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See the planet’s last untouched continent, experiencing it from one of the most advanced expedition ships in Antarctica. This voyage will take us through the Drake Passage, escorted by albatrosses and storm petrels before arriving at the magical white landscape. You will experience the continent in summer with its incredible wildlife including seals, penguins and whales.
Hurtigruten offers once in a lifetime expedition cruises to Antarctica, travelling aboard the custom built MS Fram, these spectacular adventures to the bottom of the world follow in the footsteps of pioneering explorers like Scott, Amundsen and Shackleton through the dramatic swells of the southern oceans to lands that lie at the very edge of our imagination. Hurtigruten smaller,friendly ship Fram crosses Drakes Passage in only 40 hrs, giving more time to explore the Antarctic Peninsula.
Once in Antarctica landings are exciting and safe. The use of Polar Circle boats makes it possible to make a wide range of landings. The expedition teams are experienced with in-depth knowledge of the areas we sail in.
Whilst on board the Expedition team conduct informative lectures on topics such as biology, history and geology throughout the course of the trip.
Your voyage starts with a night at a first class hotel in Buenos Aires. We offer an optional city tour in the afternoon. Spend the evening at your leisure and discover “Paris of South America” for yourself.
The flight leaves Buenos Aires in the morning allowing you a few hours to explore Ushuaia, the southernmost town in the world before boarding MS Fram. You can also join an optional excursion to Tierra del Fuego National Park. In the evening we set a course through the scenic Beagle Channel for the Drake Passage and Antarctica.
The Drake Passage is where the Atlantic and Pacific meet the Great Southern Ocean to create the Antarctic Convergence. In addition to spotting the magnificent wandering albatross and other seabirds, the crossing features our lecture series focusing on the history, environment, and wildlife of Antarctica.
Antarctica is an endless white wilderness full of fantastic vistas and nature. In spite of all the snow and ice Antarctica is teeming with life. It is home to millions of penguins, thousands of seals and is a rich feeding area for large numbers of whale. Antarctica is the home for many species including Adélie, Chinstrap and Gentoo penguins. There are no land predators in Antarctica, so they are fearless when encountering humans – they might be just as curious about you as you are about them.
Some of the highlights when we arrive in the South Shetlands are Deception Island and Half Moon Island, because of the resident colonies of Chinstrap penguins. Once on land, you can either stroll around at your own pace, or join our Expedition Team for an activity. We have various routes to choose from, either taking you through spectacular scenery or to one of the penguin colonies.
The main attraction for many visitors on Yankee Harbour is the terraced Gentoo penguin colony with an estimated 4,000 breeding pairs. Predatory Skua also nest here and visitors often witness the struggle between a penguin protecting its young and a Skua trying to feed theirs. Cuverville Island possesses the largest known colony of Gentoo penguins in the Antarctic Peninsula. Majestic mountains and high glacier walls surround the Gentoo penguin colony in Neko Harbour. This is one of the rare places on the Antarctic Peninsula where we may land on the mainland itself.
Paradise Harbour is well named with its incredible scenery. It offers another rare opportunity for a mainland landing, some of the finest vistas the Peninsula has to offer and a colony of friendly Gentoo penguins! The Lemaire Channel is known as one of the most beautiful passages in Antarctica. Depending on sea and ice conditions, you might be able to take an optional exclusive tour through the channel on our Polarcirkel boats.
On Petermann Island you will see thousands of Adélie penguins. It’s location in the picturesque Penola Strait makes a great spot for iceberg- and whale-spotting and offers spectacular views across the channel to the Antarctic Peninsula.
The British base in Port Lockroy is one of the most popular sites in Antarctica, and offers a peek into life on an Antarctic base in the 1950s. The nesting Gentoo penguins surrounding the main building have become accustomed to the frequent human visitors.
The mountains and high glaciers around Wilhelmina Bay ensure plenty of dramatic scenery and sculpted ice from tiny pieces to large icebergs. The huge ice shelves of the Antarctic sound are home to an estimated half million Adélie penguins as well as Gentoo penguins, Leopard seals, and Killer whales.
Brown Bluff lies on the coast of the Antarctic Sound at the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. Adélie penguins, Gentoo penguins, Kelp gulls, and Cape petrels can be found breeding here and Weddell seals are regular visitors. It’s possible to land here and walk along the beach among the penguins. The best way to experience Adélie penguins however is just to sit quietly and watch nature’s cutest comedians at work.
On our way back to civilization, we spend two days crossing the Drake Passage.
We arrive back in Ushuaia in the morning. Disembark after breakfast and you may choose to join an optional excursion in Ushuaia. In the early afternoon there is the flight back to Buenos Aires where it’s possible to extend the South American part of your adventure with a post voyage extension to the “Tigre Delta” or the breath-taking Iguazu falls.
The Ms Fram is a purpose built 12,700-ton vessel that incorporates all the best of both practical and traditional design. Because the ship is larger than other Expedition Ships, it offers more in the way of on board facilities and comfort. The decor on board includes original artwork and superbly appointed interiors that have been inspired by the Arctic and Greenland regions. Facilities include a main reception area, a glass-enclosed observation salon and excellent leisure facilities, including gym, sauna and heated Jacuzzis. The ship has a range of cabins on board from comfortable standard cabins to luxury expansive suites with their own lounge areas.
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