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The Whale Science Voyage 2021

The Whale Science Voyage 2021

15 Days/14 Nights
Ushuaia to Ushuaia

As the Antarctic summer comes to a close in March, migratory species like the Humpback are very active, socializing and feeding in preparation for the long journey ahead, while resident species like the Minke and Orca are also abundant. Each year we will partner with scientists doing cutting edge marine mammal studies for a special scientific voyage with our own Annette Bombosch, PhD. In March 2019, we collaborated with the world’s leading independent non-profit organization dedicated to ocean research, exploration, and education in the US, on a ground-breaking Humpback whale study. For full details on the March 2021 voyage, please enquire.

Budding Citizen Scientists will have ample opportunity to participate in marine mammal research, while photographers and videographers are busy capturing stunning images. This voyage also features all of the activities found in our standard Celebrating Antarctica itinerary.

Departure:  

  • Feb 26 – Mar 12, 2021 HSK

Day-by-Day Overview

  • Day 1: Arrival
  • Day 2: Ushuaia
  • Day 3: Embarkation
  • Day 4-5: Drake Passage
  • Day 6-8: South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula
  • Day 9-12: Antarctica
  • Day 13-14: Drake Passage
  • Day 15: Disembarkation

Day 1, Arrival

We’ve eliminated the anxiety of missed connections and flight delays by providing a two-night hotel stay at the beautiful Arakur Resort & Spa. Most flights arrive in Ushuaia in the late afternoon or early evening. Bring your bathing suit, lounge in the spa, or take a bath, and then get over your jet lag with good night’s sleep. You’ll have a full day on day two to relax at the resort or explore town, before embarkation on day three.

Day 2, Ushuaia

Today is all yours: explore some of the sights that Ushuaia has to offer, from museums to Argentinean leather markets, or continue relaxing at the lovely Arakur. Our optional evening briefing is a great opportunity for you to ask questions and meet some of your fellow travelers. All guests need to arrive at the hotel no later than the evening of day two.

Day 3, Embarkation

After a complimentary buffet breakfast, you’re free to explore Ushuaia or unwind at the resort until our mid-afternoon transfer to the ship. Once on board, you’ll be greeted by our Expedition Team and the ship’s officers. A concise safety and orientation briefing will be followed by the Captain’s welcome dinner. After dinner, relax and take in the scenery on our early evening sail through the Beagle Channel, past porpoising Magellanic penguins, Rock Cormorant, and Black-browed Albatross.

Day 4-5, Drake Passage

As we make our way ever closer to the white continent, our Expedition Team and Marine Mammal experts will be out on deck and on the bridge, looking for the whales and dolphins that may be seen as we travel south.   They will prepare us with presentations on everything Antarctic, from wildlife to history, including helpful briefings on environmental regulations and expedition safety.  Eventually, we’ll cross the Antarctic Convergence where we’ll notice a distinct drop in temperature as we enter the waters of the Antarctic Ocean.

Those interested in Citizen Science can take part in Sea Bird sighting surveys, or help collect salinity samples and weather data along the way.  The length of our journey depends on sea conditions, but we should approach the South Shetland Islands in the evening of Day 4.  We will keep especially keen watch for Pelagic whales as we approach the nutrient rich upwelling areas of the Continental Shelf.

Day 6-8, Antarctica

Exploring the South Shetland Islands, we may visit Half Moon Island with its stunning backdrop of mountainous and glaciated Livingston Island.  Or perhaps we will sail the ship into an active volcano with an opportunity to take a dip in the relatively balmy waters that surround Deception Island.  Bransfield Strait, once the site of an abandoned whaling station, gives us an excellent chance to see whales, who often return to its rich waters. In the waterways of the Antarctic Peninsula, our Expedition Leader, Captain, and Marine Mammal experts will create a flexible itinerary based on weather, ice, and previous sightings to maximize our whale watching opportunities, while also exploring some of the lesser traveled areas of the Peninsula.  We will aim for the most scenic bays and channels, with stops at penguin rookeries, seal wallows, bird colonies and whale feeding areas, as well as sites of historic and scientific interest. 

Day 9-12, Antarctica

Heading further South, we will be sure to explore the Gerlache Strait and its surrounding channels and islands.  This may include trips to picturesque Neko Harbor, sheltered Paradise Harbor, the Humpback Whale favored Wilhelmina Bay, the striking Lemaire Channel, the wildlife-filled Penola Channel, or the majestic Neumayer Channel.  We may stop at an active scientific base such as Poland’s Arctowksi or Ukraine’s Vernadskiy as well as a historic base such as U.K.’s Port Lockroy or Wordie House. At this time of year, most areas have amazing marine mammal viewing opportunities with Weddell, Crabeater and Elephant Seals often found hauled out to rest along with predatory Leopard seals and the assertive Antarctic Fur seal. Minke and Humpback whales are frequent visitors during this season and Orca sightings are also common.

Day 13-14, Drake Passage

As we leave this magical place and make our way north, heading again across the Antarctic Convergence and the Drake Passage, we will continue our presentation series and wildlife spotting. Sailing back to Ushuaia through the Beagle Channel, we celebrate the conclusion of our expedition with a special slideshow.

Day 15, Ushuaia disembarkation

Morning disembarkation lets you catch a flight to Buenos Aires or stay in Ushuaia for more sights and adventure.

 Sold Out
 Limited
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START DATE TRIPLE PORTHOLE WINDOW PROMENADE DELUXE VERANDA PENTHOUSE OWNER’S
Feb 26, 2021$10,995$13,595$15,495$16,395$16,795$17,295$19,995$21,595
All voyages include TWO hotel nights prior to embarkation
START DATE TRIPLE PORTHOLE WINDOW PROMENADE DELUXE VERANDA PENTHOUSE OWNER’S
Feb 26, 2021$10,995$13,595$15,495$16,395$16,795$17,295$19,995$21,595
All voyages include TWO hotel nights prior to embarkation

ACTIVITIES

Sign up at time of booking
Space is extremely limited

Sign up on board
Available to all guests on all voyages

FRIENDS & FAMILY

 

Have three people in your party?

Most suites have a sofa, which converts to a bed suitable for persons up to 5’10” in height.

Rates vary by deck

 

IMPORTANT DETAILS

  • The dates & prices for all of the itineraries listed above include two complimentary, pre-departure hotel nights at the port of embarkation.
  • Prices quoted are per-person based on double/triple occupancy.
  • A limited number of twin suites may be sold for single occupancy at 1.7 times the twin rate.
The most experienced team on land, water, or ice

World class marine biologists, environmental scientists, ornithologists, and modern day explorers are all part of our expedition team - highly experienced, synced to your needs and interests, and with safety always top of mind. More than a team, though, this is a tight knit family. Most of us voyage together year after year, all share a deep love for Antarctica, and all take immense pleasure in making your trip one you’ll never forget.

Polar Latitudes is one of the few operators that require all operational staff to be certified as crew under the International Maritime Organization’s STCW standards. Furthermore, we are the first polar operator to adopt the Polar Tourism Guides Association (PTGA) guide qualification framework, a world first in training and certifying polar guides in the skills and experience required for our unique industry. Read more about why you should consider choosing PTGA accredited guides here.

Check out some of our amazing Expedition Staff below!

Expedition Team changes for each departure and is composed of at least one of each of the roles below.
Team details are sent via email approximately 90 days prior to departure.

Hayley Shephard
Hayley Shephard
Director of Expedition Operations
Hannah Lawson
Hannah Lawson
Expedition Leader
Nate Small
Nate Small
Expedition Leader
Pablo Brandeman
Pablo Brandeman
Assistant Expedition Leader
Maria Cashin
Maria Cashin
Assistant Expedition Leader
Heather Thorkelson
Heather Thorkelson
Passenger Service Manager
Mariela Cornejo
Mariela Cornejo
Passenger Service Manager
Conny Bartl
Conny Bartl
Passenger Service Manager
Seb Coulthard
Seb Coulthard
Antarctic Historian
Bob Gilmore
Bob Gilmore
Citizen Science Coordinator
Annette Bombosch, PhD
Annette Bombosch, PhD
Marine Mammals
Jeff Reynolds
Jeff Reynolds
Marine Mammals
Jim Gardner
Jim Gardner
Geologist
Tracy Allen
Tracy Allen
Geologist
Marty Garwood
Marty Garwood
Ornithologist
Sophie Ballagh
Sophie Ballagh
Kayak Guide
Ewan Blyth
Ewan Blyth
Assistant Kayak Guide
Steve Schellenberg
Steve Schellenberg
Assistant Kayak Guide
Ben Osborne
Ben Osborne
Photography Coach
Philip Stone
Philip Stone
Photography Coach
Mathew Farrell
Mathew Farrell
Photography Coach
Will Rogan
Will Rogan
Photography Coach
Adam Rheborg
Adam Rheborg
Photography Coach
Tim Warren
Tim Warren
Adventure Guide
Randy Bulicka
Randy Bulicka
Musician
Falcon Scott
Falcon Scott
Historian
Hella Martens
Hella Martens
Marine Mammals
Ashley Hamilton
Ashley Hamilton
Adventure Guide
Kurtis Randall
Kurtis Randall
Kayak Guide
Delivering a world class small ship experience

Whether you’re voyaging on Hebridean Sky, or her sister ship Island Sky, superior comfort and attentiveness are the rule of every day. Recent ten-million-dollar upgrades on both ships ensures the very latest in safety and style, including state-of-the-art stabilization, ice-strengthened hulls, the very latest communication systems, and beautifully designed rooms and common areas.

We like to refer to our service, style and general atmosphere as “effortless luxury,” providing ubiquitous creature comforts and attention to detail, with none of the stuffiness that often accompanies the word “luxury.”

Library

Island Sky

Deluxe Suite

Hebridean Sky

Lido Deck

Island Sky

Window Suite

Hebridean Sky

Porthole Suite

Island Sky

Restaurant

Hebridean Sky

Club/Lounge

Hebridean Sky

Ships Feature:

  • Complimentary Wine or Beer with Dinner
  • Complimentary 24-hour Coffee/Tea station
  • 200 MB of WiFi data for your personal device
  • Free internet on computers in the Library
  • DVD Movie Library
  • Certified Emergency MD and Clinic
  • Voyage Photographer
  • Dedicated Passenger Service Manager