DURATION:11 Days/ 10 NightsREGION:AntarcticaSHIP:Polar Pioneer
This new Fly/Sail itinerary aboard the small ship Polar Pioneer features the best of Antarctica across eleven days and allows for more exploration, with only one crossing of the Drake Passage. Get up close with tabular icebergs, vast colonies of
Adelie and Gentoo penguins and dramatic volcanic landscapes in the ice-filled Weddell Sea; the Antarctic Peninsula’s many islands are alive with leopard seals busy with courtship, bustling penguins and maybe whales!
We have multiple departure dates for this cruise. Select a year and month to view itineraries for alternative departure dates.
Operated by: Aurora Expeditions
Polar Pioneer is one of the most popular style of vessels currently used in Antarctica and the Arctic. Originally built as an ice-strengthened research vessel in Finland in 1982, she was refurbished in 2000 and converted into a passenger ship for expeditions to the Polar Regions.
Polar Pioneer’s excellent reputation for polar expedition cruising is due to her strength, manoeuvrability and size. She is small and nimble, which means she can sail up close to landing sites and venture where other, larger ships can’t. Carrying just 54 passengers, she offers you a far more personal and intimate experience of the destination.
The following additional options may be added to your cruise.
Sea Kayaking in the Arctic
One of the most unique ways to experience Antarctica. The experience of sea kayaking in the humbling wilderness of Antarctica is guaranteed to stir your soul. Paddle between brash ice and icebergs of all shapes and sizes, skim past penguin rookeries or under soaring bird cliffs, or drift quietly as you watch wildlife unobtrusively, absorbing the majestic scenery. Led by experienced guides, paddling in small groups allows us the opportunity to paddle between ice floes, brash ice and icebergs of all shapes and sizes as well as allowing easy and intimate access to beautiful coastlines. Rather than travelling large distances, the aim is to see as much as possible. Paddle anywhere between 5 to 15 kilometres (2 to 4 hours) per outing, sometimes taking a snack and a flask of hot chocolate to enjoy mid excursion. Each group of 4 to 12 kayakers generally visit the same wildlife sites as fellow expeditioners, however smaller craft often means there is the opportunity to access areas that are often not accessible by Zodiacs. There will also be time to do some shore landings with the rest of the group.
This latest innovative activity option is led by expert polar diving guides from diving specialist Waterproof Expeditions, and utilises state of the art equipment including specially designed Waterproof© Snorkel-Drysuits, gloves, hood, fins, mask, and snorkel. Participants will be provided with all of the training and equipment they need to experience Antarctica from this truly unique angle. Passengers who take part will enjoy the opportunity to snorkel daily (weather dependant), taking delight in sheltered bays, off shore islands and secluded ship wrecks which make for spectacular wildlife viewing.
Go beyond the average adventure and delve deep into the waters of Antarctica exploring dive sites where no one has gone before. To participate in optional polar diving all divers must be a trained, certified SCUBA divers with proof of certification beyond entry level, i.e. Advanced Diver certification or equivalent rating issued by a recognised SCUBA training organisation. In addition, it is extremely important that adequate training and experience is gained in dry-suit diving, and in the use of other new and unfamiliar equipment to be used in polar waters. To ensure your safety and enjoyment and to avoid any unnecessary problems on the trip, recent diving experience and proof of a minimum of 20 logged dives using a dry-suit is required prior to joining the voyage.
Your cruise price includes:
- Flight from Punta Arenas to Puerto Williams (or reverse)
- Transfer from Puerto Williams’ airport to Polar Pioneer, including Puerto Williams town and surrounds tour
- Luggage transfer from Polar Pioneer to King George Island airstrip
- Flight from King George Island to Punta Arenas (or reverse)
- One night accommodation in Punta Arenas post voyage (17 Feb 2018 departure)
- One night accommodation in Punta Arenas pre voyage (25 Feb 2018 departure)
- Accommodation during the voyage
- All meals, snacks, tea and coffee during the voyage
- All shore excursions and Zodiac (inflatable boat) cruises
- Educational lectures and guiding services from our expert team
- Access to our on board doctor and basic medical services
- Free gumboot hire during the voyage
- Daily cabin service
- An Aurora Expeditions' multi-purpose waterproof jacket
- Comprehensive pre-departure information
- Professionally produced voyage journal (one per booking)
- Port taxes and charges
- All entry fees to historic landings sites
Your cruise price does not include:
- International or domestic flights to or from ship, unless specified
- Transfers not mentioned in the itinerary
- Airport arrival or departure taxes
- Visa, passport, and vaccination charges
- Travel insurance (highly recommended - SAVE 20% when purchased with your expedition)
- Hotels and meals not included in itinerary
- Optional excursions not included in the itinerary
- Optional activity surcharge. Please contact us if you wish to book any optional activities, such as sea kayaking
- All items of a personal nature including but not limited to: alcoholic beverages and soft drinks, laundry services, personal clothing, medical expenses, gratuities, and email or phone charges
Book your next cruise
Please note: This cruise is sold in USD
Note that the 25 February 2018 departure operates in the reverse direction, with charter flight from Punta Arenas to King George Island to commence the expedition.
Please note that all Polar itineraries are at the mercy of weather conditions and not all landings are guaranteed. These itineraries are flexible and will change voyage to voyage, allowing the best chance to make the most of surprising wildlife displays and unexpected opportunities.
Single occupancy is 1.7 times the twin share price. No single travel fees apply if you are willing to share your cabin (twin and triple cabins only).