Total eclipse in the Weddell Sea

Le Commandant Charcot
Le Commandant Charcot
250 Passengers
Starting 2021-22 Season — Icebreaker

Board Le Commandant Charcot, for a 15-day exploration cruise that is as original as it is spectacular. The goal is to experience a total eclipse of the Sun from the Weddell Sea ice pack. This cruise in the heart of the great White Continent will also be an opportunity to discover the eastern part of the Weddell Sea, unexplored and totally unknown to this day, as well as the imposing Larsen ice shelves.

From Ushuaia, your ship will first set course for the Weddell Sea ice pack, located in the only area in the world where the solar eclipse will be 100% visible. You will land on the immaculate and sparkling ice pack and enjoy, from the thick ice layer, a unique and privileged setting for a magnificent observation of the total solar eclipse. In this region close to the polar circle where the sun never quite sets, the full night will surround you for a few magical and suspended moments.

The Weddell Sea could be described as extreme and captivating, mostly frozen by a thick and compressed ice floe. It is a challenge and a privilege to sail on it, with its promise of exceptional landscapes and original encounters. As you advance across this immense polar expanse, you will enter an infinite ice desert, a world of silence where there is nothing but calm and serenity.

You will reach the northern part of the Antarctic Peninsula, a landmark in the history of polar exploration. To the north-west of the Weddell Sea, stretching along the east coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, stands the imposing ice barrier formed by the Larsen platforms. An extension of the ice sheet onto the sea, this white giant is equally disturbing and fascinating, if only due to its colossal dimensions and the impressive table top icebergs - amongst the largest ever seen - that it generates.

This voyage will be an opportunity to come as close as possible to the Weddell Sea and the Antarctic Peninsula, a real refuge for wildlife, so you may have the privilege of observing wildlife such as Weddell seals, crabeater seals, leopard seals, Adelie penguins, papuan and chinstrap penguins, humpback whales and sea birds.

Brief Itinerary

Day 1 Ushuaia, Argentina
Days 2 & 3 Crossing the Drake Passage
Day 4 Sailing ice floes
Day 5 Total Eclipse observation
Day 6 North Antarctic Peninsula
Day 7 The Weddell Sea
Days 8 & 9 Sailing toward Larsen Ice Shelf
Day 10 The Weddell Sea
Day 11 North Antarctic Peninsula
Day 12 South Shetland Islands
Days 13 & 14 Crossing the Drake Passage
Day 15 Ushuaia

Day 1 — Ushuaia, Argentina

Capital of Argentina's Tierra del Fuego province, Ushuaia is considered the gateway to the White Continent and the South Pole. Nicknamed “El fin del mundo” by the Argentinian people, this city at the end of the world nestles in the shelter of mountains surrounded by fertile plains that the wildlife seem to have chosen as the ultimate sanctuary. With its exceptional site, where the Andes plunge straight into the sea, Ushuaia is one of the most fascinating places on earth, its very name is evocative of journeys to the unlikely and the inaccessible.

Days 2 & 3 — Crossing the Drake Passage

Use your days spent in the Drake Passage to familiarize yourself with your ship and deepen your knowledge of the Antarctic. The expedition leaders will present the IAATO rules of conduct  and explain everything you need to know about Zodiac® outings. Lectures about the history and wildlife of the Antarctic will be an opportunity for you to learn more about this magical region, where every cruise is a unique experience. From the ship’s bridge, you will experience exceptional sailing moments before joining the naturalist-guides on your ship’s exterior decks to look out for albatrosses, cape petrels, and other seabirds flying over the Drake Passage.

Day 4 — Sailing ice floes

Enjoy the absolutely unique experience of sailing to the heart of the ice floe, a vast expanse of virgin, immaculate ice. The landscapes are constantly changing, shifting from a smooth, flat wilderness to a chaos of ice, then to channels of open water. Your ship will sail along these naturally open channels and through the areas where the frozen layer is thinnest, offering you the chance to experience magic maritime moments in the midst of drifting sea ice. It will also be an opportunity to see a particular kind of fauna, totally dependent on the ice floe.

Day 5 — Total Eclipse observation

Near the Antarctic Circle, in the bewitching silence of the Weddell Sea ice pack, you will have the unique privilege of entering the heart of the only area in the world where the total solar eclipse will be 100% visible. You will disembark on the ice pack to enjoy a magnificent observation of this natural phenomenon, as rare as it is exceptional. A total solar eclipse occurs when the Moon is positioned and aligned perfectly in front of the Sun, covering it completely with a black disc. In the polar perimeter where the Moon's shadow is cast on the Earth, it is usually never quite dark. Thanks to this prodigious event, the full night will envelop you for a few moments of eternity.

Day 6 — North Antarctic Peninsula

Throughout your time in the north of the Antarctic Peninsula, you will find yourself in the heart of a spectacular decor in subtle shades of blue and white, surrounded by exceptional wildlife. You will sail through the Antarctic Sound, named after Swedish explorer Otto Nordenskjöld’s ship, which was trapped by the ice during an important scientific expedition in 1902. The gateway to the Weddell Sea, this sound is filled with gigantic tabular icebergs and plates of sea ice drifting northward from the coastal areas of this vast sea. It is home to Adelie penguins and a great many leopard seals.

Day 7 — The Weddell Sea

Amid the eerie stillness of the Weddell Sea, wend your way through a labyrinth of dense ice floe and majestic table-top icebergs. Sweeping ice platforms sculpt a landscape unlike any other, populated by fur seals, penguins, wandering albatross and other remarkable seabirds. The Weddell seal – king of this realm – will welcome you to his territory with a haunting cry that pierces the surrounding silence. You can recognize him by his dark grey coat and spotted belly. Weddell seals have the impressive skill of being able to stay underwater for more than an hour.

Days 8 & 9 — Sailing toward Larsen Ice Shelf

On the Weddell Sea, you will sail close to the gigantic Larsen ice shelves. These floating ice shelves help to prevent the erosion of the Antarctic ice sheet. Over the last fifty years, scientists have however observed regular collapses of these shelves, along giant cracks that can be several hundred miles long and deep. In 2017, a portion measuring more than 2,300 sq mi (6,000 km2), so barely smaller than Corsica, had broken off the Larsen C ice shelf, forming one of the largest tabular icebergs in the world. This disintegration is believed to be due in part to global warming and melting sea ice.

Day 12 — South Shetland Islands

On the edge of the Antarctic Peninsula, 70 miles (120 km) from the White Continent, the South Shetland Islands offer surreal and mysterious scenery. On these volcanic islands of dark rock, the landscapes alternate between long, jagged and snow-covered coast and large, gently sloping bays. These lunar-looking and wild lands are home to important scientific research stations and a large number of animal species: chinstrap penguins, crabeater seals or Weddell seals, Antarctic terns, giant petrels and elephant seals have taken up residence here.

Day 15 — Ushuaia

Disembark in Ushuaia.

We are privileged guests in these extreme lands where we are at the mercy of weather and ice conditions. The sailing schedule and any landings, activities and wildlife encounters are subject to weather and ice conditions. These experiences are unique and vary with each departure. The Captain and the Expedition Leader will make every effort to ensure that your experience is as rich as possible, while respecting safety instructions and regulations.

* Itinerary may be subject to change

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Per Person USD
Rates Antarctica 2021-22
Prestige
Stateroom
Deck 6
Prestige
Stateroom
Deck 7
Prestige
Stateroom
Deck 8
Deluxe
Suite
Deck 6
Deluxe
Suite
Deck 7
Deluxe
Suite
Deck 8
Prestige
Suite
Deck 7
Prestige
Suite
Deck 8
Privilege
Suite
Duplex
Suite
Kayak
The Owner's Suite is ̶a̶v̶a̶i̶l̶a̶b̶l̶e̶ ̶for $96,190.
Grand Prestige Suite is available for $58,390.

CALL FOR DISCOUNT RATES
$32,680 $33,290 $33,890Full$40,240Full$41,750 $43,270 $55,360Full$56,870Full$59,900Limited$84,090 
Kayak
The Owner's Suite is available for $53,700.
Grand Prestige Suite is available for $32,900.

CALL FOR DISCOUNT RATES
$18,770 $19,100 $19,430 $22,920 $23,760 $24,590 $31,240 $32,070 $33,740 $47,050 
Kayak
The Owner's Suite is available for $70,250.
Grand Prestige Suite is available for $42,810.

CALL FOR DISCOUNT RATES
$24,150Full$24,580Full$25,020Full$29,640Full$30,730 $31,830 $40,610Full$41,710Full$43,900 $61,470 
Kayak
The Owner's Suite is ̶a̶v̶a̶i̶l̶a̶b̶l̶e̶ ̶for $64,410.
Grand Prestige Suite is available for $39,320.

CALL FOR DISCOUNT RATES
$22,270 $22,670 $23,070 $27,280 $28,290 $29,290 $37,320 $38,330 $40,330 $56,380 
Kayak
The Owner's Suite is ̶a̶v̶a̶i̶l̶a̶b̶l̶e̶ ̶for $58,850.
Grand Prestige Suite is available for $35,980.

CALL FOR DISCOUNT RATES
$20,430 $20,790 $21,160 $25,000 $25,920 $26,830 $34,150 $35,060 $36,900 $51,530 
The Owner's Suite is available for $73,740.
Grand Prestige Suite is available for $44,890.

CALL FOR DISCOUNT RATES
$25,280 $25,740 $26,200 $31,050 $32,200 $33,350 $42,580 $43,740 $46,060 $64,510 
The Owner's Suite is available for $61,430.
Grand Prestige Suite is available for $37,530.

CALL FOR DISCOUNT RATES
$21,260 $21,640 $22,030 $26,050 $27,000 $27,950 $35,610 $36,560 $38,480 $53,780 
Kayak
The Owner's Suite is ̶a̶v̶a̶i̶l̶a̶b̶l̶e̶ ̶for $64,410.
Grand Prestige Suite is available for $39,320.

CALL FOR DISCOUNT RATES
$22,270Full$22,670 $23,070 $27,280 $28,290 $29,290 $37,320 $38,330 $40,330 $56,380 
Kayak
The Owner's Suite is ̶a̶v̶a̶i̶l̶a̶b̶l̶e̶ ̶for $119,090.
Grand Prestige Suite is available for $72,050.

CALL FOR DISCOUNT RATES
$40,060 $40,810 $41,560 $49,470 $51,350 $53,230 $68,280 $70,160 $73,930 $104,030 
Kayak
The Owner's Suite is ̶a̶v̶a̶i̶l̶a̶b̶l̶e̶ ̶for $77,200

CALL FOR DISCOUNT RATES
$26,020 $26,510 $26,990 $32,110 $33,330 $34,550 $44,300 $45,520 $47,950 $67,450 
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Prices are per person based on Double occupancy.
Single rates are available in all categories (except Owner's Suite) for approximately 1.8x the single rate.

Image_LeCommandantCharcot_Layout

DeckPlan_LeCommandantCharcot_prelim

   Owner's Suite
Deck 8 • Area: 1230ft² / 114m² • Capacity: up to 6 guests per stateroom
2000ft²/186m² private balcony with jacuzzi • Shower & Balneo bathtub • Butler service • Individually-controlled air-conditioning • Stateroom layout: king-size bed or twin beds • Minibar - 24hr room service • Flat screen satellite TV • Video on demand • IPod™ docks • Safe • French bath products • Dressing table with hairdryer • Direct line telephone • 110V American/220V European • Internet access Wifi.
   Duplex Suite
Decks: 6 & 7 (2-floor suite) • Area: 515ft² / 48m² • Capacity: up to 4 guests per stateroom
280ft²/12.5 m² private balcony with jacuzzi • Shower & Balneo bathtub • Butler service • Individually-controlled air-conditioning • Stateroom layout: king-size bed or twin beds • Minibar - 24hr room service • Flat screen satellite TV • Video on demand • IPod™ docks • Safe • French bath products • Dressing table with hairdryer • Direct line telephone • 110V American/220V European • Internet access Wifi.
   Privilege Suite
Deck: 8 • Area: 515ft² / 48m² • Capacity: up to 4 guests per stateroom
135ft²/12.5m² private balcony • Shower & Balneo bathtub • Butler service • Individually-controlled air-conditioning • Stateroom layout: king-size bed or twin beds • Minibar - 24hr room service • Flat screen satellite TV • Video on demand • IPod™ docks • Safe • French bath products • Dressing table with hairdryer • Direct line telephone • 110V American/220V European • Internet access Wifi.
   Grand Prestige Suite
Deck: 6 • Area: 515ft² / 48m² • Capacity: up to 2 guests per stateroom
55ft²/5m² private balcony • Shower & Balneo bathtub • Butler service • Individually-controlled air-conditioning • Stateroom layout: king-size bed or twin beds • Minibar - 24hr room service • Flat screen satellite TV • Video on demand • IPod™ docks • Safe • French bath products • Dressing table with hairdryer • Direct line telephone • 110V American/220V European • Internet access Wifi.
   Prestige Suite
Decks: 7 & 8 • Area: 430ft² / 40m² • Capacity: up to 4 guests per stateroom
Composed of two interconnected Prestige Staterooms as indicated by double arrow on Deck Plan ⟷
110ft²/10m² private balcony • 2 Showers • Individually-controlled air-conditioning • Stateroom layout: king-size bed or twin beds • Minibar - 24hr room service • Flat screen satellite TV • Video on demand • IPod™ docks • Safe • French bath products • Dressing table with hairdryer • Direct line telephone • 110V American/220V European • Internet access Wifi.
   Deluxe Suite
Decks 6, 7 & 8 • Area: 300ft² / 28m² • Capacity: up to 3 guests per stateroom
55ft²/5m² private balcony • Shower • Individually-controlled air-conditioning • Stateroom layout: king-size bed or twin beds - communicating staterooms available • Minibar - 24hr room service • Flat screen satellite TV • Video on demand • IPod™ docks • Safe • French bath products • Dressing table with hairdryer • Direct line telephone • 110V American/220V European • Internet access Wifi.
   Prestige Stateroom
Decks: 6, 7 & 8 • Area: 215ft² / 20m² • Capacity: up to 2 guests per stateroom
55ft²/5m² private balcony • Shower • Individually-controlled air-conditioning • Stateroom layout: king-size bed or twin beds - communicating staterooms available • Minibar - 24hr room service • Flat screen satellite TV • Video on demand • IPod™ docks • Safe • French bath products • Dressing table with hairdryer • Direct line telephone • 110V American/220V European • Internet access Wifi.