Falklands, South Georgia & Antarctic Peninsula

Greg Mortimer Luxury Expidition Cruise Ship
Greg Mortimer
120 Passengers
Adventure Options

Combine Falkland Islands~Malvinas with the dazzling scenery and wildlife of South Georgia, and the Antarctic Peninsula for a truly unforgettable voyage. The Falklands~Malvinas offers rich history, sensational landscapes and outstanding bird-watching opportunities. Even though you’ve seen it countless times on television, nothing compares with personally hearing, smelling, and seeing the magnitude of South Georgia’s massive king penguin colonies and beaches alive with fur seals and elephant seals, fighting, mating, breeding, and suckling. In the Antarctic Peninsula, Zodiac-cruises reveal hunting orcas, calving glaciers, humpbacks feeding, and penguins fledging; it’s an action-filled environment where every creature is fighting to survive.

Expedition Highlights
• Photograph black-browed albatross, spot elusive macaroni penguins and endemic flightless steamer ducks in the Falklands~Malvinas
• Glide past glittering grounded bergs on your kayaking adventures in Antarctica
• Watch elephant seal beach masters guarding their harems in ferocious battles
• Adélie, chinstrap and gentoo couples take turns to incubate their precious eggs
• In South Georgia, retrace Shackleton’s legendary mountain crossing on skis (additional cost)

Brief Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive Ushuaia, Argentina
Day 2 Embark the Greg Mortimer in Ushuaia
Day 3 At Sea
Days 4 & 5 Falklands~Malvinas
Days 6 to 8 At Sea
Days 9 to 12 South Georgia
Days 13 & 14 At Sea
Days 15 to 19 Antarctic Peninsula
Day 20 At Sea
Day 21 Disembark Ushuaia

Day 1 — Arrive Ushuaia, Argentina

Arrive in Ushuaia, where you will be met and transferred to your downtown hotel (preferred flights only).

Day 2 — Embark the Greg Mortimer in Ushuaia

This morning, enjoy a leisurely breakfast at the hotel before exploring Ushuaia on a half-day city tour.

Ushuaia, capital city of the province of Tierra del Fuego, is located on the shores of the Beagle Channel and it is surrounded by the Martial Range, which offers a unique landscape as a result of the combination of mountains, sea, glaciers and forest. The city tour will visit The Mission, Brown and Solier neighborhoods, where you can see old houses belonging to the first families in Tierra del Fuego, such as the Beban, the Pastoriza, and the Ramos. Head 6.8 miles (11 km) out of town to Martial Glacier. The ride in the chair lift to the trails leading up to the glacier provides wonderful regional views and of Ushuaia town, the Beagle Channel and its islands. Afterwards, continue to the End of the World Museum with exhibitions explaining the history of Tierra del Fuego.

Transfer to the pier where our expedition team will warmly welcome you on board the Greg Mortimer.

As the Greg Mortimer pulls away from port, we’ll gather on the deck to commence our adventure with spectacular views over Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego. You’ll have time to settle into your cabin before our important briefings.

Day 3 — At Sea

As we commence our trip across the South Atlantic Ocean, we make the most of our time getting comfortable with the motions of the sea. Our expedition team prepare you for our first landing with important wildlife guidelines and biosecurity procedures, and start our lecture program to help you learn more about Antarctica’s history, wildlife and environment.

Our wildlife experiences begin as we enjoy watching and photographing the many seabirds, including majestic albatrosses and giant petrels following in our wake. They rise and fall skillfully, using air currents created by the ship to gain momentum.

Days 4 & 5 — Falklands~Malvinas

Located 296 mi (477 km) east of southern Argentina, the Falklands~Malvinas is a unique mix of being a wildlife hotspot and inhabited outpost. An archipelago of over 700 islands, but consisting of two main islands, East and West, only seven of the islands are inhabited. The cold, nutrient-rich waters surrounding the islands makes them a prime location for marine life, including seabirds and seals. Our time in the Falklands~Malvinas includes a short walk in historic Stanley town. Our experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their expertise to design our voyage over the next two days. This allows us to make best use of the prevailing weather and wildlife opportunities. In addition to Stanley, there are many exciting places we can choose to visit; a sample of some of the places where we may land, hike, and photograph or view spectacular wildlife include:

Jason Island
Jason Island is a rarely visited jewel and the most remote of all West Falklands islands. It rises sharply from the sea and is one of the most dramatic islands on the archipelago. Its remoteness and rugged coast make it difficult to visit but it is home to the world’s largest black-browed albatross colony and the area has significant importance to conservationists. Its rare beauty and its huge albatross colony make it an important goal for us. We will do our best to visit Steeple Jason, but if conditions are too harsh, we have other exciting islands to choose from.

Saunders Island
Second largest offshore island in the archipelago and is a working sheep farm. Saunders is rich in wildlife and history, the island boasts four species of penguins and a spectacular black-browed albatross colony on its northern cliffs. The combination of wildlife and natural, scenic beauty afford some of the best photography opportunities in the world.

Carcass Island
Named after the HMS Carcass which surveyed the island in 1766, Carcass Island is cat and rat free. That makes it a haven for small birds including endemic Cobb’s Wren, dark ground tyrants, tussac birds, and striated caracaras abound. It also boasts 3 species of penguins and a black-browed albatross colony with spectacular access to be within yards of their nests.

West Point Island
Home to numerous species of plants, birds and marine mammals, spectacular cliffs are a feature along the coastline. Rich wildlife, a picturesque settlement and small harbor often teeming with Commerson’s dolphins make this island well worth a visit.

Sealion Island
Located in the southeast of the archipelago, Sealion Island is recognized under the Ramsar Convention. The terrain is mainly low lying but with spectacular cliffs at the southern end. Tussac grass proliferates, providing the perfect habitat for a range of wildlife. It is an Important Bird Area with Gentoo, Magellanic and Rockhopper penguins, Cobb’s wren, Magellanic snipe and tussac birds. 95 percent of the Falklands’ elephant seal population live here. Sea lions breed on the coast and killer whales are frequently observed. A memorial for HMS Sheffield is situated in the southern part of the island.

Days 6 to 8 — At Sea

Between the Falklands~Malvinas and South Georgia, you will be entranced by the ceaseless flight of the many seabirds that follow our wake, skillfully using the air currents created by the ship to gain momentum. On this leg, we are usually traveling into the prevailing weather so it is difficult to estimate our precise arrival time in South Georgia. Our lecture program will continue highlighting all of the incredible sights we have witnessed over the past few days. You will have ample time to enjoy observing the sea birds, whale-watching from the observation areas, or simply relaxing with a book.

If time and weather conditions permit, we may pass close to Shag Rocks, a fascinating group of jagged rocky islets protruding from the sea, in the proximity of South Georgia.

Days 9 to 12 — South Georgia

South Georgia is one of the world’s most amazing natural environments. Just a speck in the vastness of the South Atlantic Ocean, and lying wholly within the Antarctic Convergence, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands are a life-sustaining haven to some of the world’s largest congregations of wildlife. The surrounding sea is one of the most productive areas on Earth and supports the life of millions of seals, whales, penguins and other seabirds.

A 9,850 ft (3,000 m) mountain range forms the spine of this long, narrow island. Between the mountains, shattered glaciers carve their way through tussock grass to the deeply indented coastline – a landscape that is synonymous with the epic expedition of survival by Shackleton, Worsley, and Crean. Abandoned rusting whaling stations and remnants of explorers reflect a time of long ago, while summer workers conduct scientific and regeneration projects.

Politically speaking, South Georgia lies north of 60° South latitude and is therefore not part of the Antarctic treaty. It is a wholly British possession, claimed and named for King George III on 16 January, 1775 by Captain James Cook.

Cook recorded in his journal:
"The wild rocks raised their lofty summits till they were lost in the clouds and the valleys lay buried in everlasting snow. Not a tree or a shrub was to be seen, no, not even big enough to make a toothpick. I landed in three different places, displayed our colors and took possession of the country in His Majesty's name under a discharge of small arms."

On 20 May, 1916, Sir Ernest Shackleton, Tom Crean, and Frank Worsley stumbled into the busy whaling station at Stromness; hungry, exhausted and covered in grime. They had just made the first ever crossing of the mountains of South Georgia, from King Haakon Bay, to find help for their three exhausted companions left at Cave Cove and to rescue the men they had left on Elephant Island. They had sailed in the James Caird for 16 days under horrendous conditions and finally found safety in the tiny entrance of Cave Cove. This epic story of survival began with the sinking of his ship, the Endurance, in the Weddell Sea, six months earlier. As we explore South Georgia, we will have the opportunity to reflect on Shackleton’s epic journey.

If conditions permit, we plan to follow in Shackleton, Worsley, and Crean’s footsteps and complete the final leg of their walk from Fortuna Bay to Stromness. On this expedition, we will make a special stop at King Haakon Bay to drop off our Mountaineers to start their 3-day crossing of South Georgia.

A sample of some of the places where we may land in South Georgia include:

Grytviken
Originally a Norwegian sealing and whaling station, it was finally closed in 1965. Now it is the administrative center and a hub of activity in South Georgia. The former whaling station stands as a solemn testament of the whaling days, but the museum offers much more than a glimpse into Grytviken’s whaling past, including exhibitions of many of the local animals on display as well as the island’s history of exploration. As you wander around the site, skirting the ruins of factory buildings, peering into the past, you must be careful to avoid sleeping elephant seals or disturbing small groups of king penguins as you imagine what it was like when whale processing was in full swing. Abandoned ships lie sunken alongside hundred-year old wharves, while pitted concrete walls remind us of the more recent Falkland's War, which started here.

Sir Ernest Shackleton died from a heart attack during his final expedition on board the Quest on 5 January, 1922. His body was laid to rest at Grytviken. We pay our respects at his grave and possibly visit the cross his men erected in his memory looking out across beautiful Cumberland Bay.

St Andrews Bay
The long black sandy beach fronts a broad valley that stretches well back from the sea. This valley shelters the largest king penguin colony on South Georgia. Toward the landing beach on the north end of the bay, the beach is a resting place for hundreds of elephant seals that haul out on the shore to molt. Behind the beach and as you move along to the south, the sight and sound (and smell) of over 200,000 pairs of King Penguins at different stages of their breeding cycle will be overwhelming. The colony can be so dense that the penguins prevent even the seals from using the beach! The glacial river that runs into the sea here will be alive with penguin chicks and elephant seal pups testing their skills. If we lift our gaze from the wildlife for a moment, we will glimpse the snow-capped peaks of some of the world's most spectacular mountains.

Godthul
Imagine indented bays lined with bleached whalebones, teeming with fur seals and penguins just ‘hanging about’. In Godthul you have the opportunity to clamber through the tussock to a spectacular plateau offering magnificent views across the island and the waters beyond. A careful descent leads us to a magnificent Macaroni penguin rookery.

Salisbury Plains
Salisbury Plain has one of the largest King Penguin colonies on South Georgia. With about 100,000 pairs, the shore and beach can be completely crammed with penguins. Along the beach you will also find fur and elephant seals in the mix. You will have plenty of free time for walking and exploring independently during this landing, allowing you the opportunity to enjoy some personal time amongst the kings.

Fortuna Bay & Stromness
Fortuna Bay is surrounded by high mountains with glaciers pushing down from the high country to terminate in the open valley that is home to a small king penguin colony. This is where Shackleton, Worsley, and Crean descended from the treacherous glaciers of the interior on their way to Stromness whaling station. If conditions allow, we can retrace the footsteps of the explorers and follow their track over the last mountain pass. It’s a moderately difficult 3.7 mi (6 km) walk over a 1,000 ft (300 m) pass, and is well worth the experience for those that are fit and able. The Greg Mortimer will meet us as we arrive into Stromness Bay.

Bay of Isles
One of the wildlife highlights will be visiting the serene wandering albatrosses sitting proudly on their cute downy chicks. We can observe within respectful distance of these magnificent gentle birds while they perform intimate courtship dances, feed their young or clumsily launch themselves into the air, bound for a fishing trip.

Other stunning wildlife destinations we may visit include:
Elsehul Bay • Royal Harbor • Cooper Bay • Drygalski Fjord • Larsen Harbor • Gold Harbor • Right Whale Bay • Possession Bay • King Haakon Bay • Moltke Harbor • Larsen Harbor • Shag Rocks

Days 13 & 14 — At Sea

En route to the Antarctic Peninsula we'll head across the Scotia Sea, following the route that Shackleton and five of his men took in order to find help for the rest of their crew. On 24 April, 1916, they piled into the James Caird, the most seaworthy of their open boats, to attempt this perilous journey to South Georgia - some 800 mi (1,290 km) distance. Shackleton hoped to reach South Georgia in two weeks. There he would enlist the help of the whalers to return to Elephant Island and rescue the men who had been left behind. As excitement builds for our arrival to Antarctica, be out on deck or from the open bridge to spot large icebergs.

“Nearly always there were gales. So small was our boat and so great were the seas that often our sail flapped idly in the calm between the crests of two waves. Then we would climb the next slope and catch the full fury of the gale where the wool-like whiteness of the breaking water surged around us.”
- Ernest Shackleton

Days 15 to 19 — Antarctic Peninsula

Over the next few days a host of choices are open to us, and depending on ice and weather conditions, the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula is ours to explore. Our experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their expertise to design our voyage from day to day. This allows us to make best use of the prevailing weather, ice conditions and wildlife opportunities.

Because we are so far south, we will experience approximately 18-20 hours of daylight and the days can be as busy as you wish. We will generally try for two landings or Zodiac excursions each day; cruising along spectacular ice cliffs, following whales that are feeding near the surface and landing on the continent and its off-shore islands to visit penguin rookeries, seal haul outs, historic huts, and a few of our other favorite spots along the peninsula. There will be plenty of time for sleep when you get home!

There are many exciting places we can choose to visit. A sample of some of the places where we may land, hike, and photograph or view spectacular wildlife follows:

Paradise Harbor
A protected bay surrounded by magnificent peaks and spectacular glaciers, the rocky cliffs of this spectacular harbor provide perfect nesting sites for blue-eyed shags, terns and gulls. The serenity of Paradise Harbor envelops us once the ship’s engine is turned off. This is a haven for whales and we keep our eyes open for humpbacks, orcas, minkes, and crabeater seals, as we explore the bay in Zodiacs.

Hydrurga Rocks
This group of low-lying unprotected granitic rocks protrude from the sea, swept by ocean swells. At first these rocks appear uninteresting, but on closer investigation, calm channels lead to a hidden interior where Weddell seals are hauled out on protected snow beds and noisy chinstrap penguins raise their families on rocky platforms. Hydrurga is the Latin family name for leopard seal (Hydrurga Leonina), and on occasions we see some skulking in the shallows. There are many places to simply sit and watch the rise and fall of clear green water and listen to the magic sounds and calls of the wildlife.

Half Moon Island
This wildlife-rich island is tucked into a neat bay at the eastern end of Livingston Island. On a clear day, the glaciers and mountains of Livingston Island dominate the vista. There is a large chinstrap penguin colony tucked in between basaltic turrets colored by yellow and orange lichens. Gulls nest on these turrets and there are often fur seals and elephant seals hauled out on the pebble beaches. There is a large rookery of nesting blue-eyed shags at one end of the island, while at the other end of the island lies a small Argentinian station that is sometimes occupied by scientists conducting research on the penguin colony and surrounding waterways.

Lemaire Channel
If ice conditions allow, standing on the observation deck of the Greg Mortimer quietly as the ship sails along the narrow Lemaire Channel could certainly be one of the highlights of our voyage. Cliffs tower 2,300 ft (700 m) straight out of the ocean on either side of the ship. The water can sometimes be so still that perfect reflections are mirrored on the surface and it is clear to see why this Channel is often called “Kodak Alley”. Gigantic icebergs may clog the channel, creating navigational challenges for our captain and crew; occasionally they may even obstruct our passage.

Port Lockroy
Located on Goudier Island, British Port Lockroy is an important site for both scientific research and visitors to the Antarctic continent. Designated a historic site in 1994 and opened to the Antarctic tourism industry in 1996, it was discovered in 1904 and used by the whaling industry in the first half of the 1900s. It was part of the British Operation Tabarin during World War II, and was later used as a British Research Station. Today, Pork Lockroy is manned by the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust and operates as a museum, gift shop and post office for visitors from passing Antarctic expeditions. You can even send a post card home from the Penguin Post Office, the world’s most southern Post Office!

Neko Harbor
Located in Andvord Bay, Neko Harbor is an inlet home to gentoo penguins, and regularly welcomes Weddell seals. The scenery is dramatic - towering peaks and calving glaciers surround the harbor. The thundering crack of the glaciers as they calve is sure to stop you in your tracks.

Robert Point
A fine example of the South Shetland Islands – tiny toes of land that are literally alive with wildlife. Here, there are two species of penguins breeding - chinstrap and gentoo. It is not uncommon to find wallows of elephant seals that are 60 beasts strong. Giant petrels nest on the ridgeline.

Other places we may visit around the Antarctic Peninsula are:
Pleneau Island • Vernadsky; a Ukrainian scientific base • Petermann Island • Penola Strait • Antarctic Sound • Cuverville Island • Danco Island • Enterprise Island • Melchior Islands

Day 20 — At Sea

On our return sailing to Ushuaia, you may choose to spend your time editing photos, enjoying the onboard facilities, or listening to an informative lecture.

Day 21 — Disembark Ushuaia

During the early morning, we sail along the Beagle Channel, before quietly slipping into dock in Ushuaia, where we disembark. Farewell your expedition team and fellow travelers as we all continue our onward journeys, hopefully with a newfound sense of the immense power of nature. A transfer to either downtown Ushuaia or to the airport is included in the cost of the voyage.

* Itinerary may be subject to change

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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 in all cabin categories. Twin share, with no supplement, is available in Aurora Stateroom and Balcony Stateroom categories.

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.

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A $15 per person per day gratuity for the crew is automatically added to your onboard account. It is at your discretion if you would like to remove the tip (or increase/decrease the amount) when you settle your account. It is not necessary to tip the expedition team members.

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International Airfare Not Included. Rates are per person, based on twin-share. Single occupancy cabin pricing surcharges range from an additional 25-70%. Twin share, with no supplement, is available in Aurora Stateroom and Balcony Stateroom categories.

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 $1,260 (Antarctica) & $1,470 (South Georgia/Antarctica), Camping  Free, Photography Free, Snowshoeing $320 (Antarctica) & $370 (South Georgia/Antarctica), Ski Touring $1,260 (Antarctica) & $1,470 (South Georgia/Antarctica), Alpine trekking/Climbing $1,260, South Georgia Alpine Crossing $2,220 (by ski on Nov 9th & by foot on Dec 8th), Snorkeling $640 (Antarctica) & $740 (South Georgia/Antarctica).

A $15 per person per day gratuity for the crew is automatically added to your onboard account. It is at your discretion if you would like to remove the tip (or increase/decrease the amount) when you settle your account. It is not necessary to tip the expedition team members.

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

Only show rates under
$ X
Please note that availability is updated about once a week.
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Rates Antarctica 2021-22
Aurora
Stateroom
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Stateroom
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Balcony
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Mountaineering, Kayak, Snowshoe
Ushuaia - Antarctica
Falklands - Ushuaia

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Expires Dec 31st 2019
$23,700Full$26,300Limited$28,100$26,695Limited$28,800$27,360$29,600$28,120$36,300$32,670$43,800$39,420$51,200$46,080
No trips meet your criteria. Please increase the budget above to view more results.
Click on the tour dates in the left column to view a trip itinerary. Point MOUSE at Cabin Category to view DETAILED description.

International Airfare Not Included. Rates are per person, based on twin-share. Single occupancy cabin pricing surcharges range from an additional 25-70%. Twin share, with no supplement, is available in Aurora Stateroom and Balcony Stateroom categories.

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 $1,470 (South Georgia/Antarctica), Photography Free, Snowshoeing $370 (South Georgia/Antarctica), South Georgia Alpine Crossing $2,220 (by foot on Nov 24th), Snorkeling $740.

A $15 per person per day gratuity for the crew is automatically added to your onboard account. It is at your discretion if you would like to remove the tip (or increase/decrease the amount) when you settle your account. It is not necessary to tip the expedition team members.

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

DeckPlan_GregMortimer-ship
DeckPlan_GregMortimer

         Captain's Suite *
480 Sq Ft / 44.5 m² including balcony
Deck 4
Twin or double bed • Private en-suite • Full size window • Desk area • Closet space • Private balcony • Room-controlled thermostat • Safe for storing valuables • Separate lounge area • 42" flat-screen TV
         Junior Suite *
420 Sq Ft / 38.9 m² including balcony
Deck 7
Twin or double bed • Private en-suite • Full size window • Desk area • Closet space • Private balcony • Room-controlled thermostat • Safe for storing valuables • 42" flat-screen TV • Separate lounge area
         Balcony Suite *
328-433 Sq Ft / 30.5-40.2 m² including balcony
Deck 4
Twin or double bed • Private en-suite • Full size window • Desk area • Closet space • Private balcony • Room-controlled thermostat • Safe for storing valuables • 42" flat-screen TV
         Balcony Stateroom-A, Balcony Stateroom-B, Balcony Stateroom-C
225-337 Sq Ft / 20.9--31.3 m² including balcony
Decks 4 & 6
Twin or double bed • Private En-suite • Floor to ceiling window • Desk area • Closet space • Private balcony • Room-controlled thermostat • Safe for storing valuables • 42" flat-screen TV
Many "B" staterooms are fitted with interconnecting features making them great for families or groups
         Aurora Stateroom  Twin & Triple (on select voyages)
170-245 Sq Ft / 15.8-22.8 m²
Deck 3
Twin or double bed (Three twin beds in Triple) • Private En-suite • Porthole window • Desk area • Closet space • Room-controlled thermostat • Safe for storing valuables • 42" flat-screen TV

*

      Suite benefits include:
• One free pair of binoculars per suite
• 1-hour spa treatment (per person)
• Free stocked mini bar (Balcony & Junior stocked once, Captain’s replenished as needed)
• Gratuities/tips for crew included to the value of $15 per person per day
• 1 free bottle of champagne per suite