Antarctic Circle Quest

A comprehensive tour deep into less-explored southern polar regions
Overview

overview

On this exciting itinerary, you will have time to explore the Antarctic Peninsula in depth, to search out its bays and islands, to marvel at its wildlife, and to wonder at the remarkable scenery. Travel farther than most trips venture into the polar regions, as far as the Antarctic Circle at 66° 33.7' south, although, as with all things in this area, this will be dependent on suitable weather and ice conditions. There will also be opportunities to kayak among icebergs or, on certain departures, to spend a night ashore camping.

itinerary

itinerary

  • Day 1: Ushuaia, Argentina

    Arrive at our hotel in scenic Ushuaia and spend the rest of the day exploring this colorful port town.

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  • Day 2: Embarkation Day

    You will be transferred to the quay to join other adventurers on deck as we sail in the late afternoon through the scenic Beagle Channel.

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  • Days 3-4: The Drake Passage

    To sailors, the Drake is legendary for its high winds and rolling seas, but you may be lucky and get calm weather. When the winds are strong, look out for seabirds that will accompany the ship. Regardless of the conditions, we’ll keep you busy on deck, on the Bridge and in the presentation room. We prepare you for boarding Zodiacs, shore landings, and, if you dare, polar dips.

    En route to Antarctica, you may find that delicious three-course meals are made even more interesting by the occasional shout of “Whales off the port side!” Will you continue eating or dash on deck with your camera?

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  • Days 5-8: Exploring the Great White

    The Expedition Team lowers the Zodiacs for exploration at least twice a day. That means that the bow of your Zodiac will be riding high as the driver opens the throttle so we can give you as much time on shore as possible. Once on land, explore the Great White, or just sit on a rock and watch penguins invest considerable energy in survival. Wildlife in the Antarctic is refreshingly unafraid of humans, making each visit feel like a trip to another planet. The jagged polar terrain is magnificent, and awe-inspiring. Perhaps you'll take a polar dip in a thermal hot spring!

    Kayakers, campers and hikers seek that one perfect moment they will relive for the rest of their lives. Perhaps you’ll find that moment in Antarctica. Optional adventures are available on a first come, first served basis. (See the dates and rates for details.) You could drift past an azure iceberg after a hard paddle. You could descend an ice slope after an exhilarating climb. While camping, you could be compelled to reach for the sky, because the stars appear to be only an arm’s length away.

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  • Days 9-10: The Antarctic Circle

    Crossing the Antarctic Circle is still a rare and impressive achievement. Celebrate with a well-earned glass of champagne, raising your glass to the intrepid explorers who have gone before.

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  • Days 11-12: Loubert Coast

    During the voyage, your expedition team will keep you informed about the fabled history of each area you visit. Every name on the map of the Antarctic has a story to tell. The Loubert Coast is no exception. The French names that appear are a legacy of Jean-Baptiste Charcot, physician, yachtsman, and explorer. He, like you, lived for adventure.

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  • Days 13-14: Whales, Birds & Memories

    While crossing the Drake once again, stay up late with new friends as the lingering twilight of the southern summer fades. Trade memories that will last forever while you puzzle over the mystery that is Antarctica.

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  • Day 15: Disembark in Ushuaia

    You disembark the ship this morning. Return to the airport for an onward flight, or stay and enjoy what Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego have to offer.

    (Note: Some departures will visit the Peninsula on the way back to Ushuaia in a reverse itinerary.)

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Price and Date Details

Price and Date Details

Jan 7-21, 2015 Ocean Diamond
Feb 8-22, 2015 Sea Adventurer
Jan 15-29, 2016 Ocean Diamond
Land Cost:
$9,995
- $18,995
Fuel surcharge may apply
Single Supplement:
$9097
twin cabin available for an additional 70% of the cabin cost; no supplement if willing to share
Need to Know

Need to Know

2015-16 Expedition Dates & Prices

All dates are per person in US dollars, based on shared occupancy.
Single occupancy of selected twin cabins is available for an additional 70% of the cabin cost.

Optional activities are indicated in chart.
 

Fuel Surchage may apply

 

Sea Adventurer

Date                          Cabins  
                                                   Triple     Lower Deck Twin

Main Deck Twin
Porthole

Main Deck Twin Window

Superior Cabin

Deluxe Suite 

Optional
Activities

Feb 8 - Feb 20, 2015 $9,295  $11,295  $12,295  $13,295  $14,295  $15,295  $17,295 kayaking

 

Ocean Diamond

Date                                  Cabin
   Triple  Twin
Obst
View
Twin

Suite

Single
Porthole
Balcony
Suite
Optional
Activities
Jan 7-21, 2015 $9,995 $12,995 $13,995 $16,995 17,995  $18,995

 camping,

 kayaking

Jan 15-28, 2016 $8.795 12,395 $12,995 $16,995 $15,995 $17,995 camping, kayaking

 

SHIP INFORMATION

 

Ocean Diamond
Sail aboard the Ocean Diamond, a modern, stable super-yacht and experience Quark's Antarctica. Carrying a maximum of 189 passengers, this outstanding vessel features numerous adventure options plus onboard amenities such as a massage and wellness program and a well-stocked polar library.

  • Intimate viewing of Antarctic wildlife, icebergs and more
  • All cabins have exterior views and facilities en suite.
  • Flat Screen TVs and DVD players in every cabin.
  • Chefs prepare delicious meals, three times daily.
  • 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-inclusive beverage packages available
  • Speed of vessel saves up to 12 hours on Drake crossing. Giving you more time to enjoy Antarctica
  • We only use high quality camping equipment on the Ocean Diamond

 

Sea Adventurer
This Polar Adventure Ship was built in 1975. Sea Adventurer underwent a $13 million conversion in 1998. Sea Adventurer is the perfect expedition ship for people who enjoy soft adventures and creature comforts. The Sea Adventurer is equipped with Zodiacs for shore landings and ocean level cruising, yet offers fine dining, and cabins with exterior views and facilities en suite.

  • Only 117 guests.
  • 4 partially enclosed lifeboats.
  • Fleet of Zodiacs for shore transfers.
  • All cabins have exterior views and facilities en suite.
  • One dining room with unreserved seating.
  • Multi-purpose lounge and presentation room.
  • Ice-strengthened hull.

 

Duration:
15 days
The number of days, or duration, in a destination corresponds with the itinerary as published. This is the time period covered by the land cost. The total number of days includes the time required to travel between the USA and the destination country.
Comfort Level:
2
Group Size:
117-189
The stated range indicates minimum required for guaranteed departure and maximum accepted on the scheduled dates. Exceptions can often be made for private departures.
Activity Level:
2
Terms & Conditions: 

Quark Polar Cruise 2014/15

Please note that this trip operates under different payment and cancellation policies than those described in our Terms and Conditions as noted in our Global Expedition Catalog, on our website and elsewhere. Please request these if you do not have them before advancing a deposit.

Insurance: All travelers must be covered by comprehensive medical, repatriation, travel, trip delay, baggage, and trip cancellation insurance in case of emergency situations, which should be purchased at the time of booking.You must have a minimum of $50,000 of emergency medical coverage.  Proof of coverage is required at embarkation. Please contact us for a recommended policy.  

Emergency Evacuation Insurance: Emergency evacuation insurance, to a maximum benefit per paying traveler of US $100,000 is included in the cost of Quark Expeditions voyages from TravelEx Insurance Company. Included coverage is applicable only to travel occurring between the first and last day of the expedition purchased from Quark Expeditions. Due to the remoteness of the areas in which you will travel, an adequate medical facility could be up to 72 hours away or more, dependent on weather. Additional days of travel prior to the expedition and/or after the expedition, including pre- and post- packages/hotels/flights, are not covered by the included emergency evacuation insurance. 

Airfares: JOURNEYS can make complete air arrangements applicable to your trip as noted in this itinerary. If you wish to redeem frequent flyer mileage or arrange flights directly with the airline, you may do so on your own at no penalty. If you do, please consult with us on exact arrival and departure dates and times before having your tickets issued to avoid errors. For scheduled flights, the fare rules of the airline carrier, including payment and cancellation conditions apply.

Included in costs: Shipboard accommodation, highly experienced expedition leader, crew and lecturers, all meals including tea/coffee 24 hours a day, complimentary parka, boot loan on all departures, access to public viewing areas, shore excursions by Zodiac boat, on-board lectures, videos, slide and film shows, on-board medical officer, port taxes, comprehensive pre-departure information.

Not included in costs: Visa and passport fees, international airfare, charter flights, airport departure taxes, any pre-trip or post-trip hotel accommodation not indicated on the itinerary, laundry, postage, telephone calls, medical expenses, travel insurance, helicopter flights, gratuities to staff and crew, changes to the itinerary after confirmation, changes to itinerary after arrival at destination, or other costs as are more fully described in JOURNEYS Terms & Conditions.

Rates: Rates for voyages, flights, and pre-expedition and post-expedition extensions are based on tariffs and exchange rates in effect at the time of printing and are subject to change prior to departure. Substantial changes in tariffs, exchange rates and the price of fuel, services and labor sometimes increase the cost of expedition arrangements significantly, and we reserve the right to alter our prices or introduce surcharges accordingly, even if payment has been received in full.

Trip-specific payment & cancellation schedule: A deposit of 25% of the product cost (minimum $1,300) per person is required to confirm a reservation. You may sign up on-line and make your deposit at our secure website: http://www.journeys.travel/info/sign_up/. The deposit may be made by Visa, Master Card or Discover.  If you prefer, a Reservation Form may be submitted by fax, or mail, and payment may also be made by check. Final payment is due 120 days prior to departure and can be made by Visa, Master Card, or check. All prices and payments are in US Dollars and no other currencies can be accepted. Airlines require full payment when tickets are issued. Cancellations must be made in writing. Cancellations made up to 180 days prior to departure will be refunded less an administrative fee of $1300 per person. Cancellations made 179 to 120 days prior to departure forfeit the full deposit. Cancellations made less than 120 days prior to departure are subject to cancellation fee of 100% of the trip cost; if full payment has not yet been received, the full penalty will still apply and unpaid monies are due immediately. It is understood that refunds cannot be made to passengers who do not complete the tour for any reason whatsoever. Prices quoted are based on group participation and no refunds will be made for any part of the program in which you choose not to participate, including any helicopter flying time (if applicable and which, at the discretion of the Captain and Expedition Leader, may or may not be utilized).

Cancellation by Quark Expeditions: Quark Expeditions begins planning voyages many months in advance of departure. Occasionally changes may be made before and after bookings have been confirmed. Quark reserves the right to cancel any service prior to departure, in which case payent will be refunded without further obligation on our part. Please note that in the event of cancellation, Quark Expeditions will not be responsible for the cost of any additiona travel arrangements beyond the voyge or other items not purchase through Quark Expeditions. Due to the nature of some of Quark's Antarctic programs, QUARK EXPEDITIONS WILL NOT OFFER PASSENGERS A REFUND IN THE EVENT OF TRIP CANCELLATION IF THE CHARTER FLIGHT IS NOT ABLE TO TAKE OFF BY 1400 HOURS ON DAY OF DEPARTURE. Travel Insurance is STRONGLY recommended. Be sure that if your expedition includes an Antarctic charter flight, that your policy includes a cancellation due to weather on the charter flight.

Quark Expeditions will not be held responsible for any change/cancellation fees due to weather related delays or any other delays arising from force majeure.

Photography: Passengers extend permission to the operator of the trip to take their photograph during the voyage, and release all rights over those images. Passengers who do not wish to be photographed during the voyage must inform the operator in writing prior to the voyage.

Itinerary Change Fee: There will be a $300 fee for changes once an itinerary has been confirmed and approved. Changes must be made in writing and submitted a minimum of 120 days prior to departure. Additional cancellation penalties or change fees may apply as per our terms and conditions. The passenger is responsible for such fees.

Transfers of Deposits or Payments to Alternate Voyages: Should travelers be unable to take the expediton they originally booked but would like to travel on an alternate date, it may be possible to transfer deposits or payments from the original booking, subject to the following conditions: The new expedition must occur within one year of the original expediton date and a request to transfer must be made in writing to Quark Expeditons more than 120 days prior to the departure of the orginal voyage. Quarke Expeditions reserves the right to prohibit transfers on any of its vayages. Should a transfer request be granted, a fee of minimum US $1,000 will be charged.

Adventure Options: Prices quoted are based on group participation and no refunds will be made for any part of the program in which you choose not to participate, including kayaking, camping, skiing, mountaineering or ballooning (if applicable, and which, at the discretion of the Captain and Expedition Leader, may or may not be used.) It is understood that refunds cannot be made to travelers who do not complete the services for any reason whatsoever. All adventure options require a signed Adventure Option Waiver, which must be signed prior to your taking part in the adventure option. The Expedition staff reserve the right to deny participation to any client who has not signed the waiver, does not follow the rules set out be the expediton staff or is not medically or physically able to participate safely.

Medical Forms: Will be sent via an email link, once you have made a deposit. You must review, complete and submit the forms as soon as possibe. Questions that related to your physical or mental suitability must be completed by a medical practioner. Medical forms must be filled out in full, honestly and accurately and disclose all medical history and information. Should your medical situation change after submitting the medical forms, ti si your responsiblity to advise us immediately. Quark Expeditions reserves the right to deny passage to any traveerl on reaonable medical grounds.

 

Resources

Trip Extensions

Trip Extensions

Tierra del Fuego & Ushuaia

Duration: 4 days

This exploration of the Southern Andes is a great addition to an Antarctic cruise or a trek in Chile’s Torres del Paine National Park.

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