akademik vavilov antarctica in depth cruise

Antarctica - 'In Depth' (Antarctic Circle Voyage)

  • Overview

    Cross the Antarctic circle and maximise your time down on the ice.

    This voyage encompasses two additional days of exploration in Antarctica without adding to the total length of the voyage. We achieve this by flying from South America to King George Island (Antarctica) at the beginning of the voyage, which saves two days on the sea crossing. Those two days 'saved' allow us the time we need to dive far to the south with the objective of crossing the Antarctic Circle. This extra time also provides for great flexibility in daily programming. Ultimately, it equals more time on shore, more time in the Zodiacs and more time spent in the company of our expert guides soaking up the experience.


    We always anticipate exciting navigation as we head for the Antarctic Circle. The region is home to several fascinating historical sites including the old British Antarctic Survey (BAS) hut – “Base W” situated on Detaille Island. We encounter sizable Adelie penguin rookeries here and the low-lying Fish, Argentine and Yalour Island groups provide fantastic options for Zodiac cruising and wildlife observation. Many of the classic locations along the Peninsula are also included and a day in the South Shetland Islands rounds out the experience.


    Our full range of activities will be offered on this voyage – walks on shore, visits to wildlife colonies, visits to historic sites and possibly even a working science station. For the more adventurous, sea kayaking is a wonderful way to discover Antarctica – and if weather conditions permit – why not spend the night camping on shore?

    Duration: 11 days
    Passengers: 96 passengers
    Embarkation Point: Punta Arenas, Chile
    Disembarkation Point: Ushuaia, Argentina
    Physical rating: Soft Adventure
    Fly/Cruise: Mandatory extra flight
    Single Supplement: 1.5x - 2.0x twin rate or share options
  • Itinerary
    • Day 1 - Punta Arenas: Embarkation Day

      Our journey commences this morning in the southern Chilean port city of Punta Arenas. We gather at a central location and transfer to the airport for the two-hour flight across the Drake Passage to Antarctica (this flight is included in the price of your voyage). Upon arrival at King George Island, we embark our ship via Zodiac. After settling into our cabins and exploring our new surroundings, we meet our expedition team and fellow passengers. Excitement is in the air as we enjoy a welcome refreshment and set sail. No doubt, everyone will be looking forward to the adventure ahead.

      IMPORTANT JOINING INSTRUCTIONS:
      Your journey commences in Punta Arenas, Chile. You will need to arrive in Punta Arenas at least one day prior to the scheduled departure date. This gives you a buffer in the event of any unexpected travel delays between home and voyage embarkation and departure. From Punta Arenas we
      fly to King George Island (Antarctica) via a special charter flight where we board the ship.

      Our voyage is complete when we arrive back into Ushuaia (Argentina). A transfer from the ship to the airport (or local hotels) is provided upon disembarkation. We advise booking your flights out of Ushuaia from mid-morning onwards. Or consider spending a night in Ushuaia at the conclusion of
      your voyage.

      Full joining instructions will be provided in your final travel documentation. If you have questions before this time, please ask us.

    • Day 2 - GERLACHE STRAIT AND CUVERVILLE ISLAND

      Overnight we have navigated across the Bransfield Strait and wake to the towering peaks of the Antarctic continent laid out before us. Our first objective will be Cuverville Island, situated in the Errera Channel. We venture on shore and observe a substantial colony of gentoo penguins as well as
      nesting Imperial cormorants. A stroll along the rocky beach here, watching the penguins come and go is a memorable experience. The sea kayakers may take to the water for the first time and there is some great paddling around the island to be enjoyed. As we navigate our way out into the Gerlache Strait - we are on our way to the south, aiming for the Antarctic Circle.

    • Day 3 - REACH THE ANTARCTIC CIRCLE

      With favourable ice conditions, we hope to have reached Matha Strait overnight and will attempt a shore landing at Detaille Island, below the Antarctic Circle. A now abandoned British science station - ‘Base W’ was established in the 1950s and is in a remarkable state of preservation. For the history buffs this is a fascinating place providing a glimpse into the harsh life of early Antarctic visitors. We toast our success on crossing the Antarctic Circle turning our gaze northwards, viewing the spectacular chain of glacier-covered peaks stretching as far as the eye can see. This coastline begs further exploration.

    • Day 4/7 - EXPLORATION OF THE ANTARCTIC PENINSULA AND THE GERLACHE COASTLINE

      Overnight we have navigated north towards the low-lying Yalour Island group. We hope to visit a working scientific base to learn of the important climate-related research happening here. A hike over the snowy saddle of nearby Winter Island allows us to stretch our legs and explore the old British Antarctic Survey hut. Nearby Petermann Island is home to a sizable Adelie penguin rookery. Adelies - the smallest of the Antarctic penguin’s nest here and share the location with Gentoo penguins and Imperial cormorants. The view to the north of Mount Shackleton and Mount Scott is impressive. These towering granite sentinels mark the southern entrance to the Lemaire Channel.

      Pleneau Island offers more opportunities for shore landings. Just offshore in the shallow waters of the Penola Strait, massive icebergs run aground. Constant wind and wave action sculpt these gargantuan chunks of ice into fantastic shapes, revealing more shades of blue than you could ever imagine. For many, a Zodiac cruise here will be a highlight of the entire voyage.

      Ice conditions permitting, we transit the Lemaire Channel on our way north towards Paradise Harbour. This may be the first opportunity to step foot on the continent of Antarctica itself. Nearby Neko Harbour offers another continental landing. Both locations offer great hiking opportunities up to panoramic view points. For the sea kayakers, the paddling opportunities here are endless. Expect to be in full sensory overload by this time of the voyage.

      It is somewhere along this stretch of coastline that we plan a night on shore, camping in Antarctica. We have all the right gear and equipment and an expert team to make it happen - all you need is an adventurous spirit! Camping always depends on the weather and is never guaranteed it on any voyage. If the weather is good and site characteristics suit our requirements, rest assured, we will always go for it. Camping is included, and you can decide to participate while onboard. There is no need to pre-book.

      The huge snow-covered outcrop of Danco Island looms over the ice-choked waters and the hike to the summit is well worth the effort for the epic views. We navigate north through the Gerlache Strait towards Spert Island - a little visited rocky outcrop with remarkable geology. The island is criss-crossed by narrow channels which makes for fantastic Zodiac cruising and sea kayaking. The cliffs are home to numerous nesting bird species and we often encounter whales here. Nearby Mikkelson Harbour also allows for another off-ship excursion.

      After several busy days of exploration along the Peninsula, we head north, bound for the South Shetland Islands. This is an important whale migration corridor and we expect sightings of humpbacks, or the resident pod of Orca that inhabit this stretch of water.

    • Day 8 - SOUTH SHETLAND ISLANDS

      The adventure is not over and we plan an additional day of exploration in the South Shetlands. Prevailing weather conditions will dictate our landing locations. Aitcho Island is a possibility and is a great spot for a hike or a Zodiac cruise. There are several other landing sites in the South Shetland's
      including Half Moon Island, or the broad pebbly beach at Yankee Harbour, where we sometimes encounter Weddell seals sunning themselves. This is another great spot for a hike. Hannah Point, with its elephant seal colony and nesting Antarctic petrels - could also fature. In the evening, we navigate north and into the Drake Passage, charting a course for South America.

    • Day 9/10 - DRAKE PASSAGE – RETURN TO SOUTH AMERICA

      Making our way back to South America, the educational presentations continue and we enjoy a memorable voyage recap by our Expedition Leader. Join our photography experts in the multimedia room and download and back up your precious images. If weather conditions allow, we hope to make
      a rounding of Cape Horn. This fabled stretch of water is home to legendary tales of exploration and early navigation. It is a fitting place to reflect on a wonderful expedition. Approaching the entrance to the Beagle Channel in early evening light, we

    • Day 11 - Ushuaia: Disembarkation day

      In the early morning, we arrive into Ushuaia, Argentina. It is time to say farewell to your crew and fellow travellers. Guests will be transported to their hotels or to the airport for return flights home. It will be possible to connect to flights through to Buenos Aires or other destinations in South America. Otherwise enjoy a night in town or venture further afield to explore the highlights of Patagonia.

    Please consider that our voyages are expeditionary in nature. This means, that there are no concrete itineraries, your Captain and Expedition Leader will utilise their vast experience to chart the best course for your expedition depending on the climatic and environmental conditions. Mentioned highlights and wildlife cannot be guaranteed.

  • Highlights & Activities

    Photography

    Photographer in residence provides presentations, critiques, informal instruction and assists on Zodiacs and shore landing to help you get the best shots!

    Included

    Camping

    All gear is provided for you to spend a night sleeping on the ice

    Included

    Kayaking

    Gear up with the best kayaking gear in the industry, to experience one of the best paddling in the world for intimate experiences.

    AUD$ 1,144 per person

    Fly/Cruise voyage

    Our Fly/Cruise programs an excellent choice to navigate the Drake Passage quickly. This expedition comprises of 1 or 2 charter flights across the Drake Passage, so you need not worry about crossing the passage by sea. These expeditions are great options and often allow for an increased amount of time around the continent.

    Penguins

    Taking centre stage on your Antarctic Peninsula expedition, are the Brushtail penguin species. These photogenic and intriguing species include, Gentoo, Chinstrap and Adelie penguins. The species are in abundance across Peninsula and are always performing.

    On board voyages in our other details you may come across Rockhopper, Macaroni, Magellanic, King and Emperor penguins.

    Shoot to your shutter's content!

    For aspiring photographers, the best time to shoot the Antarctic landscape is definitely October, November and March. At these times the sun is much lower in the sky and thus creates beautiful twilight hues and shadows, which contrast the landscape magnificently.

    Of course, if it is wildlife and Antarctica’s babies you are hoping to shoot, then January and February are the best times. Alternatively, consider an early season South Georgia & Antarctica expedition for the best of wildlife and photo opportunities in Antarctica.

  • Inclusions
    Inclusions / Exclusions

    Included in your Expedition

    - Hotel accommodation in Punta Arenas for one night at the conclusion of your voyage
    - Special charter flight from King George Island to Punta Arenas at the end of the voyage
    - Transfers from central meeting point to the ship
    - All shipboard accommodation and meals
    - Zodiac and land excursions with our expert expedition team
    - Comprehensive pre-departure material
    - Service taxes and port charges

    Not included in your Expedition

    - Gratuities
    - Baggage / cancellation / interruption / emergency and medical travel insurance
    - Expenses of personal nature including; Laundry / Bar / Beverages / Internet & Wifi
    - Pre and post-cruise accommodation
    - Passport and Visa expenses
    - International and internal flights that are not specified
  • Map
    Map coming soon
  • Gallery
  • Vessel

    AKADEMIK VAVILOV

    Akademik Sergey Vavilov is the near identical sister-ship to Akademik Ioffe. Built in Rauma (Finland) these Baltic Class 1A (Canadian Type B) ice strengthened ships are the leaders in their class. They are the pride of the polar fleet featuring first class amenities catering to the demands of today’s most discerning guests. A separate lounge and bar with panoramic views, as well as a library provide ideal places to sit and relax or catch up on some reading. A selection of movies and documentaries can also be watched in the lounge. The sumptuous meals prepared for you by our culinary team are enjoyed in our dining room, which can host all passengers in a single seating and will keep you feeling healthy and strong for the myriad of activities offered throughout the voyage. Other facilities include the theatre style presentation room, gift-shop, fitness room, massage room, hot water spa, sauna and plunge pool. There’s also a dedicated expedition ‘mud-room’ where you prepare for your off-ship excursions.

    Features & Facilities
    • Superior accommodation
    • 360 degree observation decks
    • Lounge & Bar with panoramic views
    • Theatre style presentation room
    • Wellness Centre; Gym
    • Massage services
    • Hot water spa
    • Sauna
    • Plunge Pool
    • Expedition mud room
    • Digital photography lab
    • Internet/Wifi
    Key Facts
    Luxury star rating: 3
    Guests #: 96
    Crew #: 65
    Ice Class: 1A
    Speed: 14
    Refurbished:
    Technical Specs
    Year built: 1988
    Length: 117m
    Width: 18
    Draft:
    Tonnage: 6230
    Registry: Russia
    Elec Outlets: 220V / 2 Round Pin
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Ready to book your expedition?

We understand that the trip of a lifetime takes planning, so we make the financial commitments easy to manage.

  • Confirm your booking today with just AUD$ 1,000 per passenger.
  • Pay your 25% deposit 5 day later.
  • Final payment due 120 days prior to departure.
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