Antarctic Circle Quest

Antarctic Circle Quest

14 Days From



Antarctic Circle Quest

14 Days Starting and ending in Ushuaia

Visiting: Ushuaia, Beagle Channel, Drake Passage, ሀመር።, South Shetland Islands

Tour operator:

Exodus Adventure Travels

Tour code:


Guide Type:

Fully Guided

Group size:

2 - 189

Physical rating:


Age range:


Special diets catered:

Please inform Exodus of specific dietary requirements

Tour operated in:


Trip Styles:

Adventure Tours


Sightseeing, Walking

From: $12596 $12250 Mid-Year Mayhem Discount: -$346

NB: Prices correct on 18-Jun-2024 but subject to change.

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Tour Overview

After a few days exploring the 'deep south', there are further shore excursions on the northerly route along the Antarctic Peninsula. The ship is small enough to navigate through the narrow Lemaire Channel, with glacial walls towering high on both sides, leading to a jigsaw of jewel-like islands that are home to huge penguin rookeries, Elephant seals and countless seabirds. There are also whales: imagine a pair of Humpbacks, at least 30 tonnes of mammal, rising imperiously against a turquoise ice-wall viewed from a Zodiac only metres away, and you have the essence of the Antarctic.


  • Cross the Antarctic Circle at 66° 33’ S

  • Witness abundant Antarctic wildlife, including penguins, seals, whales and more

  • Accompanied by extremely qualified Expedition Staff

  • Visit the stunning Antarctic Peninsula

  • Travel on a small expedition vessel


Expand All

Day 1 : Start Ushuaia, Argentina

Location: Ushuaia

Meals Included: No Meals

Begin your journey in Ushuaia, a small but bustling port town at the tip of

South America. This Argentine town is an ideal gateway for you to explore the

southern extent of Patagonia while preparing for your adventure ahead. Get

active in the mountains or enjoy handcrafted chocolate at a café in town.

Day 2 : Board Ship And Sail Along The Beagle Channel.

Location: Beagle Channel

Meals Included: Dinner

The morning is free to explore Ushuaia and the surrounding area, to do some

last minute shopping, stroll around Ushuaia and down to the port or maybe go

for a walk in the nearby National Park. The transfer to the ship takes place

in the afternoon. Once on board there is a get together for introductions to

the expedition team, to learn about the ship and its layout, talk about the

itinerary for the next 13 days and participate in the obligatory lifeboat

drill. Departure from Ushuaia is normally around 6:00 p.m, and we set sail

through the Beagle Channel in the early evening. The long days mean plenty of

evening light in which to experience the beauty of the channel, and to

perhaps enjoy your first wildlife sightings.

Day 3 - 4 : Cross The Drake Passage.

Location: Drake Passage

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Sea conditions in the Drake Passage can vary from dead calm (known as 'Drake

Lake'), to rough and stormy (known as 'Drake Shake'). As you cross the Drake

Passage our team of experts is out on deck to help you spot whales and

identify seabirds. There is also a programme of talks, covering the wildlife,

the ice, and polar history to prepare you for your adventure to the 'White

Continent'. The excitement intensifies as you cross the Antarctic

Convergence, where the cold waters of the Antarctic Ocean meet the warmer

waters of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. You feel the change as the air

gets cooler. Huge icebergs loom up against the horizon in increasing numbers,

and Wandering albatrosses, petrels and other birds which thrive in this cold,

remote ocean are frequently seen.

Day 5 - 7 : South Shetland Islands And Antarctic Peninsula

Location: South Shetland Islands

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

The most common reaction upon reaching the White Continent is a sense of

reverence and awe. The experience is beyond words, since few places are as

untouched and enduring as Antarctica. You will begin to appreciate why this

region has long captivated the attention of explorers and travellers alike.

Every visit to Antarctica, we witness something new or unexpected, which

means that your expedition will be unlike any other - creating a unique,

personal experience.

Each day, you will take Zodiac excursions from the ship to explore local

bays, channels and landing sites. With wildlife always at the forefront of

our minds, you will visit penguin rookeries, scout for Humpback and Minke

whales, and search for a number of southern seal species, including the

cunning Leopard seal.

Your Expedition Team will take care of you at each landing, whether you are

exploring the Antarctic terrain, visiting a research station or consorting

with penguin colonies. Chinstrap, Adélie and Gentoo penguins are found here,

along with four different species of seals. Zodiac cruising can offer

opportunities to view some of the larger local marine mammals more

intimately, such as Antarctic Minke and Humpback whales. Each day and each

excursion will present a new collection of creatures to delight you and keep

your camera busy.

Your days will be busy spotting wildlife and being mesmerized by the

astounding beauty of Antarctica. Listening to the crackling and crumbling of

icebergs and glaciers and watching penguins waddling on the beach will become

your daily entertainment.

Day 8 - 9 : Antarctic Circle

Location: South Shetland Islands

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Crossing the Antarctic Circle is an impressive achievement, as most

expeditions to the Antarctic Peninsula do not reach this far south —

66°33´S. If conditions allow us to cross this famed line at 66°33´ S, you

and your shipmates will celebrate in style with a well-earned glass of

sparkling wine!

Make a toast and take pride in knowing you’ve made it to a part of the

world visited by very few people. This is raw Antarctica, home of the

midnight sun, Adélie penguins and some of the most awe-inspiring ice

formations you’ll see anywhere on the planet.

Day 10 - 11 : Northbound Along The Peninsula

Location: South Shetland Islands

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

By now, your knowledge of Adélie, Chinstrap and Gentoo penguins will be

matched by your ability to differentiate between a Leopard, Fur and Weddell

seal. Terms like ‘bergy bits’ and ‘pancake ice’ will become part of

your vocabulary, yet there are still many tales to be told. As you head

north, Zodiac excursions will fill your days, and your Expedition Team will

continue looking out for species of seabirds, seals and whales that may have

eluded you on your journey south.

Day 12 - 13 : Sail Back Through The Drake Passage.

Location: Drake Passage

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Leaving the Antarctic Peninsula behind our ship heads back across the

Antarctic Convergence and the Drake Passage. The crossing is completed with

the rounding of Cape Horn, weather permitting.

Day 14 : Disembark And End Ushuaia.

Location: Ushuaia

Meals Included: Breakfast

In the early morning we arrive back in Ushuaia where your voyage ends. You

will be transferred either to town on to the airport for your onward flight

to Buenos Aires.

What's Included

  • Meals
    6 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 6 dinners.

  • We can include flights from the UK.  Please contact us for a quote.

  • Tour leader throughout and qualified Expedition Staff

  • All transport and listed activities

  • All meals while on the ship

  • All accommodation

What's Not Included

  • Visas or vaccinations

  • Single accommodation (available on request)

  • Travel insurance


All meals while on the ship included.

*Typical Meals*

The ships galley offers good quality service and cuisine throughout, with
excellent chefs preparing international menus including vegetarian dishes,
accompanied by a wide variety of drinks from around the world on sale.

*Breakfast:* Buffet style – unlimited tea and coffee, a selection of fruit
juices, hot options including bacon and eggs or omelettes, a selection of
bread and toast and jam/honey/marmalade, fruit and cereal.

* Lunch:* Three course set meal or buffet, or the occasional BBQ.

*Dinner:* Three or four courses with a starter of soup and/or salad, a choice
of mains with at least one vegetarian option and a dessert, with tea and

Vegetarians and vegans can be well catered for on this holiday - please do
inform us before departure of any special dietary requests so that our local
team can be well prepared.


The Antarctic Circle Quest voyage is offered on the Ocean Explorer which is a Polar Adventure Ship. One night in a standard hotel in Ushuaia is included. Please visit the Polar Fleet page for Ship Information and Deck Plans.

Polar Adventure Ships

These are small ice rated vessels well qualified for Polar waters. Intimate adventures are always more enjoyable with like-minded passengers and staff, so these voyages are for people who like flexible itineraries and plenty to keep them busy. Activities include frequent Zodiac excursions, trekking and many hours on deck in areas that other ships only dream about accessing. Food and staff are excellent and every guest benefits from the technical advances of this superb fleet. Rest assured our Polar Adventure Ships enable any traveller to maximize their experience sensitively in the Poles.

Check out our Q&As

  • Are the local guides on the tour English speaking?


  • Are airport transfers included in this tour?


  • What is the maximum group size?


  • Are children permitted to take part in the tour?

    18+ age people can go on this tour.

  • Are vaccinations required for this tour?

    There are no mandatory vaccination requirements.

  • What happens if I need to change my holiday date once I’ve booked?

    If you wish to make any changes to your booking, particularly if you need to alter any flights booked through us, please let us know as soon as possible. There is a booking or flight amendment fee of £40 per change and flight amendments often incur extra airline costs depending on the changes to be made and if the ticket has been issued or not.

  • How long has the tour company been trading?

    Exodus has been trading since 1974

  • What documents will I receive before I travel?

    Your final joining instructions and flight details, if booked with us, will then be sent out 2 to 3 weeks before departure. If you would like a hard copy posted, or if you require these any earlier, please contact the customer operations team. We advise that if you are booking connecting travel before receiving these, please ensure you leave plenty of time.

  • Do you operate a “single share” option and how does it work?

    Travellers are welcome to opt to share a room with a tour member of the same gender for no additional charge. If you'd like your own room, we can request a single supplement so that you will have your own room throughout.

  • Can I join the tour once it has departed?

    You are welcome to meet the group after the tour has departed however there is no reduction in rate for joining a tour after the departure date.

Reviews from travellers on this tour


I was introduced to Antarctica in the most amazing

I was introduced to Antarctica in the most amazing way. When we arrived there was a blanket of heavy fog the team got us on the zodiac and navigated on compass bearings. Suddenly like the curtain of a stage being pulled back we sat in sky of blue surrounded by a wild and pristine environment.


A fantastic trip encompassing magnificent scenery

A fantastic trip encompassing magnificent scenery and wildlife viewing.


The trip delivered everything promised - and more.

The trip delivered everything promised - and more. The scenery and wildlife were as hoped for and the Zodiacs got us to the right places. The programme of talks on passage days and in the evenings were excellent. The ship (Ioffe) was better than I expected - comfortable, quiet, well maintained, and with a helpful crew.

Trip of a lifetime!

Wow... where to begin. The most amazing trip i hav

Wow... where to begin. The most amazing trip i have ever been on. Being one of the few to say i have visited Antarctica is something i will never get used to. The trip was breathtaking from start to end. I couldn't reccomend it enough.


This was a holiday of a life time, and was beyond

This was a holiday of a life time, and was beyond all our expectations. The whole expedition was superbly organised and all the expedition staff were so enthusiastic, knowledgable and helpful, making sure that everyone had the best experience possible.


An absolutely exhilarating experinence cruising on

An absolutely exhilarating experinence cruising on Akademik Sergei Vavilov whilst being surrounded by large white and deep blue icebergs, pushing through the ice trying to cross the Antarctic circle..An unforgetable experience observing and photographing colonies of penguins - those guys are so curious! They ask you to stay away at least 5 meters from the wildlife but nobody told the wildlife to respect that distance!!


The scenery was as breath- taking as I expected -

The scenery was as breath- taking as I expected - if not more so: the animal life fantastic. What made the journey was the informative guides, the high quality food and the friendliness of all concerned. A fabulous trip that involved crossing the Antarctic Circle and visiting several historic sites and preserved huts of past years.

Antarctic circle quest

One of the best experiences of my life. Icebergs,

One of the best experiences of my life. Icebergs, whales, seals, penguins, historic huts and awe inspiring (in the true sense of that overused term) scenery.


Another fantastic trip to the wilderness that is A

Another fantastic trip to the wilderness that is Antarctica. Brilliant from start to finish with awesome scenery and wildlife experiences throughout on a fantastic ship.


The journey to and from Ushuaia was long and tedio

The journey to and from Ushuaia was long and tedious but when we got on the boat things improved immediately. The journey across Drakes Passage to the Antarctic Peninsula was a bit rough and I was sick until the Doctor gave me some very good pills. Once there it was calm. we started at King George Island and went south, calling at various Islands as we went. There was floating Ice and Icebergs everywhere.Everything was black(rock) or white (Ice). We saw nothing green after leaving King George. The only other colour was a bit of yellow (lichen) and some red stain on the snow. The scenery was everywhere spectacular. Ice Cliffs with blocks breaking off and black rock precipices. There were a few rocky beaches and one black sand beach. We were loaned Wellington Boots and given a heavy, warm waterproof jacket for use on the zodiacs and on land. In antarctica they were very useful and necessary but I don't think it will ever be cold enough in Enland for me to wear it again. There were penguins everywhere. we landed at one colony and I have never seen so many creatures of one species together at the same time. They smelled awful.. We crossed the antarctic circle and tried to land at one of the scientific bases but it was too rough. We went back north and paused in Paradise Harbour. Here it was fantastically smooth and peacefull. We saw an occasional Whale and some of the party went on a zodiac cruise to where there were some spectacular grounded icebergs. There were also seals and lots of birdsWe landed at one scientific station and I climbed a low cliff and looked into the water. I could see a penguin catching fish under the water. On land the penguins were clumsy and awkward, under the water they were incredibly quick and active, darting here and there like dragonflies.On the last day we went to Deception Island. This is a flooded volcanic caldera. We entered through a very narrow entrance called 'Neptunes Bellows' and landed just inside the entrance. Inside the caldera, the water was warmed by volcanic activity and some people went swimming. Sadly, one thing I hadn't brought was a bathing costume.Finally back across Drakes Passage to Ushuaia, much smoother than the way out and we saw Cape HornThe journey back from Ushuaia was awful but that was British Airway's fault not Exodus

Read all 14 reviews

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  • Transfer as credit to Future Tours

    Exodus Adventure Travels allows you to transfer existing payments to a future tour to avoid cancellation fees if you can't travel and inform exodus adventure travels, 43 days before departure.

  • Low Deposit

    Exodus Adventure Travels requires a minimum deposit of 25% or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 90 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of exodus adventure travels charges.

    Up to 70 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of deposit.

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