Overview

The South Shetlands are a rugged, heavily-glaciated chain of four island groups and dozens of islets hugging the Antarctic Peninsula, providing a sheltered sea passage defined by towers of black rock. 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.

Visitors include chinstrap, gentoo, macaroni and Adélie penguins; giant petrels, Wilson’s and black-bellied storm petrels, brown and south polar skuas, Cape pigeons, Antarctic terns, blue-eyed shags, Dominican gulls, elephant, fur, leopard and crab-eater seals; humpback, minke and orca (killer) whales offshore.

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Holidays South Shetland Islands

Visit the untamed wilderness of the South Shetland Islands on an expedition cruise with Journey Latin America.

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Private Journeys

Antarctica

Antarctic Peninsula: Fly and cruise

11 days from £14,510pp

(based on two people sharing & excluding flights)

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Antarctica

Signature Antarctica: Highlights of the Antarctic Peninsula

14 days from £8,250pp

(based on two people sharing & excluding flights)

Things to do

We proudly offer the widest range of activities, excursions and one-of-a-kind experiences across all our destinations, tried and tested personally by our travel experts.

Where to go when - our guide to South Shetland Islands

Deception Island

The weather in South Shetland Islands is wide and varied

You’ll spot an abundance of wildlife from the chain of rugged black rocks and glaciated islands hugging the Antarctic Peninsula. Chinstrap, gentoo, macaroni and Adélie penguins make their nests here in November, with chicks hatching from December and fledging in February. Elephant, fur, leopard and crab-eater seals also raise their young here, with pups appearing in December. Off-shore you’ll spot humpback, minke and orca (killer) whales, particularly later in the season February - Machr. January is the warmest month, reaching 1.5°C.

View our South Shetland Islands weather guide

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Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.

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Meet our team

Real Latin american experts

  • Lina
    Lina Fuller - Travel Expert

    Lina's passion for the continent where she was born really took off when she moved to Córdoba (Argentina) to study, spending the holidays travelling between Argentina and her native Colombia.

  • Chris
    Chris Rendell-Dunn - Travel Expert

    Anglo-Peruvian Chris grew up in Lima and spent much of his adult life in between London and Cusco as a tour leader, before settling permanently in our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours sales team.

  • Alex
    Alex Walker - Travel Expert

    A globetrotter since her childhood, Alex spent a year studying abroad in Guadalajara and has returned to Latin America countless times since then.

  • Paul Winrow Giffin
    Paul Winrow-Giffin - Travel Expert

    After graduating in Computer Science, Paul spent seven months travelling from Colombia to Argentina and came home hooked on Latin America.

  • Charlotte
    Charlotte Daubeney - Travel Expert

    Charlotte's fascination with Latin America began with a family holiday to Belize. She went on to study Spanish in school and at university before spending a year living in Santiago, Chile.

  • Millie
    Millie Davies - Travel Expert

    Having caught the travel bug as a child, Millie has travelled all over Latin America before making her home in Buenos Aires for 3 years.

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