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Photography Series: Antarctic Explorer

11 days with Intrepid Travel   Rating: Budget

Book this Trip Now and Save!

  • Save 10% to 35% off select Antarctica departures. Click here for eligible departures.

Offers subject to change or withdrawal, availability is limited. Some discounts are not combinable.


Itinerary
Click for Dates and Prices Day 1 Arrive Ushuaia
The southernmost city in the world, Ushuaia is a bustling port with an easygoing, small-town vibe. Tucked scenically between the mountains to the north and the sea to the south, Ushuaia is a spectacular gateway for your Antarctic cruise. Before departing for your expedition, spend some time exploring the nearby Tierra del Fuego National Park, relax over authentic Argentine asado (barbecue) and a glass of local wine at one of the many restaurants, or immerse yourself in the museums, boutiques and cafés.

Day 2 Embarkation Day
Embarkation will occur in the late afternoon, after which your vessel will sail through the historic Beagle Channel. This famous channel, where your camera will be put into action snapping shots of seabirds, sea lions and seals, transects the Tierra del Fuego archipelago in the extreme south of South America. Expect an air of anticipation as you depart—the next time you see land, you’ll be in the world’s most southern continent!

Days 3-4 Crossing the Drake Passage
Prepare yourself for potentially rough water, but hope for a smooth sailing, as the Drake is unpredictable and always changing. You’ll spend these first days getting to know your shipmates while your Expedition Team provides safety briefings and insights into what excitement lies ahead.

Expedition staff will also give photography buffs the scoop on shooting in the Polar Regions, which has its own set of unique challenges. You’ll learn how capture the gleaming white and deep blues of the snow, ice and icebergs in the White Continent, which can be tricky to do, with light reflecting off the surrounding sea and snow. Keen to capture the enormity of those bergs and the vastness of the landscape? Want to know how to snap the perfect penguin or seal portrait, or a breaching whale? Our on-board pros will be on hand during sea days to give you tips on capturing the magnitude and magnificence of this magical region.

Days 5-8 Exploring the Antarctic Peninsula
Once the Antarctic Convergence is left in our wake, you will truly begin your Antarctic adventure. It is perhaps the first sight of land itself that is embraced as the true beginning of any Antarctic expedition. You will begin to appreciate why this region has long captivated the attention of explorers and travelers alike. Every time we visit Antarctica, we witness something new or unexpected, which means that your expedition will be unlike any other—creating a unique, personal experience.

Each day, you will take Zodiac excursions from the ship to explore local bays, channels and landing sites. Shooting photographs from a Zodiac rewards with unique perspectives not afforded by land, and you’ll have several opportunities to capture the impressive landscape from angles that show off its striking beauty.

With wildlife always at the forefront of our minds, you may be able to photograph penguin rookeries and search for a number of southern seal species, including the cunning leopard seal. As we scout for whales, you may be fortunate to snap a shot of a surfacing humpback or minke.

The majesty of the Antarctic Peninsula’s mountains will enchant as you scramble up snowy pathways to vantage points offering you unparalleled 360° views of your surroundings. Talk about a picture postcard! Your camera will get quite the workout capturing the vastness of this pristine landscape. Danco Island, especially, offers us the opportunity to visit a penguin colony high up on a ridge. Here, you’ll have the option to hike to the island’s summit, but photographers will most likely want to spend some time sitting quietly on a pebbled beach, capturing the antics of curious penguins interacting with one another and maybe even you, if you’re lucky (and patient). If you’re feeling extra adventurous, participating in the polar plunge swim is about as crazy as it gets!

Amid the serene silence of Antarctica, noisy interludes become indelible memories, such as penguins squabbling over prized pebbles, or the boom and crack of a calving glacier in Neko Harbour.

Each day will be different and will offer more to explore and photograph, having been carefully crafted by your Expedition Team to entertain and educate you about this wonderful part of the world.

Days 9-10 Crossing the Drake Passage
The journey back across the Drake Passage provides final opportunities to enjoy the crisp Antarctic air. Spend time on the deck, camera close at hand as you watch for seabirds and whales, and pause to take it all in. Enjoy presentations, including tips for perfecting your photos in postproduction, or simply relax and reminisce about your experiences.

Day 11 Disembark in Ushuaia
After breakfast aboard your ship, it’s time to say goodbye to your Expedition Team and fellow travelers. From here, you can continue your adventure in Ushuaia, exploring this city at “the end of the world,” or catch your homeward flights.
Map
All This Included
Crossing the Drake Passage and sailing out to the Antarctic Peninsula, this expedition puts you right amongst the wildlife of the White Continent. Exploring by Zodiac, visit the bays, channels and open water that elusive leopard seals, colonies of gentoo, Adelie and chinstrap penguins, and humpback whales call home. Capture this incredible experience on film under the close guidance of an onboard photography expert.
  • Meals - 10 breakfasts, 8 lunches, 9 dinners
  • Transport - Expedition cruise ship, zodiac
Highlights
  • Take the best possible photos of the remote landscapes and unique wildlife of the Atlantic Peninsula with the assistance of an onboard photography expert (suitable for non-photographers, too)
  • Learn about the unique history, geology and wildlife of the region from polar experts
  • With a professional photographer on-hand to provide guidance, you’ll be uniquely positioned to make the most of an opportunity few people get to experience: setting foot on the Great White Continent
  • Photograph beaches teeming with thousands of king penguins in some of the largest rookeries in the world
  • A diversity of possible landing sites and activities allows you to see the spectacular Antarctic Peninsula from multiple perspectives
  • Take a refreshing 'polar plunge' in the icy sea and experience the ultimate in Antarctic weather
  • Optional activities such as sea kayaking among seals and icebergs can take your adventure to the next level. Book early, as these sell out fast
  • See abundant species of whales, seabirds, seals and penguins on regular Zodiac excursions, camera at the ready
Accommodations
Expedition cruise ship (9 nights)
Hotel (1 night)
Notes
  • Ages: Min 8
  • Group size: Min 1, Max 132
  • Although our ice strengthened ships are big and sturdy, Antarctic waters can be unpredictable and rough. Some people may experience seasickness, especially through the Drake Passage and other open water crossings. Please be prepared with medications to combat this. There is also a doctor on-board should you need further assistance.
  • As you’d expect, temperatures in the Antarctic are freezing. A warm parka will be provided along with waterproof boots and unlimited hot drinks, but you should also bring base layers and lots of warm clothing.
  • Weather depending, you will be making regular excursions in a Zodiac boat to explore the local area and look for wildlife. It can get very cold and wet on the Zodiac, so make sure you are dressed appropriately and that you keep your camera safe and dry. Sturdy sea legs are needed as you make wet and dry landings from the boat, and on steep terrain, snow and other uneven surfaces. Some ships have a lot of stairs, so please hold on to the handrails if seas are rough.
  • The weather plays a pivotal part in this adventure and although there’s an itinerary in place, there are no guarantees that you’ll be able to do everything that is planned for. A level of flexibility and openness to embracing the unexpected are important in expedition travel, especially to such a remote area. There are nearly 200 recognised sites in the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetlands; the places mentioned in the itinerary may need to be changed to others (which are equally as interesting). We may also be confined to the ship during rough weather. The on-board library and educational lectures are ideal ways for keeping entertained.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions
For Intrepid Travel terms and conditions, please click here.

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.