PLA31-20, trip log, Antarctic Peninsula, Basecamp

by Oceanwide Expeditions


Day 1: Embarkation – Ushuaia, Argentina

Embarkation – Ushuaia, Argentina
Date: 27.02.2020
Position: 5°53’S / 067°42’W
Wind: rough
Weather: Cloudy – light rain
Air Temperature: +8

So here we are at last in Tierra del Fuego, at the bottom of the world. Well, from Ushuaia we’ll be going south...a long way south. But for today, we ambled about this lovely Patagonian city, savouring the local flavours and enjoying the sights. Ushuaia marks the end of the road in Argentine Tierra del Fuego, but also the beginning – the beginning of a once-in-a-lifetime adventure. During the summer this rapidly growing frontier town of 55,000 bustles with adventurous travellers. The duty-free port flourishes with tourism but also thrives on a sizeable crab fishery and a burgeoning electronics industry. Ushuaia (literally “bay that penetrates to the west” in the indigenous Yamana / Yagan tongue) clearly benefits from its magnificent, yet remote, setting. The rugged spine of the South American Andes ends here, where two oceans meet. As could be expected from such an exposed setting, the weather has the habit of changing on a whim. However, temperatures during the long days of the austral summer are relatively mild, providing a final blanket of warmth before heading off on our adventures. For many of us this is the start of a lifelong dream. The excitement comes in different forms for each person, but even the most experienced of us must feel genuine excitement departing on a journey to the Great White Continent. Accordingly, most passengers arrived promptly at the port, ready to board the good ship MV Plancius, our home for this Antarctic adventure! We were greeted at the gangway by members of our Expedition Team and our ship’s doctor Nelleke where everyone’s health survey was reviewed and temperatures screened in order to keep all passengers and crew secure regarding the Coronavirus risk. After clearing the screening, we proceeded up the gangway where we met Hotel and Restaurant Managers, Alex and Dragan, and to be directed to our cabins with the assistance of the fabulous hotel crew. Once everyone had been approved for boarding, we all gathered in the lounge on deck five to begin our safety briefing. First was a video, entertaining but also clearly showing us what was important to pay attention to on the ship for our safety. Then we met our First Officer Miia, who with the crew and staff led us through the details of the required SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) Safety and Lifeboat Drill, including trying on our huge orange life jackets and walking to the lifeboat stations to become familiar with their locations. We then had some time to adjust to our cabins, explore the ship, and take in the striking scenery of Ushuaia’s mountainous backdrop before reconvening for our next briefing with Alex our Hotel Manager to learn more about our floating hotel/home for the next 11 days, and how life onboard will operate. This was followed by a few words from our Expedition Leader, Iain Rudkin, and the rest of the Expedition Team who will guide us in Antarctica. Finally, Iain introduced our Captain Artur Iakovlev who after some wise words of welcome, proposed a toast to our voyage. Our first dinner onboard was a chance to chat with other guests and be impressed by what Chef Charlotte welcomed us into the dining room to celebrate the first day at the famous Drake Passage.

Day 2: At Sea to Antarctica – Drake’s Passage

At Sea to Antarctica – Drake’s Passage
Date: 28.02.2020
Position: 55°53.7’S / 065°51.8’W
Wind: SW6-8
Weather: Overcast
Air Temperature: +8

A quiet morning in a place where many legends talk about strong winds and big swell. Grey light, a shy sun painting the immensity of this vast ocean, giving us the sense of life that we‘ve been looking for. We are in search of this dream-- this day, and it is finally becoming real. We start to familiarize our bodies with the never-ending tango between the ship and the waves, a strange love shared since forever, blessed by the wind. Wind means albatross… the most beautiful birds, are we are lucky to follow their performance from front row seats. They follow the waves very close, jumping from one side to the other without flapping a wing, almost touching the foamy peaks with the tips of their wings. They will be with us on this side of the world, called by the sailors as ‘the furious fifties, the deadly forties of the Southern Ocean’. During the morning the activity guides gave the Basecamp Activity Briefing, explaining all about Mountaineering, Kayaking and Camping and how their activities would work for the voyage, meanwhile everyone on the ship continued to adjust to life on a moving platform. After the first lunch at the dining room we had the signing up to all the activities and the delivering of the Rubber Boots, an important part of the equipment that we will use during this exploration trip. Many things happening around, many questions to answer, everybody is excited! The end of the day brought the time for a recap, our daily moment to review what we have seen and done during the day and to hear about plans for tomorrow. Tonight, Iain introduced the staff and shared that the seas would continue about the same, which was a relatively easy crossing. Finally, Alex welcomed us into the dining room to celebrate the first day at the famous Drake Passage.

Day 3: At Sea to Antarctica – Drake’s Passage

At Sea to Antarctica – Drake’s Passage
Date: 29.02.2020
Position: 60°01.9’S / 063°37.6’W
Wind: N4
Weather: drizzle
Air Temperature: +7

A nice morning, first real sensations after a full day on this sea. Big swell, stronger wind, long hours of rolling start to affect some of the fellow explorers. A quiet lounge at 08:00 am, some empty spaces, many passengers at the cabin trying to adapt their bodies to this new environment. This morning Iain offered us the Mandatory IAATO Briefing and another Safety Briefing about Zodiac boarding, how to get into them, the ‘Three steps’ that the expedition guides will ask us to do every time we board the boats at the gangway to start any landing or zodiac cruise. It seems easy but it will be surprising how often we can forget the process… but they will remind us as many times as is necessary. It’s all about safety! After that we started with one of the most important things before arriving to Antarctica: The vacuuming of all outerwear, backpacks and any other kind of equipment that we will introduce to this area. The reason? PREVENTION of any kind of Alien on this pristine environment—whether seeds or disease as we are doing all these activities, we are still traveling down south… We are able to visit the Bridge and see how the officers and the watchmen work together to keep us on course and set up everything on the ship. We are in good hands. The first groups of passengers start to play some cards, painting, taking pictures of the sea birds around us and they move from one deck to another moving more smoothly than yesterday. We are gaining our sea legs! Our ship slowly becomes our home, our safe cocoon in the south. Many activities happened during the day, the kayakers, mountaineers and campers had got their equipment organized—all they need to start everything a busy day tomorrow which we realize is coming ever closer. In fact, we sighted our first frozen land—we passed between Smith and Snow Islands, part of the South Shetland Islands… Everybody is wondering what the weather will be, asking for advice from the staff, asking for timings and it looks like this adventure is starting to become a reality. Everyone went to bed early... adventure is out there and everybody knows it!

Day 4: Gerlach Strait / Danco Island

Gerlach Strait / Danco Island
Date: 01.03.2020
Position: 64°12.3’S / 061°27.8’W
Wind: NW 2
Weather: Overcast
Air Temperature: +4

After our 2 days at sea and the deep hope that the rolling and pitching of our temporary home Plancius stops, we got a friendly wake-up call at 6:20 in the morning. Humpback whales around the ship. We climbed out of our beds, dressed warm, grabbed the camera and headed to the outdoor decks. So lovely to see these gentle giants in the water so close to the ship. It feels like a miracle and a nice Welcome to Antarctica. Due to our late arrival at Antarctica, we could not make the morning landing. The storm at the south coast of south America got its tribute. But no worries we enjoyed a beautiful ship cruise through the Gerlach Strait. Gerlach Strait is a perfect place to see wildlife and especially whales. The weather conditions were really nice and we enjoyed these first Antarctic sightings. Dorette started with a small photography workshop which was highly appreciated and welcomed. Meanwhile, the Officers at the bridge brought us directly to Danco Island our afternoon destination. Danco Island is situated in the middle of the beautiful Errera Channel with grounded icebergs and a phenomenal panorama on the surrounding glaciers. Danco is home to hundreds or better thousands of gentoo penguins. After lunch we got quick onto our first Zodiac ride. The weather was typical Antarctic moody. We had a low cloud cover, no wind, a glassy sea surface and unbelievable beautiful light with some sunspot in the distance. We were speechless, yes this is what we were hoping for if not even more. The mountaineering group headed out to an ice climbing area on Danco Island, the Kayakers explored the surroundings of the Island and the rest of us, conquered the hill on the island while passing cute penguins. The rookery is busy with the feeding parents and the cute little chicks that were constantly hungry. We saw them even chasing their parents when they expected more than the food delivery. Way to quick passed the time, and we headed back to our temporary home with a huge bunch of new impressions and already endless pictures of the flightless birds of Antarctica and ice in all its beauty. At 18:30 we got our daily routine and met up in the lounge for our daily Re- and Precap with the expedition team. Ian explained the plans for tomorrow, Fiz explained us interesting facts about humpback whales and Steffi told us why snow can be read. It was hard to follow the briefing; the scenery was breathtaking and in between the little ice we spotted the humpback whales in real. Unfortunately, the camping for the night was cancelled due to difficult conditions on the camping spots and a light drizzle rain with a breeze of wind. We want to be polar explorer but we also want to enjoy the fun on the next day. We learn our lesson it is hard to predict what happens. The good thing, there is a plan A, B, C…and tomorrow we are sure we just soak up this incredible atmosphere again. We went to bed early and dream of our upcoming adventures.

Day 5: Brown Station, Skonkorp Cove / Neko Harbour

Brown Station, Skonkorp Cove / Neko Harbour
Date: 02.03.2020
Position: 64°53.4’S / 062°54.0’W
Wind: WSW 4
Weather: Overcast
Air Temperature: +2

This morning the ones who were not occupied by either mountaineering or kayaking went on a zodiac cruise in Paradise Bay near the Argentinian research station Brown. On our first zodiac cruise of the trip we encountered Crabeater seals and some of us also saw a Leopard seal on an ice flow. We cruised among many different sized icebergs with nice colours. Some of the zodiacs and the kayakers encountered Humpback whales. After two hours cruising around in this Antarctic Paradise the wind started to pick up, and it was time to head back to the ship. After a great lunch and a short sailing transit with spectacular views we arrived at Neko Harbour. Our first landing on the continent of Antarctica was a proper polar one. Ice covered the beaches and the zodiacs needed to push through. At Neko Harbour we visited a Gentoo Penguin colony. At this colony the chicks were really curious, many of us had great encounters with these little fluffy daredevils. Halfway the landing there was suddenly an enormous bang, and there was a massive calving event of the nearby glacier. We were all ordered to leave the beach area as soon as possible and after a few minutes a tsunami wave hit the shore pushing the ice up a few meters. We all witnessed this natural power from a safe distance. After heading back to the ship, Iain discussed plans for tomorrow during recap, Mal explained us why ice is white, blue or green and Pippa provided some more info about Crabeater seals. Meanwhile we passed numerous seals on ice flows and the occasional Humpback whales in the distance, together with the stunning views this made our day complete. After dinner there was good news for the campers who were signed up for this night, Rustyn and Celine had managed to find a spot safe enough for this night. So, 31 lucky souls disembarked Plancius ready for a nightly adventure on Antarctica. Camping Paradise We arrived at our campsite at 20.30pm, just in time to see large pieces of ice breaking from the glacier walls that surrounded the landscape. The snow conditions were low, so most of the camp was a hard-compact ice, but flat and easy to walk around on. Everyone broke into groups to help dig out sleeping spots for the night and get our bivys ready for the night. It was dark by 21.30pm and we all realised we were going to be lucky enough to have a clear, star-filled night. It was cold, so as soon as everyone had their equipment settled, we all crawled into our bivys for the night (although no one could sleep due to the amazing spectacle of stars above us). It was a windless, quiet night and everyone slept warm and cosy. Our zodiac arrived just before 04.15am and we were all ready to go. The stars were still out as we packed our equipment got our life jackets on. We were back on the ship by 04.30am for a hot drink and shower…. and to get ready for a new day’s activities.

Day 6: Lemaire/Petermann Island/Pleneau Island

Lemaire/Petermann Island/Pleneau Island
Date: 03.03.2020
Position: 64°59.7’S / 063°47.4’W
Wind: Variable 2
Weather: clear sky
Air Temperature: +4

After an early morning camping pick up Plancius sailed south towards our morning landings. On route to the landing sites this morning we sail through one of the most beautiful spots on the peninsula; The Lemaire Channel. In beautiful blue-sky conditions, we sail through this narrow channel with towering glacial peaks surrounding our little blue ship, passing incredible icebergs and porpoising penguins. Our first landing site is Petermann Island; a small island situated at the South end of the Lemaire Channel, and home to a small Adelie Penguin colony- a new species for us. We walk over icy snow across the island to a rocky outcrop where we find moulting Adelie and Gentoo Penguins. We can also look over the beautiful landscape, both northwards to the Lemaire Channel, and south to large icebergs as far as we can see. We make our way back to the Plancius for a delicious lunch, and to enjoy the sunshine and views on deck. While we have lunch, Plancius sailed North slightly to the afternoon activity at Pleneau Island, where we head out for a zodiac cruise in the ‘Iceberg graveyard’ surrounding the island. As we cruise through the staggeringly beautiful icebergs, we soak up the afternoon sunshine, and look for wildlife. Amongst the ice we find Crabeater and Leopard Seals resting on ice flows, and we have the opportunity to view these beautiful pinnipeds as they rest. The unmistakable sound of a whales exhale as it surfaces can be heard amongst this incredible playground, and we find the source of this sound as we round an iceberg and find Humpback Whales resting at the surface. As we head back to the ship on the zodiacs, the sky displays incredible colours of blue, orange and pink as the sun sits low in the sky. Back onboard we are treated to a special Antarctic BBQ on the back deck of Plancius prepared beautifully by the fantastic galley and restaurant teams. For the campers, the BBQ is short, and soon they are heading back out to camp on Hovgaard Island for the night. For the rest, the evening is filled with music and dancing under the magnificent Antarctic sky. Camping Hovgaard March 3, 2020 The camping night on Hovgaard started with a discussion on whether or not camping was possible at all. The grey clouds and predicted rain and wind made the camping guides wonder how the night might play out. But with everyone being very positive and enthusiastic it seemed that the team could handle it - and they decided to push forward. After all zodiacs delivered the campers ashore there was a briefing about our campsite and equipment. It got dark quite quickly, so we were all racing to get our wind walls built for our bivy spots, but we had the bonus id getting a brief glimpse of the Southern Cross in the night sky directly above us. A real treat. As everyone settled into their bivys we could hear the resident Weddell Seal singing softly down on the beach below us. The night brought us only a slight bit of wind, but other than that it was a quite night for all. In the morning the entire team was in good spirits and broke down camp quickly and efficiently and got back to the ship for some hot coffee by 05.30am. It was a beautiful night that no one would ever forget.

Day 7: Damoy Point/Jougla Point

Damoy Point/Jougla Point
Date: 04.03.2020
Position: 64°52.4’S / 063°39.6’W
Wind: NE 4
Weather: partly cloudy
Air Temperature: +3

Our next day in beautiful Antarctica starts with a morning landing in Damoy Point. The wind drops as we approach the island. The sun is visible in between nice clouds above the uncountable glaciers along our way. The Expedition Team heads out to prepare the landing and shortly after we get picked up. A short Zodiac ride later we land on the nice sheltered Dorian Bay. Directly at the hut we see 2 little huts. One is built by the British to support the runway that was set up on the glaciers slope just above the hut. They used the runway to support stations further south. Besides the beautiful blue hut is a small refuge hut that was built by Argentinians. We get a nice landing and could walk up to a nice outlook next to a small gentoo rookery. The views above Dorian Bay and the surrounding glaciers is really nice and we appreciate the chance for the small hike to stretch our legs. The mountaineers head out in a small group to reach a close by mountain and the kayakers explore the glacier walls around it. We sit down along the track and enjoy the Antarctic scenery and we are happy to be so privilege to be able to see this pristine beauty of nature. We rest and listen to the sound of the Antarctic. At the end of the landing we get the possibility of a polar plunge. The bravest of the brave get their clothes off and head towards the sea to get a swim in the Antarctic waters. The Antarctic waters are known for temperature up to -1,9°C, as saltwater freezes on lower temperature. We are lucky and get warm +1°C. So, most of the passenger used this unique experience and added up the tick on their bucket list. Some stayed in the water impressive long. The Expedition team brought us quick back to the ship to enjoy the warm waters of Plancius´ showers. The Hotel team charges our batteries with a nice lunch buffet and Iain, our expedition leader, informs us already about our afternoon landing. Actual we are super happy that we get a chance to get out as the weather forecast told us a different story. The expected 20-30 knots were actually just 13 knots. We got dressed and head out to Jougla Point in Goudier Bay. It is a small outcrop with some colonies of shags, kelp gull and gentoos. At the beach are plenty of whale bones that were brought on shore by divers in the 90s. It is interesting to get an idea of the real seizes of whales. The gentoo chicks of the colony were quite lively and forgot regularly the 5m rule. So many passengers were inspected by the curious little birds. Unfortunately, the wind pick up and the conditions on shore were not the most beautiful and enjoyable, so some people decided a nice warm tea on the ship might be nice as well. We ended the landing a bit earlier, right in time to avoid the incoming rain. At 18:30 we met up with the Expedition team for our daily recap and got the information for the next day. Our ship doctor Nelleke explained some interesting facts about swimming in cold waters and Felicity gave us more information on leopard seals, the apex predator of Antarctica. During our dinner the expedition team went scouting for our opportunities to camp tonight. The weather does not look quite favorable. We have some wind and light rain, but we appreciate the effort. Good, we cannot change the weather, but this night we rather stayed on board and dream in our cozy warm beds about our upcoming adventures in the next remaining days on our expedition in Antarctica.

Day 8: Foyn Harbour/Orne Island

Foyn Harbour/Orne Island
Date: 05.03.2020
Position: 64°39.5’S / 062°29.2’W
Wind: NIL
Weather: rain fog
Air Temperature: +4

This morning we zodiac cruised Foyn Harbour, a place with a rich whaling history. This was the site where the whale oil factory ship the Governor was grounded at Enterprise Island after the crew threw a party to celebrate another successful season. They did not only throw a party but, accidentally, also a lamp in the storeroom filled with barrels of whale oil. The ship caught fire, but all crew were saved. During our cruise we visited the wreck and several water boats on the shore. During cruising most of us had an incredible whale encounter nearby the zodiacs, which warmed our hearts during this cold rainy morning. After a nice lunch and heating and drying up a bit on the ship we sailed towards Orne Island for our afternoon program. The weather did not really change, it was still drizzling with rain when we boarded the zodiac. Getting out of the zodiac was a bit challenging as the coast was a rocky. At the landing spot we were welcomed by a couple of Fur seals trying to intimidate us. The main goal of this landing was to visit a colony of chinstrap penguins. The two days of rain, combined with the Penguin guano made it quite a slippery effort to reach the colony but we all managed to get close to the third main Penguin species of the Peninsula. Upon the way back we saw some Humpback whales bubble-feeding. When we were all back on the ship, more groups of Humpbacks showed up and we had a nice show while heaving our well-deserved hot coffee or thee in the lounge. After recap we had again a well-deserved meal and where hoping for some better weather for the next day, which will be the final expedition day in Antarctica.

Day 9: Half Moon Island \ Yankee Harbour

Half Moon Island \ Yankee Harbour
Date: 06.03.2020
Position: 62°34,9’S / 059°52,2’W
Wind: NW 4
Weather: overcast
Air Temperature: +3

After our 07.00am wakeup call from Iain and a good breakfast, we all set out for our morning’s destination - Half Moon Island. The zodiac ride in was a slightly windy and bumpy, but nothing we hadn’t seen before at this before by this point. As Plancius anchored just off the coast of Half Moon, we at the glaciated peaks of Livingston Island. Rough rock-formations give the island a very characteristic touch and have creates many small niches and plateaus to host chinstrap-penguins (including one single resident Macaroni penguin, who we call Kevin), shags and gulls. The long-hikers headed off behind the Argentinian research station, to stretch their legs and get views of the surrounding mountains and glaciers. Along the route Fur Seals were scattered about, posing for photos and once in a while showing off their teeth, to remind us that they were not just beautiful, but also family tough. Meanwhile, for the passengers that had landed closer to the penguin colony, they had the added bonus of spotting a Leopard Seal in the shallow bay below, as well as an Elephant Seal relaxing and enjoying life on the beach. It was a great morning on Half Moon but after a few hours it was time to get back to the ship for a well-deserved lunch. After lunch and a small break, we set out again for Yankee Harbour. As we arrived to our landing, a large Elephant Seal decide to join us only meters from our zodiacs. If that wasn’t enough a juvenile Shag decided the Elephant Seal would be a good place for a rest, and hopped up for a rest on its back. After a minute of two the Elephant Seal decided that was enough and did what it could to get the Shag off, but the stubborn little Shag was determined to ride the Elephant Seal for a while longer, giving all of us a very entertaining show. Soon we all headed down to the beach for a walk towards the glacier. A Weddell Seal was laying on the icy beach near the penguins, posing for photos near the old sealers Tri-pots left on the beach from an era long gone. It was a great last landing. It was a little sad getting back into the zodiacs, knowing that once we got back on the ship it would be time to start heading back into the Drake… and back direction Ushuaia. Back on the ship, and back in warm dry cloths we enjoyed recap and heard stories from staff. When Alex announced dinner, we were all more than ready after such a full day. But after dinner the fun continued with a game with the staff. All the passengers formed teams and had to guess which stories from the staff were true… or false. It made for some funny stories, some good laughs and a very fun end to the day.

Day 10: At Sea to Ushuaia

At Sea to Ushuaia
Date: 07.03.2020
Position: 60°13.1’S / 061°32.9’W
Wind: E 5
Weather: Cloudy 7/8
Air Temperature: +3

As we began crossing back the Drake Passage, the pace of life on board has changed, we had a wake-up call from Iain early again but knowing this time there is no rush. We can stay a little bit more in bed and enjoy the first morning without any operation or landings ahead, so this morning, a rare sight compared to most other days of the voyage: the corridors and lounge are empty at first light. It must be said that the grandiose landscapes of the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetlands have faded away to make way for the immensity of the Southern Ocean. After the call announcing the opening of the doors of the dining room for breakfast, the ship came to life again and a lovely sunny calm day was waiting for everyone on deck. Soon after, Tom opened a new series of conferences that will liven up our two days of crossing before arriving in Ushuaia. He offered a presentation on the Geological and Climatological History of Antarctica. After a quiet break Pippa offer us another interesting lecture about the History of Antarctic Whaling. After lunch, Steffi gave us a fascinating lecture on the adaptations developed by the fauna of the polar regions: ‘Weather extreme – How animals adapt to the Polar Regions’. The day, once again enriching, came to an end with Iain’s lecture about his personal experience on ‘Overwintering in Antarctica’. Once again, our EL Iain welcoming us to the lounge to present tomorrow's program during our daily re-cap. Alex, our Hotel manager discussed a few practical points concerning our return to port, and bringing the bad news that bills will eventually have to be paid! After dinner… The full Expedition Team in the lounge played the Antarctic Quiz! a fun evening of Antarctic Trivia.

Day 11: At Sea to Ushuaia

At Sea to Ushuaia
Date: 08.03.2020
Position: 56°05.3’S / 065°32.9’W
Wind: SW 5-6
Weather: overcast
Air Temperature: +5

This morning we could definitely feel that there was some more motion in the ocean. As predicted the wind and swell had increased a little bit overnight and as the morning progressed the wind began to whip up the waves and throw mist and spray into the air. Very atmospheric to see but not always so nice to feel. It did seem, however, that most folks were up and about and well able to put their seaworthy legs to work. We had another full day ahead with lectures and tasks to take care of. First was an excellent lecture by Iain about Science in Antarctica and Rustyn about Evolution of Equipment, what it was like to work and being involved in several field operations for the British Antarctic Survey and how the equipment evolved since the beginning of the exploration era. Then after a short break for tea and cookies, Felicity talked about The Threats to Antarctic Marine Life and how we can help on the prevention of some of them. After lunch We collected the Rubber boots in a challenging sea condition, with all the expedition staff involved making the task faster and smooth to everyone. Mal started his last lecture on Climate Change – Anthropogenic Challenges and Opportunities. Another way to became an Antarctic Ambassador back home with all this new knowledge about interesting subjects like threats, pollution and consequences. Alexis gave an interesting talk about the native peoples of Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego, and recommended an extremely engaging account of establishing the first European homestead and living among the Yamana and Ona peoples, written by Lucas Bridges: “The Uttermost Part of the Earth”. After a short break Alexis then offered a workshop where he explained the culture around the well-known South American drink mate. He demonstrated how to correctly execute the ritual as well as which tools and herbs to look for at the market. After a morning of having the outer decks closed due to the rough seas, at lunch there was finally land in sight—the Beagle Channel was waiting for us. After another couple hours we were in the protection of the outer islands including Cape Horn, and so the swell dropped and we could finally emerge and feel the fresh air and get our first scents of leaves and soil wafting on the wind. The last major event of the day wasn’t a recap this time but Captain’s Farewell—a chance to gather together to hear a few final words from our Captain Artur and raise a glass to a successful voyage as well as in gratitude to all of the seen, and unseen, crew members who made this trip possible. We adjourned to enjoy one last evening meal where the galley team showed us again how fortunate we’ve been to enjoy their amazing delicacies for so many days. Then we were approaching Ushuaia at night, with lights shining, welcoming us back to solid ground.

Day 12: Disembarkation - Ushuaia

Disembarkation - Ushuaia
Date: 09.03.2020

This morning, at last, would be a dry landing. The last 10 days have taken us on a remarkable journey to Antarctica and allowed us a glimpse of life in this remote and sometimes inhospitable place. We will all have different memories of our trip but whatever the memories, whether it was the gentoo penguins at Danco or the sight of icebergs for the first time they are memories that will stay with us for the rest of our lives. On behalf of everyone on board we thank you for travelling with us and wish you a safe journey home. Total distance sailed on our voyage: 1752 Nautical Miles Furthest South: 64°91’S / 063°47’W


Tripcode: PLA31-20
Dates: 27 Feb - 9 Mar, 2020
Duration: 11 nights
Ship: m/v Plancius
Embark: Ushuaia
Disembark: Ushuaia

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