polar pioneer antarctica cruise

Antarctic Explorer

  • Overview
    This new Fly/Sail itinerary features the best of Antarctica across ten days and allows for more exploration, with only one crossing of the Drake Passage. Get up close with tabular icebergs, vast colonies of Adelie and gentoo penguins and dramatic volcanic landscapes in the ice-filled Weddell Sea; the Antarctic Peninsula’s many islands are alive with leopard seals busy with courtship, bustling penguins and maybe whales!
    Duration: 11 days
    Passengers: 54 passengers
    Embarkation Point: Punta Arenas, Chile
    Disembarkation Point: Ushuaia, Argentina
    Physical rating: Soft Adventure
    Fly/Cruise: Mandatory extra flight
    Single Supplement: 1.7x - 2.0x twin rate or share options
  • Itinerary
    • Day 1 - Punta Arenas; Embarkation Day

      Fly from Punta Arenas to Puerto Williams, enjoy a tour of the scenic port before being warmly welcomed aboard Polar Pioneer. We’ll have introductory and safety briefings before our evening’s cruise down the Beagle Channel.

    • Day 2/3 - Drake Passage

      Ease into shipboard life as we cross the Drake Passage. Our naturalist and paleontologist expand our Antarctic knowledge and prepare us for landings. The outer decks and flying bridge provide excellent space to see and photograph wildlife.

    • Day 4/6 - Weddell Sea

      We spend the next few days exploring the ice-filled Weddell Sea where weather systems and shifting pack ice dictate our schedule: we hope to visit the large Adelie and gentoo penguin colonies of Brow Bluff, and fossil-rich Seymour Island. We may hike to spectacular vantage points on Beak or Devil Islands; large tabular icebergs and volcanic scenery create long lasted memories.

    • Day 7/9 - Antarctic Peninsula

      The Antarctic Peninsula's western flanks offer long summer daylight and ice-free waters; we visit historic huts and Zodiac cruise through narrow straits and majestic icebergs, and if we're lucky, whales. The few landing points we hope to visit are Half Moon Bay, Lemaire Channel, Hydrurga Rocks and more.

    • Day 10 - King George Island

      We arrive at mountainous King George Island. If time and weather permit we explore penguin and seal-rich waters of Fildes Bay and visit the surprising Trinity Church at Bellingshausen Station, before catching our charter flight back to Punta Arenas in Chile, where we transfer to our overnight accommodation.

    • Day 11 - Punta Arenas (or Ushuaia); Disembarkation

      After breakfast at the Cabo de Hornes Hotel, bid a fond farewell to your fellow passengers as you make your journey home or continue on with your own arrangements.

      IMPORTANT - The voyages starting 25 Feb 2018 & 10 Mar 2019, will disembark in Ushuaia, Argentina.

    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

    Polar Snorkeling

    Witness wildlife and scenery unlike any other place on earth. Through crystal clear waters you'll discover the amazing mobility and speed of penguins entering and exiting from the ice, marvel at beautiful sculpted icebergs below the water and witness marine life such as crustaceans, isopods, starfish and nudibranchs!

    USD 975 per person

    Kayaking

    One of the most unique ways to experience Antarctica and the Arctic.

    The experience of sea kayaking in the humbling wilderness of Antarctica or the European Arctic is guaranteed to stir your soul. Paddle between brash ice and icebergs of all shapes and sizes, skim past penguin rookeries or under soaring bird cliffs, or drift quietly as you watch wildlife unobtrusively, absorbing the majestic scenery.

    USD 1,050 per person

    Polar Diving

    The icy waters of Antarctic and the Arctic guarantee amazing new experiences.

    Antarctic diving reveals a world of ice, where glaciers, gigantic icebergs and a unique blend of marine life greet us, whilst the possible presence of walrus and polar bears makes Arctic diving a very special experience. With numerous diving opportunities along your voyage, no two days will be alike – a truly inspiring and unforgettable experience awaits.

    Min. Experience requirement of 20 logged dry-suit dives

    USD 975 per person

    Antarctica's Babies

    During January and February Antarctica's babies are born and fledging, its a magical time as new
    life comes to Antarctica. The experience of seeing newly hatched penguins and seals pups just days old, is an
    experience that will last forever.

    Lemaire Channel – get your camera ready!

    In a continent of stunning views, Lemaire Channel has been called the Kodak Gap. Locked between the rocky vertical cliffs of Booth Island and the continent this one kilometer wide passage is one of the most photographed attractions of Antarctica. You will be glad your camera is digital.

    South Shetland Islands - Antarctica's Capital

    The South Shetland Islands are the undisputed capital of Antarctica, with some 12 different nations having research bases on the islands. Located on the very northern reaches of the Antarctic, the islands comprise of some of the Antarctic Peninsula prized sited, including; Elephant Island, Deception Island and Penguin Island. As the islands are further north, they are more temperate and thus home to large numbers of wildlife, the islands offer a great diversity of Antarctic landscape, geology and sights of interest including the King George Island airport and Russian Orthodox Church. For most cruises the islands will almost always be the first glimpse of Antarctica you will have from the decks of your expedition vessel.

    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.

  • Inclusions

    Expedition_Gear

    On board you will be provided with expedition boots and a highquality wind and waterproof expedition jacket

    Photography Workshops

    Catering to both amateurs and the more experienced photographers, our onboard team of photography guides deliver photography workshops and one-on-one instruction from the deck or Zodiacs and during landings.

    Charter Flight

    Your expedition on board the Polar Pioneer includes a charter flight to/from the ship

    Inclusions / Exclusions

    Included in your Expedition

    - Comprehensive pre-departure information
    - Entry and landing fees while on board
    - Port taxes and charges
    - Professionally produced voyage journal
    - All shore excursions and lectures
    - All accommodation and meals on board

    Not included in your Expedition

    - Items of a personal nature such as; Beverages / Laundry / Medical expenses / Gratuities / Internet & Wifi
    - Optional excursion and activity surcharges
    - Mandatory waterproof gear not provided
    - Baggage / cancellation / interruption and medical travel insurance
    - Visa & Passport charges
    - Arrival and departure taxes
    - Transfers not specified in the itinerary
    - International and domestic airfares to or from ship unless specified
  • Map
    Screen shot 2017 07 04 at 5.24.20 pm
  • Gallery
  • Vessel

    POLAR PIONEER

    Polar Pioneer is one of the most popular style of vessels currently used in Antarctica and the Arctic. Originally built as an ice-strengthened research vessel in Finland in 1982, she was refurbished in 2000 and converted into a passenger ship for expeditions to the Polar Regions. Polar Pioneer’s excellent reputation for polar expedition cruising is due to her strength, manoeuvrability and size. She is small and nimble, which means she can sail up close to landing sites and venture where other, larger ships can’t. Carrying just 54 passengers, she allows us to offer you a far more personal and intimate experience of the destination we are visiting.

    Features & Facilities
    • Basic accommodation
    • Lounge bar
    • Spacious viewing platforms and decks
    • Presentation room
    • Sauna
    Key Facts
    Luxury star rating: 3
    Guests #: 54
    Crew #: 23
    Ice Class: 1A
    Speed: 14
    Refurbished: 2000
    Technical Specs
    Year built: 1982
    Length: 71m
    Width: 13
    Draft: 4
    Tonnage: 1753
    Registry: Russia
    Elec Outlets: 220V / 2 Round Pin
Check Voyage Dates, Pricing and Availability
All available dates

Triple

25 Feb 2018 - 07 Mar 2018
Triple public cabin, 3 x berths and shared facilities
USD 9,500pp
USD 9,500pp

Twin Public

25 Feb 2018 - 07 Mar 2018
Twin cabin with shared facilities
USD 11,200pp
USD 11,200pp

Twin Private

25 Feb 2018 - 07 Mar 2018
Twin cabin, with private facilities and window
USD 13,500pp
USD 13,500pp

Mini-Suite

25 Feb 2018 - 07 Mar 2018
Suite cabin with double bed, separate sitting room and private facilities
USD 14,500pp
USD 14,500pp

Captain's Suite

25 Feb 2018 - 07 Mar 2018
Suite cabin with double bed, separate sitting room and private facilities
USD 15,900pp
USD 15,900pp