Ushuaia, Argentina to Cape Town, South Africa
This is the ultimate Cape to Cape voyage. The voyage starts in the Argentinian city Ushuaia, and we will sail through the Beagle Channel to open sea. During this ocean voyage to Cape Town we will visit the Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia and Tristan da Cunha, the most remote island in the world. We will set course across the Atlantic Ocean and sail every day.
The Southern Ocean is known for its tumultous character, where names as “Roaring Fourties”, “Furious Fifties” and “Screaming Sixties” refer to the challanges in the souther latitudes. Between the different stops there will be sailing for around 10 days, in which there is time to experience the sailing life, including watch keeping, navigating and sail handling.
Length of Travel: 52 Days
Itinerary in Brief
Ushuaia is the capital of Tierra del Fuego and the most southern city in the world. The city is located along the Beagle Channel and is surrounded by the Martial Glacier.
Around 8000 BC the area was first inhabited by indigenous people, who were still living in the bay when British missionares founded what is now known as Ushuaia in the 19th century. In 1833 the British ship HMS Beagle reached the channel which is now named after her on explorations to Tierra del Fuego. After this visit the area became a bit more known and half a century later the missionaries arrived. At the end of the 19th century there came an end to the fighting and unrest in the region, after which the city began to develop and grow.
Due to the ruggedness of the terrain the Argentinian government decided to create a prison near Ushuaia, assuming that the wilderniss of Tierra del Fuego would prevent any prison escapes. Only in 1947 the prison was closed down, after rumours about prisoner abuse and the terrible state in which the prison was at that moment. The building still exists today, and currently houses the Museo Maritimo de Ushuaia.
Being the most southern city in the world, Ushuaia is the perfect starting point for our Antarctic adventure, for which we first have to cross the famous Drake Passage.
After leaving the Beagle Channel it is time to cross the Drake, visit the Antarctic Peninsula and depending on ice- and weather conditions the Weddellsea. The sails are hoisted for a serious sail to the beautiful island of South Georgia. We will spend about a week here and have a daily routine of moving the ship from one fjord to the other and make landings, enjoying the wildlife and hikes. We’ll find the remains of a former whaling station at Grytviken and see the grave of Shackleton, one of the most heroic pole travellers. It is an old tradition to drink a glass of whisky near his grave.
Heading back to sea, course is set for Tristan da Cunha: the most remote island of the world. Here, in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, a small community lives on top of an active volcano. Let’s hope that the swell isn’t big enough to prevent a safe landing. On Tristan you can play golf on the most remote course of the planet or go fishing for lobster with the local fisherman. The final leg of this long voyage is a beautiful sail of about 10 days to Cape Town. Mid April the Table Mountain will appear on the horizon and the ship will be berthed along the quay in the V&A Waterfront.
Capetown is the capital city of the south-west region called Western Cape province. Located on the shore of the Table Mountain, you have a wonderful view over the city once you climb up the mountain. From Lion’s Head, you can watch over Robben Island, which was the island where Nelson Mandela has been imprisoned for over nineteen years.
From the 16th century onwards the Cape was an important place for Portuguese, Dutch, Danish, English and French navigators to trade their goods in exchange for food supplies. In 1652 the Dutch established a way-station and Fort the Good Hope and the settlement grew slowly every year.
With the Dutch East Indian Company being bankrupt the Brits captured the colony in 1814. It was only after 1910 that the colonies regained their independence as the Union of South Africa.
During the Antarctica expeditions there will be one or more guides on board the Bark EUROPA. They know very well the area we will be visiting. The guide gives lectures on board the ship about the flora and fauna we will encounter, prepares you for the landings on shore and will guide you on the shore walks.
Photographs + Drones – You will have the possibility to see animals close by – while keeping your distance. To reach the best photo/video result we recommend you to bring a zoom lens next to your regular lens(es). Please keep in mind drones are prohibited entirely on South Georgia and Antarctica.