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Classic Antarctica - M/V Sylvia Earle

Argentina - Trip code SEAP Polar
Days 12
Deposit From AU$1978
Price from AU$19780
Flights not included
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Why book this trip?

The South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula form one of the most spectacular wilderness areas on earth. A remarkable collection of wildlife lives in the shadow of snow-capped mountains and blue icebergs; penguins, whales and a rich diversity of birdlife await you on this exploratory journey of the Great White Continent.

  • Search for orca and minke whales - as they hunt in icy bays
  • Penguin rookeries - see Adelie, gentoo and chinstrap penguin busily building their nests
  • Enjoy the freedom of Antarctica - being in the vast, ice-sculpted Antarctic wilderness
  • Included meals

    Breakfast: 11

    Lunch: 9

    Dinner: 10

  • Trip staff

    Expedition Crew

    Naturalist(s)

  • Transport

    M/V Sylvia Earle

    Zodiac

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    Accommodation

    10 nights premium boat

    1 nights comfortable hotel

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    Trip pace:

    Relaxed

Itinerary

Itineraries on some departure dates may differ, please select the itinerary that you wish to explore.

Day 1 - Join trip in Ushuaia

Arrive in Ushuaia. If you are arriving in on the preferred flight times, you will be met by a representative and transferred to your downtown hotel. Upon arrival into Ushuaia City Airport (USH) please collect your luggage and look for a representative in the Arrivals Hall, holding a sign with your name on it. If you have booked your flights independently and are on the preferred flights, please make sure that you have advised us of your arrival flight details into Ushuaia, so that a transfer is booked for you. Be sure to keep all of your important documents - i.e. passport and travel insurance, and also your medication in your hand luggage, as your main luggage will be transferred separately to the hotel.

From our experience we have found that there are significant delays, especially in high season on flights from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia. We highly recommend booking your travel arrangements to arrive into Ushuaia earlier in the day.

There are no activities planned today. If your flight arrives earlier in the day, perhaps you might choose to explore the city, visit the Maritime Museum or join a tour to Tierra del Fuego National Park, which offers magnificent hiking opportunities.

Accommodation:

Grade: Comfortable Hotel

Single room available

Meals Provided: None

Day 2 - Embark the M/V Sylvia Earle

This morning, please ensure your luggage is taken down to hotel reception by 8 am. Your luggage will be collected from your hotel and transferred directly to port for clearance and delivered to your cabin ahead of your arrival on board. Please ensure that you keep any valuables or personal items with you throughout the day.

Once you have checked out of your hotel by 11 am, you will have free time before meeting back in the hotel lobby at 2pm to commence a tour of Ushuaia. Ushuaia, capital of Tierra del Fuego is located at the shores of the Beagle Channel and surrounded by the Martial Mountains giving you a unique landscape in Argentina, which is the combination of mountains, sea, glaciers and forests. On this half day introductory tour, you will visit La Mision neighbourhood, the old Government House, and the upper area of the city, which offers beautiful panoramic views of Ushuaia and the Beagle Channel. During the excursion you will see the antique houses that belonged to the first families settled in Ushuaia. The excursion ends with a visit to the Old Prison Museum before transferring to the pier for embarkation at approximately 4pm.

After embarkation, you'll have time to settle into your cabin before the important mandatory briefings. Gather on deck as the ship pulls away from Ushuaia, enjoying spectacular views over Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego. This evening, you will have the opportunity to get to know your fellow expeditioners and friendly expedition team at a welcome dinner, celebrating the start of a thrilling adventure to Antarctica.

Accommodation:

Grade: Premium Boat

Meals Provided: Breakfast & Dinner

Day 3 - Drake Passage

We head southbound towards the Antarctic Peninsula and across the Drake Passage. Join our Polar experts to learn about Antarctica's unique wildlife and history, talk to fellow passengers, staff and crew, and prepare for your landings with the environmental and safety briefings given on board.

Accommodation:

Grade: Premium Boat

Meals Provided: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 4 - Drake Passage and South Shetland Islands

Spirits soar as air and water temperatures fall, marking our crossing into the 'White Continent.' Possible landings as we approach the South Shetland Islands include Aitcho, Robert or Deception Islands.

Accommodation:

Grade: Premium Boat

Meals Provided: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 5 - Antarctic Peninsula

An overnight passage along Gerlache Strait delivers us to the stunning Antarctic Peninsula, an ethereal wonderland of vast proportions. Aboard robust Zodiacs, we explore penguin rookeries, historic sites and scientific stations, and cruise up close to intricately shaped icebergs and seals basking on ice floes. Kayakers paddle through narrow waterways, in search of wildlife and serenity. Stepping ashore on the continent itself creates an everlasting memory. Landings are dependent on the ice and weather conditions, so our itinerary does need to be flexible. Landings do often change voyage-to-voyage, but our expert guides and Expedition staff will ensure that you have the best chance to capture the surprising wildlife displays and to enjoy any unexpected opportunities that come your way.

Accommodation:

Grade: Premium Boat

Meals Provided: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 6 - Antarctic Peninsula

Over the next few days a host of choices are open to us, and depending on ice and weather conditions, the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula is ours to explore. Our experienced expedition team, who have made countless journeys to this area, will use their expertise to design our voyage from day to day. This allows us to make best use

of the prevailing weather, ice conditions and wildlife opportunities.

Accommodation:

Grade: Premium Boat

Meals Provided: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 7 - Antarctic Peninsula

There will be plenty of time to enjoy the sheer beauty and breathtaking scenery of this magical land, with it's impressive glaciers and rugged snow-capped mountains. Walk on shore among hundreds of penguins as you stop off at gentoo, Adelie and chinstrap penguin rookeries, or explore the glacial scenery by Zodiac. Possible landing sites may include spectacular Paradise Harbour - a perfect nesting site for blue-eyed shags, terns and gulls; Hydrurga Rocks, where you can see a group of low-lying granite rocks, protruding from the sea and the wildlife-rich Half Moon Island, tucked away in a neat bay at the eastern end of Livingston Island. On a clear day, the glaciers and mountains of Livingston Island dominate the vista. There is a large chinstrap penguin colony tucked in between basaltic turrets coloured by yellow and orange lichens. Gulls nest on these turrets and there are often fur seals and elephant seals hauled out on the pebble beaches.

Accommodation:

Grade: Premium Boat

Meals Provided: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 8 - Antarctic Peninsula

If ice conditions allow, the ship will cruise along the narrow Lemaire Channel, one of the many highlights of our voyage. Cliffs tower 700 metres straight out of the ocean, on either side of the ship. The water can sometimes be so still that perfect reflections are mirrored on the surface and it is clear to see why this Channel is often called Kodak Alley. Gigantic icebergs may clog the channel, creating navigational challenges for our Captain and crew; occasionally they may even obstruct our passage.

Accommodation:

Grade: Premium Boat

Meals Provided: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 9 - Antarctic Peninsula

Located on Goudier Island, British Port Lockroy is an important site for both scientific research and visitors to the Antarctic continent. Designated a historic site in 1994 and opened to the Antarctic tourism industry in 1996, it was discovered in 1904 and used by the whaling industry in the first half of the 1900s. It was part of the British Operation

Tabarin during World War II, and was later used as a British Research Station. Today, Pork Lockroy is manned by the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust and operates as a museum, gift shop and post office for visitors from passing Antarctic expeditions. You can even send a post card home from the Penguin Post Office, the world's most southern Post

Office.

The Peninsula also has a remarkable history and during the voyage, we will learn more about the incredible expeditions to these remote areas and hopefully, you will enjoy the same sense of excitement as many of those early Explorers. Today, we have a final full day to enjoy the serenity of one of the last true wilderness areas on earth, before we head north again.

Accommodation:

Grade: Premium Boat

Meals Provided: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 10 - Drake Passage

Today, our landings come to an end as we re-enter the Drake Passage for our return journey to Ushuaia. With lectures and film presentations to complete our Antarctic experience, there is still plenty of time to enjoy the magic of the Southern Ocean and the life that calls it home. There is time for reflection and discussion about what we have

seen and experienced, and the impact this voyage has had on our attitude to life.

Accommodation:

Grade: Premium Boat

Meals Provided: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 11 - Drake Passage

As we approach the tip of South America, our Captain may sail close to legendary Cape Horn, weather and time permitting.

Accommodation:

Grade: Premium Boat

Meals Provided: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 12 - Trip ends in Ushuaia

During the early morning, we cruise up the Beagle Channel, before quietly slipping into dock in Ushuaia. The trip ends after breakfast on board the ship. There are no activities planned today, so you are free to depart at any time after 12 pm. For those on morning flights, a transfer will take you directly to Ushuaia City Airport (USH). For those on later flights, you will be transferred to downtown Ushuaia and given time to explore the city, before continuing on to the airport in time for your flight.

Meals Provided: Breakfast

Trip information

Climate and country information

Argentina

Climate

Argentina has a climate that ranges from subtropical in the north to cold in the temperate south. The Andes has erratic rainfall and flash floods from December to May. From June to September spring like sunny days temper the cold nights.

Time difference to GMT

-3

Plugs

3 Pin Flat

Religion

Predominantly Roman Catholic.

Language

Spanish is the main language throughout this region, along with a number of indigenous dialects, of

Budgeting and packing

Optional activities

The following excursions and/or activities are usually available and may be arranged locally. Estimated costs are provided below for guidance only, are on a per person basis unless shown otherwise, and may depend on the number of participants. Prices quoted are correct as of the date these tour notes were originally issued but may change at any time due to currency fluctuations. Please note: These activities are booked and paid for direct with the supplier and do not form part of your Explore holiday contract.


Whilst landings are included in the cost of your trip as per the outline itinerary, some departures aboard the MV Greg Mortimer have additional optional excursions which can be pre-booked with the ship operator directly. These will be charged at an additional fee, depending on the excursion and we recommend booking these in advance to ensure availability. Please speak to a member of our Polar team who will advise you on the booking process.

Clothing


Parkas
You should look for a lightweight, roomy, wind and water-resistant parka with some insulation. Bright colors are more visible - and thus safer - in polar environments.
Gloves
Keeping your hands warm and dry can be a challenge. Thin polypropylene gloves can be worn underneath warm outergloves. This allows you some protection from the cold when removing your gloves to operate your camera etc. We strongly recommend that you bring more than one pair of gloves, in case one gets wet (or lost).
Hat/Cap
Warm, woollen hat/cap to protect your ears, as well as a scarf, neck gaiter or other face protection, such as a balaclava.
Trousers
Water-resistant trousers of coated nylon or, even better, Gore-Tex® are essential for your comfort. They can be worn over your regular clothes to keep you warm and dry. We suggest that you purchase trousers a few sizes larger than you normally wear as you will be wearing them over other clothing. Gore-Tex® or similar fabrics are excellent for keeping out wind and water without trapping excess heat. Rain gear and Gore-Tex® products can be found in any outdoor sport clothing store. In addition to your waterproof trousers, warm ski pants are suggested if you have them. Warm trousers such as jeans, corduroys etc are also good.
Socks
Warm wool socks worn over a thin pair of silk, polypropylene socks should provide enough warmth and insulation for your feet. Bring several pairs of socks, since you will inevitably get your feet wet.
Outer Clothing Woollen, knit or cotton sweaters/tops, polar fleece tops (medium weight), several cotton turtlenecks and T-shirts for layering on and off the ship.
Underclothing
Thermal underwear is highly recommended as it will keep you warm without adding bulk. Most polar travellers prefer a lightweight version.

Footwear

Complimentary waterproof boots will be supplied on-board. However, if you have extra small or large feet, you are advised to bring your own.
Also ensure you take good walking boots and trainers for relaxing.

Luggage

15Kg

Luggage: On tour

One main piece of baggage and daypack. Remember you are expected to carry your own luggage so
don't overload yourself.

Please note that a 15kgs luggage weight limit is sporadically enforced on the internal flight to Ushuaia, occasionally charges may be levied against passengers taking luggage in excess of 15kgs.

Equipment

Sunglasses and sun cream
Insect repellant
Personal toiletries
A refilllable water bottle
Books/reading material
Camera and memory cards
Seasickness remedy
Walking poles

Tipping

Local crew
Tipping is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. It is an expression of satisfaction. The suggested amount is USD $15 per person per day spent on board. Of course, tipping is a personal choice and the suggested amount is set only as a guideline.

Argentina

Food and drink

The costs for meals may vary depending upon location, type of restaurant and number of courses eaten and so the prices given are an average guide. Local restaurants located off the beaten track may be less expensive, whereas an upmarket restaurant located in the centre of a major city may charge more.


Lunch price
£11
Dinner price
£20
Beer price
£3-4
Water price
£2
Foreign Exchange
Local currency
Argentine Peso (ARS)
Recommended Currency For Exchange
You can choose to either change your money in advance or on arrival at the airport. Here you will find both ATMs and Bureau de Change. The exchange rate with the ARS is approximately ARS 57 to the British Pound, but do check for the most up to date rate prior to your trip. You may wish to take additional USD cash in order to pay for optional excursions, which is not dispensed by ATMs in Argentina.
Where To Exchange
Your Tour Leader will advise you on arrival.
ATM Availability
Available in Buenos Aires. In Patagonia some cards with Chip and Pin do not work in the ATM machines. Always have some cash as back-up as they are not always reliable
Credit Card Acceptance
Credit card are widely accepted in many shops and restaurants but some may be subject to a service charge
Travellers Cheques
We do not recommend Travellers Cheques
Transport, Accommodation & Meals

Transport Information

M/V Sylvia Earle, Zodiac

Ship description

The M/V Sylvia Earle is a purpose-built expedition vessel and is the sister ship to the M/V Greg Mortimer. Built with the same revolutionary Ulstein X-Bow design which allows the ship to comfortably navigate the ice, the Sylvia Earle features a distinctive glass atrium lounge at the bow of the vessel which offers stunning panoramic views. Other features include a swimming pool and Jacuzzi, from which you can soak up the passing scenery. With just 120 passengers, guests can enjoy spacious stateroom cabins and suites, a large mud room and easy boarding access at water level. The ship also has a library and multimedia room, gym, sauna and spa.

Cabins

The lead-in prices on our website are based on triple outward facing, Stateroom cabins. All staterooms have private bathrooms, ample storage, with twin beds. Many of the stateroom categories, have floor to ceiling windows that offer prime observation opportunities around the clock. Additionally, there are private balconies in most of the staterooms, allowing you to watch the world float past and take in the salty air of the open ocean. A full layout of the deck plan can be found under the Polar Ships section on our website. Your confirmed cabin type will appear on your Booking Confirmation, which will be sent on receipt of your deposit payment.

Ship dining

Meals are served in the large, spacious dining room with an open seating arrangement, perfect for swapping stories with your extended expedition family. A range of courses is offered at each meal time and you can enjoy a variety of house wines, beers and soft drinks which are included with your evening meal. Complimentary coffee, tea and snacks are available throughout the day and any additional drinks can be purchased at the fully-stocked bar.



Essential Information

Government Travel Safety Advice

We strongly recommend that you check your government's travel advisory for up-to-date information and advice about your destination: safety and security, entry requirements, health, local laws and customs. For UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office advice click here.

For more information from Explore about travel advice, click here
 

Under 18 immigration guidance

Please note that some countries require proof of parental consent when travelling overseas with under 18s. Please check requirements with the relevant embassy or consular office well in advance of travel if this applies to your party.

Price Guarantee

Once your booking has been confirmed we guarantee the price will not increase, whatever the circumstances. Before booking please ensure you have read our important tour pricing information.Booking Conditions

Visa and Passport Information

All visa information is subject to change. You should confirm all visa related issues with the relevant Embassy prior to departure.

USA (If flights transit): you will need to apply for an ESTA if you are transiting the USA as you will have to disembark and clear immigration before re-boarding for the onward flight.

Citizens of the UK, New Zealand, Australia, Canada and passport holders from several EU countries can enter the United States without a visa under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) - where you apply for an ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorisation), which applies if you enter the country by sea or by air. This must be done on line - https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov no later than 72 hours prior to travel.
Travellers who have not registered before their trip are likely be refused boarding. When completing an application for transit you should enter the words 'In Transit' with your final destination location in the address line

You must have an electronic passport with a digital chip containing biometric information about the passport owner. UK passports which are biometric feature a small gold symbol (camera) at the bottom of the front cover.

If you have visited Iraq, Syria, Iran or Sudan in the past five years or are dual nationals of these countries, you cannot travel under the Visa Waiver Programme. Instead you will need to apply for a visa from the nearest US Embassy or Consulate. If you are unable to provide a valid visa before boarding flights to the US, or entering via another method, you may not be permitted to travel.

For further information please check out the US embassy website.
Visa applications - http://london.usembassy.gov/niv/apply.html


If you do require assistance in obtaining a visa then you may be able to apply through Explore's recommended visa service in the UK, Travcour. See www.travcour.com to download the relevant visa application for your trip, if applicable (UK citizens only), along with details of how to apply for your visa through Travcour. The Team at Travcour will be happy to answer specific questions relating to visa applications, please call them directly on 0208 5431846.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of a full passport, with the correct validity for your chosen destination.
 

Booking conditions

Before booking your Explore trip, please ensure that you read both our Essential Information and Booking Conditions.

Transfers

Find out more about Trip Transfer Terms and Conditions before you book.

Booking a land only package with Explore

Customers who have chosen to book on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements of our tour, please ensure that you have checked your tour specific ‘Joining Instructions’ prior to booking your own travel arrangements. Your joining instructions can be found below in the dates and prices information. 

You may also be eligible for the Free Explore Transfer.


Joining Tour Abroad

Customers booked on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements will receive a Free Transfer, provided you arrive and depart on the tour only itinerary start and end dates. The complimentary transfers will be arranged from the Explore designated airport or train station to your trips joining point, and then back from the ending point to the designated airport or train station. Generally the airport or station that Explore have selected will be the one that is closest to the town or city where the trip starts, or the one nearest to the joining point. It will be either an airport or train station but not both.

The exception to this rule is customers who are booked on a tour where the joining and ending point is at the designated airport or train station.  

Free transfers are not available for Self-Guided, Polar, Tailormade or Tours for Churches customers.

If you are not eligible for the Free Transfer then you will need to make your own way through to the joining and ending point. On a majority of our tours Explore will be able to provide a private transfer at an additional cost. Please ask for a quote at the time of booking.  

For more information regarding the Explore Free Transfer click here

Insurance

It is a condition of booking with Explore that you have adequate valid travel insurance. It is your responsibility to arrange appropriate travel insurance and ensure you have read and understood the full terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for all activities you intend to undertake whilst on the tour, including all optional activities. Your Insurance Policy must fully cover you for medical expenses and emergency repatriation to your home country. Please ensure your policy includes medical emergency helicopter evacuation in the event of illness or injury and covers the entire duration of your holiday. If you are trekking at altitude please ensure that there is no upper altitude limit which may limit or exclude cover for your trip. The cost of many of our Polar Voyages will exceed the capped amount covered by standard insurance premiums and you will be required to pay an additional premium to cover the full value of your trip. Please ensure that you are covered for the full amount of your holiday cost, as insufficient cover could invalidate a claim under the policy. Medical and repatriation insurance cover is not mandatory for UK residents who are travelling on trips within the United Kingdom.
Read more information about what travel insurance is required.

Flight information

Explore offers a wide range of flexible flying options to make joining and leaving our trips easy. Read more about them here.


Flight Information

You are able to book this tour on a 'land only' basis or as a ‘flight inclusive’ package. Your flight inclusive package will be fully protected by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) ATOL protection scheme.

  

Booking a flight inclusive package with Explore

We have a good selection of flights not only from London but from many regional airports around the UK allowing us to compare fares between scheduled carriers as well as low cost and charter airlines. Our dedicated flights team will match the best flight options to your arrival and departure airport.

On our website we display a UK flight inclusive package guide price which is generally based on a London departure. To avoid paying supplements or to secure your preferred flight option, we recommend booking as early as possible, especially for peak travel dates.

Argentina

Vaccinations

Nothing compulsory, we recommend protection against typhoid, tetanus, polio and hepatitis A. Please consult your travel clinic for the latest advice on Malaria, Dengue and Zika Virus. Please take preventative measures to avoid mosquito bites - these include mosquito repellent as well as long trousers and long sleeve shirts to cover up when necessary. Please note many countries in Central America, South America and the Caribbean require a yellow fever vaccination certificates if travelling from infected areas. A detailed list of these countries can be found on the NaTHNaC website - http://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries. Also on the NaTHNaC site there is a list of Countries (and specific areas within a country) which are at risk of infection and a vaccination is therefore recommended. Yellow fever is only recommended for those travelling to Iguazu falls. Please check the latest requirements with your travel clinic or doctor prior to departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at Explore Travel Health and from your local healthcare provider. Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed by you before travelling.

Polar information
Ship information
The M/V Sylvia Earle is a purpose-built expedition vessel and is the sister ship to the M/V Greg Mortimer. Built with the same revolutionary Ulstein X-Bow design which allows the ship to comfortably navigate the ice, the Sylvia Earle features a distinctive glass atrium lounge at the bow of the vessel which offers stunning panoramic views. Other features include a swimming pool and Jacuzzi, from which you can soak up the passing scenery. With just 120 passengers, guests can enjoy spacious stateroom cabins and suites, a large mud room and easy boarding access at water level. The ship also has a library and multimedia room, gym, sauna and spa.

Dates, prices and booking

All holidays are subject to availability and prices are subject to change
Fri 29 Oct 2021 - Tue 9 Nov 2021
SEAP_2022
AU$19780
was Save
SINGLE ROOM OPTION
i
Call us

Add a flight with Explore

  • Full Explore refunds in the event of FCDO cancellations or major disruption at your UK departure airport
  • Carbon neutral flights – Gold Standard offsetting included
  • Rearranged flights and transfers in the event of delays, missed connections, or cancellations (including accommodation overseas)
  • ATOL protected
  • No surcharge guarantee
 
Tue 7 Dec 2021 - Sat 18 Dec 2021
SEAP_2022
AU$20610
was Save
SINGLE ROOM OPTION
i
Call us

Add a flight with Explore

  • Full Explore refunds in the event of FCDO cancellations or major disruption at your UK departure airport
  • Carbon neutral flights – Gold Standard offsetting included
  • Rearranged flights and transfers in the event of delays, missed connections, or cancellations (including accommodation overseas)
  • ATOL protected
  • No surcharge guarantee
 
Sun 9 Jan 2022 - Thu 20 Jan 2022
SEAP_2022
AU$22460
was Save
SINGLE ROOM OPTION
i
Call us

Add a flight with Explore

  • Full Explore refunds in the event of FCDO cancellations or major disruption at your UK departure airport
  • Carbon neutral flights – Gold Standard offsetting included
  • Rearranged flights and transfers in the event of delays, missed connections, or cancellations (including accommodation overseas)
  • ATOL protected
  • No surcharge guarantee
 

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