Sailing to Antarctica is a once in a lifetime experience. Beneath its exterior as a hostile, barren landscape, the white continent is full of life, colour and history. Blue glaciers creak as the sun sets, throwing the incredible stacks of lenticular clouds into fiery shades of orange and red. In summer months the rocks are sprinkled with yellow wildflowers, the waters teem with playful seals, whales and penguins and the skies are filled with the rabble of nesting albatross. An Antarctica yacht charter will take you to mountains, fjords and intriguing historic and scientific sites and leave you with incredible memories of the sunrise reflected on still, icy water in the last untouched place on Earth.
Key Cruising Areas: The Chilean coast offers fantastic sailing options and starting points for the Antarctic. The impressive shores and wildlife of the Falkland Islands and South Georgia and the Sandwich Islands make interesting cruising.
Don’t Miss: Visit Deception Island. The abandoned whaling station and WWII base give the island a unique and eerie beauty. Whale bones still sit on the beach, and the water is “warmed” by the volcano so for those who want to brave the ‘Polar Plunge’ this is the spot to do it.
Best Spots for Wining and Dining: There are no bars or restaurants in Antarctica, but your personal onboard chef will create delicious meals for you to enjoy in the warmth and comfort of your private yacht. Looking out to icy skies, watching for the still waters to break with the slow curve of humpback whales will be the ultimate dinner view.
Local Culture: The continent has a number of interesting historic sites from early expeditions and scientific operations. Ross Sea Hut, Borchgrevink’s Hut, Mawson’s Hut and others tell the tales of the explorers that they are named after. At Port Lockroy the original science base building now houses a fascinating museum.
Best Beach: While you won’t be sunbathing on sandy beaches, the Antarctic has some spectacular coastlines and beaches. The dark shingle beach of Curveville Island has incredible views of glaciers and icy mountains and is home to a huge colony of Gentoo penguins.
IYC recommends: After dinner prepared by your onboard chef, wrap your hands around a hot chocolate and dress for the night. Spend the evening chatting and watching for the characteristic curves of whales breaking the water, as you wait for the sun to go down. As it sets the colours across the mountains are incredible, and – with no light pollution – when darkness falls you will see more stars than you can imagine. Stunning views of the Milky Way and the Southern Lights will be worth the wait.