Travel Tips for Antarctic Cruising

Seals and Zodiacs

Beautiful, mysterious Antarctica.  It’s not your neighbor’s timeshare.  

It is an experience unlike any other, and one that requires thorough preparation, and enthusiastic anticipation.  Planning a trip to the Antarctic can seem overwhelming at first, since few are part of the “Seven Continents Club” and able to offer advice on how to properly travel to this remote part of the world.

Having educated polar travel specialists on your team is a great place to start.  But mental preparation, combined with great packing choices and extensive knowledge about Antarctica will also enhance your onboard polar experience, and help prepare you to enjoy all the epic adventures coming your way on your Antarctic cruise.  

If you are considering an Antarctic cruise in the future, keep in mind these five travel tips that will help you maximize your polar cruise experience, and make your Antarctic vacation the most enjoyable and epic adventure of your life.

How to Make the Most of Your Antarctic Cruise Adventure

Embrace being in the middle of nowhere.  Yes, communication will be limited, the ship will have quiet time, and internet may be spotty at best.  While society has developed this need to stay in touch digitally day-to-day, unplugging during your Antarctic cruise can be therapeutic.  All the time spent away from the cyber and cellular world will provide opportunity to enjoy the view, take in the fresh air, be alone with your thoughts, and learn something new. Save the digital stuff for post trip--you’ll have much more to share if you embrace your polar experience completely unplugged.

Educate yourself before you leave.  Knowing a little about Antarctica’s history, geography, and animal inhabitants beforehand will go a long way in helping you maximize your trip.  Reading about the history and explorations of polar explorers such as Ernest Shackleton will help you grow an appreciation for those who have previously tried to maneuver the passages of Antarctica.  Understanding the life-cycle and food chain of the indigenous wildlife and plant life of Antarctic will create a sense of intrigue about these creatures that sustain themselves despite the harshest of circumstance. And, understanding the geology of the South Pole and Antarctica will build appreciation for this sensational, awe-inspiring, and practically untouched location of the planet.

View interruptions as opportunities.  Antarctic travel can be unpredictable: itineraries change, landings are abandoned, and weather conditions can cause ships to re-route.  See these interruptions and delays as an opportunity for a surprise experience, not a disappointment.  So often the most magical things happen when we least expect it. Luckily, when you are in Antarctica, there is almost always something to see, something new to experience, or something unexpected that’s about to happen. 

Enjoy the adventure.  By deciding to take a trip to Antarctica, you’ve already shown that you are ready for adventure and experience, so why stop there?  Stepping out of your comfort zone and enjoying Antarctica through activities and adventures you may not have previously considered will only enhance the experience (as long as you are physically capable of participating). Zodiac cruising amongst icebergs, camping alongside the penguins, or getting to know a new group of travelers over dinner may be something you’ve never thought to try before, and end up being the highlight of your trip!

Bring the right gear and clothing.  It is always difficult deciding what to pack for a trip, but packing for an Antarctic cruise is even more intimidating.  Start by packing what’s recommended by your travel specialist, and base the remaining packing on what you will need to maximize your Antarctic experience.  For example, you will want to pack the necessary cold-weather gear, but you also don’t want to forget the polarized sunglasses which will take the strain away while viewing all the beautiful scenery surrounding you.  If you have a passion for photography, pack twice as many memory cards as you think you will need, or maybe consider packing along a laptop to backup your photos.  In addition, don’t forget chapstick, sunscreen, moisturizer and other toiletries which will maximize your comfort. Antarctica’s weather can be unpredictable, so packing gear that will make you as comfortable as possible despite the wind, cold, and sun will allow you to focus on the adventure and not the weather.  There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad packing!

With the right combination of anticipation, education, recreation, and preparation, you will get the most out of your Antarctica travel experience.  To find out more about cruising options to the Antarctic, or to book your next Antarctic cruise, call Polar Cruises today at: Toll Free at 888-484-2244 (US or Canada) or 541-330-2454(Outside the US).