Antarctic Peninsula – Basecamp Plancius

12 Days/11 Nights

From $7,950

(Quad. Occupancy, Not Incl. Airfare)

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Overview

Basecamp Plancius offers adventure seekers the opportunity to camp for two nights on the Antarctic Peninsula and to kayak, snowshoe, or mountain hike amidst the awe-inspiring glacial landscapes of the White Continent. Depending upon the weather, visits may include penguin and shag colonies, and a scientific research station to learn about what it is like to work on Antarctica. Further exploration by Zodiac provides the chance to encounter Humpback, Minke, and Fin whales.

Lodging and Meals: This tour includes accommodations for 11 nights (11 nights aboard the Plancius), and 32 meals (11 breakfasts, 10 lunches, and 11 dinners).

Best Time to Go: November-March.

Destinations: Argentina and Antarctica.

Interests: Adventure, Camping, Expedition Cruising, Hiking & Trekking, Photography, Sea Kayaking, Whale Watching, and Wildlife Viewing.

Places Visited: Ushuaia & Tierra del Fuego, the South Shetland Islands, and the Antarctic Peninsula.

Day-by-Day Itinerary

Your voyage begins where the world drops off: Ushuaia, Argentina, reputed to be the southernmost city on the planet, located on the far southern tip of South America.  Starting in the afternoon, you embark from this small resort town on Tierra del Fuego – nicknamed “The End of the World” – and sail the scenic, mountain-fringed Beagle Channel for the rest of the evening.  Overnight aboard the ship.  (D)

Note: We advise all passengers to plan to arrive in Ushuaia one night before the cruise departure.

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 seas, maybe even a fin whale blasting up sea spray.  After passing the Antarctic Convergence – Antarctica’s natural boundary, formed when north-flowing cold waters collide with warmer subantarctic seas – you are in the circum-Antarctic upwelling zone.  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.  Overnight aboard the ship.  (B,L,D)

Gray stone peaks 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.  The basecamp concept lets you feel more like a resident than a visitor, getting the most out of all available activities.  Here are all the places you might go:

Neumayer Channel – The vessel may position itself for the multi-activity basecamp here.  The protected waters around Wiencke Island become a veritable playground for all manner of activities.  You can enjoy the splendors of this alpine environment at sea, with Zodiac and kayaking trips.  Or if you’re among the walkers, there are possible snowshoe hikes and mountaineering (soft climb) options farther inland.  Naturally, favorable weather conditions determine the possible activities.

Port Lockroy – After sailing through the Neumayer Channel, you 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.

Pléneau & Petermann Islands – If the ice allows it, you can sail through the Lemaire Channel in search of Adélie penguins and blue-eyed shags.  There’s also a good chance you’ll encounter humpback and minke whales here, as well as leopard seals.  Kayaking, glacier walks, and more ambitious mountaineering are potential activities in this location.

Neko Harbour – An epic landscape of mammoth glaciers and endless wind-carved snow.  Opportunities for Zodiac cruising, kayaking, and walking provide you the closest possible view of this location’s ice-crusted alpine peaks.

Paradise Bay – You have the chance to pitch camp here like a true polar explorer (but with a better tent), enjoying the supreme overnight Antarctic adventure.

Errera Channel – Possible sites in this area include Danco Island and Cuverville Island, but also the lesser known (though equally picturesque) Orne Island and Georges Point on Rongé Island.

On your last day of near-shore activities, you pass the Melchior Islands toward the open sea.  Keep a sharp lookout for humpback whales in Dallmann Bay.  You might also shoot for Half Moon Island, in the South Shetlands, with further chances for activities.  Conditions on the Drake Passage determine the exact time of departure.  Overnight aboard the ship.  (B,L,D)

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.  Overnight aboard the ship.  (B,L,D)

Every adventure, no matter how grand, must eventually come to an end. It’s now time to disembark in Ushuaia, but with memories that will accompany you wherever your next adventure lies.  (B)

B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner

Itinerary Map

M/V Plancius - Antarctic Peninsula Basecamp Plancius Itinerary Map

Prices & Dates

Price per Person

CategorySingleDoubleTriple
Quad Cabin$7,950$7,950$7,950
Triple Porthole$8,950$8,950$8,950
Twin Porthole$16,405$9,650n/a
Twin Window$17,170$10,100n/a
Twin Deluxe$18,445$10,850n/a
Superior$19,890$11,700$10,450
** The prices shown above are in U.S. Dollars. See the cost of this tour in your currency here.

Notes:

  1. The above prices are valid until February 17, 2019.
  2. The single supplement is 1.7 times the Twin/Superior price.
  3. Singles willing to share a cabin pay the Twin/Superior price.

Departure Date

February 17, 2019.

What's Included

Price Includes

  • South American Vacations’ expert pre-departure planning services and documentation.
  • Accommodations on board the M/V Plancius.
  • All meals scheduled on board, including snacks, coffee, and tea.
  • Zodiac boating, hiking, camping, kayaking, mountaineering, photo workshop, and snowshoeing.
  • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program.
  • Zodiac expeditions conducted by English-speaking naturalist guides.
  • Use of rubber boots and snowshoes.
  • Evening briefings and lectures.

Price Does Not Include

  • International airfare.
  • Domestic airfare.
  • Hotel nights before/after the cruise.
  • Transfers to/from the vessel before/after the cruise.
  • Meals not indicated on the itinerary.
  • Gratuities to ship crew and guides (Suggested $8-10/per/day for the naturalist guides and crew).
  • Bar, gifts, and personal items.
  • Travel insurance.

We will be happy to quote the cost of airfare and travel insurance and to make these arrangements for you.

Accommodations

Antarctica

Plancius, Antarctica Cruise Ship

Plancius

Additional Details

Group Private: All services included in this tour are operated on a group basis.

Elevations: N/a.

Passport/Visa: U.S., Australian, Canadian, and EU citizens require a valid passport (for the duration of your visit) and return ticket for stays of up to 90 days. Australian and Canadian citizens are required to pay a reciprocity fee of $100 and $75 respectively (subject to change without notice due to currency fluctuations or other reasons) online, and must show proof of payment prior to arrival. The reciprocity fee for U.S. citizens has been suspended until further notice. For citizens of Australia, this fee covers unlimited entries to Argentina for 10 years, while citizens of Canada are charged the fee every time they enter the country (or $150 for multiple visits within five years). The fee can be paid online at ProvinciaNet.com.ar. You will need to register in order to make the payment. Citizens of other countries are advised to contact the embassy of Argentina in their country before traveling.

Travel Insurance: In order to protect your travel investment from unforeseen circumstances that may arise before or during your trip, we strongly recommend that you purchase travel insurance. We offer Allianz Global Assistance’s Classic Comprehensive and other plans. The Benefits and Coverage Limits are summarized on our Travel Insurance page. Call your travel counselor if you have any questions or to purchase a plan. The operator of the ship requires that you purchase Emergency Medical Evacuation Insurance (minimum recommended amount is $100,000).

To Book This Trip: Call or email us to confirm the availability of this ship for your desired dates of travel. For reservations made more than 90 days prior to departure, the required deposit is between $2,200 and $2,900 per person, and may be higher for single passengers. The balance is due 90 days prior to departure.