Travelers going on Antarctic cruises usually leave from Ushuaia, Argentina. There are several cruises to choose from depending on length of time you wish to spend along with the amount of money. Read our guide for more facts and information…
Ushuaia, Argentina is the southernmost city in the world and is the capital of Tierra del Fuego, an archipelago off the coast of South America. This will likely be your jumping off place for Antarctica, or you may just want to spend time here in the city at the end of the world. The city lies at the end of the Andes Mountains and the weather is much more temperate than you might expect. It is a wonderful place to spend a few days while awaiting the departure for your cruise to Antarctica. Good restaurants charge reasonable fees for their food, and in the city you can purchase your souvenirs.
Cruises to “the White Continent”
Most of the available cruises to Antarctica originate at Ushuaia, Argentina between November and late March. Even so, it is a 1200km trip between the city and Antarctica, also called “the white continent” as it is always covered in ice and snow. Cruises last at least eight days, as two days travel back and forth are needed for the crossing of Drake’s Passage.
Cape Horn and Beyond
Should you wish to include Cape Horn, the Shetlands or the Malvinas Islands, your Antarctic voyage will take two weeks and upward. Extra time should be included for any other sights you would like to see.
Cruise Around Antarctica
If you would like to circumnavigate Antarctica, cruises are also available for that purpose. You should reserve at least two months time if you want to sail all the way around the continent. There are many areas where you can get off of the boat and go ashore by dingy. In order to do this, you must have warm impenetrable clothing. You can get by with light clothing aboard ship, as they all have good heating systems, but outside is another matter.
Fares for these voyages will depend on the route and the type of ship take. Also taken into consideration is the kind and location of the cabin. At any rate, you will have full room and board for the one price. This does not include alcohol and tips.
You may also be able to visit some of the scientific bases on the continent itself. When you do visit, keep in mind that conservation and protection of the fauna is in the forefront of the minds of the scientists that are working there. The utmost care is taken to prevent any type of chemical contamination.
Should you investigate the Antarctic cruises fully, you will find that they are among the most scenic vacations available. Unusual, yes, but beauty that will make it well worth the trip.