Imagine a place so pristine and remote you can hear snowflakes hitting the water
“I would advise anyone with the smallest inkling or desire to visit Antarctica to just do it!” says Ruth T. “My trip was born from an off-the-cuff comment to my husband. After four years of planning and saving, we made it happen and celebrated our wedding anniversary in Antarctica.”
“I thought I’d never get the chance to visit Antarctica,” says Rachel B. “I did and it was worth every cent. The landscape, the flora and the fauna. Words cannot explain the experience I had. If you’ve ever thought about it just do it!”
Take a look around at our 2022-23 Antarctica itineraries below then request a quote and let us help you start planning your dream trip. Your Antarctic expedition begins here!
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Frequently asked questions about Antarctica
If you have any questions about Antarctica or joining one of our expeditions, please check out our FAQ’s below or give us a call.
During the summer months (when we visit) the temperature can range from -2°C (28°F) to 8°C (46°F). Big storms are rare, but if one comes through the temperature could drop to -8°C (17°F). Read more
Shipboard clothing is informal and casual; jeans, jumpers, long sleeve shirt and enclosed shoes are ideal in our polar regions. However, be sure to keep your jacket close for unexpected sightings! Some people like to take a nice outfit or something a bit special for the Captain’s welcome and farewell drinks, but formal clothing is not necessary. Read more
To make the most of our voyages, you should be in good general health and able to walk reasonable distances, sometimes over uneven terrain. However, if you have problems walking on rough ground, you can enjoy the scenery closer to shore. Should you have any physical limitations please notify us well in advance of your departure, but this should not discourage you from participating.
Although you cannot swim in Antarctica, most of our voyages stop for a ‘Polar Plunge’, where all willing passengers can take the ultimate dip into the icy Antarctic waters. You do have the option to take up our Polar Snorkelling activity, or experienced scuba divers have the option to dive, on selected voyages. Additional charges may apply.
Antarctica is the southernmost continent on Earth. The South Geographic Pole is in Antarctica, and most of the continent lies within the Antarctic Circle, at 66.5 degrees south of the Equator.
Antarctica is so far south that most of the continent receives 24 hours of daylight during summer, and 24 hours of darkness during winter.
Antarctica lies to the south of Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and South America, and is surrounded by the Southern Ocean (also known as the Antarctic Ocean). Most visitors access Antarctica via ship or aircraft from an Antarctic ‘gateway city’. The five official Antarctic gateway cities are Ushuaia (Argentina), Hobart (Australia), Punta Arenas (Chile), Christchurch (New Zealand), and Cape Town (South Africa).
The name ‘Antarctica’ comes from ‘Antarktos’, meaning ‘opposite the Arctic’. Antarctica and the Arctic are indeed opposites in many ways, and they lie at the polar extremes of the globe: the Arctic to the north and Antarctica to the south.
Antarctica doesn’t belong to anyone. There is no single country that owns Antarctica. Instead, Antarctica is governed by a group of nations in a unique international partnership. The Antarctic Treaty, first signed on December 1, 1959, designates Antarctica as a continent devoted to peace and science. Since then, 54 nations have acceded to (signed) the Antarctic Treaty, taking part in this unprecedented example of international diplomacy. Read more
Antarctica is home to a hardy community of wonderful wildlife, which has adapted to the cold, windy and icy Antarctic environment.
There are four species of penguins in Antarctica. They are the emperor, Adélie, gentoo and chinstrap. The emperor and Adélie penguins are found only in Antarctica.
There are six species of Antarctic seals: Ross seals, Weddell seals, crabeater seals, leopard seals, southern fur seals and southern elephant seals. They all live in the ocean surrounding Antarctica, hauling out on ice or land to rest and pup.
Many whales visit Antarctic waters during the summer feeding season between late October and early April. The whales that commonly visit Antarctic waters include humpback whales, killer whales, minke whales, fin whales, sei whales and even the enormous blue whale!
In addition to these charismatic creatures we see on the ocean’s surface, the Antarctic ocean is filled with a rich variety of sea life, from single-celled algae, which form the foundation of the Antarctic food web, to krill, a tiny crustacean which is a keystone species in the Antarctic ecosystem, providing sustenance for seals, whales, penguins and many other seabirds.
Most animals that thrive in Antarctica are marine animals. This means that they rely on the ocean and marine ecosystems to survive and thrive. However, there are a few Antarctic animals that live entirely on land. These include the microscopic springtails, nematodes and tardigrades, which live amongst moss and lichen in areas which are not permanently snow-covered.
Antarctica is the coldest continent on Earth. The average temperature in the interior throughout the year is about -57°C, with the minimum temperature being -90°C during the winter season. Although the coast is warmer and temperatures can reach a maximum of between -2°C and 8°C during the summer. It is, on average, the coldest, windiest, and driest of all the continents on Earth. Read more
Tourists visit Antarctica during the summer, between early October and late March. The Antarctic winter is cold and dark, and the continent is surrounded by an enormous fringe of sea ice, which almost doubles its size. Many animals migrate north and the Antarctic Peninsula is inaccessible.
As summer arrives the sun returns to Antarctica, and with it comes rafts of penguins, pods of whales and herds of seals. Sea ice drifts or melts away from the Antarctic Peninsula coastline, allowing expedition vessels access into many sheltered bays and harbours to marvel at the splendour of the Antarctic summer. Read more
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