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King Penguins, South Georgia

Ultimate Antarctica, South Georgia & Falkland Islands

  • TAILOR-MADE

Duration

21 Days

Prices Start from

£11,900 ex. flights

For those with time to spare, this cruise combines the ‘Big 3’ – Antarctica, South Georgia Island and the Falkland Islands – in what is arguably the most sought-after boat voyage in the world.

Navigating between highly remote locations and witnessing little-seen ecosystems, welcome to “the most staggering wildlife show on Earth”.

Key Highlights of this Itinerary

Icebergs, Antarctica 1

Once in a Lifetime

This unparalleled journey combines history with the “jewel in the crown” South Georgia.

The grave of Shackleton 2

Antarctic Explorers

Visit Shackleton’s final resting place and learn about his fellow explorers.

King Penguins, South Georgia 3

900,000 King Penguins

Walk amongst the hundreds of thousands of king penguins that inhabit South Georgia.

Sea Explorer, Amongst icebergs, Antarctica 4

Expeditionary Vessels

Travel aboard an ice-strengthened vessel, renowned for its expeditionary feel.

Why we like it

An extraordinary option for expedition cruising, this in-depth exploration of the Falkland Islands, South Georgia Island and Antarctica is a memorable wildlife-centric sailing voyage that travels to some of the planet’s most isolated islands as well as the coveted White Continent.

Combining the ultimate bragging rights of sailing the Southern Oceans with days spent exploring some of the Earth’s last pristine wilderness regions, intrepid travellers sailing this route are invited to follow the path of the great polar explorers. Owing to the milder climate and convenient up-welling of nutrients brought by the Antarctic Convergence, this place is a wildlife-lovers’ paradise – from gentoos and rockhoppers to orcas and minkes (maybe even the occasional blue whale), the marine life here is astounding.

Don't forget, we will customise this journey to suit you.

Explore our suggested itinerary

  • Day 1
    Ushuaia
  • Day 2
    At sea
  • Days 3 - 4
    Falkland Islands
  • Days 5 - 6
    At Sea
  • Day 7 - 10
    South Georgia
  • Days 11 - 12
    At Sea
  • Days 13 - 18
    South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula
  • Days 19 - 20
    Drake Passage
  • Day 21
    Ushuaia

Accommodation

Below you can see some of the wonderful places we recommend you stay on your journey.

Magellan Explorer £££££

An 100-passenger expedition ship launched in 2019, Magellan Explorer specialises in fly-cruise itineraries to Antarctica. With a minimised carbon footprint, including state-of-the-art low emission engines, Magellan Explorer is renowned for its eco-credentials.

View Boat

Hebridean Sky £££££

Re-launched in early 2016 having undergone a comprehensive refit and upgrade, Hebridean Sky is a 295-foot-long expedition ship that accommodates up to 112 passengers. With the addition of dedicated single cabins, a well-stocked library with computers and internet access and a lounge with panoramic views, there is plenty of outdoor deck space and a panoramic top deck observation platform. The suites all offer exterior views, en-suite facilities and a sitting area along with ample storage.

View Boat

Ocean Adventurer £££££

  • Russian Arctic

Originally built in 1976 in Yugoslavia, Ocean Adventurer underwent extensive upgrades as part of a multi-million pound renovation in 2017. On this nimble, ice-strengthened vessel, facilities include a well-stocked library, a lounge area, a gym and observation decks. With major technical enhancements, including two new Rolls Royce engines, to increase fuel efficiency and minimise carbon footprint, Ocean Adventurer has the capacity to carry 128 passengers across 63 cabins. Ship-to-shore satellite communications allow for email and wireless internet access, and a stocked library houses a large collection of polar books.

View Boat

Ocean Endeavour £££££

  • Spitsbergen

Launched in 1982 as a purpose-built vessel for remote environments, Ocean Endeavour boasts a 1B ice-class that enables her to navigate freely throughout the Arctic summer. At 453-foot-long, she is a stable and spacious vessel with a shallow draft and impressive manoeuvrability that allows her to access isolated fjords, bays and secluded communities. Accommodating up to 199 passengers, Ocean Endeavour has cabins arranged over multiple decks and offers outdoor dining spaces, a swimming pool, a sauna, a hot tub and three lounges.

View Boat

Greg Mortimer £££££

  • Russian Arctic

Launched in October 2019, the Greg Mortimer is a purpose-built expedition vessel that features a revolutionary X-Bow design. One of the most dynamic and state of the art ships on the seas, it is designed to slice through the water rather than riding over the waves making for comfortable and fast travels through the polar seas.

View Boat

Plancius £££££

  • Spitsbergen

Built in 1976 as an oceanographic research vessel for the Royal Dutch Navy she was fully refurbished after her decommission to become a very comfortable, but not luxurious, 108 passenger expedition vessel. The cabins all have television screens that alert passengers to wildlife sightings, and there is a superb observation lounge along with a bar that offer spectacular views. Equipped with kayaks, ten zodiacs and eight expedition leaders, guests can embark on anything from show shoeing expeditions and mountaineering trips.

View Boat

Ortelius £££££

  • Spitsbergen

Originally built in Poland in 1989 as an ice-strengthened passenger vessel, the 298-foot-long Ortelius spent many years plying the frozen waters of the Arctic and Northern Pacific before being totally refurbished in 2005. Sleeping a total of 108 passengers, the vessel provides comfortable (but not luxurious) cabins that range from quads to suites, each with a private bathroom. She carries a fleet of zodiacs for landings, and on some Antarctic departures helicopters are even used.

View Boat

Macaroni Penguins, Falkland Islands
Macaroni Penguins, Falkland Islands

Glaciers & Macaronis

From sailing past sea ice from calving glaciers to sipping a tipple in a colourful English pub in the Falkland Islands’ city of Stanley, the unique wonders of the South Atlantic Ocean are not overlooked during this voyage. This sailing will take you to the exhilarating location where the early morning and evening sun turns the cliffs to shades of gold, and to the fjord where it is possible to hear large chunks of glacial ice being calved. These windswept and isolated islands are home to over 60 species of breeding birds including the penguins that easily outnumber humans – find magellanics, gentoos and macaronis without much effort, and marvel at the photographic opportunities to capture their chatacter. With luck, you may even come across misunderstood leopard seals and solitary Ross seals.

Elephant Seals, South Georgia
Elephant Seals, South Georgia

Elephant Seals & Million-Strong King Penguins

Despite its 3,000-metre towering mountains that are permanently covered in snow and ice, the real highlight of South Georgia Island is its wildlife – there are over 50 million seabirds, 5 million seals and 4 million penguin pairs. From rare rockhopper penguins and distinctive fur seals to lazing elephant seals and weaving skuas, there is no shortage of phenomenal wildlife thriving in this glacial region. The jewel in the crown of South Georgia’s biodiversity are the nearly million-strong population of king penguins that survive here in staggering abundance. Notice as the breeding cycle commences and courtship rituals begin, and observe as colossal elephant seals battle for control on the beach.

Emperor Penguins, Antarctica
Emperor Penguins, Antarctica

Step Foot on the White Continent

Off-ship, days are spent cruising ice-clogged channels by zodiac on the lookout for seals, whales and interesting icebergs. Landings are also a major part of the experience and, for many, setting foot on the white content is the ultimate travel experience in the world. It is also possible to camp out on the ice, kayak to icebergs, see abandoned whaling stations and modern-day research stations. At the Ukrainian Vernadsky Station, receive a warm welcome from the station crew and have a drink at the best bar in Antarctica. Marine life such as humpbacks, minkes and orcas can be seen during days spent in small groups with expert guides visiting a number of landing sites.

Island Sky, Antarctica
Island Sky, Antarctica

Life Onboard an Antarctic Vessel

Time spent on the high seas is spent whale-spotting, trying to capture photographs of abundant pelagic birdlife that follow the ship, and simply revelling in the remarkable and seemingly endless scenery. In addition, a variety of informal lectures given by the expert expedition staff cover subjects such as polar exploration, photography, marine biology and environmental issues. After following the path of the great polar explorers through the notorious Drake Passage, you will be able to experience the real thrill of expedition cruising – when not eating or sleeping, venture out for long, adrenaline-packed days on land or in a zodiac.

Let’s chat

Speak to our experts

Our team is waiting to help you tailor a trip that will leave you with stories for a lifetime. Call us on

01285 601 784

Send us an enquiry

Or send us a quick email below and start your next journey.

Call us

Sue’s extensive first-hand knowledge of Antarctica was so apparent from our first phone call. She was able to help us select the ideal route and vessel for our needs, and with her guidance we were able to see the emperor penguins!

Destination: Antarctica
Travel Expert: Sue

Sue forewarned us that there would be no words to describe South Georgia and that our photos wouldn’t do it justice, and how right she was. All we can say is “see for yourself”. Thank you, Sue, for your indispensable advice.

Destination: Antarctica
Travel Expert: Sue

We were blown away by Sue’s in-depth knowledge of everything from endemic species to the history of Shackleton and his men. No question we had went unanswered, and no little detail was missed.

Destination: Antarctica
Travel Expert: Sue

Sue's in-depth knowledge of Antarctica, the route options and each of the vessels was invaluable in our preparation for the trip and was a strong differentiator when we were choosing a travel agent. When talking with Sue, we quickly got an honest perspective.

Destination: Antarctica
Travel Expert: Sue

Both telephone and e-mail responses were excellent and all of Sue's expert advice was very much appreciated. She was prompt, supportive and engaging throughout and our expedition to Antarctica was spectacular.

Destination: Antarctica
Travel Expert: Sue

Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge and expertise sets us apart. So too our curiosity. A curiosity of the world and of you, and your passions. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you.

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