Punta Arenas - Antarctica - Punta Arenas
Travel in harmony with the elements to the White Continent. En route, you will experience the wild natural wonders of the Chilean fjords. Once in Antarctica, the sight of mighty glaciers calving into the ocean, colonies of penguins and pods of whales in the icy seas will create indelible memories. And on board there is so much to do. In our Science Center, you can join exciting lectures and take part in a wide variety of activities designed to enhance your trip.
||Starting From||Ship Name
|13 Dec 2019||15 Days||EUR 6,429||MS ROALD AMUNDSEN|
From the steep mountains and valleys of the Chilean fjords to close encounters with Antarctic wildlife
Starting in Punta Arenas, this expedition will introduce you to the natural beauty of Patagonia before crossing of the treacherous Drake Passage to Antarctica and the mighty frozen desert of the south.
Endless white landscapes, teeming wildlife and fascinating history
In Antarctica, we will land at historic sites like ring- shaped Deception Island, a major harbour for whaling ships until 1930s. Or Cuverville Island, home to thousands of gentoo penguins, and the British station Port Lockroy from World War II; and Wilhelmina Bay, often called “Whale-mina Bay”, because of the large numbers of humpback whales spotted here. Brown Bluff is recognisable by the 750 metre cliffs that dominate the landscape. Our landings offer you the chance to go hiking, take kayaks out on the water, cruise among whales breaching the surface and meet the local penguins. As a modern-day explorer, you will discover unspoiled wilderness in an environmentally friendly way aboard our hybrid expedition vessel.
Back on board, you’ll have opportunities to learn and share discoveries with family and new friends in a relaxed atmosphere. MS Roald Amundsen is a ship built and designed to meet the needs of modern explorers – both on and off board. Our Science Center is where you can meet fellow adventurers for scientific fun with our engaging Expedition team, no matter what age you are. The media room on board shows the highlights of the day, and if you haven’t joined an excursion or landing, you can see films and photos to share in the adventures here at the end of each day. All scientific content is presented in a lively, fun and easily understood manner: first class edutainment, so to speak.
Santiago De Chile
Location: Santiago de Chile
The capital of Chile is exciting and diverse. There is a lot to discover here, from the Andean glaciers at the city borders, tall mountains and skyscrapers to quiet parks, colonial architecture, bohemian quarters and the fast-flowing Mapacho River. Your adventure starts with an overnight hotel stay here.
Location: Santiago de Chile/Punta Arenas
Fly early in the morning to Punta Arenas to join a city tour before embarking on MS Roald Amundsen for your expedition to Antarctica.
Location: Chilean fjords
Enjoy cruising through the Beagle Channel, with channels, fjords and mountains plunging straight into the icy water. This wild and remote area seems almost undisturbed by humans. The ice has scoured its way between the mountains, leaving isolated islands and hidden bays and creating the unique fjord landscape of Chile.
When ranking the most iconic places on Earth, Cape Horn is high on the list. At almost 56 degrees south, it is the southernmost point of South America. Before the Panama Canal, seafarers had to pass this infamous rocky island in order to cross from one side of the Americas to the other. We will do our best to make a landing on Cape Horn – however, this is an area known for high seas and challenging conditions, so the Captain will decide on the safety of the excursion.
MS Roald Amundsen will use 1 ½ to 2 days to cross the Drake Passage from Cape Horn, depending on the weather conditions. An enormous churn of water is funnelled by western wind drift from the Pacific through the Drake Passage and into the Scotia Sea to the east. The Passage is part of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current, the most voluminous current in the world. About 95 to 150 million cubic metres of water per second are transported from west to east here. As we cross the Drake, we sail over the undersea West Scotia Ridge and the nearly 6,000- metre deep South Shetland Trench. The weather can be terrible on the passage, but it may also be placid, and it is often called the “Drake Lake”. Usually, it’s somewhere in between.
Antarctica is isolated from the rest of the world by ocean currents. 90 per cent of the world´s ice is here, 4.000 metres thick, covering the landmass. In winter, it is further cut off by sea ice forming off the coast - virtually doubling the size of the continent. In summer, it is a breeding ground for millions of penguins, whales and seals that, for the rest of the year, simply spend their time at sea. Most wildlife here are dependent on a cornerstone species: krill. And there is a great deal of it. The krill population in the Southern Ocean represents the largest biomass of one species on Earth – including human beings.
As outlined in the Antarctic Treaty, this is a continent dedicated to peace, science and tourism. No human activity is allowed to alter the perfect natural balance. We are visiting a place that has evolved through millenniums without human interference. Therefore, we adhere to very strict environmental guidelines and rules. We want to leave nothing but footprints and take nothing but pictures!
What is so overwhelming about Antarctica is that its location makes every voyage to the continent an expedition. Even the most sophisticated technology cannot override some of the climatic challenges that are a part of this environment. Therefore, we need to be pragmatic; we change landings, re-route and shift plans as we go along. This also means that we will take advantage of the often-ideal conditions – spend hours ashore, on the water with kayaks, hiking or simply cruising amongst huge pods of whales. Weather, wind and ice conditions have a great influence on our programme and schedule. We will attempt to land several places, including Deception Island, Half Moon Island, Brown Bluff, Cuverville Island and Neko Harbour. All of these places are serene and offer untouched nature, oportunities to observe penguin colonies, seals, glaciers, icebergs in every shape and colour and old whaling stations.
It´s hard to sum up all the impressions you will gain. As a well-known quote from veteran Antarctic travellers puts it: “If you can describe Antarctica with words, you have probably never been there.”
Location: At Sea
With the sights and smells of Antarctic still fresh in our minds, we enjoy a day at sea while celebrating Christmas! You can expect fine food in the restaurant, fun and games in the bar and maybe a visit from a certain white bearded gentleman!
After exploring the last untouched continent, we are on our way back to South America. We will continue our lecture series on the dramatic history and diverse wildlife of the region as we keep watch for wandering albatross.
Location: At Sea
As we complete the loop of the Magellan Strait, we will have a recap of everything we have experienced on this expedition. Make sure you spend some time on deck looking for wildlife.
Location: Punta Arenas/Santiago de Chile
We arrive back in Punta Arenas in the morning. After the flight back to Santiago de Chile, you can extend your vacation with a post voyage extension to experience the impressive region.
Punta Arenas/Santiago de Chile