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About the Antarctica Classic (plus hotel) Itinerary
- Perfect for first time visitors to Antarctica
- Witness and explore the highlights of the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands
- Learn about the environment and wildlife from onboard lecturers and specialists
- Witness the abundant wildlife – penguins, seals, whales and more!
Day 1: Ushuaia, Argentina
Enjoy the “World’s Southernmost City” and explore the city center and nearby Tierra del Fuego National Park. Highlights of Ushuaia include the mountains surrounding the city with the popular “Train at the End of the World” and an award-winning museum. Delight in Argentinean leather markets and succulent lamb dishes that make Patagonia famous as you explore this growing city.
Day 2: Embarkation
Arriving at the ship in the afternoon, you will be greeted by Expedition Team and ships’ officers at a safety and orientation briefing followed by the Captain’s welcome dinner. After dinner, relax and take in the mountainous scenery on our early evening sail down the Beagle Channel past Magellanic Penguin, Rock Cormorant, and Sea Lion colonies.
Days 3-4: Drake Passage
Among the wildlife spotting opportunities as we sail south are the Albatrosses, Prions, and Petrels that frequently follow the ship. The Expedition Team will be out on deck as well, looking for the Whales and Dolphins that may also be seen in the area. The team will begin presentations with informative and entertaining lectures on the wildlife, history, and geology of Antarctica. Helpful briefings on environmental regulations and expedition safety will also be held.
Days 5-9: Antarctic Peninsula & South Shetland Islands
Arrival to the White Continent, the land of extremes! The most common first reaction to the white continent is a sense of reverence and awe. The experience is hard to put into words, as few places are as untouched, unique and enduring as Antarctica. The Expedition Leader and Captain will create a flexible itinerary based on weather, ice, and opportunity. The route will stress the most scenic bays and channels of the Peninsula with stops at penguin rookeries, seal wallows, bird colonies and whale feeding areas. Guided hikes with the Expedition Team will have you trekking up a glacier, visiting a research station, or consorting with penguin colonies. Chinstrap, Gentoo and Adélie penguins are found here, along with Fur, Weddell, Crabeater and Leopard Seals. Curious whales, such as Minkes and Humpbacks, are often attracted to Zodiacs as well, giving you a chance to get within reaching distance of these majestic animals. Each day and each landing will present a new collection of creatures to entertain you and keep your camera shutter busy.
The trip may include 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. A visit may be possible to an active scientific base such as Ukraine’s Vernadsky as well as an historic base such as U.K.’s Port Lockroy or Wordie House.
Days 10-11: Drake Passage
The lecture series and wildlife spotting will continue on the return trip to Ushuaia and while the team will reflect on beautiful Antarctica and its fragile future.
Day 12: Disembarkation
Morning disembarkation allows you catch a flight to Buenos Aires or stay in Ushuaia for more sights and adventure.
Welcome Aboard the Ocean Diamond
The Ocean Diamond is a modern, stable super-yacht, excellent for experiencing Antarctica. The ship carries a maximum of 189 passengers and features onboard amenities such as a massage and wellness program, a heated swimming pool and a well-stocked polar library. The Ocean Diamond is staffed with outstanding officers, expedition leaders, and guides.
- Guests: 189
- Staff & Crew: 144
- Length: 124 meters
- Breadth: 16 meters
- Draft: 4.9 meters
- Propulsion: 2 Wichmann Engines, 7375 horsepower
- Ice Class: 1D
- Cruising speed: 15.5 knots
- Lifeboats: 4 fully enclosed
Cabins & Amenities
- Remote headsets available for remote presentations.
- Massage & Wellness Program, Photography Program
- Optional camping, kayaking, snowshoeing, skiing & mountaineering.
- Polar Library & Expert in Residence Program
- One-year enrollment in Friends of Scott Polar Research Institute (SPRI)
- All cabins and suites have private facilities & exterior views.
- All cabins have flat-screen TV, DVD player.
- Passenger elevator.
- Bar staffed by a professional bartender.
- Theater-style auditorium.
- Photography program includes the services of a resident photography instructor.
- Polar Library contains the largest collection of polar books & DVDs.
- Massage & Wellness program offers yoga classes, aromatherapy treatments & massage therapy.
- Cruise Price does not include international airfare. Port charges are included. All cabins are outside, with two lower beds and private shower and toilet. Rates are per person based on double occupancy.
- Single cabin prices are 1.7 times the cost of the appropriate twin-share prices listed above except for superior and above which are 2x the price listed above.
- All trips subject to possible fuel surcharge.
- Kayaking – $995 (for those who want to kayak during entire voyage & have previous experience) OR
- Paddling – $225 (for those w/o experience who want to kayak one time during the voyage)
- Camping – $295
- Adventure options must be pre-booked and paid for prior to start of the trip. Space is subject to availability. Some activities require experience.
- Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping
- All shore landings per the daily program
- Leadership throughout the voyage by our experienced Expedition Leader
- All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program
- Formal and informal presentations by our Expedition Team and guest speakers as scheduled
- Photographic Journal on DVD, documenting the voyage
- A pair of waterproof expedition boots on loan for shore landings
- An official Quark Expeditions parka to keep
- Coffee, tea and cocoa available around the clock
- Hair dryer and bathrobes in every cabin
- Comprehensive pre-departure materials, including a map and an informative Antarctic Reader
- All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program
- All luggage handling aboard the ship
- Emergency Evacuation Insurance for all passengers to a maximum benefit of US$100,000 per person
- Pre-night hotel in Ushuaia with breakfast included
- Group transfer to hotel upon arrival in Ushuaia