fram patagonia and antarctica cruise

Patagonia to Antarctica Expedition - Southbound

  • Overview
    Staring in the colourful city Valparaiso, we sail along the Chilean Pacific coastline that is filled with snow-tipped volcanoes that is reflected in beautiful lakes, raging rivers and lush vegetation. The vastness and untouched beauty of the rugged and mountainous landscape will surely make a great impression! We continue one of the most scenic national parks in the world and into the fjords of Chile. This wild and remote area seems almost untouched by humans, with mountains plunging into icy waters. The steep valleys with snow-capped mountains make a striking contrast to an otherwise green area that is rich so in wildlife. Cape Horn is a mystical place where to oceans meet. We might even go ashore here. Further, we will be crossing of the treacherous Drake Passage to Antarctica to the mighty frozen wastes of the south. In Antarctica we will attempt to do landings at several places. Penguins, seals, whales and large flocks of sea birds give life to this surrealistic and beautiful landscape. We will bring you on shore to experience some of the most unique wildlife viewing while setting foot on the Antarctic continent. You might also get a chance to kayak in the icy waters of Antarctica. And while on board our comfortable ship you can hear presentations by experts in Antarctica’s rich history, so that you can get even more out of what you will experience along the way. Then we cross the Drake Passage again, before this expedition ends in Ushuaia.
    Duration: 19 days
    Passengers: 318 passengers
    Embarkation Point: Valparaiso, Chile
    Disembarkation Point: Buenos Aires, Argentina
    Physical rating: Soft Adventure
    Fly/Cruise: Mandatory extra flight
    Single Supplement: 0.0x twin rate or share options
  • Itinerary
    • Day 1 - Valparaíso, Chile; Embarkation Day

      This expedition starts in the wonderful, colourful and poetic city of Valparaíso. One of the best ways of seeing this scenic town is through its funiculars. These constructions, which are scattered around the entire natural amphitheatre surrounding the city, allow sweeping views of the bay, and highlight the multi hued houses, creating a rainbow of colour and light. Stroll Valparaiso´s narrow streets, climb its endless staircases and discover something new at every turn: a beautiful building, a remarkable art gallery or some little gastronomic ‘find’.

      Don’t forget to explore the port and fishing piers, where you’ll get a real feel for Chile’s quirky seafaring side. Buy or sample freshly caught seafood at the market and enjoy the fishermen’s banter. We also recommend a visit to the UNESCO-listed Historic Quarter before embarking on MS Fram.

    • Day 2/3 - At sea

      As we make our way along the Pacific coast of Chile the expedition team will start the lecture program to prepare you for the experiences ahead. Enjoy priming your knowledge about the history and wildlife of the area. There will also be various workshops and presentations. Make sure to spend some time on deck to enjoy the fresh sea air and look out for wildlife. Familiarize yourself with our expedition vessel and take advantage of all the facilities on board.

    • Day 4 - Castro

      Located on Isla Grande de Chiloé, Castro is set among windswept hills and green vegetation. The city is known for its colourful “palafitos”, wooden houses mounted on stilts along the water's edge. Come ashore and enjoy the local Chilote character and curious energy, mixed with a dash of modern development. The Iglesia San Francisco is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The church is a visual delight: bright yellow and orange with a lavender trim. The varnished-wood interior is stunning. On a sunny day it is illuminated by the rows of stained-glass windows.

      Other sights include Plazuela del Tren a small plaza right by the waterfront with an odd collection of old trains. A stroll in the Cementerio Parroquial is actually pleasant. Some of the tombs here are quite grand and ornately decorated. Feria Campesina Yumbel is a bustling fruits and vegetables market. There are also household goods and fish stalls here. In the shop Feria Artesanal Lillo, located just south of the port, you can buy excellent hand-knitted woollen goods and handicrafts.

      Most of the restaurants and cafes in Castro are concentrated along the Calle Blanco, running from the southern end of the plaza down to the waterfront, this is where you can get a taste of the renowned meat, potato and seafood stew. Join the excursion to the Chiloé National Park and go trekking in this evergreen forest. The area is largely unexplored by man and harbouring flora and fauna unique to the archipelago, as well as wide deserted beaches and long stretches of rugged coastline, home to dozens of seabird species, penguins and sea lions.

    • Day 5 - At sea

      The expedition continues south through the fabled waters of Patagonia and onwards to one of the world’s most remote, undisturbed and beautiful places: the southern province of Ultima Esperanza, meaning Last Hope.

      We are sailing through iconic Andean seascapes and you have plenty of time to gaze out on the glassy expanse of nature uninterrupted. There might also be trivia contests covering questions about explorer history and Antarctic wildlife.

      We might also hold auctions to raise money for specific causes. These on board auctions have contributed to the most ambitious habitat restoration project on Earth; South Georgia, protection of the Albatross and maintenance of research stations in Antarctica. With the help of our guests, we will continue to raises funds and awareness of opportunities and challenges in the areas we visit.

    • Day 6 - Puerto Edén

      After an unforgettable cruise through the Patagonian waters, the unique village of Puerto Edén will enchant you. It is a tiny village in Bernardo O’Higgins National Park. Puerto Edén is known for its geographical isolation, situated at the end of a deep fjord and surrounded by mountains. Its population of 250 people includes the 15 remaining members of the Kawéskar people.

      Puerto Edén is a great place to experience the traditional indigenous culture of Patagonian tribes. The villagers sell fish, mussels and shellfish products, which are taken to markets by a weekly transport boat. For souvenirs, buy traditional Kawéskar crafts such as wicker baskets and boats made from sea lion skins and tree bark. Enjoy a stroll among the laneways, and maybe you will spot one of the many Magellan hummingbirds that you find here when you join the expedition team for hiking or kayaking.

    • Day 7/8 - Puerto Natales

      Puerto Natales is the gateway to the world-renowned Torres del Paine National Park, one of the most attractive national parks in the world. Its main attraction, the “towers” themselves, is the impressive rock formation, both colossal and unique, called “Torres del Paine” (Towers of Paine). The towers are made up of the Torre Central (9,186 feet high), Torre Sur (9,350 feet) and Torre Norte (7,375 feet).

      The park encompasses azure lakes, trails that meander through emerald forests, roaring rivers you'll cross on rickety bridges and one big, radiant blue glacier. Variety spans from the vast openness of the steppe to rugged mountain terrain topped by looming peaks.

      This diversity of environments here has led to a very rich fauna and flora. While we are here you might see llamas, pumas, chilla foxes and skunks in addition to more than 100 species of birds like the Andean condor and black-chested buzzard eagle. Enjoy hiking in these amazing surroundings.

    • Day 9 - Chilean fjords

      The Chilean fjords will excite nature enthusiasts with its channels, fjords and mountains plunging into the icy water. This wild and remote area seems almost untouched by humans. The ice has scoured its way between the mountains, creating the isolated islands and hidden bays that form the unique fjord landscape of Chile. The snow-capped mountains and steep valleys make a striking contrast to an otherwise very green area that is rich in wildlife.

    • Day 10/11 - At sea

      In the morning we will be sailing through the Beagle Channel, named after the ship that carried Charles Darwin on his voyage of discovery – HMS Beagle. We continue into open waters, and if conditions allow we will make an attempt to land on Cape horn – the southernmost tip of South America. Going ashore can be very difficult because of the sometimes-extreme weather in this area. This is the southernmost point of Chile and South America and lies almost 56 degrees south, marking the boundary between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and the northern end of the Drake Passage. The region is of great significance on account of its location, history, discoveries and trade routes. If we anchor off Cape Horn, you will be able to go ashore to explore this deserted and yet romantic piece of land at the end of the world.

      Then we continue over the Drake Passage, where two oceans meet, on our way to Antarctica. On the way through the straits you can learn a great deal about Antarctica’s fantastic animals and history. This sea passage was notorious among the early polar explorers and is a unique voyage which only a few have the chance to experience. The Drake Passage connects the southern Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Here the warm water from the north meets the cold, less salty water from the south. This makes the ocean particularly rich in nutrients and is the basis of the unique marine life here.

    • Day 12/16 - Antarctica

      This unending, white wilderness of a continent is full of overwhelming impressions on an impressive scale. Weather, wind and ice conditions will of course have a great influence on our programme and schedule and your experienced expedition team will select possible landing sites that will provide you with the best experiences available. With long hours of daylight that we have in Antarctica this time of the year it is easy to make the most of your days.

      While in Antarctica, we will attempt to land on sites both on the South Shetland Islands and on the Antarctic Peninsula. Flexibility allows us to take advantage of the unexpected and wildlife will be at the forefront of our mind. We will bring you on shore for close up exploration. We might call at the Gentoo penguin rookeries on Cuverville Island and Neko Harbour. We hope to sail through the incomparable Lemaire Channel and take on the challenging hike on Petermann Island to get rewarded with panoramic views.

      Another fun destination if weather permits is Port Lockroy, an old British base with a museum. Sailing through the Antarctic Sound offers spectacular views of tabular icebergs and glacial landscapes, and Brown Bluff has a distinct rock formation. Our sturdy PolarCirkel boats will enable us to go ashore almost anywhere and explore bays and channels. The expedition team will explain what you see and ensure we do as little as possible to disturb the local wildlife.

      Enjoy experiencing Antarctica with all your senses. Kayaking in untouched waters with icebergs floating by, guided hikes up snowy pathways to spectacular viewing points, listening to the sounds of glaciers calving or penguins squabbling, spending the night on deck or in a tent on this remote and untouched continent, or perhaps for the most daring, taking the polar plunge swim. Every day will be different, carefully crafted by our expedition team to educate you and create lasting memories.

    • Day 17/18 - Drake Passage

      After four unforgettable days in Antarctica, MS Fram takes us safely back across the famous Drake Passage. The voyage from the Antarctic Peninsula to the southern tip of Argentina is roughly 950 km (600 mi) or 40 hours sailing time in good weather. During the voyage north, we will continue our lecture series and recap our experiences of Antarctica.

    • Day 19 - Ushuaia/Buenos Aires; Disembarkation

      Sadly, every expedition must come to an end. When we reach the southernmost town in the world, Ushuaia, it is time to say goodbye. Your journey home continues with your flight to Buenos Aires, where you have a chance to extend your stay in and enjoy our optional post extension programs.

    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

    Experience Patagonia at close range

    Experience Patagonia at close range. Explore the narrow fjords and shallow bays of Fuegian Archipelago discover secluded waterfalls, tidewater glaciers, pristine beaches and rocky shorelines, hike through primeval sub-Polar forest, thousands of penguins, elephant and leopard seals, Andean condors and Caracara falcons.

    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.

    Wandering Albatross

    Spectacular in flight and on the ground, with the largest wingspan of any bird on the planet; gracefully and effortlessly glides for thousands of kilometres across the Southern Ocean to their nesting site on South Georgia.

  • Inclusions

    Transfers, Accommodation & Tour

    Pre-cruise accommotion in Buenos Aires is provided, as well as transfers in Ushuaia with an orientation tour.

    Expedition Gear

    Expedition boots are provided on board, as is a wind/waterproof expedition jacket.

    Charter Flights

    Return flights from your itinerary starting city to Ushuaia are included in your expedition

    Dynamic Cabin Pricing

    Cabin prices on board the Fram are dynamic, that is the cabin pricing fluctuates with changes in bookings and exchange rates. Cabin prices below are not guaranteed and are subject to change and availability at the operators discretion. Please feel free to contact us for the most accurate pricing on this voyage.

    Inclusions / Exclusions

    Included in your Expedition

    - One night hotel stay pre-cruise
    - Transfers where stated in the itinerary
    - Excursion ashore and lectures
    - Expedition jacket
    - Flights where stated in the itinerary
    - Accommodation while on board
    - Hot beverages

    Not included in your Expedition

    - Optional excursions and activities
    - Luggage handling
    - Mandatory waterproof gear not provided
    - Baggage / cancellation / interruption and medical travel insurance
    - International flights
  • Map
    Screen shot 2017 07 04 at 5.29.26 pm
  • Gallery
  • Vessel

    FRAM

    The ship is purpose-built as an expedition vessel with a higher ice-class, chart drawing tools,ship depth sounding database, extractable forward sounding sonar, iceberg search lights, autonomous tracking system, oversized oil retention system for self-sufficiency, and a full ‘expedition tools-deck’ equivalent to a car-deck that holds 25 vehicles. We believe that as an explorer you need an ‘expedition base-camp’ that is comfortable – something that combines ‘all oceans capabilities’ with safety, flexibility and environmental friendliness. That’s Fram – simply the best expedition ship imaginable. The observation lounge, with comfortable sitting areas at the top of the ship and large panoramic windows, gives you incredible views of nature. A pair of binoculars is installed for spotting wildlife and details of the ever changing landscape. In the restaurant on deck 5, you can enjoy the finest cuisine. The floor has different levels, so no matter where your table is placed; there are views to the outdoors. The restaurant is located in the aft of the ship, on your way there you walk through an exhibition of original artefacts from the historic expeditions of Amundsen and Nansen. At the far end of the restaurant there is a balcony for taking pictures when wildlife show up during a meal. On deck 7 you will find a well-equipped fitness room, with its panoramic ocean view there is no better place to exercise. On top of the ship you can get warm and cosy in the sauna or bathe in one of the outdoor Jacuzzis. Let the warm water surround you while the icebergs float silently past the side of the ship. With 127 cabins on Fram, you have a choice of comfortable cabins and a number of superior suites to choose from. Our suites are named after Norwegian polar heroes, MS Fram travels in the wake of these great explorers. We are very proud of the art commissioned for MS Fram – local artists from the Arctic have contributed to making her a modern masterpiece. The ‘tender pit’ is where we embark, fully dressed in suitable expedition and excursion gear, on our sturdy Polarcirkel boats to take you safely from ship to shore. The original Fram was a ship for broadening the understanding of the world – let the new MS Fram do the same for you.

    Features & Facilities
    • Enhanced expedition vessel
    • Superior accommodation
    • Observation lounge with panoramic windows
    • Restaraunt
    • Gym with panoramic windows
    • Sauna
    • Outdoor Jacuzzies
    • Internet/Wifi
    Key Facts
    Luxury star rating: 4
    Guests #: 318
    Crew #: 75
    Ice Class: 1B
    Speed: 16
    Refurbished:
    Technical Specs
    Year built:
    Length: 113m
    Width: 20
    Draft:
    Tonnage: 11647
    Registry: Norway
    Elec Outlets: 220V / 2 Round Pin
Check Voyage Dates, Pricing and Availability

Expedition Grand Suite

19 Nov 2018 - 07 Dec 2018
Our Expeditions Suites are the most exquisite cabins on the ship.
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Expedition Suite

19 Nov 2018 - 07 Dec 2018
Our Expeditions Suites are the most exquisite cabins on the ship.
AUD $POA
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Arctic Superior - Upper Deck Twin

19 Nov 2018 - 07 Dec 2018
Relaxation and comfort are the hallmarks of our Arctic Superior cabins.
AUD $POA
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Arctic Superior - Middle Deck Twin

19 Nov 2018 - 07 Dec 2018
Relaxation and comfort are the hallmarks of our Arctic Superior cabins.
AUD $POA
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Polar Outside Upper Deck

19 Nov 2018 - 07 Dec 2018
Our Polar Outside cabins are situated mostly on middle or lower deck and all have bathrooms with shower/WC.
AUD $POA
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Polar Outside Middle Deck - Twin

19 Nov 2018 - 07 Dec 2018
Our Polar Outside cabins are situated mostly on middle or lower deck and all have bathrooms with shower/WC.
AUD $POA
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Polar Outside Middle Deck - Quad

19 Nov 2018 - 07 Dec 2018
Our Polar Outside cabins are situated mostly on middle or lower deck and all have bathrooms with shower/WC.
AUD $POA
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Polar Inside Middle Deck - Twin

19 Nov 2018 - 07 Dec 2018
Our cosy Polar Inside cabins can be found on all decks. All cabins include bathrooms with shower/WC.
AUD $POA
AUD $POA

Polar Inside Middle Deck - Quad

19 Nov 2018 - 07 Dec 2018
Our cosy Polar Inside cabins can be found on all decks. All cabins include bathrooms with shower/WC.
AUD $POA
AUD $POA