Explore the icy wonders of Antarctica and the immense wildlife populations of South Georgia!
Join this adventure to explore some of the world’s biggest penguin colonies, beaches filled with seals, immense glaciers, icebergs bigger than sky-scrapers, playful whales and so much more.
The Redfern Team is bringing together an expedition group to Antarctica and/or South Georgia to take place in 2021 after our Falkland Islands Wildlife Adventure. We will design this trip around the collective interests of the group that chooses to come. We have optioned one of the most respected expedition charter yachts crewed by one of the most experienced skippers. Please email to discuss further.
- Cost: Approximately £6,000 - £8,000 (depending upon duration of charter desired by the group).
- Start Point: Stanley, Falklands.
- End Point: Stanley, Falklands.
- Dates: flexible - but suggested dates: February 21st to March 20th, 2021 (28 days / 27 nights). For info email us.
- Group Size: 6-10.
- Bespoke Tour: If you do not wish to join a group tour, we can customise a private trip to fit your dates and interests. Please email us for details and a quote.
Unforgettable Polar Experiences
The Antarctic Peninsula and South Georgia are among the very best polar destinations... stunning landscapes dripping with glaciers, icebergs, immense colonies of sea birds and marine mammals, breaching whales, fascinating historic sites (abandoned whaling stations and research stations).
Visiting the Antarctic Peninsula and South Georgia is truly a life changing experience.
The REAL Experience
There are two main options to visit Antarctic Peninsula and South Georgia:
1. You can join a large commercial cruise ship to “visit”, allowing you to stand on-deck amongst hundreds of fellow passengers to watch the landscape pass you by. This approach will allow you get off a few key locations where you will stand in line to take photos. Many sites cannot be visited by the big ships due to visitor number restrictions.
2. Or, you can join a private charter expedition using a small expedition ship for an up close and personal experience, guided by experts and specialist boat crews! With this approach, you can go where the big ships cannot visit, you can adapt your itinerary continually depending upon weather conditions, group interests and wildlife movements, and you won’t be one of a large crowd.
This trip offers you the rare opportunity to join a private charter expedition to see the Antarctic Peninsula and South Georgia up close and personal, with extremely experienced guides and specialist boat crews!
An Adventure to the End of the World!
POLAR WILDLIFE PARADISE!
South Georgia and Antarctica are home to some of the world’s greatest concentrations of polar wildlife.
South Georgia is one of the few sub-Antarctic islands that is free of sea ice during winter, and so it is a magnet that draws in millions of breeding seabirds and marine mammals from across much of the Southern Ocean. The diverse seabird communities alone are believed to comprise over 32 million pairs of birds, among these are some of the world’s biggest penguin colonies (including over 1 million macaroni penguins, half a million king penguins and at least one hundred thousand gentoo penguins). The island is home to a staggering 22 million Antarctic prions, nearly 4 million common diving petrels, 2 million South Georgia diving petrels and a further 2 million white-chinned petrels.
Several hundred thousand albatrosses call South Georgia home, including the wandering albatross, the black browed albatross and the grey headed albatross. The island also harbours giant petrels, skuas, terns, the endemic yellow billed pintail and over twenty other bird species. Additionally, around four million Antarctic fur seals breed on South Georgia each year, along with over one hundred thousand elephant seals and visiting crab eater seals. Many species of whales are native to South Georgia’s waters, including orcas, southern right whale, blues, fin, sei, minke, humpback, sperm, southern bottlenose and long-finned pilot whales.
The Antarctic peninsula is home to less concentrated wildlife sites, but a similarly impressive diversity of animals including leopard seals, Weddell seals, southern elephant seals and crabeater seals. More than then species of whales and dolphins are known from the waters of the Antarctic Peninsula, with humpbacks being most commonly seen (often boat-side encounters!).
Four species of penguins breed widely along the peninsula (chinstrap, emperor penguin, gentoo and the Adelie penguin). Other seabirds include the southern fulmar, southern giant petrels, Cape petrels, snow petrels, Wilson’s storm-petrels, imperial shags, snowy sheathbills, south polar skuas, brown skuas, kelp gulls and Antarctic terns.
The coasts of the peninsula have the mildest climate in Antarctica and harbour patches of mosses and lichens, as well as both of Antarctica’s native flowering plant species, the Antarctic hair grass and the Antarctic pearlwort.
NOTE: it is impossible to prepare a daily itinerary for polar expeditions due to the fluid nature of charter trips. The expedition will have a clear set of defined objectives and target locations to visit for each location, which will be accomplished as efficiently as possible depending upon weather constraints and wildlife movements. As a group, we will continually discuss the itinerary throughout the trip, and adjust the plan to fit our collective interests, priorities and what we succeed on observing (or otherwise).
PLAN: 28 days
Stanley to South Georgia: 3 - 5 days.
South Georgia: approx. 8 days.
Sough Georgia to Antarctic Peninsula: 3 - 5 days.
Antarctic Peninsula: approx. 7 days.
Antarctic Peninsula to Stanley: 2 - 4 days.
INTENDED LOCATIONS WHILST VISITING SOUTH GEORGIA
Our goals during our time on South Georgia include:
- Elsehul (to see gentoo penguins, Southern giant petrels and fur seals).
- Prion Island (to see wandering albatrosses, fur seals and elephant seals).
- Salisbury Plain (to explore an immense colony of King Penguins, up to 100,000 birds!)
- Olav Whaling Settlement.
- Possession Bay.
- Shackleton Gap (where Shackleton’s march across South Georgia commenced).
- Optional walk from Fortuna Bay to Stromness Whaling Station (following part of Shackleton’s route).
- Stromness Whaling Station
- Grytviken Whaling Station.
- Ocean Harbour (fur seals, whaling ruins and king penguins).
- St Andrew’s Bay (come to am immense king penguin colony).
- Cooper Bay (fur seals and macaroni penguins).
- Drygalski Fjord (stunning glacial landscapes).
INTENDED LOCATIONS WHILST VISITING THE ANTARCTIC PENINSULA
- Elephant Island (to stand on the exact spot where Shackleton’s men were marooned!)
- Cierva Cove (stunning glacial landscapes and icebergs).
- Primavera Research Station (gentoo penguins, chinstrap penguins, mosses and plant life).
- Enterprise Island (crab eater seals and leopard seals).
- Wilhemina Bay (stunning glacial landscapes and icebergs).
- Cuverville Island (gentoo penguins and whale skeletons).
- Brown Base (research station).
- Port Lockroy (preserved research station, penguins and whale bones).
- Gerlache Straits (killer whales and stunning views).
- Spigot Point (chinstrap penguins and gentoo penguins).
- Deception Island (whaling ruins, geothermal black sands, incredible volcanic landscape and penguins!)
- Half Moon Island and Livingston Island (stunning landscapes).
This expedition begins and ends in Stanley, the capital of the Falkland Islands.
Reaching the Falkland Islands is much easier than many people imagine. Please see:
Falkland Islands Tourist Board: https://bit.ly/2LwW8aP
Falkland Islands Government: https://bit.ly/2vO9F3d
In terms of flights, there are two main options:
1. LATAM (formerly Lan Chile) offers flights to/from the Falklands via Santiago (with connecting flights across the world). So it is easy to fly from Australia, the USA and Europe with just a flight change in Santiago. These flights arrive/leave on Saturdays. We have planned this trip to start and end coinciding with these LATAM flights.
2. Royal Air Force flights (from RAF base Brize Norton in Oxfordshire) to/from the Falklands. Bookings can be made via the Falkland Islands Government Office: firstname.lastname@example.org (available to civilians of all nationalities).
Adventure Rating: Moderate
This expedition takes place immediately after our Falkland Islands Wildlife Adventure, allowing participants to discover the Falklands, then travel on to South Georgia and Antarctica!