Antarctica Whale Journey

Ship Trip
Highlights

Highlights

  • Experience the wildlife of the South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula including albatross, penguins, elephant seals, whales and dolphins.
  • Enjoy regular Zodiac excursions and landings amid spectacular scenery
  • Learn about Antarctic history from our onboard resource staff.
  • Admire breathtaking scenery such as icebergs, glaciated mountains and volcanoes
Map

Map

Map for Antarctica Whale Journey

Tour Overview

Voyage in comfort aboard Ocean Endeavour from Ushuaia, Argentina, to the South Shetland Islands, Antarctic Peninsula, and back. Appreciate the wonders of wildlife in the kingdom of ice. Add the great southern continent to your travel bucket list!

Departures & Cabins

DEPARTURES & CABINS

Please Note: You are advised not to book a flight out of Ushuaia before midday on disembarkation day, in case of delays caused by unfavourable weather conditions.

What's Included

Tour Price Includes

  • All meals on board the Ocean Endeavour including snacks
  • On-board lecture program from expedition team and naturalists
  • All shore excursions and Zodiac cruising (except paid adventure options that have an additional cost)
  • Use of rubber boots on land and waterproof outer shell jacket
  • Insulated inner jacket, yours to keep at the end of your voyage
  • Transfer from Ushuaia airport to hotel (Day 1) and pre-night hotel accommodation with breakfast
  • Transfer from hotel accommodation to the Ocean Endeavour for embarkation
  • Transfer to Ushuaia airport on return to port
  • All port taxes
  • Use of on-board gym, sauna, pool, jacuzzi and yoga

Tour Price Does Not Include

  • International or internal flights unless specified
  • Airport transfers, taxes and excess baggage charges unless specified
  • Meals other than those specified in the pre-departure information
  • Visa and passport fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Paid adventure options and all personal expenses
  • Tobacco, alcoholic or special beverages
  • Miscellaneous extras
  • Laundry and communication charges
  • Medical care
  • Life jackets, waterproof outer shell jacket, insulated inner jacket and boots for minors under sixteen years of age at time of travel
  • Waterproof outer shell jacket, insulated inner jacket and rubber boots for guests who require larger sizing
  • Gratuities for expedition team and crew

Itinerary

Day 1: Ushuaia, Argentina

Welcome to Ushuaia, the gateway to Antarctica. Take your included transfer from the airport to your hotel. Tonight, you’ll meet fellow guests and our local team in Ushuaia during a welcome briefing at your hotel. If you have some time to spare before the meeting, we suggest you head downtown to do some souvenir shopping or taste some classic Argentinian flavours at one of Ushuaia's fantastic local restaurants.

An arrival transfer from the airport on day one is included in your voyage fare. Please speak to an Intrepid booking agent to organise this.

Ushuaia cityscape at sunset - Patagonia, Argentina. View from the harbor.

Day 2: Ushuaia, Argentina, Embarkation

Enjoy some free time to explore Ushuaia and the surrounding area before boarding the Ocean Endeavour this afternoon. Once settled, you’ll cast off and make your way through the Beagle Channel towards the infamous Drake Passage. Named after Charles Darwin’s historic ship The Beagle, the deep open water of the channel presents many great photo opportunities.

Be sure to wave goodbye to South America if you're not too busy snapping away at the incredible landscapes – your next land sighting will be the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands.

Beagle Channel

Day 3–4: At Sea – Drake Passage

The Drake Passage is one of the most famous bodies of water on the planet. It can be a little rough, but if weather conditions are good, you can head out on the outer decks for a chance to spot ocean dwellers like whales and dolphins, or perhaps seabirds including the spectacular wandering albatross, prions and petrels.

Over the next two days, you'll get to know your expedition team experts as our comprehensive lecture program gets underway. Our polar experts will share their knowledge of the Antarctic region so you can gain a great understanding of its wildlife, history and geology and help prepare you for the adventure that lies ahead.

Your expedition team are experts on the marine life that inhabit these parts and will help scout for sightings as you join them on the Ocean Endeavour's bridge and spacious outer decks. With favourable conditions, you are scheduled to arrive at the Antarctic Peninsula late on the evening of day four.

On the deck in Drake Passage

Day 5–8: South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula

The Antarctic Peninsula is known for a high number of wildlife sightings in front of stunning backdrops of mountains, icy landscapes and water, which combine to provide incredible scenes as you search for whales migrating along the coast.

The peak of the migration season (February and March) is the best opportunity to see these majestic ocean dwellers, as all Antarctic whale species migrate long distances, feeding in the cold, nutrient-rich Southern Ocean during the southern summer. The most common species found in the region are humpback, minke and fin whales, as well as orcas.

As whale season is in full swing, you may like to participate in one of our exciting on-board citizen science projects, the Happy Whale Project, where you can upload photos of whale’s tails (flukes) online, along with details of where the images are taken, which are then used to analyse and identify the individual whale and track its movement across the oceans. Sightings can happen from the outer decks of the ship or during a Zodiac excursion, or on the ship's bridge with your captain, where our open bridge policy allows you into the command centre of the Ocean Endeavour for a look at the inner workings of your expedition and access to the best place to spot whales.

An average day on board begins with a wake-up call from your expedition leader around 7:00 a.m., giving you time to prepare for the day before joining fellow guests for breakfast in the Polaris Restaurant. You will usually have two excursions per day, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, with a delicious lunch served on the Ocean Endeavour in between excursions.

Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) fluke near a glacier in Paradise Harbor, Antarctic Peninsula

Day 9-10: At Sea - Drake Passage

As the Ocean Endeavour starts its return journey north to our home port of Ushuaia, now is your time to reflect on your amazing journey. We’re scheduled to reach the relatively calm waters of the Beagle Channel by the evening of day ten.

This evening, your final meal together in the Polaris restaurant is often a highlight of our Antarctic adventurers, so live it up and enjoy it as you celebrate an incredible adventure with fellow guests and expedition team members.

Chinstrap Penguins

Day 11: Ushuaia, Argentina

Disembark the Ocean Endeavour after breakfast as your Antarctic expedition comes to an end and the memories of an amazing adventure begin. Transfer to Ushuaia airport is included if you are departing today.

A departure transfer to the airport is included in your voyage fare if you are flying out today. Please speak to an Intrepid booking agent to organise this.

If you are flying out today, please do not book your flight to depart Ushuaia before midday in case of any delays caused by unfavourable weather conditions.

Ushuaia

What to Expect

Our small ship cruising programs allow you to experience the best of the natural world, while enjoying the comforts of our friendly floating hotel. The ship generally makes crossing between islands at night, so every morning you awake to new vistas and discoveries. Every day we offer a combination of interesting shore excursions and fun shipboard activities. You can choose which elements of the program you want to participate in.

This expedition cruise necessitates passengers to be in reasonably good health. Zodiac cruises and transfer times can be lengthy. You must be able to climb stairs between decks on the ship, as well as the external gangway stairs to transfer between the zodiac and ship.

Some of our shore landings will be ‘wet’, requiring waterproof boots. Once you have left the zodiac, you’ll find our shore excursions accommodate both those who wish to enjoy a gentle stroll and those who prefer more active hikes. The excursion may involve walking over uneven or sandy terrain in variable weather conditions. Our onboard specialists will join us on these shore excursions to provide interpretation and narration to these wonderful landscapes and experiences.

Each evening we will gather in the lounge to recount the day’s events and share memorable stories. Our onboard musician will provide some lively entertainment during happy hour and the expedition leader will outline the following day’s schedule. Our resource staff of naturalists, historians, and other guest speakers will give informative talks at various times throughout the voyage.

Meals in the ship's dining room are a great opportunity to meet new friends and recount the day's adventures. Special diets can be accommodated with advance notice. Safety is also a top priority with Eagle-Eye Tours – our team has extensive experience in the field, and all of our Voyages are run in conjunction with operators with the highest safety standards.

When the ship is underway, it is a wonderful time to join a naturalist on deck, take photos of the stunning scenery, or get caught up on some reading in the library.

Weather, ice, government regulations, and community requests may necessitate changes to the planned itineraries and/or the cancellation of certain shore excursions and enhancements. Published itineraries are examples only and we reserve the right to change or modify the itinerary and landing sites at any time prior or during an expedition. Changes will be communicated at your expedition orientation or during your onboard expedition briefings.

We know that everyone travels for different reasons. Over the years, however, we have found one common element among the guest who choose to travel with us - a thirst of knowledge and authentic experience. Knowing this drives us to ensure the highest quality learning experience on our trips, by taking time to carefully design each trip we offer.

Ship & Deck Plan

Ocean Endeavour Antarctica

Ocean Endeavour Antarctica

Sailing with a maximum of 198-passengers, Ocean Endeavour is the perfect vessel for expedition cruising. Outfitted with twenty Zodiacs, advanced navigation equipment, multiple lounges and a top deck observation room, she is purpose-built for passenger experiences in remote environments. The Ocean Endeavour boasts a 1B ice class, enabling her to freely explore throughout the Arctic summer.

Launched in 1982, she has had numerous upgrades, most recently in 2010 and 2014. At 137 meters (450ft) in length, Ocean Endeavour has plenty of interior and exterior space. Enjoy multiple decks offering comfortable lounge chairs, outdoor dining, a swimming pool, sauna and even a hot tub! The spacious interiors allow for multiple workshops and presentations to occur simultaneously. Community is at the heart of Adventure Canada’s expedition experience. We gather together to learn, enjoy a drink, sing a song or share a yarn – connecting with one and other. The three lounges aboard Ocean Endeavour are fantastic public spaces for seminars, events and dialogue.

The Ocean Endeavour’s private spaces are stylish and comfortable. All cabins have private washroom facilities, a phone for internal calls, radio, TV and air-conditioning.

Ocean Endeavour’s crew is experienced, and friendly. Her shallow draft and maneuverability allow her to access isolated fiords, bays and secluded communities. The stylish vessel is at home among the glorious settings we seek. Enjoy the class and comfort of a boutique hotel, while venturing to some of the world’s last great frontiers aboard the Ocean Endeavour!

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