Falkland Islands, South Georgia & Antarctic Peninsula
Days 2–4: South Atlantic Ocean/Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas). With course set southeast, become acquainted with the ship. Enjoy the lecture and educational sessions about the extraordinary human and natural history of the Antarctic region.
Days 5–6: Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)/Southern Ocean. The Falkland Islands provide a rare opportunity to witness the biological diversity and extraordinary scenery of the southern islands. Penguins are abundant here, and the Falklands have the largest black-browed albatross colony in the world. In Stanley, meet the hardy local inhabitants whose colourful houses provide contrast to the long, dark winters.
Days 7–8: Southern Ocean/South Georgia. With course set for South Georgia, days at sea are filled with historical and biological lectures to prepare for landings. Look out for the many whales that inhabit these waters.
Days 9–12: South Georgia/Scotia Sea. Home to many interesting sites (including the grave of polar explorer Ernest Shackleton), South Georgia has several former whaling stations and boasts plenty of wildlife. Visit a huge colony of king penguins, a major highlight of this part of the journey. South Georgia is also the home over half of the world's enormous southern elephant seals, the largest of all seals. Keep an eye out for newly birthed southern elephant pups. Weather permitting, enjoy 3-4 days free to explore this island.
Days 13–14: South Shetland Islands/Antarctica. Plotting a southwesterly course across the Scotia Sea, sail for two days, retracing Shackleton's route backwards.
Days 15–18: South Shetland Islands/Drake Passage. Experience some of the most unique wildlife and awe-inspiring scenery in the South Shetland Islands, just north of the Antarctic Peninsula. Attempt two shore landings per day (weather permitting), and encounter gentoo, chinstrap, and Adélie penguin rookeries; Weddell, crabeater, and leopard seals; and orca, humpback, and minke whales in the cold Antarctic waters. The ship will attempt to reach the Antarctic Peninsula for a landing, weather and ice-permitting.
Days 19–20: Drake Passage/Ushuaia. Reflect on a memorable adventure and take in some final lectures en route to Ushuaia. Keep a careful look out for a last chance to spot whales.
Day 21: Ushuaia. Disembark in the morning.