SOLAR ECLIPSE, SOUTH GEORGIA & ANTARCTICA – OCEAN VICTORY
The eclipse begins early in the morning east of Falkland Islands. From here the moon shadow speeds south at 10,000 km per hour towards the South Orkney Island and Antarctica. Albatros Expeditions has selected the best possible observation position east of South Orkney, where the sun is 11 degrees above the horizon. This wondrous phenomenon will last for almost 2 minutes.
The solar eclipse is just one out of several highlights of this 15-days once-in-a-lifetime voyage.
We follow in the path of the courageous explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton – just in the opposite direction: From Ushuaia to the wildlife paradise of South Georgia. From here to the eclipse path and onwards to South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula. We will skirt the periphery of the Weddell Sea, birthplace of the mighty tabular icebergs, and cruise close to Shackleton’s harsh winter-camp on the shore of Elephant Island.
DAY 1 ARRIVAL AND EMBARKATION IN USHUAIA
Arrive and embark in Ushuaia, Argentina – the world’s southernmost town. Explore the quaint city or local countryside. Alternatively, consider a day trip off the beaten path to the raw, natural archipelago of Tierra del Fuego. It’s a hiker’s paradise with rugged snow-capped mountains, glaciers, flower-filled meadows and boggy quagmires. Afterwards we embark the ship Ocean Victory, our home for the coming days.
DAY 2 – 4 AT SEA TOWARDS SOUTH GEORGIA
Days at sea are great for participating in lectures, photo sessions and recaps, reading books in the ship library and watching the ubiquitous storm petrels and albatrosses from top deck.
DAY 5 – 8 SOUTH GEORGIA AND SOUTH ATLANTIC
South Georgia offers stunning wildlife experiences with a wealth of breeding penguins, sea birds, sea lions and seals, all seeking shelter in this oasis amidst the roaring Southern Ocean. Previous whaling history pops up in most of fjords we will explorer – not least in Grytviken the only inhabited settlement on this mountainous island. Grytviken is also the last resting place for Ernest Shackleton, after he died on yet another Antarctica voyage in 1922. We will explorer the fjords of the north coast for 2-3 days and take as many shore landings as time and the swelling sea will allow us.
DAY 9 SOLAR ECLIPSE
The eclipse begins early in the morning east of Falkland Islands. From here the moon shadow speeds south at 10,000 km per hour towards the South Orkney Island and Antarctica. Albatros Expeditions has selected the best possible observation position east of South Orkney, where the sun is 9 degrees above the horizon. This wondrous phenomenon will last for around 1 minute 40 seconds.
DAY 10 AT SEA TOWARDS ANTARCTICA
As the white shimmer of Antarctica looms on our horizon, the presence of wildlife multiples by tens of thousands with many species of lively penguins, inquisitive seals, nesting birds and the spray of marine mammals.
Wildlife abounds on the Antarctic Peninsula: leopard, fur and Weddell seals of Cuverville Island; humpback whales of Gerlache Strait; Paradise Bay; the dramatic Lemaire Channel’s orcas. Days at sea are great for enjoying the seascapes, relaxing, or participating on the program onboard.
DAY 11 – 12 ANTARCTIC PENINSULA AND SOUTH SHETLAND ISLANDS
We will explore to the sub-Antarctic islands of the South Shetland chain.
Projected landfalls include: Elephant Island, home to elephant seals, sheer cliffs rising from the sea and snow-covered peaks; King George Island; Deception Island, an extinct volcano with waters warm enough for a polar swim; and Half Moon Island with nesting Wilson’s storm petrels and chinstrap penguins.
The itinerary and activities over the next few days depend on weather and ice conditions. The route and shore landings will be determined by the captain and expedition leader and communicated to guests through regularly scheduled briefings.
DAY 13 – 14 RE-CROSSING DRAKE TOWARDS USHUAIA
Sailing back towards South America, we cross the famed Drake Passage – a body of water that marks the intersection of the cold Antarctic with the warmer Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Drake Passage is known for strong westerly winds, heavy sea, and its nickname ‘The Roaring Fifties’. While this passage may be challenging, you can rest confidently aboard our expedition vessel, Ocean Victory, which is purpose-built with stabilizers, powerful engines and a highly qualified crew. The most spirited sailors consider Drake Passage a lifetime achievement – and soon you can tick it off on the list yourself!
In the Drake, the excitement builds as Antarctic wildlife comes into view with sights of seals, penguins and albatrosses.
DAY 15 ARRIVAL IN USHUAIA AND DISEMBARKATION
After having entered the Beagle Channel between Tierra del Fuego and Isla Navarino during the night, Ocean Atlantic goes alongside in the port of Ushuaia. Disembarkation after breakfast.
The 2021-built luxury expedition vessel Ocean Victory has a total of 93 comfortable staterooms (90% with their own balcony), several restaurants, a wellness area, a bar, an open deck dining facility, a modern lecture lounge. The vessel is designed to be both environmentally-friendly and luxurious for guests.
Year of construction 2020
Polar code Class 6
Ice Class 1A
- 15-day cruise with accommodation in a shared outside double cabin with private facilities
- Position on the solar eclipse centerline
- All Zodiac landings and excursions as per itinerary
- Expedition parka
- Solar Eclipse glasses
- Rubber boot rentals
- Guiding and lectures by our expedition leader and team
- Special Photo Workshop
- English-speaking expedition team
- Visual Journal link after voyage including voyage log, gallery, maps, species list and more!
- Full board on the ship – breakfast, lunch, dinner and afternoon snacks
- Free tea and coffee 24 hours’ daily
- Welcome and farewell cocktails
- Extra excursions and activities not mentioned in the itinerary
- Single room supplement and cabin upgrades
- Meals not on board the ship
- Beverages (other than coffee and tea)
- Tips for the crew (we recommend USD 13.5 per person per day)
- Personal expenses
- Anything not mentioned under ’Inclusions’