Print this trip dossier
Cookies

At Journey Latin America we use cookies to give you the best experience on our website. By continuing to browse, you accept that you are happy to receive all cookies on our website.
Find out more


Luxury Antarctica expedition cruise

15 days from £8,074pp

Get in touch

Luxury Antarctica expedition cruise:
Trip Dossier

Expedition cruising has matured over the years, and a wide variety of craft and styles of travel is now available to suit all tastes and budgets. At the top of the range is Silversea: the luxuriousness of its vessels is only matched by the high quality of the facilities, staff and adventurous excursions. On this cruise where just about everything is included in the price you’ll travel to the Antarctic Peninsula on Silversea’s luxury cruise ship, the ice-strengthened  Silver Cloud, fully refurbished in 2017.

You don’t have to venture deep into this huge continent – larger than Europe – to have a rewarding experience of what Antarctica has to offer. This is one of the most frequent and popular itineraries to the White Continent, which visits the most accessible region around the slim finger of land and offshore islands reaching out from the main continental mass towards the southernmost tip of South America. You will observe prolific wildlife, extraordinary ice-carved landscapes and  evidence of the human impact – derelict whaling stations, and research outposts.

You’ll view the highlights from your ship, zodiac or on shore excursions. This expedition reveals the snow-drenched mountains and icebergs of these more accessible fringes of the White Continent. The cliffs and bays are brought to life by the chattering and wheeling of birdlife, sea-lions and penguins. You pass through the oft stormy Drake Passage and the Antarctic Convergence, where the upwelling of nutrients as warm water meets cold attracts wildlife in astonishing abundance

Short itinerary

Holiday itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Santiago, Chile, and transfer to Valparaiso on the Pacific coast.

Day 2

Walking tour of Valparaiso.

Day 3

Transfer to Santiago.

Day 4

Fly to Ushuaia, Argentina, and embark Silver Cloud.

Days 5-6

Sail through the Drake Passage en route to Antarctica.

Days 7-11

Explore the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands.

Days 12-13

Return to Ushuaia via the Drake Passage.

Day 14

Dock at Ushuaia and disembark. Fly to Santiago.

Day 15

Transfer to the airport for your international flight.

Detailed itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Santiago, Chile, and transfer to Valparaiso on the Pacific coast.
 
valparaiso

You will be met at the airport by our representative for a private transfer to the port Valparaiso, a couple of hours' drive away on the Pacific coast. Valparaiso was a commercially important port until the Panama Canal opened. The vibrant city has long retained a certain tumbledown charm and plenty of character, making it one of Chile's most interesting and photogenic cities: however nowadays it is having a bit of a renaissance, its peeling façades receiving a colourful facelift. Steps, winding lanes and a series of funicular railways connect the upper and lower city

Show more Show less
valparaiso

Day 2

Walking tour of Valparaiso.
 
valparaiso

Today you’ll be escorted on a walking tour of the city. Start off down close to the busy quay where you'll taste the salt in the wind blowing over the many containers, fishing and leisure craft. The strategically located port was of pivotal importance to international trade in the  19th Century and many imposing, Victorian-style public buildings glower over dark, cramped streets.

Climb away from the bustle in a funicular elevator, just one of 15 ascensores which lead up the steep hills to meandering little residential streets above the city. While up there enjoying the views, you'll continue to Cerro Concepcíon, one of the city's loveliest neighbourhoods with colourful corrugated iron buildings with pitched roofs. After walking along a couple of the pleasant, peaceful streets continue by trolley bus to Plaza Aduana. Take the Artilleria elevator, which enjoys outstanding views over the city, back down to Paseo 21 de Mayo with its numerous arts and handicraft shops. 

Show more Show less
valparaiso

Day 3

Transfer to Santiago.
 
Santiago

Return to Santiago. The capital is set in a broad valley between snow-capped ranges of the Andes and a smaller coastal range. It is a huge metropolis, a mix of the old and the contemporary, with quarters of tree-lined avenues and affluent tranquillity and others full of commercial bustle.The historic core of Santiago, centred on the Plaza de Armas and embracing the Presidential Palace, museums and other buildings of cultural significance is easily accessible from your hotel and you can safely explore independently.

If you prefer we can book you a guided city tour, or we can arrange for you to take the cable car to the top of San Cristobal hill for a panoramic view of Santiago and its Andean backdrop. The museum and former residence of Chilean poet laureate Pablo Neruda is also quite close by, in Bellavista.

Show more Show less
Santiago

Day 4

Fly to Ushuaia, Argentina, and embark Silver Cloud.
 
Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

Your Antarctic adventure is about to begin! Travel back to Santiago airport for your exclusive charter flight to the island of Tierra Del Fuego in Argentina, landing in Ushuaia, the most southerly port in the world which crouches at the foot of a hand of ice-clad peaks on the shores of the Beagle Channel.

Embark the Silver Cloud, ready for an evening departure. This first class, ice-strengthened vessel is even more impressive for its 2017 refit, and, with many on board amenities designed for your leisure – including top class cuisine - constitute a more than comfortable home for you during your voyage to the wilderness of Antarctica. 

Show more Show less
Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

Days 5-6

Sail through the Drake Passage en route to Antarctica.
 
albatross antarctica

During your two days at sea sailing south, you can attend wildlife, geography and history discussions hosted by Silversea's expert naturalists and guest lecturers, preparing you for the exciting adventures that lie ahead. Silver Cloud will bring you safely across these southern waters.  

The Antarctic Convergence is a natural boundary within the Drake Passage where cold polar water and warmer equatorial water come together. When these two currents meet, nutrients are pushed to the surface, often attracting a multitude of seabirds and whales. Spend some time on deck watching the horizon and the variety of seabirds that glide in the air currents of the ship’s wake, such as black-browed Albatrosses,Cape petrels, white-chinned petrels and sooty shearwaters. 

While sailing in Antarctica’s waters, a flexible itinerary will allow the ship to take advantage of favourable sea and weather conditions. In the true spirit of expedition cruising, each day the Expedition Leader and Captain will determine the best course depending on weather, ice conditions and wildlife you may encounter. 

Show more Show less
albatross antarctica

Days 7-11

Explore the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands.
 
antarctica

Following your two days at sea with wheeling sea birds and maybe dolphins and whales for company you will reach the South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula. The Peninsula is the most accessible area of the continent and hosts some of the most interesting scenery and wildlife, as well as many of the continent’s scientific bases. Exactly where the ship lands will vary from one expedition to the next and according to the polar conditions as the ship edges its way southwards through the slush and abstract patterns formed by the fractured sea ice.

Here, the silence is so complete that interruptions become indelible memories: noisy penguins squabbling over prized pebbles on Cuverville Island, the boom and crack of a calving glacier in Paradise Harbour, for example. The soaring peaks and stark rocks of Lemaire Channel are just the excuse you need to grab your camera gear for a shooting session from the deck, if the channel is free of ice. Wildlife you may encounter includes gentoo, chinstrap and Adélie penguins, petrel, shag, elephant and fur seal, and perhaps whales.

Either on the way down or on the way back from the Peninsula you will also visit the South Shetlands Islands, a rugged, heavily-glaciated chain of four island groups and dozens of islets tracing the Peninsula, providing a sheltered sea passage defined by towers of black rock. The highlight here is at Deception Island, the centre of which is a volcanic caldera that last erupted in 1969. Names evoke the experiences and imagination of the early explorers – Deception and Desolation Islands, the Watchtower, and Elephant Island, where Shackleton’s expedition was stranded for 135 days.

Show more Show less
antarctica

Days 12-13

Return to Ushuaia via the Drake Passage.
 
whales antarctica

Travel north back through Drake Passage. Very occasionally the crossing is gentle, but the odds are against it. Force 5/6 winds are considered normal conditions. Whales and dolphins can often be seen as well as an abundance of marine birds such as petrels, albatrosses and penguins. Take this opportunity to attend additional presentations offered by the Expedition Team lecturers and to edit the many photos you will no doubt have taken as you travel back towards Ushuaia.

Show more Show less
whales antarctica

Day 14

Dock at Ushuaia and disembark. Fly to Santiago.
 
Lighthouse in Ushuaia

Arrive back in Ushuaia early in the morning and disembark after breakfast. Transfer back to the airport for your charter flight to Santiago. On arrival you will be escorted to your hotel in the capital. one of the first class Sheraton properties in the city. 

Show more Show less
Lighthouse in Ushuaia

Day 15

Transfer to the airport for your international flight.

Essential information

Transport

11 day cruise from Ushuaia, Argentina to the Antarctic Peninsula, returning to Ushuaia. Return charter flight from Santiago, Chile, to Ushuaia. Private return transfers from Santiago airport to Valparaiso. 

Accommodation

This holiday incorporates a luxurious cruise on board a first class cruise ship, Silver Cloud, which is set up to accommodate 254 guests and 223 staff and crew  - but which carries a maximum of 200 guests on cruises to Antarctica, affording you plenty of extra room.

After extensive refurbishment in 2017, Silver Cloud is one of the most spacious and comfortable vessels in expedition cruising. Her large suites, her destination itineraries and her unparalleled service make her truly special. There are four dining options including La Dame, the only Relais & Chateaux restaurant afloat. and 80% of her suites include a veranda. All guest suites are ocean view and all have marble bath, flat screen TV, on demand movies, and spa robes. All suites have a designated trained butler. Among his or her many services for you, your butler helps customise your mattress, pillow and bathroom amenities. The ship also has an outdoor pool, spa, beauty salon, fitness room and boutique.

Hotels on the mainland in Valparaiso and Santiago are first class.

Meals

Breakfast daily, full board on the cruise ship. On board ship, all meals and snacks are included, with options to eat al fresco or in your suite. Complimentary beverages incl wine, spirits, coffee, soft drinks; customised minibar items.

Guides

We carefully select our local partners, some of whom we have worked with for over 30 years. Their English-speaking guides understand the expectations of our clients very well, and are consistently singled out for praise by the latter on their return. Guides, lecturers and presenters on the cruise ship are all qualified in a field of expertise relevant to the cruise.

Included excursions

• Walking tour of Valparaiso.
• Land and sea-based excursions and activities on the expedition cruise.

Summary of nights

15 days, 14 nights: Valparaiso, Chile, 2 nights; Santiago, Chile, 1 night; cruise 10 nights; Santiago, 1 night.

Included in the journey price

• Services of our team of experts in our London office.
• Services of Journey Latin America local representatives on the mainland..
• All land and air transport within Latin America and Antarctica..
• All inclusive cruise as specified, including land and sea excursions, activities and lectures. 
• Accommodation as specified.
• Meals as specified.
• Excursions as specified. 
• Complimentary parka.
• Cruise staff tips and gratuities.

Not included in the journey price

• Tips and gratuities on the mainland and mainland excursions.
• Meals other than specified.
• International flights to Latin America
• Airport taxes, when not included in the ticket.
• Excursions designated optional.

Currency

The unit of currency in Chile is the Chilean Peso.

Daily spend

It is very difficult to give a guideline for essential expenses but a budget of around US$50 per day should cover the cost of good quality meals, drinks and the odd souvenir on those days in the holiday itinerary or extension outside the cruise. Eat at the very best restaurants and you will pay considerably more. On the cruise, excursions, drinks, meals and tips are included.

How to take it

Outside the cruise period, cash machines are available in major cities and towns, and so taking a debit or credit card with a PIN number is the most convenient way of withdrawing money while on your trip, and in most shops and restaurants you can also pay by card. However, since cards can get lost, damaged, withheld or blocked, you should not rely exclusively on a card to access funds. 

We recommend that additionally you take a reasonable quantity of US dollars cash (no more than is covered by your insurance), which you can spend as the dollar is the local currency. Dollar bills should be in good condition, soiled or torn bills may be refused. You can take sterling, but the exchange rate is not always competitive or even available, restricting the number of places where you can change money.

You can pay for extras on the cruise (beauty salon and spa treatments, boutique items) with a credit card or US dollars. Optional excursions may be offered which have to be booked and  paid in advance before departure. Acquiring some local currency for tips for services provided by local people on the mainland and purchases from markets is advisable.

Tipping

Tips for the cruise staff are included, but local guides onshore will welcome a gratuity: they often rely on their tip as a significant proportion of their income. Most service industry workers will hope for a tip so it is useful to have spare change for waiters, hotel porters, taxi drivers etc. It is common to leave 10 - 12% in restaurants.

Tipping guidelines can be found in our Briefing Dossier.

Insurance

Travel insurance is essential.  Details of our recommended policy can be found on our Travel Insurance page. 

Airport taxes

If you have purchased your flights through Journey Latin America, the international departure tax is usually included in the ticket.

Journey grade

This holiday is suitable for all able, reasonably fit visitors. If you have doubts about your fitness for the cruise, we will send you a medical questionnaire. 

Children are accepted, but must be over 6 years old to participate in excursions. There is no special entertainment programme on board for children. Children and and teenagers who are interested in wildlife, towns and desert scenery should enjoy the cruise and if there is a number of children/teenagers on board, the expedition team might dedicate a team member to lead the group and explain things to them.

Climate

Antarctica is accessible by ship from late October to March, the southern hemisphere summer. Outside this period days are short and dark. The Peninsula has a typical maritime climate with average temperatures during the cruising season varying between 1°C and -15°C. Antarctica is a desert, so you won’t see much precipitation.

Santiago and Valparaiso have a Mediterranean climate, it is summer in the southern hemisphere and should be hot and dry when you will be visiting, though cooler days with showers are possible.  

Clothing and special equipment

The southern hemisphere summer is hot in Santiago, so take loose-fitting light clothing for maximum comfort at this time. An umbrella is a good idea in case of a tropical shower. Spring and autumn are milder and less predictable.

South America is in general a relaxed continent and you won’t need clothes for formal dining but you may wish to take some smart casual wear if you intend to visit top of the range restaurants.

Protective clothing is the single most important way of ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable cruise and the key is to dress in layers. For Antarctic landings, travellers on Silver Cloud receive a parka which is wind and waterproof. In addition, you should bring (to be worn beneath your parka) a breathable, thermal base layer to wick away perspiration and a warm mid-layer such as a fleece or down sweater; trousers (with thermal lining, or base layer of thermal leggings) and an outer shell of waterproof trousers; hat, warm socks, scarf, gloves and sunglasses. Dress on board ship is informal and it’s sensible to bring a spare change of warm, dry clothing for wearing out on deck between landings. You will need rubber boots for shore excursions: these can be borrowed from the cruise operator, you will need to advise us of your size in advance.

Vaccinations

Preventative vaccinations are recommended against the following: typhoid; polio; tetanus; hepatitis A. You should consult your GP for specific requirements such as malaria prophylactics.

You can also find helpful information on the Masta Travel Health website.

Visas

Holders of a full British passport do not require a visa, although passports must be valid for at least 6 months after the trip begins. Anyone with a different nationality should enquire with us or check with the relevant consulate.

APIS and ESTA - important flight information:

ESTA - if flying to the US, or via the US you will need to fill in your application to ESTA online at https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/esta/esta.html

This costs $14 per person, and must be applied for by you personally.

UK Passport holders must present an e-passport with a built in chip. Avoid locking suitcases if transiting the USA, as their customs authorities retain the right to break into them.


APIS - many countries now oblige airlines to provide additional information about passengers prior to the flight departure. This Advance Passenger Information (APIS) must be supplied to us promptly in order to issue tickets and avoid fare increases. We will provide the airlines with the relevant details if we are booking your international flights. If the information is not provided you may be denied boarding.
Close

Sign up to our newsletter

Sign up to our twice monthly newsletter and be the first to know about our latest news, offer and competitions.

Sign up with...

Your email

Or...

Using a social account is fast and means you don't need to remember a password.

We never share your data either - see our terms & conditions

Facebook Connect

Remember, you can unsubscribe at any time.

To see how we take care of your data please review our Privacy Policy

Thanks for subscribing – we’ll be in touch!

You are not subscribed. Some error happened.

Share this Page

Social share page will open in new window

Page Full Path: /sitecore/content/JLA/Home/destinations/antarctica/holidays/luxury-antarctica-expedition-cruise/trip-dossier

Page ID: {25773A8F-AA12-4145-933A-9AE275F10F6C}

Page Name: trip-dossier

Page Display Name: Trip Dossier

Page Template Name: T054-TripDossier

Page Template ID: {4B17EDBB-85D2-4A79-B178-A0CE05055C05}

Parent ID: {3E2DAE0B-7552-4B59-9476-987E36BBC336}

Parent Name: luxury-antarctica-expedition-cruise

Parent Display Name: Luxury Antarctica expedition cruise

Parent Template Name: T013-Tour

Parent Template ID: {9701B79C-85FD-4A45-8072-3FFF55338F72}