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Antarctic Explorer: Discovering the 7th Continent

10, 11, or 12 days

Antarctica has been inspiring explorers for centuries. And this expedition offers you the chance to discover why, with an unforgettable journey through the spectacular wilderness of the South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula. You’ll encounter a world where nature creates the rules, her unpredictable temperament making each trip unique, exciting and personal.

Imagine cruising in a Zodiac through crackling sea ice like shattered glass, witnessing penguins building their nests, or navigating through a maze of icebergs, each one uniquely shaped by its journey through the sea. You’ll enjoy iconic Antarctic highlights, exhilarating adventures and be rewarded with memories to last a lifetime.

Day-by-Day Expedition in Brief

  • Discover why this trip is perfect for first-time visitors to Antarctica
  • Explore highlights of the Antarctic Peninsula
  • Travel safely and comfortably aboard any of Quark Expeditions’ three small, ice-strengthened expedition vessels
  • Learn about the environment and wildlife from on-board lecturers and specialists
  • Experience abundant wildlife: penguins, seals, whales and more!
  • On select itineraries, arrive in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the tango capital of the world, and let us take care of the rest of your journey

Day 1 — Ushuaia, Argentina

With a population of more than 63,000 people, Ushuaia is the southernmost city in the world.

Day 2 — Embarkation Day

Embarkation will occur in the late afternoon, after which your vessel will sail down the historic Beagle Channel.

Days 3 and 4 — Crossing the Drake Passage

Prepare yourself for potentially rough water, but hope for a smooth sailing as the Drake is unpredictable and always changing.

Days 5 to 7 — South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula

When the Antarctic Convergence is left in our wake, you will truly begin your Antarctic adventure. It is perhaps the first sight of land itself that is embraced as the true beginning of any Antarctic expedition.

Days 8 and 9 — Crossing the Drake Passage

The journey back across the Drake Passage provides final opportunities to enjoy the crisp Antarctic air.

Day 10 — Disembarkation in Ushuaia

You will arrive in Ushuaia in the morning, which allows you to continue your adventure on land or catch your flights home.
View full 10-day itinerary »

Adventure Options Add an Extra Rush of Adrenaline to Your Expedition

Every Quark Antarctic voyage includes great daily outdoor activities including Zodiac cruises, hiking and some also offer snowshoeing. The more discerning adrenaline junkie can also choose from a range of optional adventure activities, with varying exertion levels, to experience the 7th continent in a more personal way. Contact a Quark Polar Travel Adviser to learn more about adventure options, including physical requirements.

$250 per person

Not very many people have the opportunity to say they’ve camped on the 7th Continent. This is one of the best ways to experience Antarctica in a more intimate manner, and take your expedition to the next level.

Camping is available on most Antarctic voyages and has a limited number of spots. All equipment, guides and instructions are provided by Quark. Please contact your Quark Polar Travel Adviser for more information.

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Pre- and Post-Trip Options Extend Your Stay

Getting to the Antarctic can be just as much fun as being there. Quark offers multiple travel packages that enable you to see more of the world before and after your Antarctic adventure.

Introduction to Buenos Aires Package

Savour a spectacular bottle of Malbec with fine Argentine steak, explore street art in colourful San Telmo or experience the world-class shopping on Avenida Florida. Discover the elegant beauty of Buenos Aires, a city that melds European charm with the frenzied pace of Latin life. This package includes a guided tour of the city’s impressive highlights, from the quaint, cobbled plazas to its most sophisticated neighbourhoods. In the evening, you will enjoy a spectacular dinner and tango show with a live orchestra. Please contact a Quark Polar Travel Adviser for pricing.

Expedition Facts

Bridge Visits

Say Hello to the Captain and Crew

During your voyage you may be invited to visit the Bridge, where you can observe how the Captain and officers sail and navigate the ship. A map of your expedition path will be available, so you can see exactly where you have been.

Carbon Offsetting Program

Adding to its long list of industry “firsts”, Quark Expeditions is proud to say that Ocean Diamond will be the first ship to deliver CarbonNeutral® voyages under a new certification established in accordance with The CarbonNeutral Protocol, the global standard for carbon neutral certification. The offsets will be provided by The CarbonNeutral Company, a world leading provider of carbon reduction solutions.

Onboard Lectures

Presentations by Quark’s Expedition Team are included as part of your voyage. Through formal illustrated presentations, as well as informal briefings, the Quark Expeditions Team will cover a range of topics including ornithology, marine biology, glaciology, geography, geology, history and the environment.