South Pole Overnight - 7 Day

Land Based Trips
South Pole and Emperor Penguins

Immerse yourself in the 90° South experience with an overnight at the South Pole

One of the greatest stories in Antarctic exploration is the race to reach the Geographic South Pole. The heroic journeys of Amundsen and Scott and Shackleton still fascinate and inspire us to travel to the end of the Earth.

Using ski aircraft we fly to the pole, covering in several hours the distance that took those early explorers years of planning and months of hardship to achieve. History comes alive as we stand at 90 South and imagine how they felt heading out across the frozen continent and into the unknown 100 years ago. We feel the spirit of determination and discovery that has inspired a century of Antarctic exploration and scientific research. And we sense that a journey to the South Pole is as significant today as it was so many years ago.

Join us to celebrate this historic achievement!

Accommodations

Union Glacier Camp
The atmosphere is relaxed and welcoming at our main Antarctic camp at Union Glacier. You’ll find roomy, double occupancy sleeping tents; a spacious dining hall; fresh delicious meals; and a spectacular setting. You’ll be surprised how comfortable Antarctica can be! Our full-service camp is designed for Antarctic conditions and with best environmental practices in mind. It operates during the Antarctic summer (November through January) and is dismantled at the end of each season.

South Pole Camp
Be prepared for extreme conditions at our South Pole Camp. Temperatures hover around -30°C and the physiological altitude (how high it feels!) is roughly 11,000 ft (3,300m). Camp facilities are designed to provide as much comfort as possible, while minimizing our environmental footprint. Meals are served in a heated dining tent, which is also available for indoor activities and relaxation. Accommodation is in two-person mountaineering-style tents. The tents are unheated, but you will stay nice and warm with your insulated sleeping mat and polar-rated sleeping bag.

Day 1 – Fly to Antarctica

We board our chartered jet for the 4¼ hour flight to Antarctica. Our route crosses the Drake Passage, then follows the west side of the Antarctic Peninsula and the spine of the Ellsworth Mountains. We land on a naturally occurring blue-ice runway on Union Glacier where you will take your first steps on Antarctica.

Climb aboard one of our specially-adapted vans for the 5 mi (8 km) shuttle to our main camp. Our friendly staff will provide a welcome tour of camp and show you to your tent.

Days 2 to 6 – Explore Union Glacier & Fly to South Pole

During your week stay in Antarctica, you’ll have multiple days to explore Union Glacier. Our meteorologists will carefully monitor the weather conditions and find the best day for your South Pole Flight.

A typical day at Union Glacier starts with a briefing after breakfast where you’ll meet with your guide to discuss the day’s options and choose an activity tailored to the weather and the group’s interests. Union Glacier excursions can include any of the following destinations:

Elephant’s Head
Ride in one of our vehicles to this dramatic marble buttress overlooking the blue-ice runway. Beautiful ice pools and moraines offer endless opportunities for photography. If you’re looking for something more active, you’ll have the opportunity to hike up to the base of Elephant’s Head or all the way to the top of Rhodes Bluff for panoramic views of Union Glacier and the Heritage Range.

Drake Icefall
Named in the 1960s after geologist Benjamin Drake IV, this impressive icefall tumbles off the polar plateau into Union Glacier. Winds from the South Pole carve huge waves into the blue-ice and polish the surface into a high shine.

Charles Peak Windscoop
Discover the power of wind on ice as you wander through a sparkling turquoise corridor. If you’re truly adventurous, this is a prime place to try ice climbing with one of our experienced guides. For the less vertically inclined, you can rock hunt to your heart’s content. Just remember to leave them in place, as nothing may be removed from Antarctica.

The Beach at Rossman Cove
Another spectacular setting for blue-ice photography and panoramic views! Take cross-country skis with you or a picnic lunch and enjoy Antarctica’s version of a glacial beach getaway.

Hidden Valley
Our staff’s favorite getaway—this secret canyon opens up to a beautiful valley prime for hiking, climbing, and backcountry skiing.

If you’d prefer to stay closer to camp, we have a variety of activities for all abilities. You can check out a pair of cross-country skis or a fat-tire bike and take a spin around our groomed 10k loop or you can enjoy a cup of tea, an Antarctic book, or fun game in our camp library.

In the evenings, we regularly offer lectures and films tailored to your experience.

South Pole Overnight
Once weather conditions permit, you will board our ski aircraft and head for the southernmost point on Earth!

The flight to the Pole will take between 4-6 hours depending on the aircraft. You’ll fly over the high, polar plateau, viewing wind affected snow called sastrugi, crevasse fields, and an endless expanse of white.

You’ll pass the Thiel Mountains approximately halfway to the Pole and continue to fly over the plateau. As you near 90° South, you will catch sight of the South Pole station, a cluster of buildings surrounded by snow and sky.

Our aircraft lands on a groomed ski-way and you’ll deplane near the South Pole marker. Here all 360 lines of longitude meet and beneath your feet the ice is almost 10,000 ft (3000 m) thick! You have joined an exclusive group of people who have journeyed this far south on our planet. Congratulations!

You will have plenty of time to take photos at both the Geographic and Ceremonial Poles. Enjoy this special place and imagine how it must have felt to stand here a century ago with only the sound of the wind and an endless expanse of white stretching northward in all directions.

A .6 mi (1 km) walk brings you to our private South Pole Camp for your overnight stay. Enjoy a celebratory meal prepared by one of our talented chefs and mingle with your fellow explorers in the large, heated dining tent. Depending on the time of your visit, you may also get the chance to greet ski teams just completing their journey to the Pole. After a momentous day, climb inside your expedition-style tent and get snuggled up for a southerly snooze at 90°S.

The next morning, you’ll pack up for the return flight to Union Glacier Camp where you’ll receive a certificate to commemorate your South Pole Overnight Experience in Antarctica!

Day 7 – Return to Punta Arenas, Chile

When weather and runway conditions permit, our intercontinental aircraft will arrive at Union Glacier to transport you back to Chile. Our staff will meet you at the airport and transfer you back to your hotel.

NOTE:

Every effort will be made to keep to the scheduled flight date and we will depart as soon as weather and runway conditions permit. Please understand that delays are common in Antarctic travel. All flights are dependent on weather, aircraft serviceability, and local conditions. Our staff will stay in close contact with you and will provide you with regular flight updates.

* Itinerary may be subject to change

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Per Person USD
Rates 2016-2017
Price (US$)
Camp
$48,150Full
Camp
$24,650Full
Camp
$48,150Limited
Camp
$48,150Full
Camp
$52,350Full
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Only show rates under
$ X
Please note that availability is updated about once a week.
Click on the tour dates in the left column to view a trip itinerary. Point MOUSE at Cabin Category to view DETAILED description.