Polar Circle Quest

Cruise aboard M/V Ushuaia

12 days



full recomended!


Expedition cruise to the Antarctic Peninsula, South Shetland Islands, & endeavor to cross the Polar Circle aboard the M/V USHUAIA.

Highlights

  • Discover the western Antarctic peninsula's icy landscape & varied wildlife
  • View huge icebergs and snow-capped mountains along the South Shetlands
  • Spot wildlife, including penguins, seabirds, whales, and seals
  • Enjoy a full program of lectures and the Ushuaia's open bridge policy
  • Be one of the privileged few to cross the Polar Circle
  •  Enjoy the amazing variety of wildlife
  •  Fantastic glaciers and ice-formations
  •  Big cetaceans such as humpback, Finn and Sei whales

Overview

Embark on this exciting expedition cruise to the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands, and endeavor to cross the Polar Circle on this 12-day polar voyage. Board the MV Ushuaia and voyage roundtrip from Ushuaia, Argentina across the Drake Passage and into the great southern region.


Sample 12 Day Cruise aboard M/V Ushuaia
Day 1 Embark in Ushuaia
Days 2-3 At Sea | Crossing the Drake Passage
Days 4-9 South Shetland Islands | Antarctic Peninsula | Polar Circle
Days 10-11 At Sea | Crossing the Drake Passage, northbound
Day 12 Disembark in Ushuaia

Itineraty Details

Day 1: Depart from Ushuaia

Embark the USHUAIA in the afternoon and meet your expedition and lecture staff. After you have settled into your cabins we sail along the famous Beagle Channel and the scenic Mackinlay Pass.

Day 2 & 3: At Sea. Crossing the Drake Passage

Named after the renowned explorer, Sir Francis Drake, who sailed these waters in 1578, the Drake Passage also marks the Antarctic Convergence, a biological barrier where cold polar water sinks beneath the warmer northern waters. This creates a great upwelling of nutrients, which sustains the biodiversity of this region. The Drake Passage also marks the northern limit of many Antarctic seabirds. As we sail across the passage, Antarpply Expeditions' lecturers will be out with you on deck to help with the identification of an amazing variety of seabirds, including many albatrosses, which follow in our wake. 

The USHUAIA's open bridge policy allows you to join our officers on the bridge and learn about navigation, watch for whales, and enjoy the view. A full program of lectures will be offered as well.

The first sightings of icebergs and snow-capped mountains indicate that we have reached the South Shetland Islands, a group of twenty islands and islets first sighted in February 1819 by Capt. William Smith of the brig Williams. With favorable conditions in the Drake Passage our lecturers and naturalists will accompany you ashore as you experience your first encounter with the penguins and seals on Day 3.

Days 4 to 9: Exploring the Antarctic Peninsula, the South Shetland Islands, and endeavor to cross the Polar Circle

Exquisite beauty and pristine landscapes are waiting for you on the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula. Myriads of icebergs with different shades and shapes are floating free in the waterways around the continent. The Antarctic Peninsula's remarkable history will also provide you with a type of excitement often only associated with the early explorers. You will have plenty of time to explore its amazing scenery and a wide variety of wildlife. Apart from Adélie, Gentoo and Chinstrap Penguins and other seabirds you are likely to encounter Weddell, crabeater, fur and leopard seals as well as Minke whales and orcas at close range. At this time of year it is also very likely to encounter big cetaceans, such as humpback, Finn and Sei whales in the area. 

 We hope to navigate some of the most beautiful waterways the area has to offer, such as: the Gerlache Strait, Errera Channel, Neumayer Channel and the extremely narrow Lemaire Channel. Possible landing sites may include: Paradise Bay, which is perhaps the most aptly named place in the world with its impressive glacial fronts and mountains, Cuverville Island, home of the biggest Gentoo Penguin colony in the Peninsula surrounded by glaciers and castellated icebergs, and the British Museum and Post office Port Lockroy.  

As further exploration will lead us far South of the Lemaire Channel in quest of the Polar Circle, we might also visit the Ukrainian Station Vernadsky, the former British base Faradey, where the ozone hole was first spotted, the rugged Yalour Islands and south of the Polar Circle Detaille Island. 

On our way North we plan to explore the South Shetland Islands. The volcanic island group is a haven for wildlife. Vast penguin rookeries and seals hauling out on the shorelines make every day spent here unforgettable. Sailing through the narrow passage into the flooded caldera of Deception Island is truly amazing, so is visiting the crescent shaped island Half Moon, home to Chinstrap Penguins in breathtaking surroundings.

Days 10 & 11: At Sea. Crossing the Drake Passage, northbound

We leave Antarctica and head north across the Drake Passage. Join our lecturers and naturalists on deck as we search for seabirds and whales and enjoy some final lectures. Take the chance to relax and reflect on the fascinating adventures of the past days on the way back to Ushuaia.

Day 12: Arrival in Ushuaia

We arrive at the port of Ushuaia in the early morning and disembark the USHUAIA after breakfast.


Please note: The above itinerary is a guide only. Our exact route and program will vary to take best advantage of local weather and ice conditions and opportunities to view wildlife. Changes will be made by the Captain and/or Expedition Leader to facilitate the best results from the prevailing conditions and they will try their best to reach the Polar Circle. However if ice conditions do not allow access the route might be changed. A daily program sheet will be issued on board. Flexibility is the key to success.

Services Included

  • Voyage aboard the USHUAIA as indicated in the itinerary
  • All meals throughout the voyage aboard the USHUAIA including snacks, coffee and tea.
  • All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac.
  • Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff.
  • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program.
  • Comprehensive pre-departure material.


Services not Included

  • Flights tickets.
  • Pre- and post- land arrangements.
  • Passport and visa expenses.
  • Government arrival and departure taxes.
  • Meals outside of the M/V Ushuaia.
  • Personal consumption in the Bar.
  • Telephone calls and internet charges.
  • Baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is mandatory).
  • Excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges.
  • Tips. It is recommended to give the tips at the end of the cruise.

Prices

2018 - 2019 Season

 

 

Cabin categories

 

 

 

Rates in US Dollars per person

Voyage

Dates

 

Standard Plus Triple

Standard Twin

Standard Plus Twin

Premier Twin

Premier Single

Superior Twin

Suite Twin

A250219

Feb 25, 2019 

11 Nights


US$ 9,570

US$ 11,390

US$ 13,660

US$ 12,060

US$ 12,670

Polar Circle Quest

Mar 8, 2019

12 Days

Sold Out 

Sold Out 

W. List

Waiting List 

Waiting List 

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Cruise

The Ushuaia

M/V Ushuaia is an Argentine cruise ship currently operated by Antarpply Expeditions S.A., with headquarters in the city of Ushuaia. 

The USHUAIA has 46 cabins, for 88 passengers, four decks and an open-bridge policy. The ship was built by request of the United States agency NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to be an oceanographic ship). Later on, the ship was sold and refurbished to become a means of transport for passengers to Antarctica. For this reason, it has been equipped with cutting-edge communication and navigation equipment and the best service standards in the Antarctic industry. It offers two zodiac boats, which enable an easy access to places that are otherwise difficult to reach by ship.

All cabins include ample storage space. Public areas feature a large dining room (one sitting), an open-plan observation lounge / lecture room with modern multimedia equipment, bar and a well-stocked library. There is also a changing room and a small infirmary. Our expert captain, officers and crew are highly experienced in Antarctic navigation and have a great love of nature. We provide a specialist team of international expedition leaders and lecturers, all extremely knowledgeable, enthusiastic, helpful and dedicated to the protection of the environment. Our chefs prepare excellent cuisine including many local specialties and the bar is well-stocked with carefully selected wines and spirits.


Facilities
  • Four decks 
  • Dining room (one open seating)  
  • Observation lounge / lecture room, bar & library  
  • Panorama deck  
  • Gift shop  
  • Infirmary 
  • Aodiacs

 

Detail Of Cabins The M/V Ushuaia Standard Plus Triple

2 Standard Plus triple 

Outside cabins with portholes or windows on Deck E, private facilities, 3 lower berths.


Standard Cabin

12 Standard twin outside cabins with portholes on deck E with semi-private facilities, 2 berths (upper/lower).


Standard Plus

11 Standard Plus twin outside cabins with portholes or windows on deck E, private facilities, 2 lower berths. Cabin 640: 1 double bed.


Premier Twin

6 Premier twin outside cabins with windows on upper deck G, private facilities, 2 lower berths.


Premier Single

2 outside Premier single cabins with portholes (view obstructed by lifeboat) on upper


Description


Bathrooms

W.C. in bathrooms are prepared for this kind of trips – they are highly efficient bur also very delicate. You should not dispose anything but small amounts of toilet paper. Used tissues and such are to be disposed of in the wastebasket.


Restaurant

There is a large restaurant where meals for passengers are served. The dining room is located on Main Deck F. Dining tables are not assigned by cabin, so passengers choose their preferred spot. Four meals are served: Continental breakfast or American style breakfast, lunch (buffet or seated-served), snack and dinner (appetizer, main course and desert.) The schedule for meals is published during the trip, depending on land tours offered. Tea and coffee are available throughout the day.

On the ship, you will also find a bar, observation lounge/conference room equipped with multimedia, library, dressing room and a small infirmary. Our captains and officers are experts on Antarctic sailing and they have a passion for nature. Our excellent expedition team is made up of an Expedition Leader, guides and lecturers with a wide experience on Antarctica. They are all engaged and committed to environmental protection. Our chefs prepare a wide variety of dishes, including local specialties. The bar offers an excellent, wide selection of wines and alcoholic drinks.


Library

A library is located on the Main Deck F offering a good selection of international titles, with and emphasis on books related to the South Pole. Board games and cards are also available for passengers.


Languages

English and Spanish are spoken during the expedition to Antarctica. Most crew members are bilingual, although there might be a few members speaking only one language.


Health Care Facilities

On board the M/V Ushuaia there is one physician for basic health care and emergencies. The infirmary is located on Deck E. In case of emergency, you need to call the Bridge (#108.) Visits are charged. The cost is USD 20 at the infirmary and USD 25 at your cabin. This fee includes just the visit and medicines are charged separately. Seasickness and headaches are taken care of at no charge. If you are taking medication regularly, please remember to bring it on board for your trip to Antarctica.


Payment Currency

On board, currencies used are American Dollar and Euro. You can purchase using cash or credit cards Visa, MasterCard and American Express. Minimum charge for credit cards is USD 100. We recommend bringing USD 300 cash for expenses on board. All your expenses on board will be charged at the end of your trip. Tips are in cash.


Passports

Foreign passports are held for safety and management reasons.


Smoking Policy

Smoking is allowed on decks, except for the deck where the boats are located. Smoking is not allowed inside the ship, including the cabins. Disposing cigarette ends on the ocean is strictly prohibited for two reasons, preservation of the environment and prevention of fires on the ship.


Services


Communications

The ship is equipped with an INMARSAT system enabling direct communication with any telephone or fax around the world. You will receive a list of telephone numbers to reach the ship. Cost per minute from your cabin is USD 4 per minute approximately. Telephone charges are to be paid at the end of your trip.


Internet Access and E-mail

The ship has computers for Internet use for USD 10 per 30 minutes. No Wi-Fi available on board.


Lectures

In M/V Ushuaia an important team of professionals are gathered to offer lectures during your trip to Antarctica, in a room specially equipped for such events.


Power Supply

Power supply is 110V/60Hz. Cabins have multi-type sockets suitable for international plugs. It is always a good idea to bring special converters and adaptors. Some sockets on public areas are 220v-240v. These are clearly identified and they offer the usual power in the Argentine territory, suited for V shaped plugs with three flat pins (third pin is ground.) They also fit V shaped plugs with two flat pins (no ground) and plugs with two small round pins as well.


Daily Schedule and Tours to Land

Tours to land are announced one day in advance. Before disembarking, you will be informed of the duration of the visit and if it is a “dry tour” (to land) or a “wet tour” (only by boat, without reaching land.) You will receive your daily program in your cabin, where you will find out about the activities for the following day, such as tours, “dry” or “wet” landings, meals and scheduled lectures. Programs are designed according to weather conditions and they can be changed unexpectedly.


Housekeeping and Laundry Services

Ship M/V Ushuaia does not offer laundry or dry cleaning services on board.


Special Diets

If you need to keep a special diet, you must request it one month in advance. We recommend stating it on the Booking Form. Kosher food for the Jewish community is not available.


Dress Code

Comfortable, casual clothes are recommended.


Rubber Boots

The ship provides rubber boots at no cost. A wide variety of sizes are available. These boots have been used for passengers in the past. Nevertheless, bringing your own boots is recommended, especially if you wear a large size.


Zodiac Boats

Boats carrying up to 12 passengers. These boats are built with robust materials with several airtight compartments and they make embarking and disembarking easy.


Consult

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