Antartica? Any tips in finding a cruise?

Can anyone who's been on an antarctic cruise share how they selected a line?

Tags: Antartica

9 Answers

Gary bembridge did a tips for travellers YouTube video a few months ago and had tons of great insights about Antarctica.

Antarctica, what a beautiful place. We booked Celebrity because of price we received on a balcony stateroom. We had a great time and thoroughly enjoyed our cruise. We were very fortunate and had great weather.

We will return and do another Antarctica cruise again, we are currently looking at Princess and Holland due to that both do 4 days cruising Antarctica verses Celebrity did 2.

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"Imagine a place where time ceased to exist, a place of unspoiled and unforgiving beauty. A place of quiet. Where peace is everywhere. Imagine no more. The Frozen Continent."

We have visited the Horn twice, once on HAL the other on the Star Princess. Both times the seas were calm, lot of fog though on the first visit, on the second we almost had a clear day. On the Star we went on down to Antarctica, flat seas all the way down and back (Drake Passage), however, the Captain was a little concerned on the way back since a big blow was forecast moving into the Southern Ocean from the Pacific so he didn't waste time getting back to South America and the Falklands.

The Antarctic Peninsula is about the only place worth visiting since the rest of the Continent is surrounded by mostly oceanic ice cliffs where the massive ice sheet terminates in the ocean while the Peninsula is quite scenic, partly due to it mountains which mark the southern end of a long chain of mountains that runs almost continuously from Alaska down the western side of the Americas to Antarctica. There one finds lots of sea life intermingled with icebergs, bergy bits, growlers, brash ice, tabular bergs both large and small and massive ice islands. 60 degrees South Latitude is still north of all of Antarctica. At 61 degrees South most cruise ships usually turn around and head back. 66.5 degrees South is the Antarctic Circle which cuts through the base of the Peninsula. To put that in perspective, Anchorage Alaska is at 61 degrees north latitude. To give you an idea how huge the Antarctic Continent is, one fellow, an M.D., said at our dinner table the night before we approached the Peninsula that he had taken a rough measurement and had calculated we would be within 200 miles of the Pole the next day. Actually, we were 2,500 miles from the South Pole the next day.

It is true that weather in the Drake Passage can really get mean, I believe however that its notorious reputation comes a lot from days of yore when the sailing ships "Doubled the Horn". Most sea traffic then moved from east to west since the California gold fields were such an attraction to the young "Go West Young Man Go West." Prevailing winds and sea down there is from west to east therefore ships had to sail against the wind. You could only double the horn when sailing west. "Doubling the Horn entails sailing nonstop from a point above the 50th parallel in the Atlantic, down around the Horn and back to a point above the 50th parallel in the Pacific. Only this near 1,000-mile passage was considered a genuine Cape Horn rounding." I recall listening to a lecture when down there that the fastest record, at one time, was three months in getting from east to west under sail.

I can't say we doubled the Horn on HAL since we went from west to east on our cruise. An old sea chantey says: "From 50 south to 50 south you won’t grow fat and lazy boys----For the winds that howl around Cape Horn, will surely drive you crazy boys,"

Thanks

Will look - thanks

Interesting reading plus I watched a few shows on such cruises but still doubt if ever I would want to go any further south.

I have never been, but since I'm cyberstalking my next ship, Norwegian Bliss, you might want to check them out. They cruise there in the summer, apparently.

As usual, an assortment of KUDOS to KENN...makes me want to go...then I get a grip heheheheh

Of course you mean the "down under" summer, which is our winter up north.

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