Falklands, South Georgia & Antarctica

National Geographic Explorer Cruise Ship
National Geographic Explorer
148 Passengers

The ultimate Southern Ocean experience, this South Georgia Island cruise expedition takes you into majestically spectacular wildness. Not even the vast migrations of Africa can rival the awesomeness of seeing a king penguin colony of tens of thousands individuals stretching as far as the eye can see. Or albatross colonies that fill the windward edges of the remote islands they call home. You’ll have other rare sightings here too: massive–in both senses of the word–herds of elephant seals, and a wandering albatross stretching its 11-foot wings.  It’s the impossible beauty of an Antarctica trip exponentially increased by unimaginable numbers of animals. A not-be-missed polar experience, for those with the luxury of time.

For most travelers, visiting Antarctica is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. So, for those with the luxury of time, including the Falklands and South Georgia Island cruise just makes sense. And makes for a genuine experience-of-a-lifetime. This voyage has it all.
• The impossible beauty of Antarctic ice: tabular bergs, the haunting Lemaire Channel
• Massive wildlife spectacles in South Georgia and the Falklands
• Three distinct regions to experience
• Superlative photos ops and on-board photo assistance

Incomparable wildlife experience
Only the plains of the Serengeti during the migrations can compare to the wildlife spectacles offered by both South Georgia and the Falklands. On your South Georgia Island cruise you’ll see a single rookery with tens of thousands of king penguins—an astonishing sight and an indelible memory. In the Falklands, you’ll see rockhopper penguins in great number in their “hobbit shire” of the tussock grass. And, in both, you’ll have the rare opportunity to see albatross in great numbers—wandering albatross with their impressive 11-foot wing spans; and beautiful black-browed albatross—in colonies that fill the windward ledges of these southernmost islands. These, plus elephant and fur seals, pelagic birds in great numbers, and various species of whales feasting on the Southern Ocean’s seasonal bounty create unprecedented wildlife viewing experiences for you.

Add the human dimension to the ice
From the ghostly remnants of the whaling stations that once peopled South Georgia, to the warmly welcoming ranchers of Port Stanley on the Falklands, and the penguin-adapted researchers of Port Lockroy, a picturesque science station off the otherwise unpeopled Weddell Sea coast, you’ll experience the contrast between the majestic, uninhabited wildness of Antarctica, and the unique human incursions into the land of the ice.

Please note that although international airline tickets are not included in the trip cost the dates of this trip include your travel dates (based on USA/USA travel).

Brief Itinerary

Days 1 & 2 Home/Fly To Buenos Aires, Argentina/Overnight
Day 3 Buenos Aires/Ushuaia, Argentina/Embark Ship
Day 4 At Sea
Days 5 & 6 Exploring the Falkland Islands
Days 7 & 8 At Sea
Days 9 to 13 South Georgia Island
Days 14 & 15 At Sea
Days 16 to 20 Antarctica
Days 21 & 22 At Sea
Days 23 & 24 Ushuaia, Argentina/Disembark/Buenos Aires/Home

Days 1 & 2 — Home/Fly To Buenos Aires, Argentina/Overnight

Depart on an overnight flight to Buenos Aires (international flight not included). Settle into the hotel before seeing the city’s Beaux-Arts palaces and the famous balcony associated with Eva Perón.

Day 3 — Buenos Aires/Ushuaia, Argentina/Embark Ship

Fly to Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world. Enjoy lunch on a catamaran cruise of the Beagle Channel before embarking.

Day 4 — At Sea

Settle in to shipboard life as we sail to the Falkland Islands. Keep a lookout for albatross that glide alongside the ship.

Day 5 & 6 — Exploring the Falkland Islands

Stanley, the bright, pretty capital of the Falkland Islands, is a wonderfully unexpected place: a charming outpost of British culture tucked into a small bay on the shore of these windswept islands in the far South Atlantic. Many Falkland Islanders still live in very traditional ways, and we’ll have a chance to visit a small farm to see some expert sheep shearing and learn about the best techniques for cutting blocks of peat for the fire. The rocky hills and white sand beaches outside town offer some excellent hikes, and afterwards a cup of tea or a pint at the Globe Tavern goes down very nicely.

Everything we love about expedition travel seems to come together in the western Falkland Islands. Where else can you land on a beach tucked into a rocky cove, hike out across a rolling green pasture and suddenly find yourself at the crest of a sea cliff looking out over the South Atlantic surf? Just a few steps further and you’re standing at the edge of a breeding colony of black-browed albatross, so close that you can hear the wind on their wings as they swoop into land beside you. Take time to capture images of the rockhopper penguins and then it’s time to head back down to the settlement for a well-deserved farm tea—which means lots and lots and lots of delicious cakes, cookies and fresh scones!

Days 7 & 8 — At Sea

During our days at sea, we learn about the fascinating history of Antarctic exploration, as well as the flora, fauna, and geology of South Georgia—and the riveting story of Sir Ernest Shackleton and the Endurance. Our naturalists help us identify the seabirds that follow us: wandering albatross, prions, and black-browed albatross. There’ll also be time to browse the library, enjoy a massage in the wellness center, or workout in the gym.

Days 9 to 13 — South Georgia Island

Simply put, there is nowhere else in the world like South Georgia. Ninety miles long, dominated by a spine of jagged peaks and home to wildlife spectacles that are honestly hard to believe, it is one of the wildest and most beautiful places on the planet. Our days here will give us plenty of time to explore many facets of this unique sub-Antarctic island, including its storied history, rich ecology (you’ll probably be surprised by the green slopes of tussock grass below the glaciers) and the stunning scenery that surrounds us at every landing.

King penguins, the second largest species in the world, are unquestionably the most iconic wildlife of South Georgia. Exact numbers are not known, but the largest single colony on the island may have as many as 500,000 of these amazing birds. Half a million birds! Nesting together on a single two-mile-long beach! It’s a sight that is genuinely inconceivable until you have experienced it in person. At the other end of the scale, king penguins are great birds to get to know as individuals.  Strutting purposefully past our cameras on the beaches or coming and going in and out of the surf, they seem to regard us with a wonderful mixture of curiosity and disdain.

For many, South Georgia evokes, more that anything, the epic adventures of Sir Ernest Shackleton, who reached the island after making the crossing from Elephant Island in the James Caird—still one of the most incredible small-boat journeys ever attempted. From Peggotty Bluff, where he began the arduous crossing of the glaciated spine of the island, to his quiet grave near the Grytviken whaling station, Shackleton’s spirit seems to be everywhere around the island. In very good conditions we may even be able to make a long hike up to the spot where he first heard the noon whistle from the Stromness Station and knew that rescue was close at hand at last.

In the not-too-distant past, South Georgia was an important site for both whaling and sealing, but today things are very different. The contrast between watching from the ship while southern right whales feed below the blue face of a huge iceberg, and then hiking through the rusting remains of a whaling station later the same day, can be a powerfully moving experience and one that emphasizes the very positive changes that the island has seen in the last few decades. Invasive species have been removed, rare birds are growing more and more common, whales are returning in ever-greater numbers, and our own visits have become an important factor in this successful conservation.

Every minute at South Georgia is another opportunity for truly life-changing experiences. Landing before dawn to see the pink light of sunrise touch the mountains over a king penguin colony. Quietly watching as a wandering albatross, with its 11-foot wingspan, settles onto her nest and thinking of endless miles of ocean that she has seen. Capturing incredible images of three-ton bull elephant seals jousting on a lonely beach. South Georgia is sometimes called “the Serengeti of the Southern Ocean”, but that doesn’t really even come close—this lonely island is unique in the world, so rich and so beautiful that it defies any comparison.

Days 13 & 14 — At Sea

With whales below, birds above, we voyage towards the seventh continent. Head up to the Bridge to watch for icebergs and observe expert navigation at work as our skilled captain and officers sail these historic waters. Each day our naturalists offer talks that add depth to your experience.

Days 16 to 20 — Antarctica

Some ships that visit Antarctica just cruise by and have a look, but we have a very different way of experiencing this remarkable region. By taking full advantage of all the capabilities of our world-class expedition ship, we can offer a very intimate connection with this wildest of places, immersing ourselves in the polar world and filling all our senses with the beauty and excitement of the Antarctic. In the spirit of a genuine expedition, we always keep our schedule flexible so that we can take best advantage of every opportunity the White Continent offers us. We plan to be out daily, exploring in our Zodiacs, hiking at penguin colonies, discovering remote bays, photographing wildlife, and learning fascinating details from the naturalists and other experts who accompany us on every excursion.

The Antarctic Peninsula stretches over 800 miles from north to south, a spine of craggy peaks cut by dozens of deep fjords. It’s an enormous region with many different faces and ever-changing weather. Extensive experience over five decades has given us an unparalleled knowledge of the region, allowing us to respond to changing conditions, turn on a dime and select the optimal activity for each day.

Ice! It’s probably the very first thing most people think about when the topic of Antarctica comes up, and once you’re here it never disappoints. From icebergs the size of islands to the fragile, nearly invisible layers glistening on the surface where the sea has just begun to freeze, from near-vertical glaciers pouring down the slopes of every mountain to the endless landscapes of sea ice, and frozen ocean stretching to the horizon in every direction, ice defines the Antarctic. You’ll get to know it up close and personal, hiking, kayaking and cruising in the Zodiacs through this frozen world.

Our sturdy Zodiac landing craft are really the heart and soul of our explorations in the Antarctic. These tough, stable little motorized boats maneuver easily through ice-choked waters, getting us ashore safely in even the most remote and challenging locations. And simply cruising in the Zodiacs is just as much fun. What’s around the next corner? A leopard seal relaxing on an ice floe or a chance to photograph an exquisite arched iceberg that no one has ever seen before? We never know until we get there, but it’s always a thrill.

Penguins, without any doubt, are the most popular residents of Antarctica, and we’ll have many chances to get to know them well. Their colonies are almost always close to the beach, so it’s very easy to get great photos. In the short Antarctic summer these amazing birds are always busy with the many tasks of breeding and raising their chicks, so every month brings something new. In November the adults are squabbling over the pebbles they use to build their nests. By late December the first chicks are tucked in under their parents, peeping out at the world. And in February the chicks have left their nests and are very active, learning to swim and getting ready to fend for themselves.

Everywhere we go in the Antarctic we’re surrounded by opportunities to capture uniquely beautiful images with our cameras. Whether we are cruising past spectacular glaciers in the ship, getting close to seals in the Zodiacs or hiking around the penguin colonies, we are always in the company of an expert National Geographic photographer and a staff photo instructor who share what they see and help us to perfect both the art and the technique of our own photography. The impossibly gorgeous blue in the heart of an iceberg, a penguin tenderly feeding its tiny chick or a glorious sunset over frozen ocean, shots like these surround us every day. Learning to capture these perfect moments is both a wonderful challenge and a huge thrill.

Really exploring Antarctica also means simply relaxing and watching while our ships cruise through some of the most spectacular scenery on Earth.  Grab a cup of cocoa and a comfortable seat in the Observation Lounge or visit the officers on the Bridge; bundle up and climb all the way up to the Monkey Deck for a really panoramic view or just kick back in your cabin and watch for seals on ice or whales blowing in the distance. We make transits of world-famous passages like the Lemaire Channel and Antarctic Sound, but we also visit equally amazing places that you’ve never heard of, yet!

Days 21 & 22 — At Sea

As we sail toward Ushuaia, an albatross or two may join the escort of seabirds that cross our bow. There’s time to share photos with the onboard National Geographic photographer, catch up on the book you haven’t had a minute to read, and write emails home, saying “Don’t want this to end.”

Days 23 & 24 — Ushuaia, Argentina/Disembark/Buenos Aires/Home

After breakfast, we disembark in Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world. This morning's charter flight will bring us over Patagonia for spectacular views on the way to Buenos Aires. Continue on to other adventures, or connect with homeward bound flights (international flight not included).

* Itinerary may be subject to change

Only show rates under
$ X
Due to COVID-19 trip availability is not being updated. Please contact Polar Cruises to check on specific trips availability.
Per Person USD
Rates Antarctica 2021-22
Cat 1 Double Porthole
Cat 2 Double Window
Cat 3 Double Window
Cat 4 Oversized Double
Cat 5 Double Balcony
Cat 6 Suite
Cat 7 Balcony Suite
Cat SA Solo
Cat SB Solo
Charter
Air
Photography
Free International Air Miami/Santiago & Buenos Aires/Miami
Expires Mar 31st 2021
$20,960Limited$22,530Limited$23,610Limited$24,700Limited$30,390Limited$34,970Limited$40,600Limited$28,160Limited$29,500Limited$960 
Photography
$25,890Limited$27,830Limited$29,170Limited$30,510Limited$37,550Limited$43,200Limited$50,150Limited$34,700Limited$36,400Limited 
Photography
Free International Air Miami/Buenos Aires/Miami
Expires Mar 31st 2021
$15,080Limited$16,150Limited$16,720Limited$17,970Limited$21,660Limited$24,690Limited$28,200Limited$19,990Limited$20,850Limited 
Photography
$16,760Limited$17,990Limited$18,570Limited$19,990Limited$23,990Limited$27,500Limited$31,800Limited$22,450Limited$23,150Limited 
Photography
$16,760Limited$17,990Limited$18,570Limited$19,990Limited$23,990Limited$27,500Limited$31,800Limited$22,450Limited$23,150Limited 
Photography
$15,080Limited$16,150Limited$16,720Limited$17,970Limited$21,660Limited$24,690Limited$28,200Limited$19,990Limited$20,850Limited 
Photography
$25,890Limited$27,830Limited$29,170Limited$30,510Limited$37,550Limited$43,200Limited$50,150Limited$34,700Limited$36,400Limited 
Photography
$15,080Limited$16,150Limited$16,720Limited$17,970Limited$21,660Limited$24,690Limited$28,200Limited$19,990Limited$20,850Limited 
Photography
$15,080Limited$16,150Limited$16,720Limited$17,970Limited$21,660Limited$24,690Limited$28,200Limited$19,990Limited$20,850Limited 
Photography
Free Charter Flight Buenos Aires/Ushuaia & Falklands/Santiago (Prices in Red) PLUS
Free International Air Miami/Buenos Aires & Santiago/Miami
Expires Mar 31st 2021
$18,430Limited$19,590Limited$20,650Limited$21,990Limited$26,620Limited$30,750Limited$35,550Limited$24,550Limited$25,750Limited 
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.

Dates shown are USA/USA however international airfare is NOT included in trip price.

Free Bar Tab and Crew Gratuities are included in the listed rates.

Kayaking is available as an additional activity available to all passengers and arranged onboard free of charge.

All trips subject to possible fuel surcharge.

Only show rates under
$ X
Due to COVID-19 trip availability is not being updated. Please contact Polar Cruises to check on specific trips availability.
Per Person USD
Rates Antarctica 2022-23
Cat 1 Double Porthole
Cat 2 Double Window
Cat 3 Double Window
Cat 4 Oversized Double
Cat 5 Double Balcony
Cat 6 Suite
Cat 7 Balcony Suite
Cat SA Solo
Cat SB Solo
Charter
Air
Photography
Free International Air Miami/Santiago & Buenos Aires/Miami
Expires Mar 31st 2021
$20,960Limited$22,530Limited$23,610Limited$24,700Limited$30,390Limited$34,970Limited$40,600Limited$28,160Limited$29,500Limited$960 
Photography
Free International Air Miami/Buenos Aires/Miami
Expires Mar 31st 2021
$25,890Limited$27,830Limited$29,170Limited$30,510Limited$37,550Limited$43,200Limited$50,150Limited$34,700Limited$36,400Limited 
Photography
Free International Air Miami/Buenos Aires/Miami
Expires Mar 31st 2021
$15,080Limited$16,150Limited$16,720Limited$17,970Limited$21,660Limited$24,690Limited$28,200Limited$19,990Limited$20,850Limited 
Photography
$16,760Limited$17,990Limited$18,570Limited$19,990Limited$23,990Limited$27,500Limited$31,800Limited$22,450Limited$23,150Limited 
Photography
$16,760Limited$17,990Limited$18,570Limited$19,990Limited$23,990Limited$27,500Limited$31,800Limited$22,450Limited$23,150Limited 
Photography
$15,080Limited$16,150Limited$16,720Limited$17,970Limited$21,660Limited$24,690Limited$28,200Limited$19,990Limited$20,850Limited 
Photography
$15,080Limited$16,150Limited$16,720Limited$17,970Limited$21,660Limited$24,690Limited$28,200Limited$19,990Limited$20,850Limited 
Photography
$15,080Limited$16,150Limited$16,720Limited$17,970Limited$21,660Limited$24,690Limited$28,200Limited$19,990Limited$20,850Limited 
Photography
$15,080Limited$16,150Limited$16,720Limited$17,970Limited$21,660Limited$24,690Limited$28,200Limited$19,990Limited$20,850Limited 
Photography
$25,890Limited$27,830Limited$29,170Limited$30,510Limited$37,550Limited$43,200Limited$50,150Limited$34,700Limited$36,400Limited 
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.

Dates shown are USA/USA however international airfare is NOT included in trip price.

Free Bar Tab and Crew Gratuities are included in the listed rates.

Kayaking is available as an additional activity available to all passengers and arranged onboard free of charge.

All trips subject to possible fuel surcharge.

DeckPlan_NG-Explorer

   Category 1
Cabins feature one or two Portholes. Most cabins feature two lower single beds. Cabins 303-306 feature one queen-sized bed. All offer a writing desk, reading lamps, bathroom with a roomy glass-wall shower stall, and a TV showing the ship's position and programing.
    Category 2 with Window
Cabins feature two lower single beds (some can convert to a queen-sized bed), and one large window. They offer a writing desk, reading lamps, bathroom with a roomy glass-wall shower stall, and a TV showing the ship's position and programming.
  Category 3 with Window
Cabins feature two lower single beds (some can convert to a queen-sized bed), one large window, and two sitting chairs and a small table and ample storage. They have a writing desk, reading lamps, bathroom with a roomy glass-wall shower stall, and a TV showing the ship's position and programming.
  Category 4 with Window
Cabins feature two lower single beds and at least one large window. Cabin 217, 226 & 228 feature one queen-size bed. All cabins feature climate controls, a TV showing the ship's position and programing. Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall.
  Category 5 with Balcony
These cabins feature a balcony with sliding glass doors, feature one queen-sized bed, a writing desk and chairs, climate controls, a TV showing the ship's position and programing. Bathrooms are also generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall. Cabin 221 has two lower single beds that can convert to an Olympic-sized queen.
  Category 6 Suite
Spacious cabins. Those on the Veranda Deck can be converted into Triples, while Upper Deck cabin has private balcony. All feature two lower single beds that can be converted into a queen, a writing desk, chairs, and a TV. Bathrooms are generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall and twin sinks.
  Category 7 Suite with Balcony
These large cabins with private balconies have two lower single beds that can convert to an Olympic-sized queen. They have seating areas and can be converted to triples. Bathrooms are generously sized with a roomy glass-walled shower stall and twin sinks.
  Category Solo A with Window
These cabins feature one lower single bed and a large window, a writing desk, reading lamp, bathroom with a roomy glass-wall shower stall, and a TV showing the ship's position and programming.
  Category Solo B with Window
These cabins feature one lower single bed and a large window, a writing desk, reading lamp, bathroom with a roomy glass-walled shower stall, and a TV showing the ship's position and programming.