Early Antarctic explorers returned from their voyages to the deep south with tales of a magnificent, ice-covered land teeming with life. Experience the awe-inspiring immensity of Antarctica and immerse yourself in the unimaginable beauty of the Antarctic Peninsula, where vast glaciers tumble into the sea, penguins are dwarfed by soaring peaks, and humpback and minke whales feast on abundant krill. Reduce your time on the high seas by flying at least one way across the Drake Passage.
International award-winning photographer, Scott Portelli, will be our photography guide for Antarctic Explorer ANP135G, departing in December 2020; ANP136G and ANP137G, departing in January 2021.
- See and hear the busting activity of a penguin city
- Chance to spot leopard seals on ice floes from our Zodiacs
- Zodiac-cruise in search of feeding and breaching whales
- Skip one or two legs of the Drake Passage to maximise your holiday time in the white continent
Number of Passengers:
- ANP135G, ANP136G, ANP137G, AEP143G, AEP146G, AEP150S, AEP152S, AEP153S: 126 passengers (including kayakers)
- ANP133G: 126 passengers (including kayakers and divers)
- ANP138G, ANP139G, AEP144G, AEP145G: 132 passengers (including kayakers and divers)
Antarctic Explorer (ANP133G, ANP136G, AEP144G, AEP146G) are FLY/FLY voyages that skip the Drake completely. Please refer to our Contingency Plans for Fly/Sail and Fly/Fly voyages.
- ANP135G, ANP138G, AEP143G, AEP150S – Sail/Fly
- ANP137G, ANP139G, AEP145G, AEP152S, AEP153S – Fly/Sail
- ANP133G, ANP136G, AEP144G, AEP146G – Fly/Fly
In true expedition style we encourage exploration and adventure, offering flexibility in challenging environments in a way that puts you among the action to see and do as much as possible. This itinerary is only a guide and subject to change due to ice and weather conditions.
Day 1 Arrival airport transfer and overnight in Ushuaia
Arrive in Ushuaia, where you will be met by a representative of Aurora Expeditions and transferred to your downtown hotel. Upon arrival at your included hotel, kindly remind hotel check-in staff to provide you with Aurora Expeditions cabin tags. Please clearly label the tags with your name and ship cabin number.
Day 2 Embarkation Day
This morning, please ensure your cabin luggage is fitted with cabin tags clearly labelled with your name and cabin number. Please take your cabin luggage down to hotel reception by 8.00 AM. Please be advised that this voyage includes a chartered flight at the end of the voyage from Antarctica to Punta Arenas. The permitted luggage allowance is 20 kilograms of check-in luggage plus one piece of carry-on luggage weighing no more than seven kilos. Your luggage will be collected from your hotel and transferred directly to port for clearance and delivered to your cabin ahead of your arrival on board. Keep any valuables or personal items with you throughout the day. Once you have checked out of your hotel by 11.00 AM, you have free time before meeting back in the hotel lobby at 2.00 PM to commence a tour of Ushuaia. Alternatively, enjoy time at leisure and make your own way to Prison Museum carpark by 3.45 pm to rejoin the group and transfer to the pier for embarkation.
Ushuaia, capital of Tierra del Fuego is located at the shores of the Beagle Channel and surrounded by the Martial Mountains giving you a unique landscape in Argentina, which is the combination of mountains, sea, glaciers and forests. On this introductory tour, you will visit “La Mision” neighbourhood, the old Government House, and the upper area of the city, which offers beautiful panoramic views of Ushuaia and the Beagle Channel. During the excursion you will see the antique houses that belonged to the first families settled in Ushuaia. The excursion ends with a visit to the Old Prison Museum before transferring to the pier for embarkation at approximately 4.00 PM.
After embarkation, you’ll have time to settle into your cabin before our important mandatory briefings. As the ship pulls away from port, we’ll gather on the deck to commence our adventure with spectacular views over Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego. This evening, get to know your fellow expeditioners and friendly expedition team and crew at a welcome dinner.
(Breakfast and dinner included. Lunch is at own expense)
Day 3 Drake Passage Crossing
As we commence the Drake Passage crossing, we make the most of our time getting comfortable with the motions of the sea. Our expedition team prepare you for our first landing with important wildlife guidelines and biosecurity procedures, and start our lecture program to help you learn more about Antarctica’s history, wildlife and environment.
Our wildlife experiences begin as we enjoy watching and photographing the many seabirds, including majestic albatrosses and giant petrels following in our wake. They rise and fall skilfully, using air currents created by the ship to gain momentum.
Day 4 Drake Passage & South Shetland Islands
Nearing the South Shetland Islands and the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula on day four, the excitement is palpable with everyone converging on one of the observation decks, watching for our first iceberg. The ocean takes on a whole new perspective once we are below the Antarctic Convergence and are surrounded by the surreal presence of floating ice sculptures. The memory of your first big iceberg sighting is likely to remain with you for a long time. Weather permitting, we may attempt our first landing in Antarctica by late afternoon.
Day 5-10 Antarctic Peninsula
It’s almost impossible to describe the feeling of arriving in Antarctica. Spotting your first iceberg and taking a deep breath of some of the most fresh, crisp air on earth is an experience that will stay with you forever.
Once we arrive, the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands are ours to explore, and we have a host of choices available to us. Because we are so far south, we will experience approximately 18-24 hours of daylight and the days can be as busy as you wish.
Your experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their expertise to design your voyage from day to day, choosing the best options based on the prevailing weather, ice conditions and wildlife opportunities.
We generally make landings or Zodiac excursions twice a day. You’ll want to rug up before joining Zodiac cruises along spectacular ice cliffs or among grounded icebergs, keeping watch for whales, seals and porpoising penguins. Zodiacs will also transport you from the ship to land, where you can visit penguin rookeries, discover historic huts and explore some of our favourite spots along the peninsula.
While ashore we aim to stretch our legs, wandering along pebbly beaches or perhaps up snow-covered ridgelines to vantage points with mountains towering overhead and ice-speckled oceans below. If you have chosen an optional activity, you’ll have the option to do that whenever conditions allow, and of course keen polar plungers will have the chance to fully immerse themselves in polar waters - conditions permitting!
In addition to Zodiac cruises and shore excursions, we may ship cruise some of the narrow, dramatic straits separating offshore islands from the mainland, or linger in scenic bays to watch whales travelling or feeding. This is a great time to enjoy the observation lounge or make your way to the bridge for uninterrupted views of Antarctica in all its splendour. Keep an ear out for the creak and deep rumble of glaciers as they carve their way from summit to sea, and take a quiet moment to experience the wonder of this incredible white continent.
Day 11 Fly King George Island to Punta Arenas
As we approach Frei Base on King George Island, it is time to farewell Antarctica and our amazing adventure before boarding our flight (approximately one-and-a half-hours) to Punta Arenas, Chile. On arrival at the Punta Arenas airport, you will be transferred to our preferred downtown hotel.
NOTE: King George Island is located at the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula in the South Shetland Islands and is one of the most remote place on Earth. A clear sky with perfect visibility is required in order to take off and land safely. We apologise in advance if you experience any delays.
Day 12 Disembark Punta Arenas
After breakfast, bid a fond farewell to your fellow travellers as we all continue our onward journeys, hopefully with a newfound sense of the immense power of nature (breakfast included).
NOTE: Please advise your Reservations Consultant or travel agent if you require an airport transfer, so it can be booked in advance. The departure airport transfer is not included in your voyage cost and will be at an additional charge.
- Arrival transfer from airport to hotel on Day 1
- One night’s hotel accommodation with breakfast in Ushuaia on Day 1
- City tour in Ushuaia on Day 2 (lunch not included)
- Luggage transfer from your hotel in Ushuaia to ship on Day 2
- Flight from King George Island to Punta Arenas on Day 11. NOTE: Please be advised that the permitted luggage allowance is 20 kilograms of check-in luggage plus one piece of carry-on luggage weighing no more than seven kilos.
- Transfer to hotel in Punta Arenas on Day 11
- One night’s hotel accommodation with breakfast in Punta Arenas on Day 11
- On-board accommodation during voyage including daily cabin service
- All meals, snacks, tea and coffee during voyage
- Beer, house wine and soft drinks with dinner
- Captain’s Welcome and Farewell reception including four-course dinner, house cocktails, house beer and wine, non-alcoholic beverages
- All shore excursions and Zodiac cruises
- Educational lectures and guiding services from expedition team
- Free access to our onboard doctor for consultations relating to sea-sickness. A standard fee of US $60.00 (reclaimable through your travel insurance provider) applies for medical consultations not related to sea-sickness
- A 3-in-1 waterproof polar expedition jacket
- Complimentary use of muck boots during the voyage
- Comprehensive pre-departure information
- Port surcharges, permits and landing fees
- International or domestic flights, unless specified
- Transfers not mentioned in the itinerary
- Airport arrival or departure taxes
- Passport, visa, reciprocity and vaccination charges
- Travel insurance or emergency evacuation charges
- Hotels and meals not included in itinerary
- Optional excursions not included in the itinerary
- Optional activity surcharges
- All items of a personal nature including but not limited to: alcoholic beverages and soft drinks (outside of dinner service), laundry services, personal clothing, medical expenses, gratuities, Wi-Fi, email or phone charges
Note: A $15 USD per person per day gratuity for the crew is automatically added to your onboard account. It is at your discretion if you would like to remove the tip (or increase/decrease the amount) when you settle your bill. It is not necessary to tip the expedition team members. This gratuity amount is included for suites as part of their ‘Suite Benefits’."
Lectures on wildlife, our environment, history and destinations
Whale and mammal spotting
From USD $1,260.00/pp
One of the most exhilarating ways to experience Antarctica, the Arctic or any of our global voyages. The experience of …
One of the most exhilarating ways to experience Antarctica, the Arctic or any of our global voyages.
The experience of sea kayaking in the humbling wilderness of Antarctica or the European Arctic 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 10 kayakers will have their own intimate exploration of the small hidden bays and coasts that may be inaccessible to the Zodiacs and will also make time for their own shore excursions and wildlife encounters.
When we visit the poles, the elements play an important role. It is important that you have an adventurous attitude and understand that our kayaking time will be affected by the weather that we experience.
Even if your experience is limited, we’d encourage you to call us to discuss your suitability. There is often ample time to gain the required experience before you depart. Kayakers should be aged 14 years or over.
- Kayak & Paddle
- Neoprene boots
- Safety gear
- A 15-litre dry bag
- Life jackets
- Dry suits
- Pogies (insulated mittens that attach to your paddle)
Our guides have years of kayaking experience in our destinations. The sea kayaking guide will lead the group on each excursion, explaining facts about the wildlife and other highlights we paddle across. You can view our sea kayaking guides’ profiles here or see below.
How to Book
Simply inform our Expedition Experts at time of booking that you would like to include the optional sea kayaking activity for your expedition. Places are limited so we recommend reserving your place early.View more details
From USD $1,260.00/pp
At the forefront of climbing exploration in the Antarctic Peninsula, Aurora Expeditions and our experienced guides have been leading trips …
Alpine Trekking & Climbing
At the forefront of climbing exploration in the Antarctic Peninsula, Aurora Expeditions and our experienced guides have been leading trips to this remote climbing location for well over a decade. Having forged new routes on many of the continent’s magnificent peaks, we return year after year to share this spectacular continent and its climbing experiences with our guests.
Along the Antarctic Peninsula coastline, hundreds of peaks rise several thousand feet, snow-clad and beckoning eager adventure seekers. From ascents of alpine peaks to ice climbing, our program aims to give participants a taste of the region’s fantastic climbing opportunities.
During the voyage we offer climbs for the moderately fit, from easy ascents to more technical routes, ranging from 4 to 10 hours. We hope to make at least two one-day alpine ascents and attempt some ice climbing. Previous experience with crampons and ice axe is necessary and a surcharge applies.View more details
From USD $320.00/pp
Snowshoeing makes walking up gentle slopes and across Antarcticas soft, powdery snow a breeze, allowing you to explore places others …
Snowshoeing makes walking up gentle slopes and across Antarcticas soft, powdery snow a breeze, allowing you to explore places others struggle to reach in boots alone. Armed with your very own set of snowshoes and ski poles, youll be led by our expert guides who will provide all the instruction you need. Snowshoeing is an excellent way to ascend to some of Antarcticas best vantage points, stretch the legs and take in the most spectacular scenery on the planet. Snowshoeing is the perfect activity for everyone, with no previous experience required. Join in on the fun and discover a different slice of Antarctica!
Required Experience & Fitness
This popular alpine activity is easy to learn. No experience is necessary all you need is a willingness to try. All training is provided and our team of guides will have you trained and ready to go in no more than half an hour.
Participants should be confident in their footing and have an average level of fitness outings may be up to three hours in duration. Those who enjoy hiking trails or taking long walks at home will possess enough fitness to enjoy this activity. As with any other activity, you will get more enjoyment out of it with some preparation in advance, such as long walks with uphill sections or bike riding.
The minimum age for this activity is 14.
Our highly-qualified guides have many years of climbing, skiing and snowshoeing experience and all hold relevant mountain instruction and safety certificates . They aim to provide a personalised and unique experience for every customer whilst maintaining safety to the highest standards. We have one snow shoeing guide for every 10 guests.
While we aim to get out as often as possible, the number of outings will be dependent on weather and our itinerarys landing points. The average number of outings is usually six or more per voyage, lasting up to three hours per outing. Every voyage is different but some of our typical landings spots have been:
- Ronge Island Georges Point
- Neko Harbour
- Almirante Brown Base Paradise Harbour
- Port Lockeroy
- Brown Bluff
- Jougla Point
Equipment and clothing requirements
Aurora Expeditions will supply all snowshoes and ski poles for all participants. As well as the general packing list provided by Aurora Expeditions, we also recommend:
- Breathable fabric outerwear as you will be exercising
- Thick pair of socks and sheep wool inner soles
- Snow gaiters are optional
You should also ensure your insurance policy covers snowshoeing. An additional policy or premium may be required to ensure you have adequate coverage. Travel insurance, including emergency evacuation coverage, is mandatory on all Aurora Expeditions voyages. Please contact Aurora Expeditions if you need assistance with your insurance policy.
How to book
If you would like to partake in our snowshoeing option on your voyage please return a snowshoeing form at time of booking. Our guides will review your form for suitability and experience before approving your place in the group.View more details
From USD $640.00/pp
Discover the underwater world of Antarctica and the Arctic! Witness wildlife and scenery unlike any other place on earth. Through …
Discover the underwater world of Antarctica and the Arctic!
Witness wildlife and scenery unlike any other place on earth. Through crystal clear waters you’ll discover the amazing mobility and speed of penguins entering and exiting from the ice, marvel at beautiful sculpted icebergs below the water and witness marine life such as crustaceans, isopods, starfish and nudibranchs!
With a longstanding tradition of pushing the boundaries, Aurora Expeditions launched our Antarctic snorkelling adventures in 2014. In 2016 the activity has also been added to a range of our Arctic expeditions. This unique experience will allow passengers to see both destinations in a completely new dimension, witnessing wildlife and scenery unlike any other place on earth.
This latest innovative activity option is led by our expert polar diving guides, and utilises state of the art equipment including drysuits, gloves, hood, fins, mask, and snorkel. Passengers 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 dependent), taking delight in sheltered bays, off shore islands and secluded ship wrecks which make for spectacular wildlife viewing.
Our team of experienced dive guides have over 20 years polar diving experience and provide snorkellers and divers with detailed briefings and best practice procedures to ensure a safe snorkelling and diving experience.
Polar snorkelling requires at least 6 snorkellers for the activity to proceed. Please ask our team for numbers at time of booking.
How to Book
Please return the polar snorkelling activity form at the time of booking. Simply inform our Expedition Experts at time of booking that you would like to include the optional snorkelling activity to your expedition. Places are limited.
For voyages on the Greg Mortimer:View more details
From USD $0.00/pp
One of our most popular activities, camping offers you the unique opportunity to roll out your sleeping mat and wriggle into …
One of our most popular activities, camping offers you the unique opportunity to roll out your sleeping mat and wriggle into your thermal sleeping bag for a night out on the ice – no camping experience necessary! Once you’ve settled in, prepare to witness the stunning beauty of the Antarctic night sky, as well as the sounds of ice cracking in the distance and wildlife carrying on their busy schedule around you. This is the activity for the ultimate bragging rights!
How will I stay warm?
Your expedition team will advise you on the appropriate clothing to wear ashore and will provide you with a mat and thermal sleeping bag for your night out on the ice.
Is it safe?
Yes, we’ve taken hundreds of adventurous souls out overnight and our expert expedition team know where to find the best spots for your camping experience.
Will I sleep much?
Possibly not! Many passengers don’t camp out to sleep – they’re there to soak in the amazing surrounds, witness incredible vistas and enjoy the sounds of nearby penguin colonies and possibly even a calving glacier. We’ll do our best to make sure you get the chance for a cat nap the next day.
Will I get the chance to sleep under the stars?
Our camping trips take place in the middle of the Austral summer, and on the Antarctic Peninsula we’ll be experiencing almost 24 hours of daylight. This means that instead of a starry night, you’ll instead be treated to an extended sunset and sunrise as the sun briefly dips below the horizon, filling the sky with an endless palette of colours.
What should I bring?
Aurora Expeditions provides all the necessary equipment including a camping mat and thermal sleeping bag, so you only need to bring yourself. Please note: we don’t use tents for our camping experience. We believe that the experience is best enjoyed without blocking the amazing surrounds we’ve come to admire.
How do I book?
Camping is subject to weather, time and operational conditions. Places are limited to 40 campers on a first-come first-served basis, so early booking is encouraged. This activity will only be offered on board if there is still availability at the time of embarkation. If you are interested in our camping activity, simply inform our Expedition Experts at time of booking.
View more details
Cabins & Prices
Taste of Santiago
4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS Departs Daily Day 1 – Santiago On arrival into Santiago Airport, you will be greeted and transferred …
4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS
Santiago & Valparaiso Explorer
6 DAYS / 5 NIGHTS Departs Daily Day 1 – Santiago On arrival into Santiago Airport, you will be greeted and transferred …
6 DAYS / 5 NIGHTS
Falkland Islands Hopper Tours
8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS Departs Every Saturday (subject to flight schedule) Days 1 & 2 – Sea Lion Island Arriving …
8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS
Departs Every Saturday (subject to flight schedule)
Taste of Buenos Aires
Day 1 – Buenos Aires Arrive at Buenos Aires Airport, where you will be met by a representative from Aurora Expeditions and …
4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS
Buenos Aires & Iguazu Falls Explorer
6 DAYS / 5 NIGHTS Departs Daily Day 1 – Buenos Aires > Iguazu Falls Transfer from your hotel to the …
6 DAYS / 5 NIGHTS
Andean Lakes Crossing Tour
5 DAYS / 4 NIGHTS Departs Daily Starts: Bariloche, Argentina Ends: Puerto Varas The picturesque town of Bariloche, situated on …
5 DAYS / 4 NIGHTS
Ecocamp Wildlife Safari
5 DAYS / 4 NIGHTS Departs Daily A stay at the Cascada EcoCamp, unique in Patagonia, is comfortable, environmentally friendly, …
5 DAYS / 4 NIGHTS
The Singular Patagonia
4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS Departs Daily Day 1 On arrival to Punta Arenas or El Calafate airport, you will be …
4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS
Torres Del Paine Circuit Tour
9 DAYS / 8 NIGHTS Departs on Wednesdays Day 1 – Punta Arenas to Torres Del Paine (Wed) The trip begins …
9 DAYS / 8 NIGHTS
Departs on Wednesdays
8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS Departs Daily Day 1 – Lima Arrive Lima with a guided transfer to your hotel. The …
8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS
Rapa Nui Island Discovery
4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS Departs Daily (subject to flight schedule) Day 1 – Easter Island Reception at Mataveri Airport …
4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS
Departs Daily (subject to flight schedule)
Atacama Desert Adventure
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4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS
Departs Daily (subject to flight schedule)
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4 DAYS / 3 NIGHTS
Galápagos Islands Adventure Tour
Expeditions to the beautiful Galápagos Islands Ecuador is one of the most diverse and colourful corners of the planet, a country …
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*Terms & Conditions apply. Valid on select ship voyages only and select cabin categories. Offer is valid on new bookings only aboard the Greg Mortimer or Sylvia Earle which must be booked and deposited by March 31st 2020, or until sold out, whichever comes first. Promotion is subject to availability at the time of booking and capacity controlled. The promotion is not available in conjunction with any other offer, can be withdrawn at any time and is not redeemable for cash. Prices and offers correct at time of printing and subject to change. Normal booking terms and conditions apply. To confirm your booking, a completed booking form and non-refundable deposit of $2,500 pp in the booking currency is required within 7 days of reserved berth/s. Additional terms and conditions may apply. Please read our full terms and conditions.