Waterproof Cruises
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  • © Pete Shaw
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  • © Scott Portelli
  • © Scott Portelli
  • © Gary Lindenbaum

Antarctica & South Georgia small group expedition cruise

Join our Waterproof Signature Expedition Cruise to Antarctica & South Georgia!

Dates: 22 January - 10 February 2024 (20 dagen)
Ship: Polar Pioneer with only 50 guests
Price from USD 16.400 pp

Contact us to book now

Combine the highlights of the Antarctic Peninsula with an in-depth exploration of South Georgia.

Small group Expedition Cruise with 50 guests

We are very excited to operate an exclusive Waterproof Expeditions Cruise in January 2024! During this extensive 20-day voyage we'll explore the spectacular nature of Antarctica and the incredible wildlife of South Georgia. January is prime-time for expedition cruises to the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic islands, especially for wildlife lovers. The penguin chicks will have hatched and seal pups will start to wobble around. We also hope to visit wandering albatross nesting sites and spot many other sea birds on South Georgia.
During this voyage we will enjoy around 20 hours of light each day, giving us plenty of time for excursions and shore visits. Our experienced Waterproof guides share their knowledge about the polar regions with you during the outings and lectures on board. The small group size of only 50 guests will allow for an intimate and exclusive experience unlike any other.

In the footsteps of Sir Ernest Shackleton

Our expedition cruise will take you on a voyage through history. We will have the opportunity to reflect on Polar explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton’s epic expedition with his ship the Endurance which sank in November 1915 and was recently found at the bottom of the Weddell Sea. As we explore South Georgia we can retrace part of his legendary crossing of the island and visit the Stromness whaling station where he and his men found rescue. Another imporatant site is Grytviken. The place where the legendary Endurance expedition started is also his last resting ground. Here you can visit Shackleton's grave and pay respect to the ‘Boss’ as he was called.

Our Expedition Ship: MV Polar Pioneer

This exciting voyage will take place on our beloved vessel MV Polar Pioneer. In the past, we've had many memorable expedition cruises on board Polar Pioneer and we are very excited to travel on board this wonderful ship once again. Those that have travelled on Polar Pioneer before will recognize the vessel right away, but at the same time notice a higher standard due to recent refurbishments.
Polar Pioneer is the perfect expedition vessel for wildlife viewing and photography in the Antarctic. The ship is capable of accessing places restricted to vessels with more than 50 guests, but still big enough to make you feel comfortable during the voyage. There is room for all guests in the zodiacs at once, minimizing waiting times to go ashore.

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Highlights of this expedition cruise

• Only 50 guests!
• On board newly refurbished Polar Pioneer
• True expedition style travel
• Extensive South Georgia program
• Optional Snorkeling Activity
• Accompanied by 7 expert guides
• Operated by Waterproof Expeditions

  • The Antarctic Peninsula

    Our voyage starts from Ushuaia. After we exit the Beagle Channel we find ourselves on the open ocean for a 2-day crossing of the Drake Passage. During our sea voyage you might see albatrosses and storm petrels flying alongside the ship, so it's always worth having a look outside. Once we arrive in the calmer waters off the coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, we will generally plan landings and zodiac excursions two to three times a day. Sometimes we will cruise along spectacular ice cliffs, watch whales that are feeding near the surface or go ashore for a hike and a close encounter with penguins. In between landings you can enjoy lectures about the wildlife, geology, history and geography of the Antarctic Peninsula.
    Places we might visit include islands of the coast of Antarctica as well as locations on the continent itself. Like Paradise Harbour, a protected bay surrounded by magnificent mountain peaks and spectacular glaciers. The wildlife-rich Half Moon Islandwhere a large Chinstrap penguin rookery lives between basaltic turrets coloured by yellow and orange lichens. Volcanic Deception Island with black beaches and steam rising from hot springs along the shore. And the famous Lemaire Channel where the water is often so still that it perfectly reflects the high cliffs that rise on both sides of the ice-packed channel. Throughout our voyage we'll keep an eye out for wildife, as leopard seals, whales and penguins may show themselves at any time!

  • The Island of South Georgia

    Our voyage from Antarctica to South Georgia will take 2 to 3 days. During our crossing we might stop at the South Orkney Islands for a visit to the Argentine scientific station Orcadas Base, before we sail the final stretch to South Georgia.
    South Georgia is a tiny island in the Southern Ocean, one of the most isolated places on our planet. A steep mountain range traces the spine of this long, narrow island, creating a breathtaking backdrop when wildlife watching and photographing.
    Unlike Antarctica, where hardly any remnants of human activity can be found, South Georgia has a long and turbulent history of human interference. In Grytviken, the Elepahnt Seals sleep amidst the ruins of factory buildings. Abandoned ships lie sunken alongside the old docks and holes in concrete walls remind us of the more recent Falkland's War, which started here. The famous polar explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton was laid to rest at Grytviken. We hope to visit the cross his men erected on a hill looking out over Cumberland Bay. As we explore South Georgia, we will have the opportunity to reflect on Shackleton’s epic journey.

  • St. Andrews Bay

    The sandy black beach is a resting place for hundreds of Elephant seals that haul out on the shore to moult. Behind the beach, the sight and sound of tens upon tens of thousands of King penguins at different stages of their breeding cycle will be overwhelming. The glacial river that runs into the sea here will be alive with penguin chicks and Elephant seal pups testing their aquatic 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 and glaciers.

    Godthul

    Imagine indented bays lined with bleached whalebones, teeming with Fur seals and penguin chicks waiting for their parents. Here 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.

  • Prion Island

    We will aim to visit Prion Island where we can sit quietly to see serene albatrosses sitting proudly on their eggs or watch their cute downy chicks. We may be blessed by the performance of an intimate courtship dance, or may witness a youngster being lovingly fed. We might see adolescents exercising their wide wing spans, trying to launch themselves into the air, as they realise that mum and dad will no longer feed them and they must leave the island in search of food.

    Salisbury Plain

    With around 60.000 pairs of King Penguins, Salisbury Plain is home to the second largest colony in the world. No surprise is has been the focus of countless nature documentaries throughout the years. It is one of our favorite sites on South Georgia, even though landing here is not always possible since the area is not sheltered from the large ocean swells.

  • Stanley - Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)

    We leave South Georgia behind us and head north towards the Falkland Islands. Our adventure ends in Stanley, the tiny capital of the Islands. This village-size town has a lot to explore along its' sheltered harbour. From here you can make your way home or extend your journey with a few more days of exploring. The Falklands are another natural gem, offering an abundance of wildlife that is usually easy to approach. You will find a spectacular variation of birdlife here, including five types of penguin (Gentoo, King, Macaroni, Magellanic and Rockhopper). The scenic beauty of the islands creates the perfect backdrop for your wildlife photography. From white sandy beaches to high cliffs, there's a different scenery in every direction you look.

Dates & Rates

  • Polar Pioneer Signature Expedition: Antarctica & South Georgia

    Dates
    • 22nd Jan - 10th Feb 2024
    • Embark: Ushuaia
    • Disembark: Stanley
    Prices per person from
    Captain's Suite
    23,995 USD
    Mini Suite
    22,800 USD
    Twin Private Cabin
    20,750 USD
    Twin Public Cabin
    18,795 USD
    Triple Cabin
    16,400 USD

Extensions

Call us today on +31 (0) 858 771 583


Expedition Activities

Snorkeling activity

Surcharge USD 750 per person

Waterproof Cruises & Expeditions has invented the fun activity Polar Snorkeling in 2010. Over the years it has proven to be an exceptional way to explore the polar regions’ marine life without the need of any diving experience. During this voyage you might get the chance to snorkel alongside floating icebergs or near a beach where penguins shoot in and out of the water. We try to snorkel in many different locations throughout the voyage. A once in a lifetime opportunity to explore the Southern Ocean below the surface and an activity only few people have ever attempted! You can bring your own snorkeling gear and drysuit on board with you.

If you do not wish to bring your own dry suit and polar snorkel equipment, we provide a complete Polar Snorkeling rental package for an additional USD 500 per person. 

Photography

Free

This expedition is a great opportunity for nature photographers who want quality time with the (sub)antarctic wildlife and landscape. On board Polar Pioneer you will find a large deck space with raised areas making her perfect for photography from the ship. As our voyage takes place mid-season, this expedition will yield extraordinary photographic opportunities. You will enjoy long days, resulting in plenty of light for photography. Excursions by zodiac take you in among the icebergs where we might find seals resting and we will attempt frequent landings to photograph penguins. During this voyage we will spend more days on South Georgia than most other expedition cruises, offering you enough time to get excellent pictures. We will visit locations that are often featured in nature and wildlife documentaries. Among our expedition guides there are several expert (underwater) photographers who are happy to assist you and will share their experience and knowledge about photography in the polar regions.