Sub-Antarctic Islands

Silver Discoverer
120 Passengers
Sub-Antarctic Islands

Expedition Highlights:

• Experience the best pelagic birding on the planet.
• Snap a portrait of huge elephant seals lolling about on the beach.
• Witness the awkward flight forays of young albatross and the graceful soar of their elders.
• Walk through tall stands of rata trees, among giant ferns and into the twisted world of elfin forests on Campbell Island.
• Look for eight species of penguins including the rare Yellow-eyed Penguin.
• Enjoy numerous nature walks and Zodiac tours, which reveal stunning and awe-inspiring wildlife.

Brief Itinerary:

Day 1Dunedin, New Zealand
Day 2The Snares, New Zealand
Day 3Enderby Island & Auckland Island, New Zealand, Sub-Antarctic Islands
Day 4At Sea
Days 5 & 6Maquarie Island, Australia, Sub-Antarctic Islands
Day 7At Sea
Day 8Campbell Island, New Zealand, Sub-Antarctic Islands
Day 9At Sea
Days 10 & 11Bounty Island/Antipodes Islands, New Zealand, Sub-Antarctic Islands
Day 12Pitt Island, Chatham Islands, New Zealand
Day 13Chatham Island, New Zealand
Day 14At Sea
Day 15Napier, New Zealand
Day 16Dunedin, New Zealand

Day 1 — Dunedin, New Zealand

Once all guests have embarked, we depart on our spectacular 16-day, Sub-Antarctic Islands expedition. This afternoon you will be introduced to your expedition team and participate in the safety drill. Tonight we invite you to familiarize yourself with your new home away from home, meet some of your fellow travelers and enjoy the first of many memorable meals in The Restaurant.

Day 2 — The Snares, New Zealand

Unlike other Sub-Antarctic islands that were greatly affected by the whaling and sealing industry in the 19th century, The Snares remain one of the last near pristine areas in New Zealand. The islands are home to endemic bird species such as the Snares Crested Penguin, the Snares Island Snipe, the Snares Fernbird and the Snares Black Tomtit, as well as several endemic invertebrates.

Day 3 — Enderby Island & Auckland Island, New Zealand, Sub-Antarctic Islands

Enderby Island is perched on the Campbell Plateau and is composed of eroding volcanic remains, much like the main Auckland Island. Here we look for the Yellow-eyed Penguin, New Zealand Bellbird and Red-Crowned Parakeet, as well as Southern Royal Albatross which nest on the plateau. Auckland Island is the primary breeding ground for the world’s most rare and endangered sea lion, the New Zealand (Hooker), and it’s also the breeding ground for 30% of the world’s population of the Yellow-Eyed Penguin.

Day 4 — At Sea

A leisurely day at sea is yours to enjoy. Begin perhaps with a late breakfast and another cup of coffee or tea during the first of the day’s lectures. You’ll hear fascinating tales of adventure and learn more about the region’s endemic wildlife and remarkable nature. Our knowledgeable guides are experts in a variety of scientific fields.

Day 5 & 6 — Maquarie Island, Australia, Sub-Antarctic Islands

Accidentally discovered by the Australian/Briton Frederick Hasselborough on 11 July 1810, Macquarie Island lies in the southwest corner of the Pacific Ocean, about halfway between New Zealand and Antarctica.

Macquarie Island, known as Australia’s Sub-Antarctic jewel, is home to a large variety of wildlife, including thousands of seals and millions of penguins, and has been designated a World Heritage site. Since 1948 the Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) has maintained a permanent base, the Macquarie Island Station, on the isthmus at the northern end of the island at the foot of Wireless Hill. The population of the base, the island's only human inhabitants, usually varies from 20 to 40 people over the year.

The island has an approximate length of 34 km (21 mi) and a width of 5 km (3 mi), with an area of 128 km2 (49 sq. mi). Weather and tides will play heavily on the decisions made by the Captain and Expedition Leader to make the most of our two days visiting the island. We hope to visit a King Penguin colony of more than 200,000 pairs, and see colonies of rockhopper, royal and Gentoo penguins. In addition we hope to see some of the 72 species of birds including the wandering, black-browed, gray-headed and light-mantled sooty albatross.

Not forgetting the several types of seals such as the elephant, leopard and fur seals that can be founds on the island. Two days might just not be enough.

Day 7 — At Sea

The days at sea are yours to enjoy. A relaxing massage may be in order today. Once done, you might find yourself sipping on afternoon tea or taking in a little shopping.

Day 8 — Campbell Island, New Zealand, Sub-Antarctic Islands

Campbell Island is about 700 kilometers southeast of the South Island, and is New Zealand’s southernmost sovereign territory. High and rugged in the south (up to 1,867 feet), it slopes off more gently to the north where smoothed ridges and open valleys suggest considerable recent glaciation. Farmed since 1894, Campbell Island was used for sealing and whaling, wartime coastal defense, and meteorological observation. Becoming a nature reserve in 1954, it is now an uninhabited and World Heritage site administered by the Department of Conservation.

Day 9 — At Sea

Enjoy a relaxing day at sea. Perhaps you’ll join a lecture, reflect on your travels thus far or meet with new friends and share your stories. Whatever you find on your personal agenda, know that our personable staff is at the ready to serve you.

Days 10 & 11 — Bounty Island/Antipodes Islands, New Zealand, Sub-Antarctic Islands

In 1788, shortly before the famous mutiny on the Bounty, Captain William Bligh landed here and named the island group after his ship. This bare and windswept group of 22 slippery granite rocks is the most remote and least visited of New Zealand's Sub-Antarctic island. Yet in spite of their hostile environment, the islands manage to host thousands of seabirds in summer, including the world’s rarest cormorant, the Bounty Island Shag. The islands are also the strongholds for Erect-crested Penguin, which breeds among the albatross. All Bounty Islands are designated “minimum-impact islands,” with no tourist landing; therefore a Zodiac cruise along the shoreline is on offer today.

Day 12 — Pitt Island, Chatham Islands, New Zealand

The second largest island in the Chatham Archipelago, Pitt Island is surprisingly different from Chatham Island. The indigenous Moriori called the island Rangiaotea or Rangihaute; their archaeological remains are found almost everywhere here. Look for the Pitt Island Shag, endemic to these islands.

Day 13 — Chatham Island, New Zealand

Located 466 miles (750 km) east of New Zealand's South Island, these isolated islands are renowned for their peace and tranquillity. Relax on deserted beaches, explore moody landscapes, catch fish, hike through scenic reserves and discover unique plant and bird life. The islands were first inhabited by the Moriori people, Polynesians with similar origins to the New Zealand Māori. European sealers and whalers were the next to arrive, followed by Māori from the New Zealand mainland. Today Chatham islanders share both Moriori and Māori ancestry and there are two Marae (centers for the community), on the main island.

Day 14 — At Sea

Your last full day at Sea is yours for the taking. Enjoy everything the ship has to offer to your hearts content.

Day 15 — Napier, New Zealand

The iconic Cape Kidnappers is home to the world’s largest mainland Gannet Colony. Get up close to these amazing birds on a drive along the stunning coastline of Hawke’s Bay to Cape Kidnappers. We stop within just a few yards of the colony to watch the entertaining antics of these huge birds. You will see gannets swooping and diving into the sea for food, while others preen themselves or perform the ritual dance of recognition. Enjoy the scenery and learn the history of the region on our way back to Napier.

Day 16 — Dunedin, New Zealand

Following breakfast, disembark Silver Discoverer.

* Itinerary may be subject to change

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Rates 2015-2016
Explorer Suite
View Suite
Vista Suite
Veranda Suite
Medallion Suite
Single Supplement reduced to 25% for Veranda and below.
$15,050 $16,550 $23,850Full$28,250 $34,050Full
Special: Single Supplement reduced to 25% for Veranda and below.
$12,850Full$14,350 $19,350 $24,350 $29,350Full
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