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Fly to Argentina
Your Antarctic adventures begin today when you board an overnight flight to Buenos Aires.
Buenos Aires arrival
Upon arrival in Buenos Aires, take some time to rest and familiarize yourself with your surroundings before joining your Expedition Leader for a Welcome Briefing and Dinner at the hotel this evening.
Touring romantic, European-tinged Buenos Aires
After breakfast at the hotel, set off on an exploration of Buenos Aires, the romantic and whimsical home of the tango. Some highlights include the Plaza de Mayo, the city’s historic main square; the caminito, or “little path” — a street museum and alley in the La Boca neighborhood; and the fashionable Recoleta neighborhood, full of stately manors and sprawling green spaces. Here, you’ll also discover the renowned La Recoleta Cemetery, where Eva Perón and other luminaries are interred. Enjoy an evening at leisure, with dinner on your own. In a country known for its meat, perhaps you’ll dine in one of Buenos Aires’ many churrasquerías.
Fly to Ushuaia and embark the m/s Fridtjof Nansen
Board a charter flight to Ushuaia after breakfast this morning. Our destination is the world’s southernmost city and, after we arrive, we’ll take a walk around this unique place to soak in the local character before embarking the m/s Fridtjof Nansen. Tonight, enjoy a Captain’s Welcome Cocktail prior to our first dinner on board.
Cruising the Drake Passage toward Antarctica
We’ll begin our journey south, beginning with two days cruising through the fabled Drake Passage. This legendary 600-mile-wide bottleneck was discovered — and named for — Sir Francis Drake, and has both enchanted and enraged explorers and sailors throughout the centuries. Known as the world’s most unforgettable sea crossing, the Drake sometimes brings lashing waves and an exhilarating rollercoaster experience (depending on the weather and ice, of course)!
Take this time to relax aboard the luxurious m/s Nansen. Step inside the high-tech Nansen Science Center and enjoy an illuminating lecture program offered by the enthusiastic and knowledgeable onboard Expedition Team, a handpicked staff of biologists, photographers, historians, and other experts. Their visually-stimulating talks on everything from historical explorers to marine biology, wildlife to climate change, will give you a well-rounded understanding of Antarctica — where we’ll soon be!
Cross Antarctica off your bucket list when you step foot on the fabled White Continent
Prepare for true wonderment today as you step ashore the White Continent and begin the first in a series of shore and wildlife expeditions. Almost everything in Antarctica is dictated by weather, wind, and ice, so landing sites will be determined daily, and may shift with the elements. Our Expedition Team will aid our discoveries every step of the way, contextualizing our understanding of this stark landscape, its history and wildlife, and suggesting expeditions.
Spend four days exploring Antarctica’s inimitable wildlife and nature
Unforgettable Moment: Antarctic weather is very local, so conditions in one destination may not be the same as another. So, where conditions allow, we’ll venture ashore on naturalist-led expeditions by versatile Zodiac boats to explore a bevy of landing sites. These destinations may include:
Cuverville Island: This rocky island is almost fully covered in a permanent ice cap and is home to more than 6,000 delightful gentoo penguins, floating icebergs, and scenery galore.
Half Moon Island: A refuge for chinstrap penguins and a variety of seals, the island also features great glacier views of nearby Livingstone Island.
Neko Harbor: A glacial haven for minke and humpback whales, as well as gentoo penguins, skuas, and kelp gulls, Neko also boasts terrific views from atop the glacier.
Deception Island: This former whaling outpost is now home to several research bases — as well as an active caldera. (In fact, Antarctica’s ice covers as many as 91 other volcanoes!)
Petermann Island: A breeding colony for more than 3,000 gentoo penguins, Petermann is a small, rugged island with rocky beaches and a permanent ice cap that covers more than half of the land.
Wilhelmina Bay: Colloquially known as “Whale-mina Bay,” Wilhelmina is the place for onshore humpback whale watching, thanks to the plankton-rich waters here. Explorers have seen up to 300 whales here at once, so keep your cameras at the ready!
Remember, daily life in Antarctica is determined by the elements, and we’ll adjust our landings as our adventure progresses.
Recrossing the Drake Passage
Day 12 will be a bittersweet one, as we trek back north toward Ushuaia during another two-day Drake Passage crossing. Relax and enjoy the onboard cuisine, seek out the Nansen’s luxurious amenities — including the gym, wellness center, hot tubs, and pools — and take in some more enlightening lectures in preparation for your return trip through Buenos Aires.
Disembark in Ushuaia for a flight to Buenos Aires
After a final breakfast on board, we’ll disembark in Ushuaia and transfer to the airport for a short flight to Buenos Aires. After checking into your hotel, enjoy an evening at leisure with dinner included at the hotel — or, enjoy a night of culture on the town with an optional fiery tango dinner show. When in Buenos Aires, after all!
Argentina is the birthplace of tango, and a visit to Buenos Aires without seeing an authentic tango show would be unforgivable. The rich sounds and warm atmosphere will charm you as you enjoy an included meal and one of the most popular tango shows in Buenos Aires.
The tango and dinner show takes place in one of the most traditional clubs of Buenos Aires: El Viejo Almacen (“the old general good store”). In contrast to other more touristy tango-houses, here you’ll see the tango being danced in its purest form. International tango and ballroom tango generally steer towards a more showy and overstated style, going for the effect and not the form. The style of tango you’ll see here is how porteños (“port people”) dance the tango — the way the Argentine experts are dancing it today.
Discover “the sport of kings” before flying home
After breakfast, join an optional polo excursion to a local estancia (ranch), where we’ll learn about the sport’s history and popularity in Argentina, savor lunch, and even watch a polo demonstration before continuing to the airport. If you choose to enjoy your final day at leisure, you’ll transfer to the airport this evening and board an overnight flight home.
Important Notice: The above day-by-day itineraries are preliminary and therefore subject to change. If changes occur while on tour, you will be notified by your Vantage Adventure Leader or regional expert.