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Ke Classic
Ke Classic
Holidays

Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition

Argentina, Antarctica
6 reviews
Available Departures: Jan, Feb, Mar, Nov, Dec

14 days from

US$9,100

without flights
Polar
Guided Group
LEISURELY LEISURELY

Active Antarctic Expedition including kayaking, snowshoeing, mountaineering and camping

Trip Code: PAB
Holiday Grades

Our Holiday Grades Explained

To show the relative difficulty of our holidays, each trip is graded on a scale of 1 to 12, with 12 being the most challenging. Although we have tried to make our grading system as clear as possible, it cannot take into account your personal interests, abilities or experience. If you have any questions about the nature of a particular trip or its suitability for you, please read the 'Is this holiday for you?' section or contact us.

 1 - 3 LEISURELY
1 - 3 LEISURELY

Suitable for most people in good health, holidays at this grade include only limited amounts of activity.

View leisurely holidays
4 - 6 MODERATE
4 - 6 MODERATE

Suitable for reasonably fit individuals, such as weekend walkers and cyclists. There can be the occasional more difficult day.

View moderate holidays
7 - 9 CHALLENGING
7 - 9 CHALLENGING

Physically challenging holidays, where you need to be prepared before you go.

View challenging holidays
10 - 12 TOUGH
10 - 12 TOUGH

Our toughest holidays, involving many long days, often in isolated areas. A high level of fitness and previous wilderness and mountain experience is essential.

View Tough holidays

Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition

Highlights
  • Kayaking, snowshoeing, photo-workshops, mountaineering, camping
  • Zodiac and shore excursions for activities and to go wildlife spotting
  • Expert team of expedition polar leaders onboard
  • An Antarctic cruise with added adventure

At a Glance
  • Group Size 1 to 123
  • 10 or 11 days polar cruising with multi-activities: Zodiac excursions / kayaking / snowshoeing / mountaineering / camping / photo-workshop
  • Join In Ushuaia

Accommodation & Meals
  • 13 Breakfasts, 11 Lunches, 12 Dinners
  • 1 Night Hotel
  • 11 Nights Boat

This is Polar cruising in Antarctica for the restless! The ship becomes our base camp on these voyages. We sail down to the ‘High Antarctic' where we have numerous inlets and channels to choose from to set up base. We will have 2 or 3 different base camp locations for the duration of the voyage. Once we are in place we go out and enjoy multi-activities which go beyond the normal shore program. We can take the kayaks out, or enjoy some time on shore snowshoeing or if we are more intrepid we can do a few hours mountaineering on Antarctica, giving us a huge sense of achievement and a true feeling of the remoteness and scale of Antarctica.


We can also opt for a photo-work shop or shore excursions on the Zodiacs. Everyone will also get the chance to camp on Antarctica for a night. All these activities are included in the price of the holiday and do not require any previous experience.  Of course we get extremely close to the wildlife during our activities as well, which is a totally exhilarating experience. This is the Polar cruise holiday for wildlife lovers and outdoorsy people.

explore international

Explore International. This holiday is part of our Explore International range. Participants on these trips can book through KE or through one of our international partners. This helps us to gather together sufficient numbers of like-minded adventurers to get your holiday up and running quickly. Led by an English-speaking guide, the cosmopolitan nature of these groups can be an important part of the experience!

All activities from the ship are optional, and you can choose just to participate in the zodiac excursions. However, if you are interested in the activities then you should have a reasonable level of fitness to participate. No experience is required for most activities, although basic kayaking and mountaineering experience is preferred. The snowshoeing and mountaineering on Antarctica is sessions of around 3-4 hrs, this is because no toilet visits are allowed on land and no food/snacks are allowed either for passengers of cruise vessels like ours. You must be able to get up and down the steep gangway from the ship to the water level to board the Zodiacs. Staff will assist you in and out of the boats. Ashore it can be slippery and rocky. Also consider that you are travelling in remote areas without quick access to sophisticated medical facilities.

Please see our online Polar Guide for the differences between our departures, ships and more Polar information.  

Why KE?

Make your trip of a lifetime visit to Antarctica a little more adventurous as this polar cruise has all the activities included and we include a night in Ushuaia before the ship departs, so that you don't have to panic about delayed flights.

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Itinerary

Meet at the group hotel in Ushuaia. The holiday starts with the overnight stay at the group hotel.

Accommodation

Hotel

This morning is free for independent sightseeing in and around Ushuaia, the worlds most southern city, or for any last minute purchases you need for the voyage. In the afternoon we embark our ship and sail through the famous, scenic waterway of the Beagle Channel.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B D

Drake Passage. Our adventure begins with a two day sailing crossing of the 400-mile Drake Passage, named after the 16th century English explorer Sir Francis Drake. We have time to familiarise ourselves with the ship and its common areas including the lounge with bar with it's large panoramic windows. We will start our daily lectures and get to know the guides and crew.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B L D

Drake Passage. We cross the Antarctic Convergence and we may see albatross, petrels following the ship's wake as well as whales and we look out for our first sightings of icebergs.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B L D

We sail directly to the 'High Antarctica' passing the Mechior islands and the Schollaert Channel where we navigate into the Neumayer Channel and position the ship for our multi activity base camp. Walkers can snowshoe on the shore and mountaineers are rewarded with some summits and view points slightly further inland. There is plenty of opportunity to kayak as well.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B L D

Another day in the Neumayer Channel. We can visit the British research station and the post office Port Lockroy on Goudier Island. Close to Port Lockroy we may also offer a landing on Jougla Point with Gentoo Penguins and Imperial Shags. We look out for leopard seals, crabeater seals and whales whilst participating in our activities.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B L D

Weather dependent we move onto the spectacular Lemaire Channel to Booth Island, Pleneau and Petermann Island where we can find Adelie Penguins and Blue-eyed Shags. In this area there are good chances to encounter Humpback Whales, Minke Whales and Fin Whales. We choose another base camp site which is suitable and close to next day's activity.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B L D

We choose another camp site which is suitable and close to next day’s activity. At Neko Harbour we will have the opportunity to set foot on the Antarctic Continent in a magnificent landscape of a huge glacier and enjoy the landscape during zodiac cruises, hikes and kayak excursions. A small group of mountaineers may climb up on higher grounds of the glacier. We will spend the night at Neko or near Paradise Bay with a camp erected ashore. We will leave early morning after breaking our last camp. We sail via Melchior Islands towards the open sea of the Drake Passage. We have again a chance of seeing many seabirds.

Meals

B L D

Another full day to enjoy our activities including kayaking, snowshoeing/hiking, mountaineering, photo workshops as well as the standard zodiac and shore excursions. We also have the opportunity to camp on Antarctica for a night.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B L D

Another full day to enjoy our activities including kayaking, snowshoeing/hiking, mountaineering, photo workshops as well as the standard zodiac and shore excursions.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B L D

At Neko Harbour we can set foot on the Antarctic Continent near a huge glacier and enjoy the magnificent landscapes whilst participating in zodiac cruises, hikes or kayak excursions. The mountaineers can climb up on higher grounds of the glacier. We will spend the night at Neko or near Paradise Bay with a camp erected ashore.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B L D

We leave early morning after breaking our last camp. We sail via Melchior Islands, in a northerly direction towards the open sea of the Drake Passage. We can enjoying some final lectures by our expedition staff and catch some final glimpses of the birds and whales in this extraordinary part of the world.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B L D

Our final day onboard, we can reflect on our adventure and relax as we return into Ushuaia.

Accommodation

Boat

Meals

B L D

We disembark in Ushuaia in the morning. The holiday ends with a transfer to the airport.

Meals

B
Download Trip Notes
The Route
Point Point
Direction Direction
Boat

Essential Information

We've compiled some of our Frequently Asked Questions to help you learn more about this amazing trip.

  • Expert Expedition staff
  • All accommodation
  • All meals whilst on board and B&B whilst in Ushuaia
  • All shore excursions and Zodiac cruises with expert expedition team
  • All multi-activities and equipment including: Kayaking / snowshoeing / Mountaineering / Camping / Photo-workshops
  • Waterproof boots supplied (men's USA sizes 8-14 and women's USA sizes 3-9)
  • Single timed airport transfer Ushuaia Airport on disembarkation
  • Fuel Surcharge

  • Travel insurance
  • Tips for staff
  • Airport transfers on arrival in Ushuaia
  • Transfers to/from vessel other than as described
  • Dinners and lunches whilst in Ushuaia (if applicable)
  • Airport departure taxes
  • Transfers between airports in Buenos Aires
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc.

On arrival in Ushuaia you will need to take a taxi to the hotel.

We have included a night in Ushuaia for you, if you would like another additional night, just in case of major flight delays please do call us for a quote.

On return to Ushuaia after your voyage you will disembark the ship at approximately 8am. A transfer from the port to the airport is provided after disembarkation between 8-9am. No other transfers are included. You should not book flights before12 midday on this day.

If your flight is in the early hours of the morning on departure we advise that you book a hotel room in Ushuaia. You will need to take a taxi from the port to the hotel and then to the airport for your flight. Please do let us know as soon as possible if you require extra hotel nights.

Hotel and ship contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your booking confirmation.

Breakfast only is included while staying in Ushuaia. All meals while aboard MV Plancius or the MV Ortelius are included in the holiday price. We recommend you allow about US$20 per meal in Ushuaia.

Many places on this holiday have drinkable water from the tap to fill your personal water bottles. Please check with the leader at the various locations. Please take purification tablets or a filter bottle (such as a Water-To-Go bottle) for days when drinking water out of the tap is not available. We do not encourage the purchasing of single use plastic bottles.

On board the ship a diverse range of international dishes are available. Meals are prepared and catered by professional chefs and all meals are included in the holiday price. Special dietary requirements, including vegetarianism, can be accommodated with advance notice (please advise at the time of booking). Coffee, tea and water are all provided free of charge. All other beverages, alcoholic and non-alcoholic, are not included and can be prurchased in the dining room or the lounge areas.

Whilst we can cater for vegetarians, albeit sometimes with a more limited choice, we cannot always provide special diets.  Due to the nature of some of the trips that we operate and the countries in which we operate them, it can be very hard (and sometimes impossible) to cater for a wide range of dietary choices and you may have to supplement your diet with food/snacks from home.  If you have specific dietary requirements please do speak to our sales team and they will be able to advise you whether or not we will be able to offer your specific choice.  Please note that we are unable to provide separate menus and cannot accept liability for any problems arising from special dietary requirements or intolerances.

During this trip the group will spend 1 night in a hotel in Ushuaia and 10 or 11 nights on board the MV Plancius, the MV Ortelius or the MV Hondius (Depending on departure date). Standard cabins on the MV Plancius, MV Ortelius and MV Hondius are quad berth cabin with porthole. All cabins have en-suite facilities. All accommodation is on a sharing basis. If you are travelling by yourself you will be paired up with another single client of the same sex. Upgrades are available to triple or twin berth with porthole, twin berth with window, and superior/ suite. Depending on availability, it is also possible to arrange a single cabin. Please contact the office for upgrade and single cabin prices. Please note that if you wish to upgrade ensure that you book early to avoid disappointment.

An international team of Polar experts and field guides is enthusiastic about sharing their in depth knowledge with lectures, briefings and field excursions. Lectures are selected and relevant to the destinations we travel to. We cover major topics such as marine biology, geography, geology, glaciology, ornithology and history. Our staff is skilled, trained and qualified in the activity they are in charge of: mountain guiding, photography, kayaking, zodiac driving. Expedition guides organize the informative ship program and actively guide our shore excursions in different languages but always English as well.

Prices onboard are in Euros or US dollars. It is not practical to set a recommended amount for personal spending money on a holiday like this. All meals while on board are included in the trip price. The main extra spend on board will be on drinks and this will very greatly from person to person. A drink onboard costs from Euros 2.50. On board ship, bar bills can be put on a tab and paid at the end of the cruise by credit or debit card or in cash Euros or US dollars You will also need some money for any meals taken in Ushuaia and for tips. As a guide, we recommend you allow $10 - 15 per day for tips to your crew and expedition staff. It is possible to withdraw local currency at ATM’s in Ushuaia, but we recommend that you bring a minimum of US$200 in cash for emergency situations where you are unable to withdraw money from ATMs.

The customary gratuity to the ship’s service personnel is made as a blanket contribution in one envelope at the end of the voyage which is divided among the crew and staff. You will receive detailed guidelines aboard. Tipping is a very personal matter and the amount you wish to give is at your discretion. It is better for the crew and staff, if you can give them cash, either US Dollars or Euros. You may give individually and / or communally as a personal ‘thank you’ to one or more of the ship’s personnel. As a guide, we recommend you allow $10 - 15 per day for tips to your crew and expedition staff.

BASECAMP – OUR ACTIVITIES

 

ZODIAC CRUISING & SHORE PROGRAM:

This is our core activity: guided shore excursions, walks and wildlife spotting and zodiac cruises are included in the fare and will be offered to all passengers during the voyages. Our voyages are primarily defined as explorations and we spend as much time ashore as possible. We can be flexible, taking advantage of wildlife opportunities by using our zodiacs for both landings and cruises. Our knowledgeable guides assist on these outings, providing detailed information. This is supplemented by lectures on board which covers topics such as wildlife, history and true emotions.

 

KAYAKING:

We plan to offer 3-4 full days of kayak excursions parallel to all other activities (6-7 outings morning, afternoon or evening). Basic kayak experience, appropriate outdoor clothing and physical fitness is essential. The maximum number is limited to 14 kayakers per outing. Special kayak gear will be provided: single seat and double seat kayaks, neoprene wet suits, life vests. Kayakers will bring

their personal warm and protective clothes. An expedition kayak guide will supervise the activity. The kayakers will be accompanied by a safety zodiac boat.

1 kayak excursion free of charge. Every passenger will be able to take advantage of at least 1 outing but it can be more availability allowing. Kayaking must be pre-booked and you will have the opportunity to do this when you receive your booking confirmation. There are no waitlists for any extra outings that may be offered.

 

PHOTO WORKSHOP:

During the voyage we offer photo workshops for beginners and advanced photographers under the supervision of a photo expert on board. Everyone is welcome to participate, no previous experience required. The workshop group will be accompanied by the photo expert during activity ashore. The maximum participants per photo workshop is aimed at 20 participants per outing per guide, so maximum attention can be paid to individuals. The work shop group will be taken on shore excursions whenever opportunities arise. Participants with a special interest in photography will bring their personal photo equipment. During cruise days everyone will be able to listen into photo lectures in order to learn more about objects, exposures and photo composition. The workshop intention is not to instruct on how to use specific camera models, but more to give an insight on better photo results by respecting basic rules of photography. Photographers can also take part in other activities of their choice.

The photo workshop must be pre-booked and you will have the opportunity to do this when you receive your booking confirmation.

 

SNOWSHOEING & HIKING:

We plan to offer several possibilities to become active ashore. There will be easy, moderate and more demanding walks on offer in the vicinity of the landing sites. There are walks on offer which suit everyone’s capability. In the Antarctic we are aiming at two hikes per day, each 2 - 3 hours long during morning and / or afternoon landings (lunches onboard). In the Arctic we offer several full day walks of up to 5-7 hours (with packed lunch). Hikers are recommended to bring a proper pair of hiking sturdy waterproof boots and gaiters. Rubber boots suitable for hiking will be provided. Hikes will be guided by experienced expedition guides.

 

Snowshoeing:

Especially on early departures at the beginning of the season there are still snow covered areas. Snowshoes are easy to use and don’t require any technical skills. They make it easier and safer to walk on snow surfaces. They are available free of charge for everyone on board, fit all boot sizes and can be used in combination with the Oceanwide rubber boots.

Snowshoeing must be pre-booked and you will have the opportunity to do this when you receive your booking confirmation.

 

MOUNTAINEERING:

This is technical and more strenuous activity for mountaineers who wish to walk beyond the shore radius in order to reach higher grounds and view points. Mountaineers walk in rope parties under the leadership of a certified mountain guide mostly across glaciated environment in Antarctica. Depending on the landing site, glacier walks can vary from half day to full day outings. In general we plan to offer 4-5 glacier excursions parallel to all other activities. Mountaineering knowledge is preferable, but not required. Physical fitness is essential. The maximum number is limited to 6 mountaineers per rope party. Special glacier equipment will be provided: ropes and carabiners, harnesses, helmets, ice axes and crampons. Participants will bring their personal protective outdoor clothes, mountaineering boots (B2 or B3, leather or plastic) suitable for using crampons. A qualified mountain guide and assistant will supervise and guide the activity for a maximum of 12 mountaineers at a time. Note that you are not allowed to ‘visit the toilet’ whilst on Antarctica (Antactic Treaty/IAATO Regulations). We recommend you bring a ‘pee bottle with a large opening (e.g. Nalgene) for this purpose. For human waste we provide biodegradable poo bags which have to be taken back to the ship for disposal.

1 mountaineering excursion is free of charge. Every mountaineer will be able to take advantage of at least one outing but it can be more. Space is limited to 48-60 participants during the voyage, first come first serve.

Mountaineering must be pre-booked and you will have the opportunity to do this when you receive your booking confirmation.

 

CAMPING:

We plan to offer 3 - 4 camp nights during the voyages. Everyone can participate, no previous experience is required. The maximum number is limited to 30 persons per night. The camping group will be taken ashore after dinner, and returns to the ship just before breakfast. On shore a camp will be made in a place where wildlife will not be disturbed. Special gear and field equipment will be provided: tents, wind and waterproof bivouac bags, mattresses and polar sleeping bags provide comfort during the night. Campers bring their personal warm and protective clothes. Expedition guides will conduct the activity ashore.

Note that you are not allowed to ‘visit the toilet’ whilst on Antarctica (Antactic Treaty/IAATO Regulations). We provide a portable toilet facility for the night, but we encourage use of the facilities on board and we recommend that you bring a ‘pee bottle’ with large opening to avoid use of the portable toilet during the night.

Camping must be pre-booked and you will have the opportunity to do this when you receive your booking confirmation.

For this holiday you should take one piece of luggage and a daypack. Luggage with wheels is useful for this holiday. For international flights please check your baggage allowance with your airline (the baggage limit on the domestic flight between Buenos Aries and Ushuaia is 15kg). 

Please note that you should be able to carry your own luggage.

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR THOSE TRANSITING THROUGH THE USA

You will require an ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorisation), and you must get this before boarding any US-bound aircraft or ship, or entering on a land border. The fee is USD$21 and you should apply for it at https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/esta/. With the ESTA complete, the majority of British Citizen passport holders can enter the US under the Visa Waiver Programme, VWP. You will be required to have a passport with an integrated chip. Note that if you have travelled to Cuba, Iran, Syria or North Korea since March 2011* you will have to apply for a visa rather than the Visa Waiver Programme (* a full and up to date list of countries can be found on the US government website here.)

IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR THOSE TRANSITING THROUGH CANADA

All citizens (except for USA citizens) will require an eTA (Electronic Travel Authorisation), and you must get this before boarding any Canada-bound aircraft or ship, or entering on a land border. The fee is CAD$7 and you should apply for it at http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/eta-start.asp

 

US passport holders must obtain a Brazilian visa prior to arrival if they will be in Brazil for more than 6 hours.

Visa Argentina

UK and USA passport holders do not require a visa for short stays.

VACCINATIONS

You should contact your doctor or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations or other preventive measures. You should be up to date with routine courses and boosters as recommended in the UK e.g. diphtheria-tetanus-polio and measles-mumps-rubella, along with hepatitis A and typhoid. A good online resource is Travel Health Pro.

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on an active holiday getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. Some of the optional activities require basic experience and equipment (see above in main section).

Along the Antarctic Peninsula, temperatures as high as 15°C have been recorded, though during the Antarctic summer temperatures are typically between 0 and 2°C. The wind will be a significant moderating factor and you must come prepared for ‘real feel’ temperatures as low as -20°C. The Antarctic is technically classed as a desert averaging 166 mm of precipitation per year. Although you are unlikely to experience precipitation, storms can and do occur.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office's ‘Travel Aware campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas. The 'Travel Aware' website provides a single, authoritative source of advice for all kinds of travellers and we recommend that prior to travel, all KE clients visit the official UK Government website at travelaware.campaign.gov.uk and read the FCDO Travel Advice for their chosen destination. North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: www.travel.state.gov for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCDO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCDO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

KE do not encourage the use of single use plastic items. We are ensuring that our agents all over the world are working together to reduce the problem and educate those around them. We are leading by example in our KE office by reducing our plastic use.

It is an essential condition of joining a holiday with KE Adventure Travel that you have a valid travel insurance policy to cover the cost of medical treatment and to protect the value of your holiday in the event of cancellation.  When taking out insurance please ensure the policy you choose covers you for the activities and altitude included in your itinerary.

For appropriate insurance cover we recommend Campbell Irvine Direct.  Please go to our Travel Insurance page for further information and to get a quote.

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum. Dress on board is informal. Beware of tight clothing that leaves no room for trapped air, which is an excellent insulator. Wool, silk and some of the synthetic fibers, like polar fleece, retain heat better than cotton.

You must bring the following items:

  • Casual shoes / Trainers or similar for onboard

  • Rubber boots (Wellington boots)*

  • Walking shoes*

  • Socks (Warm, high wool or similar socks worn over a thin pair of silk, polypropylene socks should provide enough warmth and insulation for your feet. Bring several pairs of socks, since you will inevitably get your feet wet)

  • Waterproof jacket

  • Trekking trousers

  • Waterproof pants/trousers

  • Thermal baselayer - leggings

  • Underwear

  • Baselayer shirts / fleece

  • Casual shirt and/or T-shirts

  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper

  • Sunhat

  • Warm hat

  • Scarf and/or neck gaiter

  • Sunglasses

  • Gloves or mittens (Thin polypropylene gloves under warm outer gloves is a good combination)

  • Headtorch and spare batteries

  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)

  • Water bottles 1 Litre x1 (we encourage re-filling water bottles rather than single use plastic)

  • Washbag and toiletries

  • Antibacterial handwash

  • Small towel

  • Rucksack 25 litres

  • Selection of dry bags (to keep rucksack contents dry)

  • Small daypack

  • Warm jacket (down)

  • Basic First Aid Kit including: Antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, and plasters. Glucose tablets and multi-vitamin tablets are also a good idea.

The following items are optional:

  • Warm Ski pants

  • Shorts
  • Spare gloves
  • Ski goggles in case of bad weather
  • Travel clothes
  • Camera (in a dry bag)
  • Binoculars
  • Penknife (remember to pack sharp objects in hold baggage)
  • Repair kit – (eg. needle, thread, duct tape)
  • Seasickness remedy

Snowshoeing Equipment:

  • Snowshoes are provided. You can make use of the supplied rubber boots to attach the snowshoes to or you may wish to wear waterproof ankle height walking boots

  • Waterproof ankle height walking boots & gaitors (see note above)

  • Walking poles

  • Reusable cloth bag for shopping (to avoid plastic bags)

Mountaineering Equipment:

Please ensure your rucksack/backpack has straps to tie snowshoes to when not in use.

  • Mountaineering boots (B2 Min)

  • Gaitors

  • Walking poles

  • Suitable additional clothing: Down jacket / mountain gloves / salopettes / socks etc

  • *Helmet, Ice-axe, Crampons (with anti-balling plates fitted), Climbing harness, Karabiners

Camping & Mountaineering:

Pee bottle: e.g. a wide opening Nalgene bottle (special adaptors for ladies are available).

* Notes

Rubber boots / Wellington boots:

Complimentary waterproof boots are supplied for the following sizes: (please confirm your preffered size to KE at least 8 weeks prior to departure)

 

Men’s USA size 8-14 / UK size 7 to 13½ / Europe 41 to 48½

Women’s USA size 3 to 9 / UK size 1 to 6 ½ / Europe 33 to 40

 

If you have different feet sizes to these you should bring your own rubber boots. These should be rubber, waterproof boots that are just below your knee with a strong, ridged non-skid sole.

Mountaineering Boots:

You need to take a pair of warm and reasonably substantial mountain boots that are sufficiently rigid to be securely fitted with crampons. The B2 (semi-rigid) boot rating is appropriate.

Crampons, ice axe, helmet and harness with karabiner are all provided along with all ropes and snow shovels etc. If you wish to take your own crampons, helmet, ice axe and harness you are welcome, but it is not necessary.

Walking shoes - There is the opportunity to sightsee around Ushuaia. If you intend to make the most of these opportunities, you should make sure that you take suitable footwear.

 

Cotswold Outdoor Red PantonMany of the Equipment items listed above are available from Cotswold Outdoor - our 'Official Recommended Outdoor Retailer'. When you book a holiday with KE you will receive 12.5% discount voucher from Cotswold Outdoor and other retailers.
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Reviews

4.7 out of 5 from 6 reviews

Absolutely incredible, well organised, mind blowing trip! ★★★★★

I’m so happy we chose this trip for our once in a lifetime journey to Antarctica. There are many options out there, but we were hoping for something active, sustainable, and immersive, and this trip not only delivered but went beyond so many of our expectations. Given that once you’re there, everything is very weather dependent, I was a bit anxious about whether we’d get to see and do what we wished for. But I was under the impression that there was a set itinerary, and if the weather is p oor, you’re out of luck. What I didn’t realise is that the boat is run by expedition leaders who know the place and are equally in love and excited to be there, and they do everything they can to get you off the boat and doing something. They check local weather, and change plans on the go, picking best places to make sure activities get done. We did have good weather on this trip, however did have to change plans a few times, and some leaders ended up pulling three shift days just to make sure everyone gets to do everything they wanted. It wasn’t really super clear from the brochure, but everyone gets to do one session of kayaking, camping, and mountaineering, and if you’re not doing that, you’re either on a zodiac cruise, or on land. There’s no sweat about what you need to do when, everything is well organised, and you won’t miss anything. If your priority is activities, choose a smaller boat that carries less people to have the best chance of making up anything that may be cancelled due to wind or ice (Plancius or Orthelius). The ship is clean and comfortable, older but charming, and geared towards adventure and nipping on and off quickly rather than luxury. Great vibe from all the staff on board. Expedition leaders are lovely and really committed, and clearly passionate about the place and preservation. There are thorough procedures in place for environmental protection, nothing seemed like a chore though. We saw loads of penguins, seals, whales, and even had a surprise orca encounter, when the expedition guides quickly changed plans, dropped zodiacs, and we went riding alongside around 70 of them! Kayaking and mountaineering were the highlights, incredible experiences. Camping was wonderful, although no one slept much due to excitement and nearby humpback whales that we couldn’t resist watching. Hiking and snowshoeing aren’t something you need to book separately – if the snow isn’t firm, they’ll prep snowshoes for everyone so that’s all taken care of. No use taking hiking boots, unless you plan doing very technical mountaineering. The knee high muck boots they provide are brilliant (order your true size, but don’t fret because they have loads to change if they don’t fit). Some landings require stepping into water, where even if you have gaiters, you’d get wet feet. If you bring your own boots, you wear the muck boots to shore and then change – it’s not worth it, the muck boots are suitable for everything, and they have to be brushed and bleached before and after every landing. Mountaineering comes in different difficulty levels and it’s possible to do super basic ones, on a good day, ours was like a super pleasant snowshoe walk! The journey there and back is hard – at least 24 hours of flying, then two and a half days across the Drake passage that took out half the ship, including me. There’s a doctor on board who can give you medicine. I took Stugeron which didn’t help, patch was the only thing that prevented vomiting on the way back. Taxis in Argentina are no problem, at airports they have ushers for queues, and prices agreed before the journey. Dollars are widely accepted, and in places Euros as well, certainly on the ship. Aerolineas Argentinas is the only airline to Ushuaia, do be careful because they’re a lot more relaxed and they often change times and even which airport they’re landing on, Buenos Aires domestic or international. We had our destination airport changed both inbound and outbound. There are multiple flights a day, so if there’s space and your flight was delayed or changed, it’s worth asking if they can bump you to an earlier flight, they can do it. All in all, I could rave about this trip for hours, it was the most amazing place I’ve ever gone to, in a fantastic environment, with lovely people who really cared about giving me the best experience.
By Ivana Brighton | 18 January 2024

Antarctic Hike and Cruise ★★★★★

The Antarctica Basecamp trip was well organized with excellent stuff and facilities. The small ship size (~100 passenger) provided an intimate environment. Antarctica was a truly amazing and unique place.

By Tao London | 30 March 2023

Experience of a lifetime ★★★★★

Nothing will prepare you this experience, icebergs, seals, whales and penguins it is all laid out in front of you. The crew were all amazing, not only did they go beyond what they needed to to make the holiday memorable they were also experts in their fields of marine life or arctic birds for example and past on their knowledge. All activities and trips to shore are weather dependant, plans will change and some trips may be cancelled. Luckily on the trip I was on they were able to fit in all th e plan activities and only 1 planned landing had to be cancelled. Of the 7 continents I have visited this stands head and shoulders above the rest and the memories will be with me for the rest of my life. If you do go the drakes passage is the roughest sea in the world so have plenty of sea sickness tablets with you more than half the guest got sea sickness on the way there.
By Darran St. Ives | 28 December 2019

Good experience but needs some improvement ★★★

Very excited to go on this trip yet nervous on the harsh weather conditions and skill levels on the activities on offer. The tour which is approx. 11 days includes getting there and back by ship. It takes approx. 2-3 days to reach Antarctica from Ushuaia and is subject to weather and sea conditions. Unfortunately bad weather was encountered which resulted in 3 days to reach there and activities has to start in the evening to get the most out of it. Be prepared for sea sickness, one is crossing t he roughest seas and is unavoidable, 90% of the passenger were sick. Due to bad weather, activities had to be cancelled, buts that’s the risk one takes as the time scale to fit everything in is not much. The trip could have been better planned by adding to 2 extra days to allow for flexibility of bad weather. Its very difficult to cram everything in as cancelations sets everything back and some people may not get the chance to do everything. Unfortunately I was not able to do any kayaking due to bad weather and poor planning by the expedition as activities clashed with each other and due to short available time scale. The weather to my surprise was tolerable as long as you have the 3 basic good layers of clothing. Be prepared to get wet when going on zodiacs; however ones outer clothing should be able to deal with this. Activities were divided up and grouped based upon ones skill and ability levels. The required clothing list for mountaineering and kayaking needs improvement and clarification by the expedition. Some clothing is already provided which lead to unnecessary expense for preparing for the tip. It was found that some people were allowed to do mountaineering with out crampon compatible boots which are mandatory for any mountaineering activity according to their terms and conditions. Some people were allowed to do kayaking with no swimming ability despite an attempt to meet these mandatory conditions which seemed unfair. Over all the trip was good experience but not amazing as was expected as there are other countries that can offer similar or better scenic views and activities. I was expecting to see hump back whales up very close , but seen only from distance so may be it was not the right season. The trip is very expensive for what it was, however what was on offer is the cheapest that could be found compared to other providers. The guides are very good and funny and always making you laugh. Would I go on this trip again, may be not , as there are other destinations that could offer similar experience, better weather conditions and cheaper. But that’s just one person view so tick in the box been there done it.
By Dharmendra Hornchurch | 18 December 2017

Amazing ★★★★★

Its not called the Ice planet for nothing, there is nothing on Earth that compares. You've got to go!!

By Alan CHICHESTER | 05 December 2016

Traveller Reviews
4.7 out of 5 from 6 reviews

Absolutely incredible, well organised, mind blowing trip!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I’m so happy we chose this trip for our once in a lifetime journey to Antarctica. There are many options out there, but we were hoping for something active, sustainable, and immersive, and this trip not only delivered but went beyond so many of our expectations. Given that once you’re there, everything is very weather dependent, I was a bit anxious about whether we’d get to see and do what we wished for. But I was under the impression that there was a set itinerary, and if the weather is p oor, you’re out of luck. What I didn’t realise is that the boat is run by expedition leaders who know the place and are equally in love and excited to be there, and they do everything they can to get you off the boat and doing something. They check local weather, and change plans on the go, picking best places to make sure activities get done. We did have good weather on this trip, however did have to change plans a few times, and some leaders ended up pulling three shift days just to make sure everyone gets to do everything they wanted. It wasn’t really super clear from the brochure, but everyone gets to do one session of kayaking, camping, and mountaineering, and if you’re not doing that, you’re either on a zodiac cruise, or on land. There’s no sweat about what you need to do when, everything is well organised, and you won’t miss anything. If your priority is activities, choose a smaller boat that carries less people to have the best chance of making up anything that may be cancelled due to wind or ice (Plancius or Orthelius). The ship is clean and comfortable, older but charming, and geared towards adventure and nipping on and off quickly rather than luxury. Great vibe from all the staff on board. Expedition leaders are lovely and really committed, and clearly passionate about the place and preservation. There are thorough procedures in place for environmental protection, nothing seemed like a chore though. We saw loads of penguins, seals, whales, and even had a surprise orca encounter, when the expedition guides quickly changed plans, dropped zodiacs, and we went riding alongside around 70 of them! Kayaking and mountaineering were the highlights, incredible experiences. Camping was wonderful, although no one slept much due to excitement and nearby humpback whales that we couldn’t resist watching. Hiking and snowshoeing aren’t something you need to book separately – if the snow isn’t firm, they’ll prep snowshoes for everyone so that’s all taken care of. No use taking hiking boots, unless you plan doing very technical mountaineering. The knee high muck boots they provide are brilliant (order your true size, but don’t fret because they have loads to change if they don’t fit). Some landings require stepping into water, where even if you have gaiters, you’d get wet feet. If you bring your own boots, you wear the muck boots to shore and then change – it’s not worth it, the muck boots are suitable for everything, and they have to be brushed and bleached before and after every landing. Mountaineering comes in different difficulty levels and it’s possible to do super basic ones, on a good day, ours was like a super pleasant snowshoe walk! The journey there and back is hard – at least 24 hours of flying, then two and a half days across the Drake passage that took out half the ship, including me. There’s a doctor on board who can give you medicine. I took Stugeron which didn’t help, patch was the only thing that prevented vomiting on the way back. Taxis in Argentina are no problem, at airports they have ushers for queues, and prices agreed before the journey. Dollars are widely accepted, and in places Euros as well, certainly on the ship. Aerolineas Argentinas is the only airline to Ushuaia, do be careful because they’re a lot more relaxed and they often change times and even which airport they’re landing on, Buenos Aires domestic or international. We had our destination airport changed both inbound and outbound. There are multiple flights a day, so if there’s space and your flight was delayed or changed, it’s worth asking if they can bump you to an earlier flight, they can do it. All in all, I could rave about this trip for hours, it was the most amazing place I’ve ever gone to, in a fantastic environment, with lovely people who really cared about giving me the best experience.
By Ivana Brighton | 18 January 2024

Antarctic Hike and Cruise
★ ★ ★ ★ ★

The Antarctica Basecamp trip was well organized with excellent stuff and facilities. The small ship size (~100 passenger) provided an intimate environment. Antarctica was a truly amazing and unique place.

By Tao London | 30 March 2023

Experience of a lifetime
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Nothing will prepare you this experience, icebergs, seals, whales and penguins it is all laid out in front of you. The crew were all amazing, not only did they go beyond what they needed to to make the holiday memorable they were also experts in their fields of marine life or arctic birds for example and past on their knowledge. All activities and trips to shore are weather dependant, plans will change and some trips may be cancelled. Luckily on the trip I was on they were able to fit in all th e plan activities and only 1 planned landing had to be cancelled. Of the 7 continents I have visited this stands head and shoulders above the rest and the memories will be with me for the rest of my life. If you do go the drakes passage is the roughest sea in the world so have plenty of sea sickness tablets with you more than half the guest got sea sickness on the way there.
By Darran St. Ives | 28 December 2019

Good experience but needs some improvement
★ ★ ★
Very excited to go on this trip yet nervous on the harsh weather conditions and skill levels on the activities on offer. The tour which is approx. 11 days includes getting there and back by ship. It takes approx. 2-3 days to reach Antarctica from Ushuaia and is subject to weather and sea conditions. Unfortunately bad weather was encountered which resulted in 3 days to reach there and activities has to start in the evening to get the most out of it. Be prepared for sea sickness, one is crossing t he roughest seas and is unavoidable, 90% of the passenger were sick. Due to bad weather, activities had to be cancelled, buts that’s the risk one takes as the time scale to fit everything in is not much. The trip could have been better planned by adding to 2 extra days to allow for flexibility of bad weather. Its very difficult to cram everything in as cancelations sets everything back and some people may not get the chance to do everything. Unfortunately I was not able to do any kayaking due to bad weather and poor planning by the expedition as activities clashed with each other and due to short available time scale. The weather to my surprise was tolerable as long as you have the 3 basic good layers of clothing. Be prepared to get wet when going on zodiacs; however ones outer clothing should be able to deal with this. Activities were divided up and grouped based upon ones skill and ability levels. The required clothing list for mountaineering and kayaking needs improvement and clarification by the expedition. Some clothing is already provided which lead to unnecessary expense for preparing for the tip. It was found that some people were allowed to do mountaineering with out crampon compatible boots which are mandatory for any mountaineering activity according to their terms and conditions. Some people were allowed to do kayaking with no swimming ability despite an attempt to meet these mandatory conditions which seemed unfair. Over all the trip was good experience but not amazing as was expected as there are other countries that can offer similar or better scenic views and activities. I was expecting to see hump back whales up very close , but seen only from distance so may be it was not the right season. The trip is very expensive for what it was, however what was on offer is the cheapest that could be found compared to other providers. The guides are very good and funny and always making you laugh. Would I go on this trip again, may be not , as there are other destinations that could offer similar experience, better weather conditions and cheaper. But that’s just one person view so tick in the box been there done it.
By Dharmendra Hornchurch | 18 December 2017

Amazing
★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Its not called the Ice planet for nothing, there is nothing on Earth that compares. You've got to go!!

By Alan CHICHESTER | 05 December 2016

Fantastic holiday
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Antarctica is totally unique, unlike any other place. Be prepared for; rough seas, amazing views, abundant wildlife, great company, good food, cold (and windy) weather, lots of penguins, jumping into/out of Zodiacs, getting wet, disinfecting your boots, drinking lots in the bar, meeting lots of new friends, watching whales, falling asleep listening to lectures, snoring from campers, icebergs, innumerable glaciers, unbelievably rugged mountains. Do take; a spirit of adventure and lots of memory c ards Don’t take; books (you wont have time to read them)
By Adventure MOFFAT | 15 March 2016

DATES & PRICES

Private Departure?

Gather a few friends, family or club and take over your own departure.

2024

Dates

Adults from

Deposit

Status

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /03/24/
  • This trip begins on Sun 3 Mar and ends on Sat 16 Mar
  • This departure is available and departs within 5 days. Secure your place today with full payment by contacting the KE office
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /04/24/
  • This trip begins on Fri 22 Nov and ends on Thu 5 Dec
  • This departure has limited availability. Don't delay - secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /05/24/
  • This trip begins on Wed 4 Dec and ends on Tue 17 Dec
  • This departure has limited availability. Don't delay - secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /06/24/
  • This trip begins on Tue 24 Dec and ends on Mon 6 Jan
  • This departure has limited availability. Don't delay - secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /07/24/
  • This trip begins on Sat 28 Dec and ends on Fri 10 Jan
  • This departure has limited availability. Don't delay - secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

2025

Dates

Adults from

Deposit

Status

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /01/25/
  • This trip begins on Thu 9 Jan and ends on Wed 22 Jan
  • This departure has limited availability. Don't delay - secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /02/25/
  • This trip begins on Wed 12 Feb and ends on Tue 25 Feb
  • This departure has limited availability. Don't delay - secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /03/25/
  • This trip begins on Mon 24 Feb and ends on Sun 9 Mar
  • This departure has limited availability. Don't delay - secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /04/25/
  • This trip begins on Wed 26 Nov and ends on Tue 9 Dec
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /05/25/
  • This trip begins on Mon 8 Dec and ends on Sun 21 Dec
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /06/25/
  • This trip begins on Mon 15 Dec and ends on Sun 28 Dec
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /07/25/
  • This trip begins on Sat 27 Dec and ends on Fri 9 Jan
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,575
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /08/25/
  • This trip begins on Sun 28 Dec and ends on Sat 10 Jan
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,620
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

2026

Dates

Adults from

Deposit

Status

More Information

  • Antarctic Hike and Sail Expedition
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: PAB /01/26/
  • This trip begins on Fri 9 Jan and ends on Thu 22 Jan
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of US$2,620
  • Contact us for single room pricing
  • Download Trip Notes

Land Only Information

The LAND ONLY dates and prices are for the itinerary joining at the hotel in Ushuaia. For clients making their own flight arrangements, Ushuaia Airport is the most convenient.

ZEN_HOLIDAY_DATES_PRICES_LAND_ONLY_USD_NOTICE


Changes to flights

Please be aware that the flight industry is experiencing a high level of service fluctuation and changes to your flights may occur. This may also require amends to the transfers and joining arrangements. Thank you all for continuing your patience and understanding.

 


Deposit amount

The exact deposit amount is dependant on the category of cabin chosen.  Our base deposit amount listed for this holiday is for a quad cabin with porthole.


Final Balance

Full payment for all Polar Cruises is 14 weeks prior to departure. Early booking is recommended as flights  fill early and cabin choice can be more limited nearer to departure.



Medical Form

Please note that for all our Polar Cruises you are required to complete a confidential medical form. This will be sent to you with your booking confirmation.


Upgrade Price per person and cabins

Our base price for this holiday includes accommodation in a quad cabin with porthole. It is possible to upgrade to cabins with triple or twin berth twin with porthole, or twin with window or superior/suite. If you are travelling on your own you will be paired up with another single client of the same sex. Please contact the office for further details on upgrade prices. All cabins and have private en-suite bathrooms.


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