South Georgia

Celebrating Shackleton: Journey from Antarctica to South Georgia Trip Notes

Ways to Travel:
Guided Group
Destinations:
Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia, Falkland Islands, Antarctica
Programmes:
Polar Expeditions
Trip Code:
PUF
Activity Level: Leisurely
Leisurely

You are healthy, enjoy the outdoors and want a relaxing trip. No experience is required.

20 Days Land only
Ages: 18+

Trip Overview

This brand new itinerary celebrates the life of Sir Ernest Shackleton, whose passing in South Georgia on January 5, 1922, marked the end of the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration. The 20-day itinerary Celebrating Shackleton: Journey from Antarctica to South Georgia (which will coincide with the centenary of Shackleton’s death) not only honours one of Antarctica’s greatest heroes—but also his unwavering spirit of exploration, which Quark Expeditions continues to emulate to this day.

Whereas Shackleton and his crew braved the harsh elements of Antarctica aboard Endurance, which had the most basic of amenities, guests on this voyage will sail aboard the brand new ship Ultramarine - during its inaugural Antarctic sailing season. The technologically-advanced vessel will follow the route of Shackleton’s Trans-Antarctic Expedition (1914–1917), allowing passengers to experience the full splendour of Antarctica and South Georgia while exploring on Ultramarine’s two twin-engine helicopters and 20 fast-launching Zodiacs. Guests will cross the Drake Passage to the Antarctic Peninsula, visit the Weddell Sea (where the ill-fated Endurance met its tragic end), then onto Elephant Island and, ultimately, wildlife-rich South Georgia, where, if conditions allow, guests will pay homage to Shackleton at his grave at Grytviken.

Throughout the voyage, passengers will enjoy special presentations by Polar experts Tim Jarvis (author of ‘Chasing Shackleton’) and Dr. Ross MacPhee, curator of the ground-breaking museum exhibit ‘The Endurance: Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition.’

At a Glance

  • 18 nights on the ship, 1 night hotel in Buenos Aires
  • Expedition cruising in comfortable conditions

Trip Highlights

  • Start in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the tango capital of the world
  • Explore the Antarctic Peninsula by ship, Zodiac and foot
  • Relive Polar history on a visit to Shackleton’s grave at the cemetery in Grytviken
  • Observe wildlife in South Georgia, known as the ‘Galapagos of the Southern Ocean’
  • Learn about Antarctica’s unique geology, history and wildlife from our onboard experts
  • Enjoy a helicopter tour of the frozen Weddell Sea, where Shackleton’s Endurance lies buried under the ice
  • Mark Ultramarine’s first-ever New Year in the Antarctic
  • Accompanied by extremely qualified Expedition Staff

Is This Trip for You?

Travelling Conditions

The voyages are designed to be as flexible as possible, taking advantage of circumstances and events as they occur, as well as passengers’ wishes and particular interests wherever possible. The atmosphere onboard is relaxed and friendly with expedition staff, including naturalists and polar experts, on hand and the opportunity to mingle with people from all over the world. The ship is kept warm, clean and comfortable with a wet / mud room in which to hang gear and store boots ready for the next adventure.

On the Zodiac cruises you are sitting still for most of the time with the potential for some sea spray and a cold headwind - if you are not dressed appropriately you will get cold.

On the shore excursions, the majority of landings are ‘wet’ which means that the Zodiacs beach and you are helped to slide into the ankle deep shore break before walking up onto dry land (wellington boots are issued to all passengers). There are, of course, no paths, so be prepared for slippery, rough terrain and sometimes fairly deep snow. Back on board the cosy ship after each adventure, you can have a sauna and/or a hot shower and then relax with a tea, coffee, hot chocolate or something stronger from the bar.

Optional activities

On some occasions, space is limited on the optional activities and needs to be booked in advance.  Please also note that not all optional activities are available on every departure. Please ask our Polar Sales team for more information if you are interested in one of the options below.

Sea kayaking option

Imagine gliding across the surface of a bay in the presence of icebergs and glaciers. Our Sea Kayaking program is a great way to intimately explore your surroundings. A small group of kayakers will plan to go out multiple times per voyage as an alternative to shore landings or Zodiac cruises. The number of opportunities to kayak is weather dependent and will be conducted only during calm conditions. Prior kayaking experience is required, and you must be able to do a wet exit to participate. Beginners interested in kayaking should consider participating in the Paddling Excursion.

Paddling Excursion

If you’re interested in kayaking but would like to try something a bit less demanding than Sea Kayaking, you’re the perfect candidate to sign up for a one-time paddle on our stable sit-on-top kayaks—perfect for anyone with minimal or no kayaking experience. Rotating groups of passengers will be taken out on calm days, with our expert guides always present to provide instruction and help connect you with the Polar sea.

Polar Itineraries

All Polar itineraries should be treated as a guide only - it is possible that, amongst other things, the capricious nature of wind, visibility and ice, intelligence from previous sailings, changes in local landing regulations or the expert opinion of the crew onboard may lead to adjustments to the route published.

Booking Conditions

Please note that, as with all Polar holidays and voyages, the booking conditions for this trip differ from our standard conditions. 

The required deposit is 25% per person of your selected travel arrangements (minimum £1000 per person or equivalent in booking currency) and the balance of the price of your travel arrangements must be paid at least 133 days before your departure date. The deposit is non-refundable, and at 133 days before departure date, our cancellation penalties are 100% of the holiday cost.

 

COVID-19 Vaccination: Please note that as a condition of travel on any of our Polar voyages, clients must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.  Clients must provide proof of their vaccination status to Quark staff before boarding the ship. For full terms and conditions please refer to our Quark Book and Travel with Confidence Policy, found here: https://www.exodus.co.uk/quark-book-and-travel-confidence  

If you have any questions, please contact our specialist Polar sales team on 020 8003 9957 or at [email protected] for further details.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Group

The Exodus group forms part of the ship’s complement, enjoying the relaxed, intimate and informal atmosphere, which breaks into smaller groups to facilitate the frequent excursions. We offer these cruises in conjunction with our partner, Quark Expeditions, and Exodus participants will join an international group, not all of whom have booked through Exodus. Occasionally some of these may be younger than 18 years old, the Exodus' stated minimum age for this trip.

We work with many fine Expedition Leaders and Polar Experts, bringing a diversity of interests including zoology, Polar history, geology, ornithology and ocean sciences. The ship’s operating crew have many years of experience in Polar Regions and are committed to ensuring a safe and memorable journey. Each day your cabin will be serviced by the housekeeping crew, and your meals served by the friendly and attentive restaurant staff. There is also a resident medical officer.

Adult min age:
18
Max group size:
199

Itinerary

PUF map

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Buenos Aires, Argentina; overnight in hotel

    Arrive in Buenos Aires at any time during Day 1 of your itinerary. Upon arriving in this splendid city, known for its architecture and rich European heritage, you will independently transfer to your group hotel (pre-expedition hotel night included in mandatory transfer package). 

  • Day 2

    Fly to Ushuaia and embark.

    After an early breakfast at the hotel, the group will transfer to the airport and board our private charter flight to Ushuaia, Argentina.  

    Upon arrival, you will be transferred from the airport to a central downtown location to have some time on your own to explore this quaint port town before making your way to the pier. Embarkation will occur in the late afternoon, after which your vessel will sail down the historic Beagle Channel, which transects the Tierra del Fuego archipelago in the extreme south of South America. Expect an air of anticipation as you depart! 

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Dinner
  • Days 3-4

    Crossing the Drake Passage

    Not only will guests experience the much-anticipated crossing of the Drake Passage, considered by many to be a polar rite of passage, they will also enjoy one-of-a-kind presentations from the expedition team members—and from our two distinguished special guests who have delved deeply into the life of Sir Ernest Shackleton.

    In 2013, environmental scientist, author and explorer Tim Jarvis—with a crew equipped in era-authentic gear—re-enacted Shackleton’s 800-mile (1300 km) journey from Elephant Island to South Georgia in a replica of the 23-foot whaler James Caird. In fact, the foreword to Jarvis’ book, 'Chasing Shackleton: Re-creating the World’s Greatest Journey of Survival,' was written by Alexandra Shackleton, granddaughter of Sir Ernest. 

    Also on board as guest presenter: mammologist, paleontologist, anthropologist and polar historian Ross MacPhee, a curator at the American Museum of Natural History, which hosted the ground-breaking exhibit 'The Endurance: Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition.' MacPhee is the author of 'Race to The End: Amundsen, Scott, and the Attainment of the South Pole.'  MacPhee, who has participated in more than 50 scientific expeditions (including both Polar Regions), has also researched the extinction of early mammals who roamed Antarctica 45 million years ago. 

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Days 5-6

    Antarctic Peninsula

    The most common reaction upon reaching the White Continent is a sense of reverence and awe. The experience is hard to put into words, since few places are as untouched and enduring as Antarctica. 

    You will discover that Antarctica is a land of extremes. At one moment you’ll be overcome with a feeling of complete isolation and silence, and at the next moment you’ll be inspired by nature as a calving glacier crashes into a brilliant blue sea or a penguin waddles by to inspect your footwear. 

    Your Expedition Team will take care of you at each excursion, whether you are Zodiac cruising, visiting a historical site or consorting with penguin colonies. Chinstrap, Adélie and Gentoo penguins are found here, along with Weddell, Fur, Crabeater and Leopard seals. Keep a lookout for Antarctic whales, such as Minkes, while on a Zodiac cruise. Each day and each excursion will present a new collection of creatures to delight you and keep your camera busy. 

    As exciting as the Zodiac excursions and landings are, perhaps you’ll treat yourself to an extra-special Antarctic experience by partaking in an optional paddling excursion (at an extra cost) or cast reason aside and jump into Antarctic waters for the Polar Plunge! 

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 7

    Weddell Sea

    The Weddell Sea has profound meaning for admirers of Shackleton. This is where the explorer’s ill-fated ship, Endurance, crushed by pack ice, disappeared into the harsh waters in 1915. Despite the extreme harsh environment, the Weddell Sea region is known for its rich wildlife: seals, penguins and baleen whales.

    Aboard Ultramarine—with its two twin-engine helicopters and 20 quick-launching Zodiacs—you’ll be able to explore by sea and air, an experience never before possible until the launch of this game-changing expedition ship.  

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 8

    At Sea

    Throughout the voyage, guests will enjoy one-of-a-kind presentations from the expedition team members—and from our two distinguished special guests, Polar experts Tim Jarvis and Ross MacPhee.

    Your days at sea are also perfect for experiencing the superb luxury amenities of Ultramarine, which include a spa and a sauna with floor-to-ceiling windows that allow guests to stay connected to the Polar environments while enjoying relaxing moments onboard the ship. Ultramarine also has more wildlife viewing stations than any ship of its size, so you’ll have plenty of opportunity to stay on the lookout for birds and other wildlife while at sea. 

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 9

    Elephant Island

    On April 9, 1916, after spending 165 days drifting through the hostile ice of the Weddell Sea, Shackleton and his crew reached remote Elephant Island, one of the outermost islands of the South Shetland Island chain. Arriving here today, 100 years later, you will see the island exactly as Shackleton and his men first encountered the brutish landscape. Yet to the stranded crew, Elephant Island was a haven, offering vital shelter while they waited anxiously to be rescued.  

    We hope to visit Point Wild, located on the northern shores of the island, where Shackleton and his men were able to come ashore. This was the location where Shackleton launched his epic 650-mile (1046 km) boat journey aboard the James Caird, and where his men waited for his return. If conditions are ideal, we will launch our Zodiacs to get as close as possible to land, where guests can appreciate the immensity of the Shackleton feat. 

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Days 10-11

    New Year's at Sea

    Say goodbye to the Antarctic Peninsula, as your next destination is South Georgia!  We invite you to join us as we mark the first-ever New Year celebration on Ultramarine, the first ship purposely built for Polar exploration. The inaugural season of Ultramarine, much like Shackleton’s feats in Antarctica, makes for a memorable moment in Polar history.

    In addition to the New Year’s celebrations aboard Ultramarine, your days at sea are filled with presentations led by our two special guests and your Expedition Team, who will prepare you for the wildlife and landscapes that await you in South Georgia. 

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Days 12-15

    South Georgia

    South Georgia is one of the most fertile breeding grounds in the world for sub-Antarctic wildlife, with beaches blanketed with penguins and seals. It won’t take you long to realize that you are in a bird paradise, as burrowing seabirds, albatross and petrels can be seen in abundance.

    You’ll find that on South Georgia, once a popular base for whalers and sealers, visitors can see abandoned relics and evidence of human activity from centuries gone by. Your Expedition Team will help bring those days to life while you visit old whaling stations and enjoy presentations on the South Georgia of then and now.

    In re-creating the voyage of the James Caird, Shackleton’s heroic open-boat journey from Elephant Island to South Georgia, our first planned destination on the island will be King Hakkon Bay—the very site where Shackleton and his men landed before traversing the island’s harsh interior. 

    South Georgia is particularly significant and, for many guests, a poignant stop on this voyage that celebrates the life of Sir Ernest Shackleton, whose enduring legacy of Polar exploration lives on through the Quark Expeditions team today. After Shackleton’s death on January 5, 1922, the explorer’s widow insisted her husband be buried in South Georgia, which figured so prominently in his life and dreams. If conditions allow, we hope to visit Grytviken, one of the first whaling stations established in the sub-Antarctic waters. It’s also the site of the modest cemetery where Sir Ernest Shackleton is buried. Guests traditionally gather at Shackleton’s grave to pay homage and raise a toast to one of history’s greatest Polar explorers.

    In addition to a historical visit to Grytviken and other whaling sites, you will have the opportunity to visit many of the pristine beaches, coves, and fjords that line the protected northern coast of the island. The wildlife density in South Georgia is unlike anywhere else in the world, and each stop during our journey will bring new adventures.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Days 16-19

    At Sea

    After more than two weeks of unique wildlife encounters and remarkable landscapes, your journey home begins. Spend time on deck watching for seabirds and whales, enjoy presentations by your Expedition Team, rejuvenate in the sauna with floor-to-ceiling windows, indulge in the luxury amenities of Ultramarine—including its spa-inspired suites and beautifully designed lounges and restaurants—or simply relax and reminisce about your experiences. 

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 20

    Disembark in Ushuaia and fly to Buenos Aires

    We will arrive in Ushuaia in the morning after breakfast. After disembarkation, we will taste a little of Patagonia by touring Tierra del Fuego National Park before we transfer to the airport for the return group charter flight to Buenos Aires.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast

Accommodation

Ultramarine

The Celebrating Shackleton: Journey from Antarctica to South Georgia journey is offered on the Ultramarine which is a Polar Adventure Ship.

Polar Adventure Ships

These are small ice rated vessels well qualified for Polar waters. Intimate adventures are always more enjoyable with like-minded passengers and staff, so these voyages are for people who like flexible itineraries and plenty to keep them busy. Activities include frequent Zodiac excursions, trekking and many hours on deck in areas that other ships only dream about accessing. Food and staff are superb and every guest benefits from the technical advances of this superb fleet. Rest assured our Polar Adventure Ships enable any traveller to maximize their experience sensitively in the Poles.

Ultramarine

Ultramarine

The newest ship in Quark’s fleet, Ultramarine, is designed to go beyond the familiar in Polar exploration, to discover new places, and to immerse you in the best the region has to offer.

Equipped with two twin-engine helicopters, Ultramarine offers the most robust portfolio of adventure activities in the industry, the most spacious suites in its category, breath-taking public spaces, and more outdoor wildlife viewing spaces than other expedition ships its size. It also features an innovative mix of sustainability features that exceed all industry standards. With all this and more, Ultramarine is set to deliver the ultimate Polar expedition experience.

Balcony Suite - Ultramarine

Panorama Lounge - Ultramarine

Dining Area - Ultramarine

Cabin Class:

SOLO PANORAMA: Located on Deck 6, and approximately 132 sq. ft. (12.3 m2). This suite is perfect for solo guests who appreciate privacy and want to wake up to sweeping views from the comfort of their bed. These are the only solo suites with floor-to-ceiling windows available onboard any ship in its class. 

Features: single bed, floor-to-ceiling window, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower and heated floors.

EXPLORER TRIPLE: Located on Deck 3, and approximately 285 sq. ft. (26.5 m2). This suite is perfect for guests traveling solo who want to share their experience with other like-minded travellers of the same gender, or for groups of three traveling together. Featuring three separate single beds, and amenities for each of the three guests. 

Features: three single beds (two of which can be combined into a double bed), sitting area, picture window, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower and heated floors. 

EXPLORER SUITE: Located on Deck 3, and approximately 285 sq. ft. (26.5 m2). These suites are perfect for people traveling together or solo guests looking to share with like-minded individuals. This suite maximizes interior living space while still offering guests the opportunity to stay connected to the outdoors. Our entry-level twin suites are the largest available on a ship of this class.

Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, picture window, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower and heated floors.

BALCONY SUITE: Located on Decks 4 and 6, with approximately 226 sq. ft. (21 m2) of indoor living space, and a 52 sq. ft. (4.8 m2) balcony, this entry-level balcony suite is one of the largest available on a ship of this class. This suite is perfect for guests who are looking for both indoor and outdoor living spaces. There are four connecting suites in this category, making this an excellent option for families or groups wanting to stay connected to each other during their expedition.

Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower and heated floors.

DELUXE BALCONY SUITE: Located on Decks 4 and 6, with approximately 299 sq. ft. (27.8 m2) of indoor living space, and a 70 sq. ft. (6.5 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests wanting a larger living space, full bathroom, and a substantial balcony. Deluxe Balcony Suites are the first suite type to offer additional privacy in the bathroom with an enclosed toilet, a full bath and shower to make it easier for guests to get ready together in the morning.

Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors.

TERRACE SUITE: Located on Deck 6, with approximately 350 sq. ft. (32.5 m2) of indoor living space, and a 100 sq. ft. (9.3 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests wanting generous interiors with a wide layout and the largest balconies on the ship. Centrally located on Deck 6, guests will enjoy minimal movement and motion from the comfort of these suites.

Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, private extra-wide balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors.

PENTHOUSE SUITE:The only suite category to be located on Deck 7, with approximately 369 sq. ft. (34.3 m2) of indoor living space, and a 67 sq. ft. (6.2 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests wanting to wake up to unobstructed polar views from the warmth and comfort of their bed onboard the ship. These suites offer the best of everything—views, spacious interiors, full bathrooms and generous balcony sizes—as well as easy access to the wellness centre.

Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors.

OWNER’S SUITE: Located on Deck 6, with approximately 446 sq. ft. (41.4 m2) of indoor living space and a 46.3 sq. ft. (4.3 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests who want it all. A large, luxurious suite featuring a private bedroom, full bathroom, powder room, and two separate living spaces. This suite is perfect for families or couples who want all the comforts of home onboard the ship.

Features: one double or two single beds in a private bedroom with walk-in closet, sitting area with sofa bed and additional closet, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors and separate powder room.

ULTRA SUITE: Located on Deck 6, with approximately 563 sq. ft. (52.3m2) of interior living space, and a 46 sq. ft. (4.3 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests who want to travel without compromise. Our largest and most luxurious suite features the most sleeping, entertainment and storage space onboard the ship. It is perfect for families or travellers who want all the comforts of home onboard the ship.

Features: one double or two single beds in a private bedroom with walk-in closet, sitting area with sofa bed and additional walk-in hallway closet, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors and separate powder room.

DECKPLAN:

 

Where a single supplement is available, paying for a single will only guarantee a room for single use. It does not necessarily mean a twin or double room will be provided for sole occupancy.

Please note that a member of the group may be allocated a single room by default if the make-up of the group means there isn’t anyone for them to share with. Paying the supplement in advance is the only way to guarantee a single room.

Single supplements cannot be refunded retrospectively.

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

All meals while on the ship included.

Typical Meals

The ships galley offers good quality service and cuisine throughout, with excellent chefs preparing international menus including vegetarian dishes, accompanied by a wide variety of drinks from around the world on sale.

Breakfast: Buffet style – unlimited tea and coffee, a selection of fruit juices, hot options including bacon and eggs or omelettes, a selection of bread and toast and jam/honey/marmalade, fruit and cereal.

Lunch: Three course set meal or buffet, or the occasional BBQ.

Dinner: Three or four courses with a starter of soup and/or salad, a choice of mains with at least one vegetarian option and a dessert, with tea and coffee.

Vegetarians and vegans can be well catered for on this holiday - please do inform us before departure of any special dietary requests so that our local team can be well prepared.

Transportation

During the expedition, you will visit remote and isolated sites that are accessible only by Zodiac landing craft. Designed for expedition work, these large and heavy-duty inflatable vessels are extremely safe.

Weather & Seasonality

Weather Information

Late Spring and Early Summer - October & November

The start of the season and the most adventurous time to travel. You’ll encounter truly breathtaking, exquisitely sculpted icebergs emerging from their frozen hibernation. Many of these blue bergs house courting, nesting and brooding penguins. In the Falklands flowers are coming into bloom.

High Summer - December, January & February

Close to the solstice you’ll experience almost perpetual daylight. These are the mildest months when the first Adelie and Gentoo penguin chicks are hatched. It’s also the time to encounter seal pups on South Georgia. As the water warms the whale sightings also improve.

Late Summer - February & March

This is the time for some incredible encounters with whales, especially Minkes and Humpbacks. The receding ice allows for further exploration and penguin colonies are very active with adults feeding their chicks.

Weather Charts

Joining Instructions

Travelling land only: 20 days starting and ending in Buenos Aires

Your trip normally starts at our hotel in Buenos Aires in the afternoon on Day 1 of the itinerary. Details of how to reach the start point are provided in the Final Joining Instructions ‐ sent approximately two weeks before departure.

 

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Location start:
Buenos Aires
Location end:
Buenos Aires

What to Take

Essential Equipment

Boots – Rubber boots are essential for a Polar expedition, but to eliminate these from your packing list we will loan you a pair for the duration of the voyage.
Parkas – A complementary Quark parka will be provided on the ship.
Trousers – Waterproof trousers are essential for Zodiac travel as well as activities on shore.
Gloves – To keep your hands warm and dry, pack a minimum of two pairs of gloves: a pair of thin polypropylene gloves to be worn underneath warm outer gloves.
Hat and Scarf – Pack a warm, woollen hat or cap that covers your ears, as well as a scarf, neck gaiter or other face protection.
Socks – For maximum warmth, we suggest that you wear two pairs of socks to wear inside the rubber boots.
Outer Clothing – Pack woollen or fleece jumpers and tops, plus several turtlenecks for layering.
Underclothing – Pack silk or polypropylene underwear since it will keep you warm without adding bulk.
Knapsack or Backpack – To keep your hands free for shooting photograph, bring a water resistant or waterproof knapsack or backpack.
Shoes – Non-slip shoes for walking around the vessel.

As advice about luggage allowances for both hand and hold luggage is subject to change, we suggest you check the airline's website for the latest information prior to your departure.

Optional Equipment

Swimsuit
Sunglasses
Binoculars
Camera, extra batteries, film or memory cards
Protective sunscreen
Electric converter with adapter plug set, 220V/110V
Small medical kit containing prescription medicines and over-the-counter medication for basic ailments such as stomach upsets, allergies, headaches and seasickness
Snow poles or trekking poles

Zodiac and iceberg

Practical Information

Visa

South Georgia

No visa required for British, US, Canadian, Australian, New Zealand and most EU passports.

Falkland Islands

No visa required.

Antarctica

No visa required for British passport holders.

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

There are no specific health risks on this trip.

Vaccination

Antarctica

There are no specific health risks.

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

As we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information. Please note: vaccinations that are routinely recommended to residents of the UK, North America or Australasia are not considered to form part of the travel health advice, and you should ensure these are kept up to date where necessary.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will be asked to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

Local Time

Electricity

Antarctica's Electricity:

The electrical supply on board most of the Polar vessels is 220v/50Hz. 

The electrical outlets found in the cabins and around the ships on most Polar vessels accept standard European two round pin plugs, so you may need to bring your own travel adapter.

Money

Antarctica's Currency

On board all Polar vessels USD are accepted as the primary currency.

ATM Availability

There are ATMs in Buenos Aires and Ushuaia which dispense Argentinian currency. Credit cards are widely accepted and can be used to settle your account on the ship.

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

On board the ships all transactions are in US dollars. Dollars can also be used in Argentina, although local currency is preferred. 
At the conclusion of your voyage, you will be presented with an account. This will include any drinks from the bar, laundry or ship’s shop purchases for which you have signed. You may pay for this in US Dollars cash, credit card (Visa or MasterCard ONLY) or US dollars Traveller’s Cheques.

Allow US$ 8 for the airport tax on departure from Ushuaia and US$ 18 to depart from Buenos Aires (Please note that airport taxes do change often and it is recommended to include a little extra in case of this). You should also budget some dollars for sightseeing and meals/drinks in Argentina, the amount depending on your tastes.

Tipping

The appropriate amount to tip the staff and crew is a personal matter but it is customary to provide an end-of-cruise gratuity (as a rough guide approximately US$13-15 per day per passenger would be appreciated).

Responsible Tourism

We work hard to create trips which improve life for the people and places we visit and look after the planet we explore. To read more about our sustainable travel ethos and practice, click here, and to find out about the work of the Exodus Travels Foundation click here.

Some sustainable travel highlights of this trip include:

People

How this trip helps improve life for local communities.

  • Although this tour is predominantly concerned with dramatic natural landscapes and the many species of whale, penguin, seals and seabirds which inhabit these areas, we try to benefit local people where we can as well. Before we embark in Ushuaia, clients are encouraged to explore and to use local businesses. By supporting locally owned shops and using various other services and facilities, money goes towards an increase of employment opportunities and growth of the local economy.
  • We have developed a comprehensive staff training and accreditation program which ensures that our staff is fully aware of responsible tourism issues and that they are kept updated with refresher courses. From safety to environmental sustainability, our team of lecturers, specialists and crew are able to pass vital information on to clients in briefings. We also send extensive preparatory packs out to every group including guidelines from the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO), of which our operator is a full voting member.
  • Our onboard gift shop only sells items which have been thoroughly researched as to where an item has come from, whether it has been produced fairly, what it is made of and distance it has had to travel.

Places

How this trip helps protect and conserve local landscapes and nature.

  • All of our Antarctic expeditions are designed to operate in line with International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO) which has guidelines in place to protect the fragile environment of this Polar region.
  • We emphasise that the protection of this pristine yet fragile environment and its wildlife is at the forefront of what we do. This is driven by our ‘leave no trace’ policy, which includes being vigilant with litter disposal and avoiding approaching animals any closer than 5 metres.
  • We strictly adhere to all international policies regarding disposal of waste at sea and only use recycled and acid free paper on board.  Clients are also encouraged to recycle and reduce waste throughout and are provided with a re-usable water bottle for the trip. Cabins are fitted with eco-friendly amenities and the laundry is done with green detergents.
  • The South Georgia Heritage Trust do conservation work for important historic sites such as the Grytviken church in South Georgia and they run a habitat restoration project for the area. A particular problem for the wildlife, and particularly birdlife, in the area is the threat of foreign species such as rats, which were introduced by whalers over the last two centuries. On each voyage, we conduct passenger auctions and a portion of the money goes towards keeping these threats at bay.

Planet

How we seek to keep the carbon footprint of this trip low.

  • Read about Exodus Travels’ Planet Promise here, including our rewilding and carbon compensation commitments for every customer who travels.
  • All of our Antarctic expeditions are designed to operate in line with International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO) which has guidelines in place to protect the fragile environment of this Polar region.
  • We emphasise that the protection of this pristine yet fragile environment and its wildlife is at the forefront of what we do. This is driven by our ‘leave no trace’ policy, which includes being vigilant with litter disposal and avoiding approaching animals any closer than 5 metres.
  • We strictly adhere to all international policies regarding disposal of waste at sea and only use recycled and acid free paper on board.  Clients are also encouraged to recycle and reduce waste throughout and are provided with a re-usable water bottle for the trip. Cabins are fitted with eco-friendly amenities and the laundry is done with green detergents.
  • The South Georgia Heritage Trust do conservation work for important historic sites such as the Grytviken church in South Georgia and they run a habitat restoration project for the area. A particular problem for the wildlife, and particularly birdlife, in the area is the threat of foreign species such as rats, which were introduced by whalers over the last two centuries. On each voyage, we conduct passenger auctions and a portion of the money goes towards keeping these threats at bay.

Tips for sustainable travel on this trip

  • Leave no trace: We do all we can to ensure we leave no rubbish behind in the wild and beautiful places we visit; we ask that you do the same. If there are no recycling facilities in-country, we’d ask you to consider bringing recyclable materials home with you.
  • Plastic waste reduction: Please bring your own re-usable water bottle on this trip; filtered water will be provided where tap water is not drinkable.

Exodus Community

Join the Exodus online community

Don't forget to visit the Community area on our website. You can view the range of Exodus videos and podcasts, read trip write-ups which have featured in the national media and take advantage of some special deals on travel gear and equipment.

In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

To make full use of the Community you'll need to join My Exodus. It's free, registration is simple and easy, so what are you waiting for?

Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 14 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred.

On all trips

In booking this trip you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

 

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons - climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

TRAVEL AWARE – STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD

 

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office and the NHS have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more on security, local laws, plus passport and visa information, see https://travelaware.campaign.gov.uk/

Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/

Advice can change so check regularly for updates.

For all latest travel information about your holiday, please visit our Travel Safety Advice page.

How to Book

1. Check availability

Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.

2. Secure your place

You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.

3. Complete your booking and payment

When you're ready to book, go to our website for online bookings, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque. Book with confidence: Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582 issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA ‐ The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.

TRIP NOTE VALIDITY

These Trip Notes are valid from the "Current as" date on page one. They will occasionally be updated post booking and pre-departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary bookers will be written to separately. All customers will also receive a link to the most up-to-date version of the Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions pre-travel.