It’s the coldest, driest and windiest spot on the planet, but for those lucky enough to reach the final frontier, the long journey and weather conditions are inconsequential to the wonders that await them.

According to the IAATO (The International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators), there were a total of almost 44,500 visitors to Antarctica over the past 12 months. Australian’s made up the third largest nationality. So, what is it about this beguiling continent that features on just about every intrepid traveller’s bucket list?

Whilst all of The Adventure Traveller consultants have travelled to Antarctica, William is the only one who has been twice. He is an Antarctic fanatic with an immense passion for helping others create their once-in-a-lifetime Antarctic adventure.

My journey started in Ushuaia the southern most town in the world in Tierra Del Fuego, Argentina. I boarded the Polar Pioneer a Finnish ice strengthened research ship that holds 56 passengers. My journey was to take in The Drake passage known to all that sail as the Drake lake or the Drake shake as it can be either a smooth crossing or a choppy crossing depending on weather.

Heading firstly to the Antarctic peninsula for amazing photographic opportunities at Paradise Bay and Lemaire channel viewing Whales, Penguins, Seals and numerous species of birds including the 3m wing span of the Wandering Albatross and well as magnificent icebergs and huge glaciers.

After a few days down on the peninsula we cruised to South Shetland Islands including Elephant Island then on to the breeding grounds for the Sub Antarctic Fur Seals, the Elephant Seals and King Penguin colonies of 80,000 on South Georgia Island where Ernest Shackleton the great explorer is buried. After a few days exploring there we headed for the Falkland Islands and the infamous Port Stanley(for all the wrong reasons) where we visited Sea Lion colonies as well as the Magellanic Penguins that live in burrows and some rare species of birds (ornithologists dream).

An amazing opportunity that everyone should experience once in their lifetime.



Apart from the standard of ship you choose, there are two very different cruise types to Antarctica. The larger ships generally offer longer cruises that are restricted to scenic cruising around the South American coast.

The majority of cruises we deal with offer smaller specialty ships that allow passengers to experience the Antarctic islands and the continent itself and tend to be more expedition style cruises.


Larger cruise ships tend to depart either Valparaiso or Buenos Aires

Smaller specialty ships generally depart from Ushuaia, the most southerly city in the world located on Tierra del Fuego.


The Antarctic cruising season is during the Southern Summer months of October to March when the days are longer – up to 20 hours of daylight at the height of Summer.

Summer in the sub Antarctic still means the temperature on the continent rarely gets above freezing, but the days are pleasant non the less – as long as you wear the appropriate attire.