The Classic Antarctic Peninsula voyage is the ultimate introduction to the White Continent and great value aboard the MV Ushuaia. Visit the last pristine region of the world, landing at penguin colonies and research stations and get up close and personal with various different species of whales, seals, penguins and sea birds via our fleet of zodiac craft
Day 4 to 7: Exploring the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands
Day 9-10: At Sea crossing the Drake Passage, northbound
Day 10: Disembark in Ushuaia
*Please note 11 day departures will offer an extra day in the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands. Refer to our dates tab for the list of departure dates.
Day 1: Depart from Ushuaia
Embark the M/V Ushuaia in the afternoon and meet your expedition and lecture staff. After you have settled into your cabins we sail along the famous Beagle Channel and the scenic Mackinlay Pass.
Day 2-3: Crossing the Drake Passage
Named after the renowned explorer, Sir Francis Drake, who sailed these waters in 1578, the Drake Passage also marks the Antarctic Convergence, a biological barrier where cold polar water sinks beneath the warmer northern waters. This creates a great upwelling of nutrients, which sustains the biodiversity of this region. The Drake Passage also marks the northern limit of many Antarctic seabirds. As we sail across the passage, Antarpply Expeditions’ lecturers will be out with you on deck to help in the identification of an amazing variety of seabirds, including many albatrosses, which follow in our wake. The M/V Ushuaia’s open bridge policy allows you to join our officers on the bridge and learn about navigation, watch for whales, and enjoy the view. A full program of lectures will be offered as well.
The first sightings of icebergs and snow-capped mountains indicate that we have reached the South Shetland Islands, a group of twenty islands and islets first sighted in February 1819 by Capt. William Smith of the brig Williams. With favorable conditions in the Drake Passage our lecturers and naturalists will accompany you ashore as you experience your first encounter with the penguins and seals on Day 3.
*Day 4-7: Exploring the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands
The South Shetland Islands are a haven for wildlife. Vast penguin rookeries, beaches ruled by Antarctic fur seals and Southern elephant seals make every day spent in this amazing island group unforgettable. Sailing through the narrow passage into the flooded caldera of Deception Island is truly amazing.
King George Island, the largest of the South Shetland Islands, features colonies of nesting Adélie and Chinstrap Penguins, Kelp Gulls, Blue-eyed Cormorants, Antarctic Terns and Southern Giant Petrels and is home to scientific bases of many different countries. Macaroni, Chinstrap and Gentoo Penguins as well as elephant seals await you at Livingston Island.
The Antarctic Peninsula’s remarkable history will provide you with a type of excitement often only associated with the early explorers. You will have plenty of time to explore its amazing scenery, a pristine wilderness of snow, ice, mountains and waterways, and an incredible wide variety of wildlife. Apart from penguins and seabirds you are very likely to see Weddell, crabeater and leopard seals as well as Minke, killer (orca) and humpback whales at close range.
We hope to navigate some of the most beautiful waterways (depending on the ice conditions): the Gerlache Strait, the Neumayer Channel, and the Lemaire Channel, the latter are narrow passages between towering rock faces and spectacular glaciers. We plan to make at least two landings per day and possible landing sites may include:
Paradise Bay is perhaps the most aptly named place in the world and we attempt a landing on the continent proper. After negotiating the iceberg-strewn waters of the Antarctic Sound, we hope to visit the bustling Adélie Penguin (over 100,000 pairs breed here) and Blue-eyed Cormorant colonies on Paulet Island. The Nordenskjöld expedition built a stone survival hut here in 1903. Today its ruins have been taken over by nesting penguins.
Further exploration may take you to Melchior Island, Cuverville Island, Portal Point, Neko Harbour, Pléneau Island and if ice conditions permit, to Petermann Island for a visit to the southernmost colony of Gentoo Penguins.
*Please note that 11-day departures will spend one extra day exploring the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands.
Day 9-10: At sea crossing the Drake Passage
We leave Antarctica and head north across the Drake Passage. Join our lecturers and naturalists on deck as we search for seabirds and whales and enjoy some final lectures. Take the chance to relax and reflect on the fascinating adventures of the past days on the way back to Ushuaia.
Day 11: Arrival at Ushuaia
We arrive at Ushuaia in the early morning and disembark the M/V Ushuaia after breakfast.
Departs - Selected dates (listed below)
Ship Cabins: M/V Ushuaia
Standard Plus Triple
2 triple outside cabins
with portholes or windows on deck E, private facilities, three lower
10 twin outside cabins with portholes on deck E, semi- private facilities, two berths (upper/lower).
Standard Plus Twin
11 twin outside cabins with portholes or windows on
deck E, private facilities, two lower berths
6 twin outside cabins with windows on the upper
deck G, private facilities, two lower berths; 2 single cabins with
portholes on the upper deck G, private facilities.
2 outside superior single cabins on upper deck G featuring a
porthole (view obstructed by lifeboat), private facilities and one
9 twin outside cabins with windows on the
upper deck G, private facilities, two lower berths.
4 outside cabins with windows on the upper deck G,
private facilities, two lower berths, lounge, TV, DVD player and fridge.
Suite 201 features two double beds, Suite 202 features one double bed
and a sofa bed. Suites 204 and 207 feature three lower single beds.
Ship Deck Plan
Originally built for the United States agency NOAA (National
Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration), the MV Ushuaia has been
refurbished to accommodate a maximum of 84 passengers in 41 comfortable
twin cabins and suites.
The ice-strengthened polar vessel
MV Ushuaia is very well appointed and provides ample deck space and an
open bridge policy. The full complement of inflatable landing craft
ensures superb landings and wildlife viewing opportunities on the
otherwise inaccessible coastline.
All cabins include ample storage space. Public areas feature a
large dining room (one sitting), an observation lounge and bar, a
conference room with modern multimedia equipment, a well-stocked
library, a changing room and a small infirmary.
captain, officers and crew are highly experienced in Antarctic
navigation and have a great love of nature. We provide a specialist team
of international expedition leaders and lecturers, all extremely
knowledgeable, enthusiastic, helpful and dedicated to the protection of
the environment. Our chefs prepare excellent cuisine including many
local specialties and the bar is well-stocked with carefully selected
wines and spirits.
All meals throughout the voyage
Activities/shore excursions as specified
Lectures and presentations by expedition leaders and naturalist staff
Comprehensive pre-departure material
Rubber boots on loan
Detailed post-expedition log
Whats not included?
International and internal airfares
Arrival/departure taxes or reciprocity fees, visa fees where applicable