Falkland Islands - South Georgia - Antarctic Peninsula

Meet at least six penguin species

Falkland Islands - South Georgia - Antarctic Peninsula
Cruise route
Title: Falkland Islands - South Georgia - Antarctic Peninsula
Dates:
Tripcode: OTL25-18
Duration: 18 nights
Ship: m/v Ortelius
Embarkation: Ushuaia
Disembarkation: Ushuaia
Language: English speaking voyage
Summary: Download cruise info in PDF
More about: Antarctica cruises
South Orkney Islands cruises
Antarctic Peninsula cruises
Falkland Islands cruises
South Georgia cruises
 
Itinerary

PLEASE NOTE: All itineraries are for guidance only. Programs may vary depending on local ice, weather, and wildlife conditions. The on-board expedition leader will determine the final itinerary. Flexibility is paramount for expedition cruises. Average cruising speed for m/v Ortelius is 10,5 knots.

Day 1: End of the World, Start of a Journey

Your voyage begins where the world drops off: Ushuaia, Argentina, reputed to be the southernmost city on the planet, located on the far southern tip of South America. Starting in the afternoon, you embark from this small resort town on Tierra del Fuego – nicknamed “The End of the World” – and sail the scenic, mountain-fringed Beagle Channel for the rest of the evening.

Day 2: Winged Life of the Westerlies

Several species of albatross follow the vessel into the westerlies, as well as storm petrels, shearwaters, and diving petrels.

Day 3: Falklands Found

The Falkland (Malvinas) Islands offer an abundance of wildlife, easily approachable – with caution. These islands are largely unknown gems, primarily remembered for the war between the UK and Argentina in 1982. Not only do various species of bird live here, but chances are great you’ll see both Peale’s dolphins and Commerson’s dolphins in the surrounding waters. A hike along the shore of Carcass Island may show you anything from breeding Magellanic and gentoo penguins to numerous waders and passerine birds (including Cobb’s wren and the tussock-bird) live here. And on Saunders Island you can see the black-browed albatross and its sometimes-clumsy landings, along with breeding imperial shags and rockhopper penguins. King penguins, Magellanic penguins, and gentoo penguins are also found here.

Day 4: Seat of Falklands Culture

The capital of the Falklands, Port Stanley has some South American traits mixed in with a little Victorian charm: colorful houses, well-tended gardens, and English-style pubs. You can see several century-old clipper ships in the surrounding area, silent witnesses to the hardships of 19th century sailors. The small but interesting museum is also worth a visit, covering the early days of the settlement up to the Falkland War. Approximately 2,100 people live in the capital, where you are free to wander at will – though admission fees to local attractions are not included.

Day 5 - 6: Once More to the Sea

En route to South Georgia, you cross the Antarctic Convergence. The temperature cools considerably within only a few hours, and nutritious water rises to the surface of the sea due to colliding water columns. This phenomenon attracts a multitude of seabirds near the ship: several species of albatrosses as well as shearwaters, petrels, prions, and skuas.

Day 7 - 10: South Georgia Journey

You arrive at the first South Georgia activity site on day seven. Weather conditions here can be challenging and largely dictate the program. Over the next several days, you have a chance to visit the following sites: Prion Island – This location is closed during the early part of the breeding season (November 20 – January 7). The previous summer’s wandering albatross chicks are almost ready to fledge, and adults are seeking out their old partners after a year and a half at sea . Salisbury Plain, St. Andrews Bay, Gold Harbour – These locations not only house the three largest king penguin colonies in South Georgia, they’re also three of the largest breeding beaches for southern elephant seals in the world. Only this time of year do they peak in their breeding cycle. Watch the four-ton bulls keep a constant vigil (and occasionally fight) over the territories where dozens of females have just given birth or are about to deliver. You can also see a substantial number of Antarctic fur seals here during the breeding season (December – January). Fortuna Bay – Near beaches inhabited by penguins and seals, you have the chance to follow the final section of Shackleton’s route to the abandoned whaling village of Stromness. This route cuts across the mountain pass beyond Shackleton’s Waterfall. But the terrain here is partly swampy, so be prepared to cross some small streams along the way. Grytviken – You have the opportunity to check out this abandoned whaling station, where king penguins now walk the streets and elephant seals lie around like they own the place – because they just about do. You might see the South Georgia Museum as well as Shackleton’s grave . Cooper Bay – A great place for a Zodiac cruise, this bay also houses a rookery of macaroni penguins. King penguins, pintails, and giant petrels may also appear here.

Day 11: Southward Bound

There may be sea ice on this route, and at the edge of the ice some south polar skuas and snow petrels may join the other seabirds trailing the vessel south.

Day 12: South Orkney Sights

Depending on how friendly the weather and ice is, you might visit Base Orcadas, an Argentine scientific station on Laurie Island in the South Orkney archipelago. The personnel here will happily show you their facility, where you can enjoy great views of the surrounding glaciers. If a visit here isn’t possible, you might land in Signy Island’s Shingle Cove instead.

Day 13: Last Push to the Antarctic

Huge icebergs and a good chance of fin whales ensure there’s never a dull moment on this last sea voyage south. Also, your best chance to spot Antarctic petrels occurs here.

Day 14 - 16: Awe-Inspiring Antarctica

If ice permits, you sail into the Weddell Sea. Here colossal tabular icebergs herald your arrival to the eastern side of the Antarctic Peninsula. Paulet Island, with its large population of Adélie penguins, is a possible stop. You might also visit Brown Bluff, located in the ice-clogged Antarctic Sound, where you have the chance to set foot on the Continent. In good conditions, your time in the Weddell Sea may be extended. The volcanic islands of the South Shetlands are windswept and often cloaked in mist, but they do offer subtle pleasures: There’s a wide variety of flora (mosses, lichens, flowering grasses) and no small amount of fauna (gentoo penguins, chinstrap penguins, southern giant petrels). Chinstrap penguins and Weddell seals often haul out onto the beach near Cámara Base, an Argentine scientific research station on Half Moon Island. In Deception Island, the ship plunges through Neptune’s Bellows and into the flooded caldera. Here you find hot springs, an abandoned whaling station, and thousands of cape petrels – along with a number of kelp gulls, brown and south polar skuas, and Antarctic terns. Wilson’s storm petrels and black-bellied storm petrels also nest in the ruins of the whaling station in Whalers Bay. You are likely to sail toward the northern parts of Gerlache Strait (in case the Weddell Sea extension is not possible) for your last landing. One option is Cierva Cove and the rugged, ice-gripped mountains of the Davis Coast. Mikkelsen Harbour on the south coast of Trinity Island is another alternative. Here you may enjoy a gentoo penguin rookery as well as some fine scenic cruising. Conditions on the Drake Passage determine the exact time of departure.

Day 17 - 18: North by Sea

While crossing the Drake, you’re again greeted by the vast array of seabirds remembered from the passage south. But they seem a little more familiar to you now, and you to them.

Day 19: There and Back Again

Every adventure, no matter how grand, must eventually come to an end. It’s now time to disembark in Ushuaia, but with memories that will accompany you wherever your next adventure lies.

m/v Ortelius

Fortified for both poles of the planet, the ice-strengthened Ortelius is thoroughly outfitted to provide you an up-close experience of the Arctic and Antarctic. Full ship info >>

Cabins & Prices

Quadruple Porthole

Windows Windows Info Info
  • 2 portholes
  • 2 upper / lower berths
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Desk & chair
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Telephone
  • Hair dryer
  • Ample storage space
Info Info Info Info
Sharing berth
13200 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price

Info Info Info Info
Complete cabin
52800 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

Triple Porthole

Windows Windows Info Info
  • 2 portholes
  • 1 upper / lower berth + 1 single lower berth
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Desk & chair
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Telephone
  • Hair dryer
  • Ample storage space
Info Info Info
Sharing berth
14600 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price

Info Info Info
Complete cabin
43800 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

Twin Porthole deck 4

Windows Windows Info Info
  • 2 portholes
  • 2 lower berths
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Desk & chair
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Telephone
  • Hair dryer
  • Ample storage space
Info Info
Sharing berth
15950 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price

Info
Single cabin
27115 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

Info Info
Complete cabin
31900 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

Twin Porthole deck 3

Windows Windows Info Info
  • 2 portholes
  • 2 lower berths
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Desk & chair
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Telephone
  • Hair dryer
  • Ample storage space
Info Info
Sharing berth
15950 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price

Info
Single cabin
27115 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

Info Info
Complete cabin
31900 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

Twin Window

Windows Windows Info Info
  • 2 windows
  • 2 lower berths
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Desk & chair
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Telephone
  • Hair dryer
  • Ample storage space
Info Info
Sharing berth
16950 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price

Info
Single cabin
28815 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

Info Info
Complete cabin
33900 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

Twin Deluxe

Windows Windows Windows Info Info
  • 3 windows
  • 2 lower berths
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Desk & chair
  • Small sofa
  • Refrigerator
  • Coffee & tea maker
  • Flatscreen TV, Telephone
  • Hair dryer
  • Ample storage space
Info Info
Sharing berth
17800 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price

Info
Single cabin
30260 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

Info Info
Complete cabin
35600 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

Superior

Windows Windows Info
  • 2 windows (minimum)
  • 1 double bed
  • 1 single (sofa) bed
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Desk & chair
  • Flatscreen TV, Telephone
  • Refrigerator
  • Coffee & tea maker
  • Hair dryer
  • Ample storage space
Info
Single cabin
32980 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

Info Info
Complete cabin
38800 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.