23–Day Epic Antarctica: Crossing the Circle via Malvinas (Falklands) and South Georgia

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Buenos Aires - Ushuaia - Malvinas - Georgia Islands - Antarctica
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23 Days


Full Day

Group Size





Antarctica is a remarkable destination that can profoundly change those lucky enough to visit it alongside the most seasoned expedition leaders in the business. Quark Expeditions has been leading transformative journeys to the poles for over thirty years, discovering that a tailored adventure greatly enhances the enjoyment. We created this guide to assist you in organizing your ideal trip to the 7th continent. Our Epic Antarctica voyage lives up to its name by covering all the key highlights of Antarctica. The journey starts in the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas), continues to South Georgia, and culminates in the Antarctic Peninsula, totaling an exhilarating 23-day expedition. In the Falklands, you’ll find landscapes reminiscent of sandy Cape Cod and the English moors, inhabited by albatrosses, dolphins, and five types of penguins. Next, you’ll visit South Georgia, teeming with 450,000 breeding pairs of king penguins, 50 million seabirds, and 5 million seals. Then, explore the breathtaking Antarctic Peninsula and cross the Antarctic Circle—a significant achievement for any global traveler. Antarctica has motivated explorers for generations, and now it’s your chance. Our state-of-the-art Ultramarine is engineered to push the limits of polar exploration, offering unforgettable aerial tours and the most extensive array of onshore activities available. We look forward to guiding you on this memorable expedition. Please contact our Polar Travel Advisers anytime for information or assistance.


  • Arrive in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and enjoy free time in the tango capital of the world.
  • Explore the quaint British town of Stanley in the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas).
  • See incredible wildlife—more than 30 species of breeding birds, including seven species of penguin.
  • Follow in the wake of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s perilous voyage to South Georgia and visit his gravesite.
  • Cross the Antarctic Circle and celebrate with a toast.
  • Enjoy flightseeing on one of Ultramarine’s two twin-engine helicopters.


  • An official Quark Expeditions parka to keep.
  • Leadership throughout your voyage by our experienced Expedition Team, including shore landings and other activities.
  • All Zodiac transfers and cruising as per the daily program.
  • All shore landings as per the daily program.
  • Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping.
  • All meals, snacks, soft drinks, and juices on board throughout your voyage. Please inform us of any dietary requirements as far in advance as possible. Unfortunately, the ships’ galleys cannot prepare kosher meals.
  • Select beer and wine during dinner; and coffee, tea, and cocoa available around the clock.
  • Formal and informal presentations by our Expedition Team and guest speakers as scheduled.
  • A photographic journal documenting your expedition.
  • A pair of waterproof expedition boots on loan for landings and Zodiac cruising excursions.
  • Hair dryer and bathrobes in every cabin.
  • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program.
  • All luggage handling aboard the ship.
  • Emergency Evacuation insurance for all passengers to a maximum benefit of USD $500,000 per person.
  • One 10- to 15-minute helicopter flightseeing excursion (weather and logistics permitting).
  • Mandatory Transfer Package*
  • International airfare
  • Passport and applicable visa expenses
  • Government arrival and departure taxes not mentioned
  • Meals unless otherwise specified
  • Baggage, cancellation, interruption, and medical travel insurance—strongly recommended
  • Excess-baggage fees on international and domestic flights
  • Mandatory waterproof pants for Zodiac landing and cruising excursions, or any other gear not mentioned
  • Laundry, bar, spa services, and other personal charges, unless specified
  • Phone and Internet charges (connectivity may vary by location)
  • Voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for expedition staff and shipboard crew
  • Additional overnight accommodation
  • Arrival and departure transfers, except where explicitly stated
  • Adventure Options not listed in Included Activities


<span>Day 1</span>Arrive in Buenos Aires, Argentina

When you arrive in this cosmopolitan city, celebrated for its architectural beauty and deep European roots, you will make your own way to the hotel where your group is staying (a pre-expedition hotel night is part of the required transfer package).

<span>Day 2</span>Fly to Ushuaia and Embark

After enjoying an early breakfast at the hotel, your group will be transported to the airport to catch a private charter flight to Ushuaia, Argentina. Upon landing, you will be shuttled from the airport to a central location in downtown Ushuaia, giving you some free time to discover the charms of this picturesque port town before heading to the pier. Following a late afternoon boarding, you will set sail along the historic Beagle Channel, which cuts through the Tierra del Fuego archipelago at the southernmost tip of South America. As you embark, feel the excitement build; the next time you sight land, you will be in the untouched wilderness of Antarctica!

<span>Day 3</span>At Sea

During your days at sea, you'll be engaged with presentations by your Expedition Team covering topics such as photography, wildlife, glaciology, and history. Between these sessions, you can spend time on deck spotting wildlife or enjoy conversations with your fellow travelers over a drink at the bar.

<span>Days 4 and 5</span>Malvinas Islands (Falklands)

As soon as you arrive in the Falklands (Malvinas), you’ll find ample opportunities to put your camera to use, capturing the plentiful wildlife and the rugged terrain of this sub-Antarctic region. The archipelago features two main islands, East Falkland and West Falkland, which you'll explore through daily Zodiac excursions and landings. Stanley, often referred to as Port Stanley, is a popular landing spot known for its distinct British outpost atmosphere, complete with a quirky charm. Here, you can wander at your leisure, enjoy a pint at a local pub, or visit the various churches and museums. The Falklands are a haven for birdlife, hosting species like Magellanic, gentoo, and southern rockhopper penguins. You might even be fortunate enough to spot king penguins. There’s a high likelihood of encountering black-browed albatross and two bird species unique to the islands—the flightless Falkland steamer duck and perhaps even the rare Cobb’s wren. Your team of polar experts will deepen your appreciation and knowledge of the local flora and fauna, enhancing your experience in the Falklands.

<span>Days 6 and 7</span>At Sea

As you navigate southeast towards South Georgia, you'll officially enter Antarctic waters upon crossing the Antarctic Convergence. This invisible biological boundary that encircles the continent marks the place where the cold Antarctic waters meet the warmer waters from the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. This confluence creates a nutrient-rich environment that supports a thriving population of krill, which in turn attracts whales, seals, and an array of birdlife to this region. Your Expedition Team will inform you when you pass this significant yet unseen boundary and assist you in spotting the diverse seabirds and marine life that frequent this fertile area.

<span>Days 8 to 11</span>South Georgia

This remote, mountainous island was a pivotal stopover for many historic Antarctic expeditions and was once a hub for whale and seal hunting. Today, wildlife populations on the island are rebounding, yet remnants of old whaling stations and other abandoned structures still dot the landscape. One of the most significant and poignant sites on South Georgia is the burial place of the famed explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton. You can visit his grave at the settlement of Grytviken, which also hosts an old whaling station, a museum, a gift shop, a church, and a small research station. While South Georgia's historical significance draws many visitors, it's the extraordinary abundance of wildlife that is likely to captivate you and your fellow travelers. Often referred to as the "Galapagos of the Poles," South Georgia offers numerous opportunities to observe vast wildlife populations. On any given day, you might encounter rookeries with hundreds of thousands of king penguins or beaches thronged by hundreds of fur or elephant seals. The island's grasses, mountains, and beaches all play crucial roles in the breeding and survival of various species. Your Expedition Leaders will guide you in understanding and appreciating the complex and delicate ecological relationships that sustain this unique environment.

<span>Days 12 and 13</span>At Sea

Bid farewell to the king penguins, for your next journey takes you to Antarctica! Your upcoming days at sea will be rich with engaging presentations, educational workshops, and lively social activities, all organized by your Expedition Team.

<span>Days 14 to 16</span>South Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula

Describing the experience of reaching the Antarctic Continent is challenging, but most often, the initial response is a profound sense of awe and reverence. In Antarctica, a land of stark contrasts, you might find yourself enveloped in utter silence and isolation one moment and laughing at the playful antics of a curious penguin the next. Your days will be enriched with Zodiac cruises, visits to historical sites, and intimate encounters with seals and penguins. You may even spot a leopard seal, known as the fearless predator of penguins, or find yourself locking eyes with an Antarctic minke whale during a Zodiac expedition. Each day offers a new array of wildlife, ensuring your camera and your sense of wonder are continuously engaged. For those seeking even more adventure, consider the optional kayaking excursion, which must be reserved in advance. Or, if you're feeling especially bold, participate in the Polar Plunge—a truly unforgettable experience that will leave you exhilarated.

<span>Days 17 and 18</span>Antractic Circle

Crossing the Antarctic Circle is a momentous experience and a remarkable achievement, as it is a journey made by only a few travelers. If conditions permit crossing this celebrated latitude at 66°33' South, we’ll celebrate the pioneering explorers who first braved this frontier. You can raise a glass in honor of these adventurers and take pride in knowing you’ve reached a region visited by very few. This is the unspoiled Antarctic, where the midnight sun illuminates the landscape, Weddell seals lounge on ice floes, and you’re likely to encounter sea ice—the vital backbone of the Antarctic marine ecosystem.

<span>Days 19 and 20</span>Northbound along the Peninsula

If your appetite for Antarctic wildlife and icebergs isn't yet sated, rest assured, the return journey through the Drake Passage is likely to fulfill your desires. As you journey north along the western Antarctic Peninsula, you'll continue engaging in Zodiac excursions, exploring more of the stunning icy landscapes and abundant wildlife. Your Expedition Team remains vigilant, constantly on the lookout for seabirds, seals, and whales that might have eluded you on your southward trek, ensuring every opportunity for wildlife encounters is seized.

<span>Days 21 and 22</span>Crossing the Drake Passage

After over three weeks filled with exceptional wildlife encounters and breathtaking landscapes, your voyage home commences. The thrilling and unpredictable Drake Passage presents an adventure all its own. While under the expert care of our onboard staff, you'll have ample opportunity to look out over the ocean, capture photos of seabirds gliding around the ship, and contemplate the extraordinary experiences of your Antarctic journey.

<span>Day 23</span>Disembark in Ushuaia and Fly to Buenos Aires

You will arrive in Ushuaia in the morning and disembark after enjoying breakfast. Included in the mandatory transfer package is a brief but enriching glimpse of Patagonia with a tour of Tierra del Fuego National Park. Following the tour, you will be transferred to the airport to board the return group charter flight to Buenos Aires.



Frequently asked questions

Upon arriving in Buenos Aires, you will proceed to the designated group hotel. A room for luggage weighing and tagging will be available from 12 pm to 8 pm. During this time, a representative from Quark Expeditions will be on hand to answer any questions you might have and provide details about the next day's flight and ship embarkation. After an early breakfast the following morning, your group will head to the airport to board a private charter flight to Ushuaia, Argentina, which is known as the southernmost city in the world. **Ushuaia and Embarkation** In Ushuaia, your mandatory transfer package includes some time to freely explore the charming port town. Additionally, depending on the flight schedule, you may have the opportunity to tour Tierra del Fuego National Park. This tour could occur either on the day of embarkation or disembarkation, depending on timing. **Embarkation** The group will be transferred to the ship for embarkation, scheduled for around 4 pm.

**Disembarkation in Ushuaia** The ship is scheduled to dock at the pier in Ushuaia between 7 am and 8 am. After enjoying a final breakfast aboard, you will say goodbye to your Expedition Team and complete your disembarkation, which typically takes about one hour. Following this, the mandatory Buenos Aires hotel and transfer package includes a brief tour of Tierra del Fuego National Park before you are transferred to the airport for the return charter flight to Buenos Aires. **Departing from Buenos Aires** Upon your arrival in Buenos Aires, if you are continuing your journey home immediately, you will likely be able to connect directly with your outbound flight. Our charter flight will land at Ministro Pistarini International Airport (also known as Ezeiza International Airport, EZE) at approximately 5 pm. To ensure a smooth connection, please allow at least three hours between the charter's arrival and your international flight's departure. We advise against booking any international departures from EZE before 9 pm. If your travel plans involve continuing your journey within South America, make sure to confirm your connection times before booking. Should you need to transfer from Ezeiza International Airport to Jorge Newbery Airport (also known as Aeroparque, AEP) for a domestic flight, consider that this usually requires about an hour's drive under normal traffic conditions. For transfers, you can utilize the efficient airport shuttle service, Manuel Tienda León, or opt for a remis (a pre-booked taxi available within the airport). Alternatively, your Polar Travel Adviser can arrange a private transfer for you. Due to possible traffic delays, we recommend allowing at least five hours between flights departing from different airports in Buenos Aires to accommodate transit, check-in, and security procedures. For the most secure travel arrangements, booking an additional hotel night in Buenos Aires between flights is highly recommended. This allows for any unforeseen delays and a stress-free continuation of your journey.

Your included accommodation starts from Day 1 of your itinerary, and the specific hotel details will be provided in your final voyage confirmation. If you plan to arrive before Day 1 of your expedition or intend to stay beyond the disembarkation day and need assistance arranging a pre- or post-stay, please contact your preferred travel agent or Quark Expeditions directly for hotel options. Since accommodation space can be limited, it's advisable to request any additional nights as early as possible to ensure availability.

**Buenos Aires Airport Transfers** Please note that arrival and departure transfers in Buenos Aires are not included in your package. However, a Polar Travel Adviser can arrange these transfers for you upon request. To facilitate this, please ensure that you provide your flight details to Quark Expeditions at least 30 days before your travel date. This advance notice will help in organizing smooth and timely transfers for your trip.

**Ultramarine: A New Era in Polar Exploration** Introducing Ultramarine, the newest addition to our fleet, crafted to redefine polar exploration and bring guests into rarely visited sectors of the Polar Regions. This state-of-the-art vessel is not only a path to remote adventure but a luxury platform from which to experience the polar wilderness. Ultramarine is outfitted with two twin-engine helicopters and 20 quick-launching Zodiacs, enabling the most extensive range of off-ship adventure activities available in the industry. For on-board experiences, guests can indulge in culinary delights at two restaurants—Balena and Bistro 487—relax in the Tundra Spa, or unwind in a sauna that features stunning floor-to-ceiling windows. The spacious suites and expansive wildlife-viewing areas ensure every moment with nature is intimate and breathtaking. Additionally, Ultramarine incorporates advanced sustainability systems that surpass all industry standards, reaffirming our commitment to preserving the pristine environments we explore. Designed for the ultimate polar expedition experience, Ultramarine invites you to venture beyond the familiar and immerse yourself in the untouched splendor of the polar wilds.

Tour's Location

Buenos Aires - Ushuaia - Malvinas - Georgia Islands - Antarctica


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