For those who want to see the southernmost continent on earth, but don't have the annual leave for the traditional three-week trip, we have put together a compact trip, including six days on board an expedition vessel bookended by time in Chile.
Itinerary at a Glance:
- Fly from Chile to Antarctica, avoiding the choppy Drake Passage crossing
- Spend six days on board a luxury expedition vessel with dedicated scientist guides
- Spend time in and around Santiago, enjoying Chilean wine and culture
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When To Travel
All of the holidays we create are completely tailor-made to you
Day 1: Arrive in Chile
Once you have landed in Santiago, cleared customs and collected your luggage one of our team on the ground will meet you for a one-hour private transfer to your hotel in the heart of vineyards.
Once you have settled in, we recommend getting out in the fresh air and wandering around the grounds of your hotel. This evening enjoy some excellent Chilean cuisine and fine wines at the hotel.
Day 2: Horsing Around
After an early breakfast this morning, you will make your way to the estate's stables. Here, you will meet your expert guides, a huaso (Chilean cowboy) and, most importantly, your mount for the morning's ride.
You will ride through the vines and the surround valley to an elevated lookout point, spotting native flora and fauna along the way.
Day 3: Punta Arenas
Early this morning you will be privately transferred to the airport for your three-and-a-half-hour flight to Punta Arenas, the start point of your Antarctic adventure.
Once you arrive, you will be privately transferred to your hotel for the night before a briefing where the expedition team will fill you in the voyage and the essential guidelines for visitors to the white desert. This evening you will enjoy a welcome dinner with your fellow travellers.
Day 4: Fly to Antarctica
This morning, you will make your way to your special expedition plane for the two-hour flight to King George Island, in the South Shetland Islands.
Breath deep as the first hit of Antarctic air fills your lungs, and soak it all in. From here, you will be taken to your expedition vessel by RIB dinghy to begin your cruise.
Day 5-8: Antarctica
For the next four days your captain will expertly pilot your ship along ice-filled fjords and along the coast line of the South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula. Every day, you will leave the expedition vessel and make landfall in the dinghies, always accompanied by your expert guides.
While no journey to Antarctica is the same and excursions cannot be guaranteed, you will visit spots which show off the best of the Antarctic environment. These include enormous glaciers and ice shelves as well as penguin colonies and beaches covered with elephant seals. Every evening, you will enjoy lectures and presentations from the experts on board, as well as the spectacular views from the ship's lounge.
Day 9: Punta Arenas
Today you will return to King George Island, where you will board the return flight to Punta Arenas.
One of our team on the ground will privately transfer you to your hotel for the night, after which we recommend going for a walk before dinner and getting used to being back on dry land.
Day 10: Santiago
This morning you will be privately transferred to the airport in good time for your three-and-a-half-hour flight to Santiago. Bags collected, one of our team on the ground will meet you for a 25-minute transfer to your hotel.
Once you have settled in and freshened up, we recommend getting out and exploring the Chilean capital. Our local Concierge is on hand to recommend their favourite places to eat and drink in this fun city.
Day 11: Home Time
Before your flight home today, you can enjoy a tour of Santiago, taking in the city's highlights and most important historical sites. You can drop in on the Presidential Palace, and the Mercado Central, one of Chile's largest fresh seafood markets.
You tour will also include visits to some of the lesser-known barrios (neighbourhoods), including Republica and Concha y Toro, where Chilean high society have their city homes. Then, you will be privately transferred to the airport (your bags will already be in the car) in good time for your flight to home.
Ollie is our expert for this itinerary and, as a seasoned traveller, has the inside track on the most memorable adventures.