Antarctica Tourism: Plan Your Trip to Antarctica
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Few travellers make it to this icy continent, but the lucky ones who do get to explore a frozen Eden ruled by the elements and teeming with wildlife.
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Experience earth's frozen frontier, a world of sea and ice awaits.
Ready for the adventure of a lifetime? Massive, magnificent, and unforgiving, Antarctica is a continent of superlatives that will leave your mind searching for words to describe it. Each day presents a new discovery, whether you’re cruising through ice-choked waterways, trekking through chattering penguin rookeries, or catching minkes and humpbacks breaching in the pristine waters. The few travellers who are fortunate enough to explore Antarctica’s vast expanses return home forever changed by an experience so awe-inspiring that it reaches to their very core.
What our antarctica cruise travellers say:.
Welcome aboard the G Expedition
Not only will the G Expedition steer you closer to some of our planet’s most amazing places, our professional and highly-skilled team of on-board experts offer keen insight, unique perspectives, and hands-on attention not found in a guidebook. Make your next tour a voyage you’ll remember for the rest of your life. Return home a different person than when you left.
The G Expedition at a Glance
Cabin categories, category 1a - 160sq ft/15 m2.
- 2 upper, 2 lower berths
- Full en suite bathroom
- Porthole view
Category 1 - 160 sq ft/15 m2
- 1 upper, 2 lower berths
Category 2 - 160 sq ft/15 m2
- 2 lower berths
Category 3 - 160 sq ft/15 m2
- Window view
Category 4 - 160 sq ft/15 m2
- Large window views
Category 5 - 320 sq ft/30 m2
- Queen bed, lounge area
The G Expedition has multiple large public areas to enjoy during sea crossings and in between land excursions. Amenities include:
- All cabins with private en suite and outside view
The Penguin Library
- Medical clinic and english speaking doctor
- The Gear Shop
- Polar Bear Pub
- Albatross Dining Room, serving international cuisine and large enough to accommodate all passengers in one sitting
- Large aft deck with barbecue facilities
- Forward deck viewing platforms
- Fitness centre/sauna
- Large fleet of Zodiacs with 4-stroke engines
- Built: Helsingor Skibsvaerft, Denmark 1972 (2009)
- Ice class: Swedish/Finnish 1B
- Length: 105 metres
- Breadth: 18 metres
- Max Draft: 4.71 metres
- Gross Tonnage: 6334 grt
- Cruising Speed: 13 knots
- Stabilizers: Retractable fi ns, gyro stabilized
- Passenger Group Size: 134 max
- Crew: 55 crew, plus 14 expedition staff
- Current Life Saving & Rescue equipment: Covered motor lifeboats 4 pcs capacity of 204 people and life rafts with a total capacity 150 people
- Communication: Telephone, internet, GMDSS, satellite C, B & M.
Albatross Dining room
Large heated mud room
Polar Bear pub
Meet the G Expedition team
Experts in everything from geology to marine biology and polar history, the members of our team are always eager to share their infectious passion for the plants, animals, and people you’ll encounter. Add in professional hotel staff and a seasoned crew, and you’ll be more than comfortable during your adventure on the water.
10:1 passenger-to-expert ratio
More on-hand experts means deeper access and greater understanding of the planet’s most amazing places. Our experts’ lectures, Q&A sessions, and personal reflection deliver a personalized and intimate perspective on these faraway shores.
Jonathan is a native of England, graduating BSc Geology with Geography from the University of North London in 1984. He travelled and lived in France and Spain for four years, before training as a naturalist with the Galápagos National Park Service in 1988. He was elected Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society of London in 1989.
For nearly three decades, Jonathan has worked in the Galapagos Islands and has several thousand dives in the surrounding waters. An early fascination with whale sharks led to the founding of the Galapagos Whale Shark Project where he is the Project Founder and Director.
He has also worked in the Amazon, Antarctica, the Arctic, Africa, Central and South America, and Indonesia as a diver, photographer on land and underwater, leading and participating in expeditions and expedition travel. In 2009, he led a dive expedition to explore the undersea world of Antarctica in a 70 ft sailboat. On screen, he appeared on “BBC's Planet Earth II” and is the star of the documentary “Galapagos: Secrets of the Ocean Giants.”
For the past 30 years, Susan has lectured and lead expeditions in places like the Amazon, the Canadian Arctic, and Greenland – just to name a few. Her work hasn’t gone unnoticed. In 2016, Adie Cove, an inlet on Antarctica’s western coast, was named for Susan in recognition of her work in responsible polar tourism and conservation. She is also the Chair of IAATO's (International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators) Field Operations Committee.
Her work for G Adventures has included collaborating with Planeterra and the Expedition’s onboard team to develop the Ocean Health Fund, a program that helps support organizations that work to protect the health of our oceans.
Meru grew up in Buenos Aires, Argentina and went on to study tourism in university where she won a scholarship from the United Nations to specialize in disaster risk reduction and sustainable development. She went on to work for the Argentinean Tourism Board and eventually started working with Expedition ships shoreside until she jumped onboard as Expedition Guide, which is where she most loves to be. She has a keen interest in history, culture, geography and nature, which propelled her to start lecturing in the capacity of Polar Historian. She loves to share her passion about the polar regions and strongly believes that people can only protect what they care about.
She splits her time between guiding in Antarctica and the Arctic, consulting for community-based sustainable tourism development projects, as well as exploring and hiking wherever she can find mountains.
John Kernan has been working in the expedition cruise industry for the past 24 years as a lecturer, naturalist, Zodiac driver, and expedition leader. He has led trips to all seven continents and over one hundred countries, with a keen focus on the polar and tropical regions. Since 1991 he has travelled the high Arctic during the northern summer, splitting time equally between the North Pacific (Alaska and Siberia) and the North Atlantic (Svalbard and Greenland). During the austral summer months, he makes his way deep south to Antarctica, where he has completed more than 150 trips to the great white continent.
He graduated from Humboldt State University in 1989 with a double major in Marine Biology and Zoology. He focused graduate work on invertebrates of the Pacific Northwest while working as a docent at the California Academy of Science’s Steinhart Aquarium in San Francisco. While travelling with the organization as a guide and lecturer he found his natural calling as an expedition staff member. In his spare time, he enjoys birding, botany, astronomy, invertebrate zoology, photography, writing, backpacking, scuba diving, and skiing. He currently makes his home in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Expedition leader & naturalist.
Matthew has been working as an ecotourism guide for the last 15 years, mostly in British Columbia, Washington, Antarctica and the Arctic. He specializes in vessel based operations focused on marine mammals in remote ocean habitats and sensitive ecosystems with an emphasis on facilitating research, citizen science, and conservation through tourism. He manages his own extension of Orca Spirit Adventures through a tour operation out of Port Renfrew, British Columbia that has access to a government protected sanctuary for critically endangered whales.
Having spent every day over the last decade in designated protected wilderness areas has given insight, experience and knowledge of sustainable practices where following set guidelines or regulations is paramount. He is also a specialist in education, providing more than a tourism product, where all levels of the experience he provides is deeply focused on teaching and inspiring his clients about respectful practices in nature and how to be more involved in conservation.
This cumulative experience has put Matthew in various leadership roles throughout his career and he has trained countless guides on emergency procedures, vessel operations in extreme conditions, facilitating research and following guidelines where the safety of all personnel and wildlife is top priority.
Sarah grew up on a small island off the coast of British Columbia, Canada, which helped lead to her passion for marine wildlife and outdoor adventure. She has since spent her entire life in the pursuit of working close to nature, such as her years spent as a captain running ocean wildlife tours in British Columbia.
She has spent the past several years as a captain supervising an entire fleet of whale watching vessels. Here she has the privilege of operating the only eco adventure vessel out of a small, secluded town in a remote ocean wilderness off the west side of Vancouver Island. In this remote setting she records important sighting data on Bigg’s orca, humpbacks, gray whales and most importantly the critically endangered southern resident orca.
It only seemed natural to bring her skills to the polar regions, a place where her love of the ocean, glacial landscapes, and marine mammals can be experienced all together. Sarah is most happy in Antarctica while guiding kayak trips through its pristine ice-filled waters.
Eric is a professional mountaineer and documentary photographer who specialises in landscape, mountaineering and wildlife photography in the Alps, Himalayas and polar regions.
In 2016, he was the first foreigner to graduate from the Khumbu Climbing Center in Nepal with the famous mountain tribe Sherpa. He also received a professional ice climbing and mountaineering qualification having led and climbed more than 35 mountains including Everest, and he has worked for the Hong Kong Mountain National Team.
His passion for the outdoors and extreme environments brought him to the world of expedition cruising. He has extensive experience in the polar regions having worked aboard the G Expedition for several seasons in both the Arctic and Antarctica.
Photographer in residence.
Jeffrey Garriock is a Toronto-based Director & Cinematographer. He works mainly making films about Science, Natural History, and Ocean Conservation. His fascination with the ocean dates back to age 15 when he was able to scuba dive for the first time on Australia's Great Barrier Reef.
Jeff has worked making films with National Geographic, Mission Blue, the Toronto Raptors NBA team, and in over 60 countries around the world. He has shot everywhere from inside the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant to the seas beneath Darwin's Arch in the Galapagos islands. Jeff has worked in the polar regions since 2014 when he visited Svalbard aboard the G Expedition for the very first time. Since then, filmmaking has taken him everywhere from Hudson's Bay seeking out Polar Bear cubs, to Iceland in the dead of winter diving between the continental plates, and all up and down the Antarctic peninsula chasing ice, penguins, whales, and once in a lifetime experiences. Increasingly attracted to conservation stories, Jeff hopes to shine a light on situations that need our attention - even those that may seem quite far away from our regular lives. The more we learn about our planet, the more we begin to care about it - and the harder we will work to protect it. Through films, videos and photographs, Jeff hopes to help inspire those feelings.
Add to your experience
Antarctic kayaking* download the kayaking package.
Nothing connects you to the blissful solitude and fragile beauty of the polar regions like paddling through them in a low-slung kayak. Kayaking excursions depend on the weather, but we’ll try our best to get you out as much as possible. Participants should come with a working knowledge of strokes, entries, and exits.
Antarctic camping* Download the camping package
Experience the sounds of heaving ice, the fresh scent of the sea, and the crisp air of Antarctica in the polar night by camping out on the ice itself. We provide all the tents, warm sleeping bags, and other equipment.
Tierra del Fuego National Park Visit - Ushuaia
Explore this stunning coastal national park extending 630 sq km. We'll take care of the transport, the park entrance fee, and take you to scenic lookouts in the southern portion of the park. Pass Valle Rio Pipo on the way to Austral Fueguino train station. Opt to take the End of the World train before visiting Lago Roca and Bahía Lapataia. Keep an eye out for a variety of birdlife and spectacular colours in the fall. Please note: The entirety of this activity (including the End of the World train) can only be booked on the ground locally.
*Kayaking and camping excursions are only available for booking prior to departure, as space is limited. To add either of these excursions to your Antarctica cruise, simply call us and reference your booking number.
Wear your bragging rights with your very own G Expedition parka
Yours included with every booking.
We wouldn’t send you all the way to the ends of the Earth without making sure you were prepared for the weather. All G Expedition passengers receive their own exclusive parka, included with their tour.
A high-performance parka designed specifically for adventuring in the polar regions’ frozen climate, the official G Expedition parka combines functional cold-weather features like breathable waterproof fabric, a removable 5cm (2 in) Thinsulate TM liner, reflective taping by 3M, and a removable hood with microfleece lining.
Antarctica Tours & Travel Packages 2023-2024
113 antarctica trips. compare tour itineraries from 61 tour companies. 78 reviews. 4.8/5 avg rating., popular antarctica tours.
Christmas in Antarctica: Antarctic Peninsula
- Celebrating Christmas amidst fantastic rugged mountains, cascading glaciers, crystalline icebergs and clear waters abounding with whales and seals.
- Countless penguins and endemic Antarctic birdlife - true memorable lifetime moments
- Possibility for kayaking and camping under the southern stars in a world of ice and snow.
Antarctica Expedition & Wild Patagonia
- Torres del Paine Luxury Camp
- Walk on the Perito Moreno Glacier
- Explore the "End of the world"
- Nature at its best at the Small Luxurious Expedition Cruise to Antarctica.
- Adventure in Antarctica: Ice-Camp and Kayak
Best of Antarctica: Wildlife Explorer (Ocean Endeavour)
- Explore an unspoiled wilderness, uninhabited by man, where penguins, seals, whales and seabirds in their abundance are the true rulers.
- Emerging from winter, the density of wildlife is increasing, and penguin rookeries are at full capacity with penguin chicks beginning to hatch from mid-December.
- Seal and whale sightings become more frequent as minke, southern right and humpback whales return to Antarctic waters to feed, ensuring extraordinary wildlife viewing opportunities.
- Enjoy daily Zodiac excursions, onshore landings and take advantage of a range of adventure options during the voyage such as kayaking, camping, photography and snowshoeing.
- Benefit from a variety of onboard activities including educational lectures on history, geology, and ecology by the expedition team.
- Explore the remarkable Antarctic Peninsula
- Incredible wildlife viewing including seabirds, penguins, seals and whales
- Travel on a small expedition vessel
- Accompanied by extremely qualified Expedition Staff
Across the Antarctic Circle - M/V Sylvia Earle
- A classic expedition voyage - exploring the Antarctic Peninsula
- Delight in observing young penguins - leaving the nest for the first time
- Celebrate the crossing of the Antarctic Circle - at latitude 66°33' South
- Penguin rookeries - see Adelie, gentoo and chinstrap penguins
- Enjoy the freedom of Antarctica - being in the vast, ice-sculpted Antarctic wilderness
Antarctic Wildlife Adventure: Falklands, South Georgia & Antarctica
- The greatest concentrations of seabirds and marine mammals on the planet.
- Astounding abundance of penguins at huge breeding colonies
- A rare view of albatross family life
- Fearless marine wildlife and scenery beyond belief on the Antarctic Peninsula.
Epic Antarctica: Falklands, South Georgia & Antarctic Circle Crossing via Buenos Aires
- Explore the quaint British town of Stanley in the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)
- See the incredible wildlife
- more than 30 species of breeding birds, including four species of penguin—of South Georgia, often called the Galapagos of the Poles
- Follow in the wake of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s perilous voyage to South Georgia and visit his gravesite
- Cross the Antarctic Circle and celebrate with a toast
Best of Antarctica: A White Christmas (Ocean Endeavour)
- Experience a guaranteed white Christmas as you explore the icy wilderness of the White Continent.
- The festive season is a wonderful time for wildlife lovers to visit Antarctica, as penguin chicks are hatching and abundant on the peninsula and South Shetland Islands.
- With over 22 hours of sunlight each day, you’ll have more time for exploration.
- Enjoy daily Zodiac excursions, on-shore landings and take advantage of optional activities during the voyage such as sea kayaking, ice camping and snowshoeing.
- Benefit from a variety of on-board activities including educational lectures on history, geology and ecology by the expedition team.
All Antarctica , expedition cruises, self guided adventures and vacation packages. Find the best guided and expert planned vacation and holiday packages. Read more about Antarctica
Small Group Antarctica Tours
King Penguins of the Falklands and South Georgia - Expedition
- An epic Antarctic adventure - in the footsteps of Ernest Shackleton
- View large colonies of iconic king penguins - on South Georgia
- Variety of penguins - stand amid magellanic, macaroni and rockhopper penguins in the Falkland Islands
- Get close to the marine wildlife - see whales and cavorting seals from your Zodiac
- Montevideo - explore the delights of this vibrant city
Antarctica, Falklands & South Georgia
- Discover the fascinating history of the Falkland Islands
- Explore South Georgia, with its remarkable history and spectacular wildlife
- Visit the stunning Antarctic Peninsula
Antarctica In Depth - Expedition
- An abundance of wildlife - discover the amazing wildlife of Antarctica and its variety of seabirds
- Polar exploration - learn about Antarctica's pioneer explorers
- Incredible scenery - witness the raw beauty of the White Continent
- Enjoy a variety of whales - sail with orca, minke and humpback whales
- See large penguin colonies - Adelie, gentoo and chinstrap penguins
Antarctic Explorer via Buenos Aires
- Explore highlights of the Antarctic Peninsula
- Enjoy helicopter flightseeing from Ultramarine for a unique perspective of the Antarctic Peninsula
- Enjoy talks about the environment and wildlife from our onboard Polar experts
- Experience abundant wildlife, such as penguins, seals and whales
Antarctic Explorer: Cape Horn & Diego Ramirez
- Visit Cape Horn National Park, UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve and Diego Ramírez Islands, nesting grounds for many species of albatross
Best Antarctica Tours by Duration
Tours, Cruises & Private Trips
Best Antarctica Tours by Price
Top Antarctica Attractions & Experiences
Top Antarctica Experiences
- Stepping out of your Zodiac and setting foot on the world’s most remote continent, something only a tiny percentage of people worldwide can claim.
- Spotting a humpback or minke whale breaching a few hundred yards from the deck of your ship.
- Marveling at the aggressive tactics of elephant seals and fur seals during mating season on South Georgia Island.
- Kayaking through near-frozen waters, making sure to steer clear of passing icebergs.
- Visiting one of the Antarctic research bases staffed by scientists from around the world.
- Standing on your expedition cruise ship’s deck after dark, basking in the solitude of the world’s
- last wilderness.
- Training your lens on an albatross as it soars overhead while en route to Antarctica.
- Trekking , skiing or just going for a walk across a vast white landscape.
Antarctica Tours & Travel Guide
Antarctica Attractions & Landmarks Guide
Ever since Lars-Eric Lindblad built the first expedition-style cruise ship to take passengers to visit Antarctica in 1969, adventurous travelers have aspired to follow in their wake. Today about 40 vessels – mostly expedition-style vessels but some yachts as well -- make the run to the White Continent, leaving primarily from Argentina or the Falkland Islands, carrying as few as six and as many as 500 passengers.
Most of the Antarctic-bound ships, though, carry fewer than 100 passengers. Visitors go in search of the last real wilderness on earth, whose sole permanent residents are penguins, whales, seals, albatrosses and other abundant marine and bird life.
Besides the stunning array of wildlife, you’ll see glaciers, snow-covered mountains, icebergs, and, on some tours, historic sites (such as early Antarctic explorer Ernest Shackleton’s huts) and perhaps one of the 20 scientific research stations that have welcomed visitors since 1969.
Why Visit Antarctica?
“Why not” should be the better question! Antarctica can be considered the “last frontier” of the travel world. There are only a select few travel companies offering cruises and tours of Antarctica. Most people will never have the chance to experience this remote and secluded location.
You’ll be able to see whales and penguins just off your boat, kayak next to whales, and be able to learn about the importance of Antarctica to the rest of the world. Antarctica isn’t for everyone though. You’ll have to be prepared for the cold, lack of proximity to hospitals or major cities, and dealing with occasional uncomfortable travel. If you are able to get through all of these things, you’ll find that you'll never be able to forget the experiences you’ve had on the Ice Continent.
The most common destinations on sea tours leaving from South America are the Antarctic Peninsula , the South Shetland Islands , South Georgia Island, and the Falkland Islands -- all havens for wildlife. (The latter two are not part of Antarctica.) The primary destination in Antarctica itself is the Antarctic Peninsula, which juts up from the rest of the mainland and is closest to South America .
A few icebreakers challenge the often frozen Weddell Sea in search of emperor penguins to the peninsula’s east. And some ships make the journey from Australia , New Zealand and South Africa to the Ross Sea on the other side of the continent; emperor penguin colonies are accessible from there by helicopter.
While some 100 tourist sites have seen landings in Antarctica over the years, fewer than 10 receive the bulk of the visitors. Port Lockroy, site of the British Antarctic Survey, is the most visited site, drawing more than 10,000 visitors per year. Passengers board Zodiacs (rubberized rafts) to go ashore, with most ships making one to three landings per day on the mainland.
Top Things to See and Do in Antarctica
Top activity for any Antarctica tour is kayaking through the cold waters around the continent. Paradise Bay and parts of the South Shetland Islands provide opportunities for you to kayak next to large icebergs and possibly even above the colossal whales that pass through these waters.
2. Zodiac Tours
Another opportunity to get a hands-on experience of Antarctica is going on Zodiac tours. A Zodiac tour takes you on small inflatable boats out into the channels and smaller waterways of Antarctica so you can stand below the Ross Ice Shelf or see a whale breach the surface only feet away.
3. Ross Ice Shelf
One of the most stunning sites in all of Antarctica, the Ross Ice Shelf is a natural wonder that reminds us of the effects on the natural world. Created by floating ice from other parts of the Southern Pole, the Ross Ice Shelf is a massive area of ice that towers 160 feet above the water.
4. Deception Island
A prime destination in the South Shetland Islands off of Antarctica, Deception Island is where you can interact and catch a glimpse of the penguins of Antarctica. Deception Island is one of the nesting grounds for the penguins and a great spot to explore Antarctica’s landscape and animal life.
Wildlife in Antarctica
Many may think that Antarctica is a desolate and uninhabited piece of land. In some areas, they may be right, but Antarctica is also home to a wide variety of land and sea life.
On an Antarctica cruise, you’ll be able to see the whales that migrate through these polar waters, see thousands of penguins on the mainland and surrounding islands, catch a seabird flying above your ship, or kayak next to some sleeping sea lions.
In most countries, wildlife is remote and you aren’t able to be near the animals. Antarctica offers the chance to be feet away from a yawning walrus or a colony of penguins. However, it is important to maintain somewhat of a distance to not interfere with the animals.
Protecting the Ecosystem
Strict standards Antarctic tour operators must follow strict environmental protection guidelines mandated by the international Antarctic Treaty as well as the voluntary guidelines of the International Association of Antarctic Tour Operators (IAATO); all itineraries must be approved in advance so they don’t harm the wildlife or the fragile ecosystem.
The Antarctic tourist season runs from late October or early November to March or early April, the summer months when the waters off Antarctica are comparatively ice free. The earlier months bring penguin and elephant seal courtship rituals, while the later months see the birth of penguin chicks and seal pups. By March the adult penguins are mostly headed out to sea, but whale and seal sightings increase. December and January bring the most daylight hours, prime time for photographers.
With so many variables in itineraries, vessels, levels of luxury, price, and trip lengths to wrestle with, it makes sense to let Stride help you sort through all the possibilities. And sooner than you may think, you can experience the same wonders that have captivated polar explorers for more than a century.
Snow, Ice, and Wildlife Photography Tips
Antarctica is made for stunning photos. Around every bend of the sea, you’ll be able to capture landscapes only seen in movies. Like with any remote location or harsher climate to get those photos you want, here are a few tips you can keep in mind:
- Protect your gear . Bring along ziplock bags to keep your gear dry and protect against the cold. If you are carrying around a lot of camera gear, it’s suggested to bring a dry bag to protect against water landings and occasional whale sprays.
- Bring different cameras . If you’re going from animal portraits to landscape photos, bring different cameras so you don’t expose your lenses to the cold. Remember, Antarctica is VERY cold.
- Using a scale for ice photos . To show the magnitude of the Ross Ice Shelf or an iceberg, incorporate people or ships to show the scale of the objects. This can help capture the difference in size.
- Wildlife photos . Some wildlife will be just photogenic (penguins), others you may have to wait for to move or go swimming. Patience is key to capturing wildlife in Antarctica. Always remember though - do not disturb the wildlife and do not force them into getting a nice shot.
- The dreaded grey snow . Anyone who has tried to shoot snow scenes will have had the unfortunate grey snow effect. This happens when your camera tries to adjust the amount of light reflecting off of the snow and turns the snow grey. Adjusting your settings, check out your camera’s meters to counteract the light, and photoshopping help make a difference.
Travel to Antarctica: Before you go
Warning: obvious statement ahead. It gets cold! So pack very warmly. Consider thermal undergarments, and breathable layers. Some excursions will involve being out on the water among icebergs, so also consider waterproof outer-layers. Cold can be alarmingly disorienting, so if you get cold easily, talk to your doctor about any precautionary measures or tips they recommend.
You may also want to consider any anti seasickness measures. Waters can be unpredictable, and you’ll be spending a lot of time aboard ship. Some tips to keep in mind: eat lot’s of crystallized ginger! Dramamine is also extremely effective for some. Talk with a doctor to figure out what will work best for you.
Antarctica does not have a governing body, and no permanent residents. All visitors, whether business or pleasure, are temporary. For this reason, you only need to ensure that your passport is valid for at least 6 months prior to your trip. No visa is required if you plan to stay less than 90 days.
Safety Considerations When Traveling to Antarctica
Safety when traveling to another country is never a guarantee. Antarctica has one of the harshest climates and is extremely remote. Medical services won’t be as readily available as if you are traveling to other parts of the world.
However, the cruises are well-equipped for any issues. Many also offer water-resistant clothing and additional warm clothes. The guides are always aware of the weather and potentially dangerous temperatures. The staff on Antarctica cruises are experienced guides, scientists, and travelers who will be able to offer any support.
Keep in mind is that there are no public hospitals, pharmacies, or doctors offices in Antarctica. If you get sick or hurt, you will be relying on your cruise’s available resources, which while sufficient for normal ailments, will be minimal for anything extreme.
As mentioned above, be prepared for the cold and bring any anti seasick measures.
As highlighted by the CDC , you will be traveling with people from all over the world, in close quarters, and for an extended period of time. The risk of influenza, measles, and mumps is increased because of this, so especially for older travelers and children it will be important to ensure you are up to date on all these vaccines.
Antarctica Reviews & Ratings
What can I say?! The most amazing trip, far exceeding the expectations that I had held for a lifetime! Each experience seemed to surpass the last , and I hold...
Exodus and Quark had the perfect recipe for the adventure of a lifetime. Helpful and efficient pre-trip planning. The Vavilov, a great vessel for th...
Our trip to the Antarctic Peninsula was simply 'mind-blowing' Any description of Antarctica is always full of 'expletives'. Quite honestly where do you start? ...
An unforgetable trip, can't begin to really describe the Antarctic, it has to be seen to be believed. The Minke whale who decided to investigate 3 of the 5 Zo...
WE had a wonderful experience in the Antarctic and also spending a few days in Ushuaia before our departure on the Clipper Adventurer. ...
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The list below is a carefully selected compilation of our Top 3 Antarctica Tours and Cruises. Though keep in mind that there is a wide range of Antarctica cruises and what you see here is just an assortment of what we can offer you. Travelers often combine cruises to Antarctica with a trip to Argentina or a Patagonia cruise . This packs in all of the southernmost region’s highlights, including Bariloche , Ushuaia , Torres del Paine , Tierra del Fuego, and more. Each Antarctica vacation package can be customized to your unique travel style including the cruise itinerary of interest, the type of ship you wish to travel on, and the excursions you wish to enjoy. Covid-19 Update: South America Travel – Countries are open for travel! South America is open for travel! Our partners are eager to start planning your trip! Read More ⌄
Top 3 Antarctica Tours & Trips
Best antarctica ushuaia cruise.
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Antarctica is among the most beautiful, pristine and least explored places on the planet. Truly exhilarating, mysterious a...
Ushuaia to Antarctica Cruise on the Plancius
11 Days / 10 Nights Get custom pricing
Embark on this 10 to 20 days Cruise and discover the beauty of Patagonia and the Antarctica. Available From November to Ma...
Antarctica XXI Cruise
Go on an 8-day cruise to discover the white continent of Antarctica. The cruise includes a visit to a penguin colony, excu...
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Things to Do in Antarctica & Related Experiences
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Places to Visit In Antarctica
If you’ve ever dreamed of visiting all 7 continents, and seeing where penguins and whales live without the constant intrusion of humans, or where the most hard-boiled adventurers of the early 20th century risked their lives to compete for international fame, Antarctica is the place to visit. For a complete Antarctic exploration, make sure to add the Antarctic Peninsula, the South Shetlands, and the various islands of Antarctica to your tour or cruise itinerary. These are all integral parts of an Antarctica trip package. Spot all types of penguins, marvel at large ice sculptures, look out for rare bird species, all while aboard a luxurious cruise ship or on exciting land-based excursions.
Antarctic Peninsula Cruises & Tours
Trips to Antarctica almost always include several days visiting the Antarctic Peninsula. This is the finger of land that reaches up towards the southernmost tip of South America. Most tours to Antarctica spend the majority of the time cruising around the peninsula with regular zodiac-landings for land-based excursions. The Antarctic Peninsula is a highly varied area and extremely rich in wildlife including penguins, seals, and whales. On a typical trip to the Antarctic Peninsula, different types of penguins will be seen, usually in huge numbers. Adelie, chinstrap and gentoo penguins are the most frequently seen species on the peninsula. Crabeater seals are often spotted, so too are fur seals and leopard seals. Seals can often be found laying on top of small icebergs floating around just off the shore. Penguins are by no means the only birds found in Antarctica, skuas are common too and snow petrels can be found on the peninsula too. The Antarctic Peninsula has a number of scientific bases belonging to a range of different nations. Many cruises will include a visit to a scientific base, for example, the Ukrainian base of Vernadsky or the historic British base at Port Lockroy from where postcards can be sent home. Some bases will even put an Antarctica stamp in your passport! There are also other interesting sights such as Shackleton’s Hut and other research stations.
The South Shetlands
The South Shetlands are the first sign that Antarctica is nearing if coming on a cruise across the Drake Passage. If taking a fly-cruise, King George Island in the South Shetlands is where flights arrive. The islands are about 75 miles north of the Antarctic Peninsula – or about half a day by boat. Many, but not all Antarctic cruises include at least one stop in the South Shetlands. The islands have a rich history relating to the first explorers to reach Antarctica. Elephant Island is a popular stop and has a large colony of chinstrap penguins. Deception Island is formed of an active volcano with the caldera flooded by the sea. Ships carefully navigate their way into the caldera and landings can be made to visit the remains of an old Norwegian whaling station and British World War II military base. The heat of the volcano warms the seawater a little and it is often possible to swim here. Livingstone Island can also be visited on some Antarctica tours and is rich in birdlife with macaroni, Gentoo and chinstrap penguins as well as giant petrels. Rather gruesomely a stop on this Antarctic island often includes a visit to see the iron vessel in which seal blubber was boiled by American sealers in the early 19th century.
Guests Often Combine Antarctica Cruises & Tours With
Los Glaciares National Park
Torres del Paine National Park
Popular antarctica tours & cruises.
Wondering how to get to Antarctica ? There are two main ways to travel to Antarctica. The first is to sail from Ushuaia in the very south of Argentina for a couple of days across the Drake Passage to reach Antarctica. This is the most common way to visit and can be seen in our Best Antarctica Ushuaia Cruise Tour . Crossing the Drake Passage is an experience in itself, and gives you a sense of just how remote Antarctica is. Lectures are given on the way about the wildlife and history of Antarctica. However, the seas are usually very rough so those prone to seasickness may well prefer the second option.
The second way to travel to Antarctica is to take a flight from Punta Arenas in southern Chile to King George Island – the largest of the South Shetlands. On King George Island you meet your ship and cruise around the Antarctic Peninsula without the need to endure the rough seas of the Drake Passage. The flights are relatively short but are weather dependent, so while fly-cruises are typically shorter than cruises from Ushuaia, additional days need to be built into the itinerary to allow for any flight delay. Both ways of getting to Antarctica have their pros and cons, talk to us for more information and see which most suits your trip.
When planning an Antarctica trip, some time spent in either Chile or Argentina is needed before and after the cruise. Therefore, it makes sense to include a few destinations in either country as part of any of our Argentina tours .
Adding Patagonia to an Antarctica tour is one fantastic option and logistically makes a lot of sense. Patagonia is a great choice for lovers of mountains and wide-open landscapes, so likely the area appeals to anyone interested in Antarctica. We recommend combining a tour of Patagonia, such as our Santiago and Torres del Paine Tour , before traveling to Antarctica, as everything in Antarctica is on a bigger scale, so save the most impressive until last!
After an Antarctic cruise ending in Ushuaia, a nice option is to fly up to the Iguazu Falls for a couple of nights to warm up a little and enjoy a totally different landscape. Buenos Aires is ideal for the start or end of a trip, the stylish city contrasts fantastically with the vast emptiness of Antarctica.
Custom Antarctica Tours
Rather than an Antarctica vacation, think of travel to Antarctica as an expedition or adventure. Due to varying weather conditions, it is common to not know exactly what is coming next on an Antarctica tour, and that is part of the beauty of exploring the white continent. So, pack all your gear , board a comfortable cruise, enjoy delicious meals, educational naturalist lectures, and land excursions with the Zodiac boats. Antarctica tours are a can’t miss for world travelers – get started in 3 easy steps!
5 Best Antarctica Tours for 2023
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Antarctica Travel FAQ’s
Thinking about an Antarctica trip? Here’s a list of frequently asked questions we often hear from our guests. Visit our Antarctica Vacation Planning page for in-depth Antarctica travel tips.
When is the best time to visit Antarctica?
Mid-October marks the start of summer and yields the largest icebergs, whereas the end of the season, into February and March, are perfect for whale watching. December and January will yield the highest average temperatures and days of near-endless sunlight, up to 20 hours. However, this is also the most popular time to travel, so planning far in advance is a must.
Is it worth going to Antarctica?
How long is the trip to antarctica, can you go to antarctica without permission.
Remember, Antarctica is not a country by itself since nobody lives there apart from researchers. Parts of Antarctica are administered by different countries. So the ships get the permissions from the respective administrating country. Having said that, access to the continent is highly restricted. The cruise companies can not land on any beach. Which in part would be pointless. Penguins are not found on any of the beaches and sometimes it is more fun to see those Penguin colonies from a distance. It is an overwhelming landscape that you can enjoy from the boat.
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Can You Go to Antarctica? Yes! Here's How to Get There
Among the first questions prospective polar travelers consider “ Can you visit Antarctica? ” Yes, you can visit Antarctica, being mindful of any Antarctica travel restrictions . We’ll show you how.
The next question is “ How to get to Antarctica? ” The answer is not as difficult as it seems. The best way to get to Antarctica is to cruise or fly. Cruises to Antarctica depart from Argentina, Australia and New Zealand. Flights to Antarctica depart from Chile.
This post outlines everything you need to know to get to Antarctica. Our travel experts answer common questions about how to get to Antarctica, with a focus on Antarctica cruises from Argentina and Antarctica flights from Chile.
IN THIS POST – HOW TO GET TO ANTARCTICA Can You go to Antarctica? 10 Reasons to Visit Antarctica Get to Antarctica by Ship Flights to Antarctica Get to Antarctica From Your Home Passport & Visa Requirements The Best Way to Get to Antarctica More Resources
Can You Go To Antarctica?
Yes, you can visit Antarctica. In fact, Antarctica has never been more accessible to travelers.
Do you need permission to go to Antarctica? Travelers do not need permission to go to Antarctica, but tourism operators must hold a valid permit. First, a bit of background on why it is legal to visit Antarctica.
Antarctica is not a country. The continent is protected by the Antarctic Treaty, which preserves it for peaceful and scientific use. The treaty and related agreements ensure that all human activity is carefully managed and planned, including environmentally sensitive tourism. As of 2023 the treaty has 56 signatory parties.
Tourism operators in Antarctica submit stringent permit applications annually. If their planned activities meet all criteria, they are authorized and granted a permit. Traveling with an authorized operator means your permit has been secured for you.
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Do you need a visa to visit Antarctica? Because no country owns Antarctica, a visa is not required to travel there.
How many tourists visit Antarctica each year? During the 2021-22 season, more than 23,000 travelers landed on the Antarctic continent. Will you be next?
10 Reasons to Visit Antarctica Now
Before we cover how to get to there, we’d like to outline why you should visit Antarctica. The cost to travel to Antarctica is significant, so many travelers ask us, “ Is it worth it to travel to Antarctica? ” Yes, Antarctica is worth the price.
Antarctica is absolutely amazing and unlike any other travel experience on earth. Extraordinary experiences await including spectacular scenery, incredible wildlife, gripping history and personal enlightenment.
A visit to Antarctica emphasizes how special our planet is. It will instill a desire to protect the environment. Going to Antarctica is a life changing adventure. Here are the top 10 reasons why you should travel to antarctica.
- Penguins – Over 15 types of penguins live in Antarctica and sub-Antarctic islands. They are a joy to watch. Walk among penguin colonies, witness them torpedo through the water and travel over “penguin highways.”
- Whales & Wildlife – There are 10 species of whales in Antarctica including humpback, blue, fin and orca whales. Seas and sea lions haul on the ice and lounge on beaches. Wildlife and whale watching in Antarctica are a highlight of any visit.
- Ice, Glaciers & Icebergs – Antarctica is over 97% covered in ice. Ice sheets cover the contentment and glaciers spill into the sea along the coast. Massive tabular icebergs inspire awe and sculpted blue icebergs will fill your camera’s memory card.
- Birds & Birdwatching – Antarctica is a hotspot for birdwatching. You will see unique birds found nowhere else in the world. Birdwatchers can find 5 species of albatross, 10 species of petrel and several skuas, shags and prions among others.
- Ultimate Adventure – Simply going to Antarctica, the most remote continent on earth, is an adventure. Actively explore up close with expert naturalist guides. Get off the vessel everyday hiking, kayaking, paddleboarding, camping, mountaineering, skiing, snowshoeing and even scuba diving. Learn all the things to do in Antarctica .
- Spectacular Scenery – Pack your camera for pristine mountains, dramatic cliffs, massive glaciers, unusual iceberg formations and an expansive landscape. Long Austral summer days with extended sunrises and sunsets create prime photo opportunities. Professional photographers travel onboard to help you make the most of every shot.
- Follow in the Footsteps of Explorers – Antarctica has a rich history of exploration by hearty adventurers. They went by dog sled and tall ship. You can go in comfort aboard specialty ships designed for polar cruising. Experience historic sites like Grytviken, where Shackleton is buried. Then return to a hot shower and gourmet meal.
- Experience the Extremes – What is so special about Antarctica? Antarctica is the coldest, windiest, iciest and driest continent on earth. These conditions make for a true expedition. Feel the cold and enjoy the sun when it shines. Learn the best time to visit Antarctica .
- Learn About Climate Change in Antarctica – Climate change is affecting Antarctica and its ecosystems. The Antarctic Peninsula is one of the most rapidly warming parts of the planet. Most Antarctica voyages will tackle this topic head on educating travelers about how Antarctica is affected by climate change and how it serves as a laboratory for research. Rather than take a doomsday approach to see it before it’s gone, we hope you will visit and fall in love. Only when you love a place are you motivated to protect it.
- Bragging Rights – Many people go to Antarctica because it is a bucket list destination. Some want to check the 7 th Continent off their travel list. However very few actually go to Antarctica. Whatever your reason, if you go to Antarctica, you’ll be part of a select cadre and have bragging rights among your friends.
How to Get to Antarctica
The two primary routes travelers use to get to Antarctica are cruising to Antarctica or flying to Antarctica. Below we present everything you need to know about each method.
Get to Antarctica by Ship
The most common and most affordable way to get to Antarctica is to book an Antarctica cruise . Over 90% of all visitors travel to Antarctica aboard a small ship. Learn more about the cost to go to Antarctica .
Specially outfitted operators run a fleet of purpose-built Antarctica expedition ships taking travelers to Antarctica. They take care of all the logistics from permits to schedules and itineraries. Shore landings and activities on the continent are an important part of the experience. See our tips on how to choose an Antarctic cruise .
Cruise to Antarctica From South America
The distance from the tip of South America to Antarctica is about 600 miles. The countries closest to Antarctica are Argentina and Chile. Most of the travel to Antarctica occurs from these countries in South America. Most cruises begin in Ushuaia, Argentina but some start in other port towns in Argentina and Chile.
Cruises to Antarctica range from 10-24 Days. Antarctica cruises from South America are popular because they access the most popular regions including the Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia Island and the Falkland Islands.
Ushuaia to Antarctica Cruises
Ushuaia to Antarctica is the most popular cruise route. Ushuaia is 680 miles to Antarctica and the closest port making it the primary hub for cruises.
Ushuaia is the southernmost city in South America before Antarctica. It is in the Terra del Fuego province of Argentina and is generally recognized as the southernmost city in the world. Ushuaia is well worth a visit. We recommend travelers going to Antarctica arrive a day or two early.
Ushuaia Antarctica cruises offer the largest variety of itinerary and ship options. The shortest and most affordable Ushuaia cruises visit the Antarctic Peninsula. Some cruises from Ushuaia strive to reach farther south the Antarctic circle. More comprehensive Antarctica cruises from Ushuaia include South Georgia and the Falkland Islands.
During the height of the season the port of Ushuaia can host 3-5 Antarctica expedition ships each day. Overall, there may be more than three dozen ships visiting Antarctica from Ushuaia each season. Don’t worry the ships coordinate schedules so ports and landing sites do not become overcrowded. This diverse fleet offers travelers the widest choice of ships, cabins and availability.
Other Argentina to Antarctica Cruises
While most cruises begin in Ushuaia there are other routes from Argentina to Antarctica. Each year a handful of Argentina Antarctica cruises embark from Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands. To reach Port Stanley travelers must fly from mainland Argentina, usually Buenos Aires.
Chile to Antarctica Cruises
Chile is known for its cruises with flights to Antarctica. But there are some cruises from Chile to Antarctica each year. Chile Antarctica cruises typically embark in the southern Patagonia city of Punta Arenas.
A Chile to Antarctic voyage will travel through the Chilean Fjords passing by Cape Horn before venturing into the Drake Passage. If you choose a Chilean Antarctic trip it is also possible to combine it with travel to Patagonia or a Chile vacation .
Cruises From Australia and New Zealand to Antarctica
Each year a handful of specialty cruises voyage from New Zealand and Australia to Antarctica. These are true expeditions and take longer than cruises from South America. Just crossing from New Zealand or Australia to Antarctica can take five days or more. The highlight of an Antarctica cruise from Australia or New Zealand is a visit to the Ross Sea.
The most common embarkation ports for journeys from New Zealand to Antarctica are Invercargill and Dunedin. Cruises from Australia to Antarctica typically depart from Hobart, Tasmania.
Some Antarctica cruises depart from Australia, visit the White Continent, and then return to the same port. Others begin in South America and end in Australia, or reverse. Either way, these cruises are much longer than cruises from South America. Antarctic cruises from Australia and New Zealand range from 25-35 days.
Voyages will visit sub-Antarctic islands such as Macquarie Island, the Auckland Islands or Campbell Islands. These remote outposts are rich in birdlife and wildlife. They serve to break up the longer ocean crossing.
How to Get to Antarctica by Boat FAQ’s
The Antarctic Peninsula lies just over 680 miles (1100 kilometers) from Ushuaia, Argentina in South America.
The Antarctic Circle is about 800 miles (1,300 kilometers) from Ushuaia, Argentina in South America.
The voyage from Ushuaia to Antarctic takes about 48 hours by small ship. Antarctic Peninsula cruises will make this crossing each way. So, a typical 11-day cruise will include 4 days crossing at sea and 7 days exploring the Antarctic Peninsula.
Most Antarctica cruises are 10-13 days. Some cruises are 14-20 days. The longest Antarctica cruise is 36 days long.
Most cruises to Antarctica leave from Ushuaia, Argentina. Cruises also leave from Punta Arenas-Chile, Port Stanley-Argentina, Hobart-Australia, Dunedin -New Zealand.
The Antarctic continent is about 1650 miles (2655 kilometers) from Australia. The Ross Sea is about 2200 miles (3,500 kilometers) from Australia.
The crossing from Australia to Antarctica can take up to 7 days depending on weather.
The Antarctic continent is about 1500 miles (2415 kilometers) from New Zealand. The Ross Sea is about 1800 miles (2900 kilometers) from New Zealand.
The crossing from New Zealand to Antarctica can take up to 5 days depending on weather.
The closest country to cruise to Antarctica is Argentina.
You cannot see Antarctica from South America. Don’t laugh, people ask.
Flights to Antarctica
Flying to Antarctica from Chile avoids crossing the infamous Drake Passage and makes the overall trip shorter. Antarctica air cruises are the second most popular way to get to Antarctica.
Flights to Antarctica are a great option for travelers short on time or concerned about seasickness. A flight to Antarctica takes about two hours, saving two days of cruising. Since most cruises make the crossing twice, flying can shave four days off the overall travel time. Cruises with flights to Antarctica range from 7-17 days long.
When considering cruises with flights to Antarctica, there are not as many options of ships and itineraries. The season for Antarctica flights is shorter, beginning in December and ending in February. There are not as many flight departures as standard cruises from South America.
Many trips with flights depart and return to the same location. Others will fly one way to or from the Antarctica Peninsula and cruise the other direction. Our experts are here to discuss the details of flights to Antarctica and help you choose the best Antarctic flight.
There are no commercial flights to Antarctica. Antarctica air cruise itineraries utilize one-way or round-trip flights from Punta Arenas, Chile, to the Antarctica Peninsula where guests board a ship. Flights to Antarctica utilize the airstrip at the King George Island Antarctica airport. This landing site is associated with Chile’s Frei Station.
Fly to Antarctica from Chile
Punta Arenas, Chile, is the primary departure point for cruises with Antarctic flights. These trips fly over the Drake passage, landing on King George Island near the Antarctic Peninsula. Travelers then embark the ship in Antarctica.
Most trips will explore the Antarctic Peninsula, then fly back to Chile. Some venture further to Antarctic Circle, South Georgia Island and the Falkland Islands. Some trips fly one way from Chile then cruise back or reverse.
How to Fly to Antarctica FAQ’s
Yes, you can fly to Antarctica , but only in conjunction with an organized tour or cruise. There are no commercial flights to Antarctica.
There are no commercial airports in Antarctica. Flights to Antarctica utilize landing strips associated with scientific research stations.
The only way to fly to Antarctica is part of an organized tour or cruise. Flights with cruises depart from Chile.
The flight to Antarctica from Punta Arenas, Chile is about 2 hours.
Travelers get around in Antarctica by small expedition ship. Travelers also get around via zodiacs, kayaks, skiing, snowshoeing, hiking and trekking.
The closest country to fly to Antarctica from is Chile.
No it is not possible to see Antarctica from Chile.
How to get to Antarctica from Your Home
Most cruises depart from Ushuaia, Argentina. Fly-and-cruise trips depart from Punta Arenas, Chile. There are no direct international flights into these ports, so most travelers must route flights through Buenos Aires, Argentina, or Santiago, Chile.
Below is our advice on how to get to Antarctica from your home, using these air travel hubs. Our specialists can assist with your flights to Antarctica.
GET TO ANTARCTICA FROM YOUR HOME Get to Antarctica From the U.S.A. Get to Antarctica From Canada Get to Antarctica From Australia Get to Antarctica From New Zealand Get to Antarctica From the U.K. & Europe
How to Get to Antarctica From the United States
- To Buenos Aires : To get to Antarctica on a cruise departing from Argentina, travelers need to fly from the USA to Buenos Aires. The most popular Antarctica flights from U.S.A. to Buenos Aires depart from New York, Dallas, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Houston, Chicago, Washington D.C. and Boston. From Buenos Aires fly to Ushuaia to board your ship.
- To Santiago : To fly to Antarctica from the USA, travelers first need to fly to Santiago, Chile. The most popular flight routes from the U.S.A. to Santiago, Chile, depart from Los Angeles, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Miami and New York. From Santiago fly to Punta Arenas to board your flight to Antarctica.
How to Get to Antarctica From Canada
There are direct flights from Toronto to both Buenos Aires and Santiago, five days each week. From other regions in Canada, travelers may consider connecting through a gateway in the U.S.A.
How to Get to Antarctica From Australia
- To Hobart: To get to Antarctica on a cruise departing from Australia you will need to travel to Hobart, Tasmania. Popular flight routes to Hobart depart from Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide.
- To Buenos Aires: To get to Antarctica from Australia on a cruise departing from Argentina, travelers need to fly to Buenos Aires. Unfortunately, there are no direct flights from Australia to Buenos Aires. Travelers going to Antarctica from Australia must consider connecting to Buenos Aires through Auckland, New Zealand, or through Santiago, Chile. From Buenos Aires fly to Ushuaia to board your ship.
- To Santiago : To fly to Antarctica from Australia travelers will first need to fly to Santiago, Chile. Flights from Sydney, Australia, to Santiago, Chile, operate four days each week. From Santiago fly to Punta Arenas to catch your flight to Antarctica.
How To Get to Antarctica From New Zealand
Most travelers from New Zealand will fly to South America to get to Antarctica from there. If you are on a specialty New Zealand cruise to Antarctica there are numerous options, depending on your departure port. See details below to get to Antarctica from New Zealand.
- To Invercargill or Dunedin: To get to Antarctica on a cruise departing from New Zealand you will need to travel to either Invercargill or Dunedin. Travelers on New Zealand’s South Island may drive to their embarkation port. There are flights to Invercargill and Dunedin from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.
- To Buenos Aires : To get to Antarctica from New Zealand on a cruise departing from Argentina travelers need to fly to Buenos Aires. There are four direct flights each week from Auckland, New Zealand, to Buenos Aires, Argentina. From Buenos Aires fly to Ushuaia to board your ship.
- To Santiago : To fly to Antarctica from New Zealand, travelers will first fly to Santiago, Chile. Flights from Auckland, New Zealand, to Santiago, Chile, operate four days each week. From Santiago fly to Punta Arenas to catch your flight to Antarctica.
How To Get to Antarctica From the U.K. & Europe
- To Buenos Aires : To get to Antarctica from the U.K. and Europe most travelers will first fly to Buenos Aires, Argentina. There are numerous flights from Europe to Buenos Aires each day. Popular routes depart from London, Amsterdam, Paris, Frankfurt, Zurich, Madrid, Barcelona and Rome. From Buenos Aires fly to Ushuaia to board your ship.
- To Santiago : To fly to Antarctica from the U.K. and Europe travelers will first fly to Santiago, Chile. There are numerous flights from Europe to Santiago each day. Popular routes depart from London, Amsterdam, Paris, Frankfurt, Madrid and Barcelona. From Santiago fly to Punta Arenas to catch your flight to Antarctica.
How to Get to Antarctica From Argentina
To get to Antarctica from Argentina, travelers will first fly to Buenos Aires. Buenos Aires, Argentina has two airports. International travelers will arrive at Ezeiza International Airport (EZE). Then connect from Buenos Aires to Uhsuaia. Flights to and from Ushuaia (USH) operate out of the Jorge Newbery Airpark domestic airport (AEP). So a transfer between airports in Buenos Aires is required.
We recommend the airport shuttle service, Manuel Tienda Leon. Find their colorful booths in the airport to book a transfer for about $30 USD. Shuttles depart every 30 minutes from the EZE arrival terminal. A taxi can be arranged and may be quicker but more expensive.
The opposite transfer is required on the return trip. We advise travelers to allow at least four hours between flights for this transfer and check in. Many travelers will consider a stopover in Buenos Aires as part of their Antarctica travel package.
How to Get to Antarctica from Chile
To get to Antarctica from Chile, travelers will first fly to Santiago. International travelers will arrive at Arturo Merino Benitez International Airport, also known as Santiago International Airport (SCL). Then connect from Santiago to Punta Arenas. Flights to and from Punta Arenas also depart from this airport making connections easy. Many travelers will consider a stopover in Santiago as part of their Antarctica plans.
Antarctica Passport & Visa Requirements
A visa or passport is not required to visit Antarctica. However, the country you pass through to get to Antarctica, such as Argentina, Chile, Australia or New Zealand will require a passport and may require a visa depending on your country of origin. Visas are not required in these countries for U.S. citizens. Your passport should be valid for 6 months after your travel dates, depending on your country of residency.
Countries that have signed the Antarctica Treaty including the U.S.A., Canada, E.U., New Zealand and Australia require that visitors from those countries need permission to visit Antarctica. This is typically provided through the tour operator.
Argentina Visas – click here to learn if a visa is required to enter Argentina from your country. Chile Visas – click here to find your Chilean consulate. Contact your consulate to learn if a visa is required if a visa is required to enter Chile from your country. In the United States, visa services can answer detailed questions and expedite applications for visas to Argentina and Chile.
What is the Best Way to Get to Antarctica?
The best way to get to Antarctica is by small ship cruise across the Drake Passage, or by plane to meet your ship in Antarctica. There are no right or wrong ways to get to Antarctica. Your choice will depend on your personal preferences, schedule and budget. Regardless of how you get to Antarctica, it will be the trip of a lifetime.
Continue your research on how to travel to Antarctica using the links below, or sign up for the AdventureSmith newsletter to stay in the loop on Antarctica travel news and deals. Our experts are here to teach you how to visit Antarctica and to help you get there.
MORE ANTARCTICA RESOURCES : Antarctica Travel Guide Antarctica Cruises Luxury Antarctica Cruises Falkland Islands & South Georgia Cruises Cruises with Flights to Antarctica Best Time to Visit Antarctica Antarctica Cruise Cost Things to Do in Antarctica Places in Antarctica Antarctica Ships Best Antarctica Cruise Lines Antarctica Cruise Deals Antarctica Cruise Reviews
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I want to visit in Feb or March 2024. Please give me a price for 2 pax.
Hi Smarajit, You’ve come to the right place. An Antarctica expert will be in contact with you shortly to discuss all your Antarctica cruise options.
i want to package of antartica via cruise or by air with couple
Hi Pradeep, We can certainly help! An Antarctica Specialist will be in touch direct shortly. In the meantime you can review more information about Cruises with Flights to Antarctica and Antarctica cruises in general.
Let Our Travelers Explain What Is So Special About Antarctica
The Antarctic cruise was something else; it was an unbelievable experience. The crew were superb. Thanks, AdventureSmith, for getting me into such a grand adventure. I have too many stories.
Antarctica is an out of the world experience. It is nothing like anywhere. Neither was there an experience like this before nor can there be similar one after.
I was blown away by the experience. Antarctica is truly a magical place. By far, the quality and variety of food beyond exceeded my expectations. Camping on land was incredible!!!
One of the best trips I have ever taken. You are only going to Antarctica once most likely, so you want to get it right. I felt like we really did and that was made possible by excellent guidance from Nick and excellent service from all involved on our travels. We were told National Geographic was second to none in terms of naturalist and that was very true. Antarctica was simply amazing. Nothing can compare and you simply have to see it to believe it.
The first time I stepped onto Antarctica, I just closed my eyes and tried to envision the globe and where I was on it at that very moment; definitely a wow moment and a wow trip! Since I prefer masses of wildlife to masses of humanity, I had a wonderful experience. Be prepared to be amazed!
The trip far, far, far, far, far, far exceeded our expectations. I had one "far" in the sentence when we left South Georgia Island after seeing 250,000 King Penguins at St. Andrews Point and added the second when we saw blue whales on two different days. The third "far" was added when we saw hundreds of whales for 6 hours along the iceberg, A68a...
The Antarctic cruise was something else; it was an unbelievable experience. The crew were superb. I have no negative impressions to relate. The scenes of Antarctica from the Professor Malchanov were breathtaking, not to mention in the landings on the peninsula and numerous islands. The gear (coat and rubber boots) was perfect; I never got cold. Penguins were encountered at just about every stop. We saw a couple of seals, too, and a few whales at sea. Those birds are incredibly photogenic and there must have been thousands of pictures taken by my fellow passengers. Thanks, AdventureSmith, for getting me into such a grand adventure. I have too many stories.
Featured in this Traveler Review
- Antarctic Explorer
Overall trip experience was great, since it had an equal measure of all components-comfortable stay, good food, insights on the continent, well organised landings and great care taken by the expedition head and his team. All the landings were unique in their own way, had different elements of surprise every time. Whale watching from the ship-out of the world experience.
Accommodations were convenient and well maintained. Only the camping tent could have been a little larger to accommodate two campers.
Crew & Guides Review
The enthusiasm and professionalism was par excellence. Alex the team leader was very knowledgeable about the continent and its various facets and his alertness and information got us more benefits from the trip. All others were equally competent and knowledgeable. Lyn, Osi, Gerard, Scott, Phil, Mike and others-each had so much energy and enthusiasm to share their knowledge, help and guide us that made your trip so memorable.
AdventureSmith Explorations Review
All info was given in detail. There were regular emails from Nick which helped me a lot. The change in airline schedule was informed in advance so that alternates could be booked. The info about ground transport was also useful.
Antarctica is an out of the world experience. It is nothing like anywhere. Neither was there an experience like this before nor can there be similar one after. Anyone who like nature should visit it! Do not have any doubt or inhibition, everything will be smooth. Enjoy and soak in the experience as it seeps in!
- Antarctic Peninsula Aboard Expedition
- MS Expedition
I was blown away by the experience. Antarctica is truly a magical place and Oceanwide did an excellent job in showing it to me. The staff and crew were beyond helpful and enthusiastic about their work. By far, the quality and variety of food beyond exceeded my expectations. Safety was paramount and everyone was well taken care of. I would recommend this trip to anyone! Great variety of age, backgrounds, gender, country of origin, etc. on the boat. Everyone was friendly and talkative.
David (Expedition Leader) was very professional, informative, and friendly. He handled any situation that came up quickly and made prompt decisions. He kept everyone informed and had a positive attitude the whole time. The other staff that took us on expeditions was also wonderful (Mal, Koen, Julia, Owen, Werner, Alexis, Andreas, Regis, Daniel, and Trevor).
I enjoyed the adventure activities including camping, kayaking, and mountaineering. They allowed me to get close to nature and experience the environment first-hand. It felt like we stayed in the same place for so much of the trip and that was a bit of a disappointment. It would have been nice to see more of the peninsula and move along it each day rather than in the same area. Camping on land was incredible!!!
It was phenomenal! As noted previously, I was blown away by the food variety and quality.
I received great information from AdventureSmith. The only exception would be in regards to the Mountaineering activity. I was told I would need mountaineering boots for this but after purchasing them and getting on the boat, I found out I was not able to do the activity because I did not have prior experience mountaineering.
- Antarctic Peninsula Basecamp Cruise
Please note: The primary ship(s) operating the mentioned itinerary can change from year to year, so the ship this guest cruised on may no longer be sailing this exact route.
The arrangements from start to finish were seamless. The staff for the pre-cruise tours as well as on the ship were simply fantastic. Great group of travelers on the ship - we enjoyed the adventurous spirit of all on board. One of the best trips I have ever taken. You are only going to Antarctica once most likely, so you want to get it right. I felt like we really did and that was made possible by excellent guidance from Nick and excellent service from all involved on our travels. We were told National Geographic was second to none in terms of naturalist and that was very true. Not only did we see the landscape and animals but we learned about them - and from people who love them and are experts in their field. That added a richness not possible otherwise.
The Mandarin hotel prior and the National Geographic Orion were exactly as I expected and met all our needs.
The meals on the ship were consistently incredible. The variety of fresh foods and beautiful presentation never got boring.
The pre-tour guide and driver were outstanding. Our guide went above and beyond to make our experience a good one and to give us insight into his country in addition to seeing 'the sights' - it was a true cultural experience which I wanted and appreciated. The National Geographic crew from top to bottom were fantastic.
Antarctica was simply amazing. Nothing can compare and you simply have to see it to believe it. We also enjoyed our day trip to Valpairaiso. The day trip and the drive over with a stop at a local winery gave us a good flavor for the region as well as a day to adjust and get ready for the next leg of the journey.
Nick helped us for more than a year to secure the trip, work on pre-tours and help with all preparations and questions - which were many. He was also professional and responsive and educational in preparing us for the trip. Just what I wanted from a travel agency. Expert advice from people who have been there and can match your wishes and travel style to the right fit for you.
Plan far ahead and research what the actual trip experience will be like. Find the fit that best suits your personality and travel style. Be flexible. The only challenge was a very late night flight out of Santiago to Dallas. The downtime on that final day proved to longer than I would have liked. I would recommend to future travelers that they spend the night in Santiago, taking a morning flight out the following day in order to ensure a less exhaustive end to the trip. Santiago city center is worth seeing but not particularly engaging - at least at the moment. The protests have very much disrupted the flow for tourists and the effects on the city with graffiti and boarded up sites around the city are painful to see.
- National Geographic The White Continent
- National Geographic Orion
- Lindblad Expeditions
The first time I stepped onto Antarctica, I just closed my eyes and tried to envision the globe and where I was on it at that very moment; definitely a wow moment and a wow trip! Penguins, penguins, penguins, penguins, penguins! Gosh, I love them! South Georgia was fantastic. Since I prefer masses of wildlife to masses of humanity, I had a wonderful experience.
The M/S Plancius is a very nice clean ship with comfortable beds. I was impressed that they cleaned the windows many times during the voyage so that you always had a clear view from inside.
I thoroughly enjoyed all of our leaders and thought all were professional and enthusiastic. James Cresswell and Brent Houston were outstanding in their knowledge.
Chris Harter at AdventureSmith was outstanding in answering my endless questions; also in general he was just a pleasure to talk to, easygoing and friendly.
Be prepared to be amazed!
- Falklands, South Georgia & Antarctica
We particularly wanted to do this trip because of the abundance of wildlife we expected to encounter and selected this ship because they offered the kayaking experience. Overall, the weather was very good. Most people seemed like minded and were there for the adventurous experience.
They upgraded our cabin and we were very pleased with the amount of space and the amenities in the room. We appreciated the twin windows and being able to see humpbacks diving from our cabin. It was kept very clean and it was a treat to have our bed turned down with chocolates on the pillow each night.
We liked the variety and the quality of the food. There was always something new to try. The dining room staff was very professional and personable.
Solon was our Principal Trip Leader. He was incredibly professional and it seemed like he was constantly working to maximize the encounters with wildlife and scenery, taking advantage of all the weather opportunities and going to places that they don't often go. He worked very closely with the captain who was very accommodating and caring about us having a memorable voyage. Aymie and Andrew were our kayak guides. We went out to kayak 10 different times and were able to get to know both of them well. They worked hard to keep us safe and well informed. They made sure that we didn't miss out on any land excursions. We've had quite a few kayak guides over the years that we've paddled and we loved these two. Marla was the marine biologist aboard the ship. She was very enthusiastic and had a passion for marine mammals that was infectious. We loved listening to her presentations and looked forward to hearing her voice on the PA saying that there was another whale sighting. Colin, the geologist aboard the ship, was very knowledgeable and able to make difficult subjects understandable to the passengers.
The trip far, far, far, far, far, far exceeded our expectations. I had one "far" in the sentence when we left South Georgia Island after seeing 250,000 King Penguins at St. Andrews Point and added the second when we saw blue whales on two different days. The third "far" was added when we saw hundreds of whales for 6 hours along the iceberg, A68a. I added another "far" when we kayaked for over an hour with humpbacks all around and another "far" when minke whales were all around the kayaks the next day. The last "far" was added the day we didn't paddle since a leopard seal was all around the kayaks and then an orca came close. We had so many incredible experiences that we could never experience all of them in the same trip again. The guides told us that the close encounters that we had didn't happen very often and that we were very lucky that they all happened on our trip. The only thing that we didn't like was portions of the Drake Passage when it was a tad rough, but that experience gives us something to talk about.
We made our transportation arrangements through another travel agency.
Make sure that you take sea sickness meds. Take advantage of every opportunity to see wildlife.
- Explorers & Kings
How To Go To Antarctica? On These Trips
Now that you know how to get to Antarctica, start browsing this selection of cruises and trips with Antarctica flights for your best way to get there. Contact our experts to learn more about how to get to Antarctica. We’re here to help with a free, personalized quote and planning advice for your polar expedition.
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Antarctica Solo Tours & Vacations
- Antarctica Solo Tours & Holidays
Antarctica is one of those destinations you can’t do alone…literally
If you're drawn into the icy wonders of the seventh continent and plan on traveling solo, you won't be able to visit entirely on your own (unless you're a humpback whale). But when we’re offering Antarctica cruises on well-equipped vessels (including a sauna and gym facilities) that promise the adventure of a lifetime, you’ll hardly mind sharing your expedition with a bunch of like-minded, penguin-loving travelers. Especially when your trip is full of daily shore excursions, animal spotting and breathtaking scenery. As far as Antarctica solo travel endeavors go, it doesn’t get much bigger than this.
Our solo tours in Antarctica
Journey to the antarctic circle (ocean endeavour), 14 days from 9990.
Set sail for the trip of a lifetime – a 14-day journey on board the Ocean Endeavour,...
Best of Antarctica: Whale Journey (Ocean Endeavour)
11 days from 8800.
Follow the whales of Antarctica as they migrate south on this 11-day expedition cruise,...
Best of Antarctica: Wildlife Explorer (Ocean Endeavour)
11 days from 7863.
Experience the magic of the Antarctic Peninsula and its islands aboard the Ocean...
WWF Journey to the Circle and Giants of Antarctica (Ocean Endeavour)
14 days from 11850.
Cross the Antarctic Circle with World Wildlife Fund Australia (WWF-Australia) whale...
Best of Antarctica In Depth (Ocean Endeavour)
14 days from 9053.
Experience the rare opportunity to explore both the eastern and western sides of the...
Take four or more on an exclusive trip and tailor your itinerary
Shackleton's Antarctica, South Georgia & Falklands Explorer (Ocean Endeavour)
21 days from 18900.
Embark on a 21-day Intrepid expedition including the Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia...
Best of Antarctica: A White Christmas (Ocean Endeavour)
This is one Christmas you’ll never forget – journey to Antarctica on board the Ocean...
Best of Antarctica: Pristine Wilderness (Ocean Endeavour)
11 days from 6715.
Set off on an 11-day expedition on board the Ocean Endeavour, revealing the landscapes...
WWF Giants of Antarctica (Ocean Endeavour)
11 days from 8700.
Join World Wildlife Fund Australia (WWF-Australia) scientists on an 11-day expedition...
Shackleton's Falklands, South Georgia and Antarctica Expedition (Ocean Endeavour)
21 days from 12495.
Spot seals, whales and albatross aboard the Ocean Endeavour. Retrace the steps of...
Ultimate Antarctica: Falklands, South Georgia & the Antarctic Circle (Ocean Endeavour)
23 days from 17055.
This trip is an Antarctica expedition like no other. Try wildlife photography and see...
Best of Antarctica: Whale Discovery (Ocean Endeavour)
12 days from 6715.
Witness Antarctic Peninsula whales on this epic journey at sea. Spot seals and penguins...
Traveling solo? We got you
The Ocean Endeavour
Our comfortable expedition ship is big, but with one crew member for every eight travelers, you'll never be completely alone. From lounging in one of the ship's many recreational areas to taking a morning leader-led yoga class, there's plenty to keep you busy on your solo Antarctica travels.
Flexible cabin arrangements
Over 41% of our travelers to Antarctica are doin' it solo, so we've made our accommodation options as flexible as possible. From single cabin options to sharing with one of your shipmates, your rooming arrangement onboard is entirely up to you - just let us know at the time of booking.
Epic included activities
One of the best things about solo traveling in a group to Antarctica is that you don't have to worry about organizing any activities. Instead, bond with your newly-made buddies over daily excursions, including shore visits, polar plunges, wildlife spotting and onboard seminars. You know, the important stuff.
The perks of solo travel in Antarctica with Intrepid
A local leader
While our leaders might not call Antarctica their home (although there are people who live there), you can rest assured our experienced guides know what they’re talking about. With hundreds of polar voyages between them, you’re in the best hands possible. Not only are they ready to teach you about the region's history, geography and wildlife, but they’ll also answer your questions and snap photos of you taking the polar plunge.
Antarctica is about as remote as it gets and with remoteness comes a whole different level of precautions. While you don’t have to worry about dangerous areas and pickpockets, there are other things you need to be aware of in order to remain safe on the seas. Our onboard experts will conduct a safety briefing at the beginning of your voyage and will be on hand to help you on and off Zodiacs during shore excursions (should you need it).
Not many people can say they’ve been to the seventh continent, but you and your trip mates sure can. There’s something about watching the world’s most remarkable scenery go by as you cruise the waters of the Antarctic Peninsula that bonds you for life. And that’s exactly what you’ll come away with; millions of photos, dozens of unforgettable experiences and plenty of forever friends.
Logistics and convenience
There’s a whole heap of organizational planning that goes into running a trip of this magnitude, but you don’t have to worry about any of it. From loaning out expedition parkas to coordinating shore excursions, we take care of all the boring but necessary administration so all you have to do is climb aboard with some motion sickness medication and a healthy sense of adventure.
Do I need a COVID-19 vaccine to join an Intrepid trip in Antarctica?
Trips from 1 January 2023 onwards
To join one of our Antarctica departures, you must provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19.
If you are unable to be vaccinated for medical reasons, you may apply for an exemption. Exemptions will be assessed on a case-by-case basis. To apply, you must provide a medical certificate from a medical professional.
Children under 18 are exempt. Children aged between 5 and 17 years old must provide proof of either vaccination, recovery or a negative COVID-19 test.
Learn more about Intrepid's COVID-19 policy
I'm new to group travel, what will my group be like?
People who travel to Antarctica are generally more experienced travelers, nature and wildlife lovers and understand the expedition-style travel experience. You will likely find a diverse group of ages and nationalities on board, with the majority of passengers aged between 40 and 65 years. English is the language spoken on the board the Ocean Endeavour.
Do I need to purchase travel insurance before traveling in Antarctica?
You sure do. All passengers traveling with Intrepid are required to purchase travel insurance before the start of their tour. Your leader will record your travel insurance details on the first day of the trip. Due to the varying nature, availability and cost of health care around the world, travel insurance is very much an essential and necessary part of every journey.
Learn more about travel Insurance
Will my cell phone work in Antarctica?
Your cell phone will not work during your Antarctica cruise as the continent is still considered extremely remote and doesn't have the right telecommunication infrastructure in place.
Read more about mobile phones in Antarctica
Do I need to take part in every activity?
An Antarctic voyage can be as active or as low-key as you want it to be. While a trip to Antarctica provides many opportunities to get off the ship, it’s up to you whether you want to venture further afield on a Zodiac boat or explore onshore. Some optional activities need to be booked before departing.
Is an Antarctica trip appropriate for solo female travelers?
While it might be remote, Antarctica is a very safe destination to travel to as a solo female traveler, especially if you've booked a trip to do it with us. As a solo traveler, you'll be paired with someone of the same gender to bunk with. If you don’t identify with the gender assigned on your passport, please let us know at the time of booking and we’ll be happy to work with you to organize a rooming configuration that you feel comfortable with.
Can I pay a single supplement and get my own room?
If you're traveling solo and would prefer not to be paired up with a fellow traveler to share a room, ask your booking consultant if the tour you’re interested in offers a 'single supplement' so that you can be allocated a room alone – this is subject to availability and an additional charge.
However, if you don't have a rooming preference, you'll be paired with another solo traveler of the same gender to bunk with. If you don’t identify with the gender assigned on your passport, please let us know at the time of booking and we’ll be happy to work with you to organize a rooming configuration that you feel comfortable with.
Are Intrepid's Antarctica tours accessible for travelers with disabilities?
Intrepid is committed to making travel widely accessible, regardless of ability or disability. That’s why we do our best to help as many people see the world as possible, regardless of any physical or mental limitations they might have. However, we’re always happy to talk to travelers with disabilities and see if we can help guide them toward the most suitable itinerary for their needs and where possible, make reasonable adjustments to our itineraries.
All of our Antarctic trips also have a low physical rating of one or two, which means they are accessible to people of all levels of fitness with no major mobility issues and do not require any physical preparation. Activities onshore and excursions involve a bit of walking, but all are optional. You’ll be visiting sites where at times you may have to cross uneven ground and take on challenging conditions underfoot. You will have support stepping on and off the Zodiac boats.
Learn more about accessible travel with Intrepid
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