Chimu also specialise in Tailor-Made journeys so you can explore some of the highlights of South America pre or post cruise. Our Destination Specialists have exceptional knowledge and first-hand experience in the regions we visit, and will assist in every way possible to make your journey the most memorable it can be, matching not only the itinerary, but the accommodation and activities to suit your style of travel and budget.

Sustainability

Chimu Adventures is passionate and dedicated to sustainbility measures and understands the crucial part sustainability plays within the tourism industry.

We use local guides and office staff to both maximise local employment opportunities and minimise carbon footprint. Local guides also ensure you benefit from the intimate knowledge, passion and culture of the country you’re visiting. Our guides are all highly qualified (most with university degrees) or equip with many years of experience and are paid above the standard wage. Whether it be our knowledgeable local guides, locally produced meals or the transport on tour, we do not use imported goods when local products are available. We aim to minimise our impact on the environment and give as much back as possible to the communities we work in.

We ensure that we have as little negative impact on the wildlife as possible and minimise disturbances. We also encourage the education and visitation of protection and conservation services, specifically associated with the area. You will also find that we visit many locations and landmarks of which we encourage you to explore yet advise you to remain culturally aware and sensitive. We further encourage you to buy appropriate souvenirs and discourage the buying of anything wrongfully made or taken from the environment i.e. shells and endangered species products. Information on how you can be environmentally conscious, and travel responsibly will be made available in pre-departure information and en-route by guides and staff. Furthermore, in our further efforts of supporting the communities, a percentage of the funds generated from your tour (10%) will go back to our charities and assist us supporting the next generation and the environment they live in.

Being environmentally accountable is a crucial part of our organisation. Chimu is currently striving towards using less paper, taking several initiatives to do so and tracking our progress along the way. Our goal: A paperless organisation. For this reason, all information given to you will be sent electronically. We encourage those who choose to travel with us to support our aspirations and actions and ask that you reconsider printing out documentation. To view these documents, you can download them to your iPad or portable computer before and during your trip.

For more information visit our sustainability page.

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