trip
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1
Discovery and Cruising
Activities
  • 20 days expedition cruising
Accommodation
  • 20 nights aboard Ortelius
Meals
  • 20 Dinners
  • 19 Lunches
  • 20 Breakfasts

21 Days$12600USD

Hit the trails with confidence

COVID-19 safety measures
Read our Covid-19 travel policy and what we're doing to keep you safe

Remote adventures
means social distancing comes naturally

Small groups only
Guided group sizes are strictly limited to maximum 16 people, average of 8-10


 
 
Trip Code: OWS

Trip highlights


  • Flora and fauna of the beautiful Falkland Islands
  • South Georgia - home to penguins & albatrosses
  • Spectacular mountains rising directly out of the sea
  • Historic sites, including Shackleton’s last resting place
  • The South Orkney Islands & landscapes
  • The most wildlife-rich part of Antarctica - penguins, whales, seals, sea birds
  • Active scientific stations
  • Icebergs and active glaciers

This comprehensive voyage aboard Ortelius will bring you close to the incredible landscapes, wildlife and history of the Sub-Antarctic islands and the Antarctic Peninsula. Cruising to the Falkland Islands, we'll visit Port Stanley - the capital of the Falklands, and discover Black-Browed Albatross sharing their colony with sturdy Rockhopper Penguins along the western side of the archipelago. We then cruise to South Georgia, an island boasting a huge diversity of mammals, whales and birds, and a series of harbours that once sheltered large fleets of whaling ships. In South Georgia we plan to visit Stromness Bay, the King Penguin colonies on Salisbury Plain, Grytviken (Whaling History Museum) as well as Shackleton's grave. Combine this with the natural wonders of the South Orkney Islands, Elephant Island and the spectacular Antarctic Peninsula and you have the makings of a truly memorable voyage.


You will be warmly greeted by the crew and expedition staff as you embark Ortelius in Puerto Madryn in the afternoon. As we set course towards the Falkland Islands, we will settle into shipboard life and enjoy our first meal on board. Golfo Nuevo is renowned for its visiting southern right whales, so we have a good chance of spotting one as we sail toward the open ocean.

Meals:  D

Though you’re now at sea, there’s rarely a lonesome moment here. Several species of bird follow the vessel southeast, such as albatrosses, storm petrels, shearwaters, and diving petrels.

Meals:  B,L,D

The Falkland (Malvinas) Islands offer an abundance of wildlife that is easily approachable, though caution is always advised. These islands are largely unknown gems, the site of a 1982 war between the UK and Argentina. Not only do various species of bird live here, but chances are great you’ll see both Peale’s dolphins and Commerson’s dolphins in the surrounding waters. During this segment of the voyage, you may visit the following sites: Steeple Jason – Home to the world’s largest black-browed albatross colony (roughly 113,000), Steeple Jason is a wild and rarely visited island buffeted by wind and waves. Weather and swell conditions dictate the journey here. Carcass Island – Despite its name, this island is pleasantly rodent-free and hence bounteous with birdlife. Anything from breeding Magellanic penguins and gentoos to numerous waders and passerine birds (including Cobb’s wrens and tussock-birds) live here. Saunders Island – On Saunders Island you can see the black-browed albatross and its sometimes-clumsy landings, along with breeding imperial shags and rockhopper penguins. King penguins, Magellanic penguins, and gentoos are also found here.

Meals:  B,L,D

The capital of the Falklands and center of its culture, Port Stanley has some Victorian-era charm: colorful houses, well-tended gardens, and English-style pubs are all to be found here. You can also see several century-old clipper ships nearby, silent witnesses to the hardships of 19th century sailors. The small but interesting museum is also worth a visit, covering the early days of settlement up to the Falklands War. Approximately 2,100 people live in Port Stanley. Feel free to wander at will, though be aware that admission fees to local attractions are not included in the voyage.

Meals:  B,L,D

On our way to South Georgia we will cross the Antarctic Convergence. Entering Antarctic waters, the temperature will drop by as much as 10 degrees C in the time span of only a few hours. Near the Convergence we will see a multitude of southern seabirds near the ship; several species of Albatrosses, Shearwaters, Petrels, Prions and Skuas.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today you arrive at the first South Georgia activity site. Please keep in mind that weather conditions in this area can be challenging, largely dictating the program. Sites you might visit include: Prion Island – This location is closed during the early part of the wandering albatross breeding season (November 20 – January 7). The previous summer’s wandering albatross chicks are almost ready to fledge, and adults are seeking out their old partners after a year and a half at sea. Salisbury Plain, St. Andrews Bay, Gold Harbour – These sites not only house the three largest king penguin colonies in South Georgia, they’re also three of the world’s largest breeding beaches for southern elephant seals. Only during this time of year do they peak in their breeding cycle. Watch the four-ton bulls keep a constant vigil (and occasionally fight) over territories where dozens of females have just given birth or are about to deliver. You can also see a substantial number of Antarctic fur seals here during the breeding season (December – January). Fortuna Bay – Near beaches inhabited by various penguins and seals, you have the chance to follow the final leg of Shackleton’s route to the abandoned whaling village of Stromness. This path cuts across the mountain pass beyond Shackleton’s Waterfall, and as the terrain is partly swampy, be prepared to cross a few small streams. Grytviken – In this abandoned whaling station, king penguins walk the streets and elephant seals lie around like they own the place – because they basically do. Here you might be able to see the South Georgia Museum as well as Shackleton’s grave.

Meals:  B,L,D

There may be sea ice on this route, and at the edge of the ice some south polar skuas and snow petrels could join the other seabirds trailing the vessel south.

Meals:  B,L,D

Depending on the conditions, you might visit Orcadas Base, an Argentine scientific station on Laurie Island in the South Orkney archipelago. The personnel here will happily show you their facility, where you can enjoy expansive views of the surrounding glaciers. If a visit isn’t possible, you may instead land in Signy Island’s Shingle Cove.

Meals:  B,L,D

Enormous icebergs and a fair chance of fin whale sightings ensure there’s never a dull moment on this last sea voyage south. Also, your best chance to spot Antarctic petrels is here.

Meals:  B,L,D

If the ice conditions permit, you now sail into the Weddell Sea. Here colossal tabular icebergs herald your arrival to the eastern side of the Antarctic Peninsula. Paulet Island, with its large population of Adélie penguins, is a possible stop. You might also visit Brown Bluff, located in the ice-clogged Antarctic Sound, where you could get the chance to set foot on the Antarctic Continent itself. If conditions aren’t favorable to enter the Weddell Sea from the east, the ship will set course for Elephant Island and head into the Bransfield Strait, between South Shetland Island and the Antarctic Peninsula. Here you can attempt to access the Antarctic Sound from the northwest. The volcanic islands of the South Shetlands are windswept and often cloaked in mist, but they nonetheless offer many subtle pleasures. A wide variety of flora (mosses, lichens, flowering grasses) and fauna (gentoo penguins, chinstrap penguins, southern giant petrels) live here. Chinstrap penguins and Weddell seals often haul out onto the beach near Cámara Base, an Argentine scientific research station on Half Moon Island. On Deception Island, the ship plunges through Neptune’s Bellows and into the flooded caldera. Here you can find hot springs, an abandoned whaling station, and thousands of cape petrels. A number of kelp gulls, brown skuas, south polar skuas, and Antarctic terns can be spotted too. Wilson’s storm petrels and black-bellied storm petrels also nest in the ruins of the whaling station in Whalers Bay. As an alternative, you can take part in activities near Telefon Bay, further inside the caldera. This extended voyage gives you the chance to sail even farther down the icy coast of the western Antarctic Peninsula. In the Gerlache Strait are several opportunities for great landings where you might set foot on the Antarctic Continent, surrounded by an epic landscape of alpine peaks and mammoth glaciers calving at sea level. Gentoo penguins, leopard seals, Weddell seals, humpback whales, and minke whales are often seen here. The breathtaking scenery continues in the southern Gerlache Strait, and if ice conditions allow, we may even reach Lemaire Channel. Conditions on the Drake Passage determine the exact time of departure.

Meals:  B,L,D

Your return voyage is far from lonely. While crossing the Drake, you’re again greeted by the vast array of seabirds remembered from the passage south. But they seem a little more familiar to you now, and you to them.

Meals:  B,L,D

You arrive and disembark in Ushuaia, commonly held to be the world’s most southern city. It is located on the Tierra del Fuego archipelago, nicknamed the “End of the World.” But despite this stopping point, the wealth of memories you’ve made on your Antarctic expedition will travel with you wherever your next adventure lies.

Meals:  B


Inclusions

  • 20 breakfasts, 19 lunches and 20 dinners
  • Comfortable cabin accommodation
  • Specialist expedition staff
  • All activities while on cruise including zodiac excursions
  • Lectures, videos, slide and film shows and guide services
  • Medical services (there is a resident medical officer and infirmary on board)
  • Port taxes and port charges imposed by government authorities
  • Pre-departure information
  • Use of rubber boots aboard Ortelius
  • Use of all ship facilities and public areas

  • Air transport and airport transfers before and after the cruise
  • Passport and vaccination charges, reciprocity fees and airport departure taxes
  • Accommodation and meals or other services not included in the ship cruise itinerary
  • Laundry, postage, personal clothing, medical expenses, travel insurance and items of a personal nature such as bar charges, wine and phone calls.
  • Emergency evacuation charges
  • Customary end of voyage tips

Cabins


Departure dates


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Total Priceper person from

$12600USD

Options & Supplements*
    *Prices listed are per person

Essential Information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed South Georgia, Falkland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula on Ortelius trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.


Trip reviews


Why travel with us

Award Winning Adventures

Enhancing your journey with authentic experiences, genuine cultural exchange and real exploration are the focal points on all of our adventures. In 2019, we were crowned by our peers as the best in adventure travel at The Travel Awards in Sydney.

Thoughtful Travel

Responsible travel is at the heart of every program we offer as a fundamental and long held philosophy. When you book one of our 100% carbon offset adventures you’re supporting true sustainability in the protection of local communities, natural environments and wildlife.

Ultimate Value

 When you book one of our adventures, you will receive quality services at the best prices with plenty of inclusions. There are no hidden costs, single travellers don’t pay more and you’ll enjoy many ‘extra touches’ that ensure your holiday is excellent value for money.

Positive Impact Travel

By joining this trip you are directly supporting positive impact projects in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

We’ve offset the carbon emitted by this trip by purchasing credits that support important projects that address the UN’s seventeen SDGs, like reducing poverty, affordable and clean energy, reducing hunger, clean water and climate action.

Proceeds from this adventure purchase carbon credits through the world’s largest and most awarded carbon project developer, South Pole, which are invested into projects accelerating the transition to renewable energy sources in developing countries.

Supported projects are based on internationally recognised standards and are third-party audited. They entail a series of positive impacts on the ground, which benefit local communities and ecosystems, that are aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

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