In Shackleton's Footsteps

Polar Pioneer Cruise Ship
Polar Pioneer
56 Passengers
Adventure Options

Ushuaia to Punta Arenas | Cruise from Ushuaia to Puerto Williams

Includes flight from Puerto Williams to Punta Arenas

Activities: South Georgia Alpine Crossing and Sea Kayaking

Voyage Highlights

 Antarctic Peninsula
Wildlife spectacle
Historic sites
Continental landing 

Weddell Sea
Vast tabular icebergs
World class fossils
Nordenskjold and Shackleton

Elephant Island

South Georgia
Shackleton Alpine Crossing
Fur seals and albatross
Thousands of king penguins
Whaling museum 

Falkland Islands

Additional Voyage Inclusions

• Luggage transfer from Ushuaia hotel to Polar Pioneer on day of voyage departure
• Transfer from Polar Pioneer to Puerto Williams airport, including Puerto Williams town and surrounds tour
• Flight from Puerto Williams to Punta Arenas

Our emphasis is on highlighting aspects of Shackleton's voyage, unique wildlife encounters, exploring pristine landscapes, visiting sites of historical interest and the occasional visit to scientific stations. The Erebus & Terror Gulf and the Weddell Sea itself are home to huge tabular icebergs that have split from the Larsen, Ronne and Filchner ice shelves further to the south. Nestled amongst ice floes of the northern Weddell Sea is the little known Seymour Island. Locked away in its fossil-rich rocks is the story of the disappearance of the dinosaurs and the collapse of the mythical Gondwanaland. One of the aims of this voyage is to explore these fossil beds, as well as to enjoy the wildlife treasure chest of the northern Weddell Sea.


Voyage Highlights

- Subantarctic wildlife – albatross, king penguins, fur seals etc.
- Falkland Islands and the magnificent South Georgia.
- Historic sites, including Shackleton’s last resting place.
- Narrow sheltered waterways and fjords.
- Spectacular mountains rising directly from the sea, icebergs and active glaciers.
- The most accessible and wildlife-rich part of Antarctica - penguins, whales, seals, sea birds.
- Great variety of terrain over short distances.
- Opportunity to cross the mountains of South Georgia in the footsteps of Sir Ernest Shackleton.

Day 1

Step aboard in the late afternoon to a cordial welcome, introductory briefing and an evening departure along the Beagle Channel. Settle into your homely cabin, explore the ship and enjoy a drink with your shipmates.

Days 2-3

As we cross the Drake Passage, our naturalist and historian inform us about Antarctica and prepare us for the weeks ahead. Seabirds, then icebergs entrance us as we approach our first landing in the South Shetland Islands.

Days 4-6

Sail through spectacular Antarctic Sound into the Weddell Sea, attempt a continental landing, watch for whales, visit magnificent penguins rookeries, search for fossils and begin retracing Shackleton’s epic.

Days 7-9

At Elephant Island we hope for close views of Cape Wild, where Shackleton’s men sheltered four months awaiting rescue, then sail to South Georgia, with a possible detour to the remote, mountainous South Orkney Islands.

Day 10

We enter King Haakon Bay and may make a ceremonial landing at Cave Cove, Shackleton’s first landfall.  Near Peggotty Bluff, we farewell our alpine crossing party as they follow the difficult overland leg of Shackleton’s epic.


Days 11-13

While our “Crossers” negotiate Shackleton’s historic route, we revel in some of the world’s largest king penguin rookeries, chinstrap, gentoo and macaroni penguin colonies, wandering albatross on nests, beaches thick with elephant and fur seals. We join our Crossers for the final leg from Fortuna Bay to Stromness, before visiting Shackelton’s grave, the whaling museum and lovely church.

Days 14-16

Crossing the Scotia Sea, we watch for whales and enjoy entertaining talks by our expedition team.

Days 17-18

In Stanley, beautiful Falkland Islands capital, enjoy its excellent museum, post office, picturesque houses, welcoming shops and pubs. Sea Lion Island is home to extraordinarily diverse wildlife – from steamer ducks to magellenic and rockhopper penguins, ruddy-headed geese and cormorants, elephant seals and sea lions.

Days 19-20

Magnificent seabirds accompany us as we pass Isla de los Estados and sail up the Beagle Channel to dock in Puerto Williams at dawn. Enjoy a tour of the lovely port before boarding your flight to Punta Arenas, Chile.

Alpine Crossing Option

Follow in Shackleton’s footsteps across South Georgia. It takes up to three days, weather permitting. Alpine climbing experience is essential.  A surcharge of US$1,250 applies. 

* Itinerary may be subject to change

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Per Person USD
Rates 2016-2017
Triple Shared
Twin Shared
Twin Private
Mini Suite
Captain's Suite
$14,300Limited$17,200Full$20,790 $22,785 $24,200Full$1,325  
Camp, Mountaineering, Photography, Kayak
Camp, Kayak
$8,725Full$10,200Limited$12,340 $13,250 $14,650Full$995Full 
Camp, Kayak
$8,725Full$10,200 $12,340 $13,250 $14,650Full$995  
Camp, Photography, Kayak
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International Airfare Not Included. Rates are per person, based on twin-share. Single costs are 1.7 times the twin rate.

Flights included for Fly/Cruise itineraries.

Adventure options must be pre-booked and paid for prior to start of the trip. Space is subject to availability. Some activities require experience.

Optional Activities: Kayaking prices as listed, Climbing $450, Photography Free, Camping  Free.

Mandatory Emergency Evacuation Insurance Required. All trips subject to possible fuel surcharge.


   Captain's Suite
Polar Pioneer's most deluxe cabin, the Captain's Suite (on Deck 5) features a separate sleeping area and lounge room, a private en-suite and large windows for optimal viewing opportunities from your own cabin. Only one cabin available, so be sure to enquire early.
Cabin Features: Private en-suite • Double bed in separate room • Forward- and side-facing windows • Separate lounge area • Desk and table area • TV, DVD player and mini fridge • Air-conditioning control • Outside deck access from Deck 5.

242 sq ft (22.5 sq m)
    Mini Suite
Two Mini Suites on Deck 5 offer a more spacious cabin with a separate sleeping and sitting area as well as a private en-suite and large windows to enjoy the views from the comfort of your own cabin. Perfect if you're after a bit more space and comfort.
Cabin Features: Private en suite • Double bed in separate room • Side-facing windows • Separate lounge area • Desk and chair • Cupboard with hanging space • TV, DVD player and mini fridge • Air-conditioning control • Outside deck access from Deck 5.

180 sq ft (16.8 sq m)
  Twin Cabin, Private Bathroom
Twin Cabins with Private Bathrooms on Deck 4 & Deck 5. Each cabin accommodates two people and offers the convenience of private bathroom facilities.
Cabin Features: Private en-suite • Two lower bunk beds (Note: #402 and #403 have an upper and lower bunk and a couch) • Side-facing window • Desk and chair • Cupboard with hanging space • Air-conditioning control • Outside deck access to main deck (Deck 4 cabins only) • Outside deck access to upper deck (Deck 5 cabins only).

130 sq ft (12 sq m)
  Twin Cabin, Shared Bathroom
Twin Cabins with Shared Bathrooms on Deck 3. Surprisingly spacious, each cabin comfortably sleeps two people and are only a short distance from the ship’s public bathroom facilities. Outside decks are accessible from this deck.
Cabin Features: Two lower bunk beds • Outside porthole • Wash basin • Lounge and desk • Cupboard with hanging space • Air-conditioning control • Shared bathroom facilities on same deck • Outside decks accessible via Deck 3 and 4.

105 sq ft (9.8 sq m)
  Triple Cabin, Shared Bathroom
Two Triple Cabins with Shared Bathrooms on Deck 3. Perfect for friends or families, or for solo travelers who are happy to share their space with fellow passengers. Bathrooms are located close by on the same deck.
Cabin Features: Two lower bunk beds and one upper bunk bed • Outside porthole • Wash basin • Lounge and desk • Cupboard with hanging space • Air-conditioning control • Shared bathroom facilities on same deck • Outside deck accessed via Deck 4.

110 sq ft (10.2 sq m)