Antarctic Activities

Immerse yourself into the Antarctic wilderness with an exciting add-on activity.

Most Antarctica cruises off a variety of activities to choose from including kayaking, camping and cross-country skiing.

Your Antarctic activities begin as soon as your ship leaves port, with onboard lectures by the ship’s specialist expedition staff on Antarctic history, geology, birdlife and wildlife. Once you reach the Sub-Antarctic islands or the Antarctic Peninsula, you will go ashore by Zodiac inflatables to walk amongst penguins, explore historic sites and visit scientific research stations. Some voyages offer optional adventure activities such as camping overnight on the ice, kayaking, snow-shoeing, cross country skiing and mountaineering (some activities at extra cost).

To find out more about more about Antarctic activities on our range of Antarctica cruises and tours, please download the brochure excerpt.

Antarctica map

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Antarctic Activities

Zodiac Excursions

Most shore excursions and some sightseeing trips in Antarctica are by Zodiac inflatable boats. Anyone of average fitness and agility can get into and out of the Zodiacs. To avoid getting wet you will be wearing high rubber boots (wellies or gum boots). Some landings will be “dry” and some “wet”. Zodiacs were developed by the famous Jacques Cousteau and these nimble, rugged boats are the best way to get to shore quickly.

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Kayak Amongst Icebergs

Sea kayaking is a fantastic and inspiring way to explore the Antarctic Peninsula. Excursions are in small groups with an experienced guide. You will paddle into bays and inlets, navigating around amazing icebergs – blue-tinted sculptures of ice eons old. Sea kayaking is an amazing way to really immerse yourself in the immensity of Antarctica, and should be booked in advance. Kayaking experience is required.

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Ice-Climbing or Mountaineering

Keen adventurers with some climbing experience and a high degree of fitness might like to take on one of Antarctica’s peaks and glaciers. All climbs are coordinated by the expedition team on board your ship. Spaces are limited and this option should be booked in advance, preferably at the time of booking your cruise. Equipment, guides and instruction are provided.

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Cross-Country Skiing

This is a fabulous way to experience the remote landscapes of Antarctica. Cross-country skiing is available on select Antarctic voyages and arrangements will vary depending on the ship. Equipment, guides and instruction are provided. A high level of fitness is required. There are limited places available so this activity will need to be organised in advance.

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Ross Sea

Wildlife Encounters

The seas and shores of Antarctica, the Peninsula and the Sub-Antarctic islands are often crowded with noisy penguin rookeries, seal colonies and many sea birds. Get close to breeding colonies of Gentoo, Chinstrap, Adelie, King or Emperor Penguins. Seal species include the Weddell, crabeater, and leopard seals, as well as sea lions, fur seals and elephants seals. Other marine mammals include orca, humpback and minke whales.

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Ice Shelf Camping

On some voyages you can enjoy a night camping on an ice shelf in Antarctica. This is a very popular activity and a great way to experience the profound silence of the polar wilderness. All camping gear is provided. This activity is only offered on certain voyages and must be booked in advance. As this activity is very much weather and ice dependent, it can never be guaranteed. Your Expedition Leader and/or Captain of the ship will make all decisions with regards to which shore excursions and activities can proceed.

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