Quest for the Antarctic Circle
A massive rookery of penguins shuffles across a frozen shore; a pod of whales glides through frigid waters; dramatic landscapes float off in the distance – welcome to Antarctica. Join us on a voyage of discovery to our planet’s last frontier – a mysterious and virtually pristine paradise. Our ice-strengthened expedition ship is ideally suited to cruising this icy wilderness, and her expert staff are on hand to ensure you’ll fully appreciate all the majesty you encounter. Sail the Drake Passage past the South Shetland Islands, then really explore the western coast of the Antarctic Peninsula. Prepare yourself for an adventure like no other – more like a private expedition than a traditional cruise.
Day 1: Ushuaia – Arrive in Ushuaia at any time. Arrival transfer and hotel night included. Enjoy the sights and sounds of the world’s most southerly city.
Day 2: Ushuaia/Drake Passage – Enjoy a free morning in Ushuaia. Do any last minute shopping, explore the town, or visit the surrounding countryside. Embarkation on the G Expedition begins in the afternoon at the port in Ushuaia. Enjoy the evening sailing through the Beagle Channel.
Days 3–4: Drake Passage/South Shetland Islands – The adventure begins with an 800km (497 mi) crossing of the passage named in honour of 16th-century English sea captain and privateer, Sir Francis Drake. The ship is at home in this part of the Southern Ocean. Enjoy daily lectures from the expedition team and keep an eye out for icebergs, whales, and albatross following in the G Expedition’s wake.
The G Expedition is at home in this part of the Southern Ocean, known for the unimpeded never ending fetch of the winds that encircle the Antarctic.
As the Expedition crosses the passage there will be time to become acquainted with the ship and frequent the common areas that include the lounge, dining hall, library and lecture hall where we meet our guides, ship’s crew and expedition staff.
Begin lectures and information sessions to learn the extraordinary human and natural history of the Antarctic region.
Days 5–6: South Shetland Islands/Antarctic Peninsula – Encounter some of the region’s unique wildlife and awe-inspiring scenery while setting foot on the Antarctic continent. Attempt two shore landings per day (weather permitting) and encounter gentoo, chinstrap, and Adélie penguin rookeries; Weddell, crabeater, and leopard seals; and orca, humpback, and minke whales in the cold Antarctic waters.
This is what we’ve all been waiting for – a chance to step foot on the Great White Continent! Over the next four days the Expedition will navigate southwards making stops in the South Shetland Islands then through the Bransfield Strait and to the Antarctic Peninsula.
Our goal is to attempt two excursions per day while navigating through the area but our itinerary and daily schedule will be based on the local weather and ice conditions.
The peninsula also has a remarkable human history; during the voyage, learn about some of the most important and dramatic expeditions to this remote corner of the world.
Days 7–8: Antarctic Peninsula/Antarctic Circle – With a close eye on weather conditions, continue southward along the western coast of the Antarctic Peninsula. Passing colossal icebergs and countless colonies of penguins, push on with the goal in mind – crossing the Antarctic Polar Circle. Few travelers have ventured this far south, but with our fully equipped ice-strengthened vessel and favourable sea conditions, the Expedition can access many remote locations other ships just can’t reach.
Days 9–11: Antarctic Circle/Drake Passage – Turn north for the first time to continue exploring the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands.
Continue our exploration of the peninsula and the then into the South Shetland while moving North again. Keeping a close eye out for wildlife there might be opportunities to do some whale watching or even go for a polar plunge in the Southern waters.
Day 12: Drake Passage – Leave Antarctica and head north across the Drake Passage. In between bird watching and whale watching and enjoying some final lectures by the expedition staff, this is a chance to relax and review the adventures of the past week before returning to Ushuaia.
Remember, the best way to experience the wildlife of the Drake Passage is to be on deck keeping a look out for Albatross, Prions and Whales!
Day 13: Drake Passage/Ushuaia – Begin your journey to your home port of Ushuaia. Review the highlights of your Antarctic experience with our lecturers and staff, and keep your eyes open on the observation deck for some last-minute whale sightings.
Day 14: Ushuaia – Disembark the G Expedition after breakfast.
Upon completion of disembarkation in Ushuaia, passengers will receive a complimentary transfer to either the airport or a central location where luggage can be stored.
For those on morning flights, the transfer will bring them directly to Ushuaia airport (USH). The rest of the passengers will be transferred to the luggage storage point and given time to explore the city. These passengers should then return to retrieve their luggage and board a transfer to Ushuaia airport at 12:30pm or 4:30pm, depending on their flight times. Please note that the transfer times are subject to change according to flight schedules.
Please note: Specific sites visited will depend on ice and weather conditions, the planned itinerary will be updated at the time of final preparations as well as throughout the voyage in order to take advantage of favourable conditions.