Cruise for 12 nights to the big white continent Antarctica onboard MV Hondius.
Day 1, 24 January:
Depart Brisbane - Sydney - Santiago - Buenos Aires
Arrival transfer from airport to hotel.
Sheraton Buenos Aires Hotel - 1 night
Day 2, 25 January:
Buenos Aires - Ushuaia
9am arrival transfer from airport to hotel. B.
On arrival, please make your way through to the Arrivals Hall where our representative will be waiting for you to transfer you to your hotel. They will be holding a sign with your name on it. Should you not be able to locate them, please refer to the front of your itinerary for emergency contact details of our representative office.
There will be an evening a briefing at 7:30pm to run through details of embarkation the following day. Ushuaia is the most southerly city in the world and the capital of Tierra del Fuego, with a dramatic setting overlooking the Beagle Channel, surrounded by mountains. It is a major port for Antarctic bound vessels and an interesting city to explore.
Day 3, 26 January:
This morning is free for you to explore Ushuaia and pick up any essential supplies before boarding the ship in the mid-afternoon. Highlights of Ushuaia include the award-winning Museo Marítimo y del Presidio de Ushuaia, (Maritime & Prison of Ushuaia Museum), located in Ushuaia’s former prison, in buildings dating back to 1906, and nearby Tierra del Fuego National Park that can be reached by the “End of the World Train”. Stroll along the main street of Avenida San Martin with its many cafes, shops and restaurants, explore the Argentinean leather markets and maybe taste a succulent lamb dish for which Patagonia is famous.
This afternoon, you will be transferred together with your fellow expeditioners to the pier to board your vessel. On embarkation you will meet the expedition crew and be shown to your suite. In the early evening we sail down the majestic Beagle Channel past magellanic penguin, rock cormorant and sea lion colonies as we head towards Antarctica. We will enter the legendary Drake Passage just after midnight. D.
MV Hondius - 12 day Antarctica Jewels cruise
Days 4-5, 27-28 January:
Cruise the Drake Passage
Path of the Polar Explorers
Over the next two days on the Drake Passage, you catch a taste of life from the perspective of the polar explorers who first braved these regions: cool salt breezes, rolling waves, maybe even a fin whale blasting up a column of sea spray. After passing the Antarctic Convergence – Antarctica’s natural boundary, formed when north-flowing cold waters collide with warmer subantarctic seas. Not only does the marine life change, the avian life changes too: A variety of albatrosses and petrels show up, along with cape pigeons and southern fulmars. Then, near the South Shetlands Islands, the first icebergs flash into sight – always an exciting moment for those aboard. Our lecture program will commence during this time and continue for the duration of the cruise. Be prepared to be astounded by legendary tales, find out more about the unique flora and fauna of this part of the world, and learn about the geology of the Antarctic. B, L, D.
Days 6-11, 29 January - 3 February:
Enter the Antarctic
We arrive to Antarctica. The world’s most pristine wilderness. Grey stone peaks greet us, sketched with snow, towers of broken blue-white ice, and dramatically different wildlife below and above.
You first pass the snow-capped Melchior Islands and Schollaert Channel, sailing between Brabant and Anvers Islands. Sites you may visit during your time here may include:
Cuverville Island – Stabbing up between Rongé Island and the Antarctic Peninsula, Cuverville houses a colony of several thousand gentoo penguins, as well as pairs of breeding brown skuas.
Danco Island – Activities here may focus on the gentoo penguins nesting on the island, in addition to the Weddell and crabeater seals that may be found nearby.
Crystal Sound – If conditions permit, you may enjoy a landing in this ice-packed body of water.
Port Lockroy – After sailing through the Neumayer Channel, We may get a chance to visit the former British research station – now a museum and post office – of Port Lockroy on Goudier Island. You may also be able to partake in activities around Jougla Point, meeting gentoo penguins and blue-eyed shags. There are great opportunities for kayaking and camping here.
Paradise Bay – You may be able to walk on the Continent again at this location, or to take a Zodiac cruise in the sprawling, ice-flecked waters. Here you have a good chance of seeing humpback and minke whales.
Wilhelmina Bay & Guvernøren – This is a great place to spot humpback whales, and you also may embark on a Zodiac cruise. Around the ghostly wreck of Guvernøren, a whaling vessel that caught fire here in 1915. Around the Melchior Islands, amid a frozen landscape peopled with icebergs, you may encounter even more whales, leopard seals, and crabeater seals.
King George Island – Heading to the South Shetland Islands, the aim is a landing at the Chinese Great Wall Station. There are also Russia, Argentine, and Uruguayan research stations in this area.
Onboard your adventure you will have plenty of free time, as well as enjoy some fantastic famed Chimu Adventures hospitality! B, L, D.
Day 12, 4 February:
Return to the Drake Passage
Your return voyage is far from lonely. While crossing the Drake, you’re again greeted by the vast array of seabirds remembered from the passage south. But they seem a little more familiar to you now, and you to them. The return crossing is always a great time to relive the experiences with your fellow passengers, and check through some of the incredible photography taken by the group. B, L, D.
Day 13, 5 February:
Every adventure, no matter how grand, must eventually come to an end. It’s now time to disembark in Ushuaia, after the journey of a life time. B.
Alto Andino Hotel Ushuaia - 1 night
Please note: itineraries may change as conditions warrant
Day 14, 6 February:
Ushuaia - Buenos Aires
Argentina’s elegant, historic and cosmopolitan capital, is known as the “Paris of the South” due to its European atmosphere with glamorous avenues lined with fashionable shops and Parisian-style restaurants and cafes. Located on the western shore of the estuary of the Río de la Plata, Buenos Aires has many fascinating neighbourhoods to explore including the colourful and lively La Boca, home to art galleries and tango shows; San Telmo with its restored mansions and antique stores and Recoleta, the city’s most exclusive area. B.
Optional: Evening tango show.
This evening you will be collected from your hotel to experience a Tango Show with dinner. This is an intimate & passionate tango show, housed in a cozy wood-panelled 19th century building with a colourful history as a meeting point for poets and students in the heart of Buenos Aires's historic centre. Dinner will be served from 8.30pm followed by the show commencing at 10pm.
Sheraton Buenos Aires Hotel - 2 nights
Day 15, 7 February:
Optional: Full Day Ranch & Countryside Tour with lunch.
This morning you will be collected from your hotel for an authentic day in the countryside at an exclusive estancia in San Antonio de Areco. Travel by road from Buenos Aires to San Antonio de Areco across the endless pampas. This journey will take approximately an hour and half. On arrival at San Antonio de Areco you can take a short walking tour of this charming gaucho town, which includes a walk around the historical plaza. Continue to the exclusive ‘El Ombu de Areco’ Estancia. Once at the estancia, choose to either have a short horse ride, or ride in a sulky carriage perhaps! There is a typical welcome/starter of cold cuts, cheeses and beverages, and for lunch you will enjoy a typical Argentine country style asado prepared using only the finest quality meats. Dessert is accompanied by a folklore show, which is followed by a demonstration of gaucho skills. On completion of the tour, you will be taken to your hotel. Please note this is small group tour.
Day 16, 8 February:
You will be collected from your hotel for your three-hour tour visiting the most important highlights of the city of Buenos Aires. Discover the history of the Plaza de Mayo Square, the site of Argentina’s most important historical events - see its surroundings and the most emblematic buildings and learn all about them. Then enjoy Mayo Avenue and wonder in awe at the oldest residential neighbourhood in Buenos Aires: San Telmo. Live and feel the original Tango in the neighbourhood of La Boca: walk along Caminito Street and enjoy the Dancers and souvenir shops. See the mythical Boca Juniors soccer stadium. Contemplate the modernisation of the city whilst traveling along Puerto Madero and its exclusive docks, full of excellent restaurants and large offices. Pass through the Retiro neighbourhood and move on to see Palermo and its most exclusive residential area before finally arriving at Recoleta. Here, discover the final resting place of Eva Peron, “Evita” and wander through Recoleta Cemetery where she is to be found. On completion of your tour, you will be taken to your hotel. Please note this is a small group tour. B.
3pm transfer from hotel to airport
Buenos Aires - Santiago
1 nights accommodation in a double room at Holiday Inn Santiago Airport
Holiday Inn Santiago Airport - 1 night
Santiago - Sydney