Antarctica is so isolated and extreme, a snow-blanketed desert lost at the end of the world amidst vast oceans and protected by pack ice and looming icebergs, that few people make the trek to see and experience it. Yet intrepid, adventurous travellers can explore this wilderness, and what’s more they can do it in some style aboard a luxury cruise, allowing them to retrace historic voyages, enjoy close-up wildlife encounters and bag supreme bragging rights after some once-in-a-lifetime experiences.
Take to the air in a helicopter for an extraordinary perspective and fly to your private expedition yacht. Cruise through the coastal passages in serious style looking out for colonies of penguins and congregations of seabirds, in the company of an expert naturalist, geologist or marine biologist. Imagine life in the harsh conditions. Practice wildlife photography on seals with a top cameraman or huddle with penguins for exceptional close-up pictures. Keep an eye out for pods of orcas hunting. Board inflatable RIB vessels to uncover the hidden corners and secret shores of even the most off-the-beaten path locations. Land on the ice and explore deeper on foot or skis. Discover the work and scientific activity being undertaken at a remote research station. Slip beneath the ice and dive with the creatures that live here. Or simply sit in the all-embracing silence and stargaze in some of the darkest, least light-polluted skies.
Sleep on a luxury cruise vessel, such as Silversea Explorer, which is surprisingly spacious by expedition ship standards and is kitted out with all manner of creature comforts. Or, for an exclusive expedition, sail on a private yacht. Ask us as well about staying on the ice in an historic explorer’s cabin or luxury wilderness camp.
Combine the world’s wild remotes with unbridled luxury aboard the Silver Cloud, enjoying all-inclusive fine dining, open bars and the indulgence of a butler-served suite.
This is one of the world’s most luxurious exploration ships, able to pair the world’s remotest regions with all-inclusive fine dining and open-bar indulgences.
Cruise ships to Antarctica only make the voyage during the southern hemisphere’s winter months, from late-October to late-March, when temperatures oscillate between +/-5°C.
Chile & the Antarctic with Silversea
16 days from £12,755 pp incl. flights Silver Cloud
Live a life of sophistication in Chile with a stylish stay in Santiago, followed by an indulging trip to the vineyards of Colchagua Valley. Then, embark on an adventure of a lifetime to the glittering glaciers and wondrous wildlife of Antarctica's seldom-ventured landscapes.
Torres del Paine & Antarctic Cruise
16 days from £17,125 pp incl. flights
Witness towering rock spires in Torres del Paine National Park, relax on the shores of Lake Sarmiento and savour exquisite wines on this itinerary, designed to celebrate the best of Chile's natural treasures – including its proximity to the wild, frozen expanse of the West Antarctica Peninsula.