In Shackleton’s Footsteps
DEPARTING FROM:Ushuaia, ArgentinaFINAL DESTINATION:Falkland Islands, British Overseas Territory
DURATION:18 Days/ 17 NightsREGION:AntarcticaSHIP:Polar Pioneer
Late summer offers the best chance to chart a course through the Weddell Sea’s shifting pack ice and vast tabular bergs, where Shackleton’s ship Endurance was trapped and crushed. Explore fossil-rich islands, historic huts and set foot on the continent before retracing Shackleton’s heroic journey to save his men - first to
Elephant Island, then on through waters where blue, sei and fin whales roam. South Georgia offers nesting albatross, mating elephant seals, the world’s largest king penguin rookeries and a visit to Shackleton’s grave. This expedition also offers the chance to join a unique three day SouthgGeorgia Alpine Crossing by foot.
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.
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, our aim is to see as much as possible. We 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 on our excursion. Each group of 4 to 12 kayakers generally visit the same wildlife sites as our fellow expeditioners, however our smaller craft often means that we also have the opportunity to access areas that are often not accessible by Zodiacs. We will also make time to do some shore landings with the rest of the group.
South Georgia Alpine Crossing
For the more experienced hiker or climber our South Georgia Alpine Crossing offers a once-in-a-lifetime experience and the chance to delve deep into some of the world’s most rugged and remote terrain. Example Alpine Crossing Itinerary Day 1 Ascend to Murray Snowfield, traverse up and over Trident Pass. Descend to Crean Camp. Day 2 Pre-dawn start. Ascend Crean Glacier to Great Nunatak. Cross Fortuna Glacier and descend to Fortuna Bay. Overnight on ship. Day 3 Walk Fortuna Bay to Stromness, accompanied by fit passengers. Sail to Grytviken and Shackleton’s grave. Please note: Itinerary is subject to departure time, weather and ice conditions.Crossing length, route and time will vary. Crossing Length and Time The crossing distance can vary from 35 to 50 kilometres depending on the route we take, and involves crossing large, heavily crevassed glaciers and alpine passes. In good weather, the crossing could take only two days, but we allow three days in case of bad weather.
Your cruise price includes:
- Luggage transfer from hotel in Ushuaia to Polar Pioneer on day of boarding
- Transfer from Polar Pioneer to Stanley airport, including tour of Stanley
- Post-voyage flight from Stanley to Punta Arenas OR Santiago (no reduced fare for finishing in Punta Arenas)
- Accommodation during the voyage on board Polar Pioneer
- 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
- Complimentary custom-designed Polar Expedition jacket
- Free gumboot hire during the voyage
- Daily cabin service
- Complimentary custom-designed polar expedition 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 or emergency evacuation charges (highly recommended - ask us for a quote today)
- 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
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Please note: This cruise is sold in USD
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).