Snorkeling in Antarctica

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Yes, you read that right. Snorkeling in Antarctica! Now you might be asking yourself, why on earth would anybody want to jump into the frigid Antarctic waters to snorkel? The quick answer is, you will experience scenery and wildlife unlike any other place on earth. While you will see incredible scenery and wildlife from the Zodiacs or on shore, strapping on a mask and taking in the views below the water adds a whole new perspective! 

Snorkeling is offered on select voyages aboard the ships Greg Mortimer and Sylvia Earle. Our client service team member, Sharon, had the chance to try out this relatively new activity in late 2019 aboard the Greg Mortimer.  

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The pristine waters of the Southern Ocean are crystal clear allowing you to see icebergs and marine life. Only a small portion of icebergs are visible above water so it’s truly breathtaking to see the size, color and shapes of the bergs from below. If you are as lucky as I, you will see the penguins swimming by. It is astonishing how graceful and fast they are in the water compared to waddling around on land! You may also witness marine life such as isopods, starfish, crustaceans and seals.

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Required Experience & Fitness
While it is an advantage to have previous snorkeling experience, complete beginners are welcome to participate. The expert guides will provide all the necessary equipment, guidance and instructions needed to enjoy this activity. However, you must be a competent swimmer. 

Number of Outings
During the expedition the goal is to snorkel as often as possible. The outings will allow you enough time to witness wildlife in action, as well as marvel at the fascinating display of life under the water. You are not obliged to join all snorkeling outings and can choose to enjoy regular shore excursions if you wish. Generally, expect to have between 5-10 outings in the Antarctic depending on the itinerary and weather. Antarctic voyages that include South Georgia can have 7-12 outings, depending on the weather.

Equipment Included
All the necessary gear for your polar snorkeling experience is included in the activity cost.  The following gear is provided:

• Snorkeling dry suit – these light, flexible and breathable suits are specially designed to keep you dry in the icy polar waters

• Hood, gloves and boots – a thick neoprene hood with face and neck seal will keep you stay warm and dry from the neck up, while neoprene mittens and boots protect your hands and feet

• High quality and polar-tested fins, mask, and snorkel. However, you are welcome to bring your own fins, masks, and snorkel if you prefer. Every snorkeler will be issued a snorkeling safety pack with additional buoyancy aids and means of communications.

The Guides
The team of highly qualified guides have over 20 years of polar diving and snorkeling experience and provide snorkelers with detailed briefings and best practice procedures to ensure a safe and enjoyable snorkeling experience.

Cost
Joining the snorkeling program is an additional cost and you can find the current prices listed below the Greg Mortimer and Sylvia Earle pricing grids on our website.

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You may have snorkeled in the Caribbean or other tropical locations but snorkeling in the polar regions is a truly unique experience for any adventurer to cross off their bucket list!

For a list of voyages offering snorkeling, please visit the following link: https://www.polarcruises.com/antarctica/activities/antarctica-snorkeling

Contact us for more information and for assistance with finding a voyage that meets your specific needs!