Journey to the Antarctic circle holiday
Description of Journey to the Antarctic circle holiday
This 14 day journey to the Antarctic Circle holiday takes in the dramatic Antarctic Peninsula then pushes further south than most cruises do, to cross the Antarctic Circle. Despite the harshness of this landscape, there is abundant wildlife here, and you’ll see seals relaxing on the ice, whales breaching and huge numbers of penguins on the rocky shores.
A Zodiac will take you from the expedition vessel to explore at close range, nipping around bays and making landings so you have the unique opportunity to discover Antarctica’s steep peaks, huge glaciers and enormous icebergs. This is an extended expedition, designed to give you more time at the Antarctic Peninsula, so you can explore more of it and make numerous landings, to see its unique wildlife and landscapes.
There are lots of optional activities laid on to supplement the regular Zodiac excursions, so you can tailor the trip to your interests. Go kayaking, take a photography class, or relax onboard with yoga and a massage. True adventurers might prefer the icy embrace of a polar plunge or you can even opt to camp overnight like a polar explorer.
Polar expeditions often have a crew-to-passenger ratio of 10, 15 or 20 to one, but on this one, travelling on the Ocean Endeavour, you there is one crew member to every eight passengers, so you get greater service and a real sense of the personal touch. Our crew and expedition leaders know the Antarctic really well, having made hundreds of polar expeditions, and are know the marine biology, glaciology and history of the region inside out. This wealth of knowledge will be shared during the lecture programme that runs onboard throughout the expedition, so you’ll understand everything you’re seeing.
PlanetWe work hard to conserve and protect the polar regions and their fragile ecosystems. We are members of IAATO – the International Association of Antarctic Tour Operators and are fully compliant with their rules and guidelines. All our trips are run under strict regulations that ensure the environment of Antarctica remains in a pristine state. Being a member means that we actively support and contribute to the environmental and scientific work being carried out there. Encounters with wildlife are also controlled by a responsible code of conduct.
Our expedition vessels are much smaller and less imposing on the polar environment than the bigger cruise ships. Hence, group landings are more easily managed. Plus, due to our low passenger to crew ratio (8:1), we can provide a much more personalised experience. Our expedition staff, who are highly-skilled experts in fields like natural history, glaciology and marine biology (to name but a few), will introduce passengers to the wonders of Antarctica. As well as learning more about the local and global conservation issues facing polar habitats.
PeopleThe places we visit in Antarctica have no permanent residents other than researchers who live there seasonally or overwinter at their research stations. There’s a strong relationship between the researchers at these stations and our expedition staff, meaning our passengers get the opportunity to visit the research stations and find out all about their work. The Ukrainian research station Vernadsky for instance loves to give passengers a tour of their laboratories – the place where the hole in the ozone layer was first discovered. They share their knowledge and stories and passengers can even join them for a beer or vodka at their bar. We also take the research staff with us on board if they need to be transferred back to South America or vice versa.
Travellers are welcome to book pre and post tour accommodation with us. We’ll always do our best to secure rooms at family-run bed and breakfasts or hotels. Our travellers will also be given local restaurant recommendations, so that money is put back into the Argentinian economy. As this trip starts and finishes in Ushuaia, we encourage our clients to buy souvenirs from local vendors and discourage the purchase of endangered animal products or items unduly taken from the environment.
We also support the Mawson’s Huts Foundation which was established in 1997 to conserve the Mawson’s Huts at Cape Denison in East Antarctica. Since then, it has funded over 10 major expeditions to the historic site with further expedition planes.
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