A cruise from Ushuaia to Antarctica has been number one on my bucket list for years. Simonne did this cruise a few years ago. You’d think that such a cruise is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, but Simonne thought it was so fabulous that she is considering undertaking this journey again. She says there is only one disadvantage to doing a cruise to Antarctica: all trips will disappoint after that.
Here is the 16-day journey she undertook and lots of her spectacular photographs of Argentina and Antarctica.
Flight to Buenos Aires in Argentina.
You will arrive early in the morning in Buenos Aires, the bustling capital city of Argentina. Today you will explore the city, and perhaps you can try some dancing in the evening, as you haven’t been to Buenos Aires until you’ve danced the tango.
You fly from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia, and you get some time to explore Ushuaia.
Visit the Tierra del Fuego National Park. This park lies in the Argentinian part of Terra del Fuego, and was established in 1960. You get there by steam train from Ushuaia, El Tren del fin del Mundo or The train at the end of the World. The park consists of mountains, forests, and glaciers, and is the portal to Antarctica.
The Ocean Diamond is ready for embarking around midday, and we finally start our journey to Antarctica at the end of the afternoon. The first part of the journey brings us through the Beagle Canal.
Ocean Diamond is one of the ships of Quark Expeditions, and can accommodate 189 passengers.
Day 6 and 7
It takes two days to cross the infamous Drake Passage. Many passengers get seasick from the choppy seas here. Nevertheless we drunk a glass on the new year, while crossing the Drake Passage.
There are cruises available where you skip this part of the cruise, and you fly to the South Shetland island of King George. You will board there, and travel on in calm waters.
Lectures are organised during these days where you will learn more about the wonders of the world that you are about to see or where you will get to know why polar regions are so cold.
Day 8 to 12
The Quark Antarctica cruise brings you past the Southern Shetland Islands and the coast of the Antarctic peninsula. You will see enormous icebergs, ice-filled fjords, birds, whales, sea lions, and penguins of course. A zodiac will take you, where possible, to land.
If the weather is favourable, you can even go cross-country skiing. A limited number of skiers can experience the wild Antarctic nature during a strenuous 5-hour trek.
There is an option to take the “Antarctic Polar Plunge” for the polar bears among the tourists. I will have to carefully consider whether I want to dive into the water in Antarctica before I leave!
After the trek or the plunge you will receive a certificate that you can frame at home, so you can be reminded of this fantastic journey.
Today you'll go through the Drake Passage, towards Ushuaia.
After arrival in Ushuaia you will immediately go onto the flight to Buenos Aires. From there you can fly home, or continue travelling in Argentina. If you fly back, you leave on day 15, and you’ll be home on day 16.
EAnd because pictures say so much more than words, here are some more amazing pictures from Simonne's cruise from Ushuaia to Antarctica. My ultimate bucketlist trip!
Is an expedition cruise to Antarctica on your bucketlist?
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