This 'fly-sail' itinerary is the quickest way to get as far south as possible and cross the Antarctic Circle.
Flying from Punta Arenas in southern Chile over Cape Horn and thus avoiding the notoriously rough waters of the Drake Passage, this is the easiest way to travel to Antarctica – the coldest, highest, windiest, driest and least inhabited continent on earth – reaching King George Island, the largest island in the South Shetlands in under two hours. By retracing this route on the return journey you avoid two days of sailing each way, ensuring you experience only the best of the White Continent.
Boarding your expedition cruise vessel, you then sail southward along the west coast of the Antarctic Peninsula (with plenty of stops and landings along the way) to cross the Antarctic Circle. This active adventure involves daily landings by Zodiac inflatable, and a full programme of lectures on board ship, assisted all the while by experienced crew and knowledgeable expedition staff.
A typical Polar Circle itinerary is shown below.
Note that some trips will fly over Drake Passage in one direction only (and sail the other).
Arrive Punta Arenas, 1-night hotel
Fly to King George Island in the South Shetlands and board vessel
Fly to King George Island (approx one and a half hours) in the South Shetlands, visit the Chilean Antarctic mission's Frei Base, then board your vessel.
Sail from the South Shetland Islands down the western coast of the Antarctic Peninsula
Sail from the South Shetland Islands down the western coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, passing through ice-filled fjords past spectacular icebergs in the company of sea birds, penguins, seals and whales. Visit some of the most magnificent spots in the white continent, such as: Cierva Cove, Port Lockroy, Petermann Island, Paradise Bay, Lemaire Channel, Prospect and Fish Islands amongst others. The highlight of your trip is attempting to cross the Polar Circle at latitude 66 33' South, with a champagne toast to celebrate the occasion. This is an active adventure with several daily landings and cruises in Zodiac boats, lectures and a fun time on board.
Disembark at King George Island and fly to Punta Arenas
You should note: Exact itinerary and duration will depend on your chosen vessel, departure date and local conditions.