Antarctica is a beautiful place that nearly 30,000 people visit each year. Of those, only about 20,000 people set foot on the continent, and of those, only a few dare CAMP on it. Camping in Antarctica is no comfortable task, but it is not only for the most experienced camper. If you are offered the chance, people who have done it say don’t even hesitate (don’t walk, RUN).
Camping in Antarctica is a great way to become one with nature, see the stars in the most open and darkest climate possible, get amazing photos, and have the experience of a life time. Find your Antarctica camping experience today!
Most camping expeditions are included as an extra activity that you can choose to do while on an excursion to Antarctica. Here is what to expect from right before you get onto the zodiac to going back to the ship by zodiac.
Because you are not able to pack food onto the continent, your camping trip is a short lived one. This being said, you typically will leave right after having a large dinner on the ship. After dinner, you will most likely receive a safety briefing and quick how-to on the use of the equipment.
After this, you will board onto the zodiac and make your way to the snowy continent. After a relatively short ride, you will touch down and start unloading your gear. Depending on the expedition you chose and the climate for the night, you may or may not have tents. If it is relatively warm, you may be using only bivvy sacks that allow you to look at the stars and take in the scenery at night time.
To set up, you may have to level out the ground beneath you, then you will place your thermal pad down, then the tent or bivvy sack, and then you’re mostly set. After this, you will have some time to explore and take in the surroundings, maybe snag a few photos, and possibly even take in a beautiful sunset.
Soon enough it will be time to take off your boots and crawl into your tent or bivvy sack. If you packed the right warm gear you should be pretty comfortable. Sleep isn’t really the priority while camping in Antarctica however, most don’t sleep at all! Now is the time to take in the beautiful scenery around you and maybe even snap some night photography.
If you did end up getting some sleep, you will be woken up very early in the morning to start packing up camp. Once it’s all packed, a guide will scan over the site and make sure that no contaminants to the environment were left behind. Once the scan is clear, you will load back onto the zodiac and head back to the ship for breakfast.
Not at all! All camping trips have guides that will help you along the way. The only thing you need to worry about is bringing gear that can withstand the elements. The only requirement is that you are above the age of 18. There is no harm in trying as well, most excursions give you the option to leave once you are there if you are extremely uncomfortable or if there is some sort of emergency. The only thing to keep in mind is that you are not allowed to come back once you decide to leave.
The best time to camp in Antarctica is in the summer months for two reasons, the warmer climate and the amount of light that you have during the day. The seasons are different in Antarctica than the rest of the world, and each month provides a different experience.
Most expeditions that offer an overnight camping experience will provide any crucial equipment such as sleeping bags and bivvy sacks, tents, thermal pads, certain snow gear, and waste buckets, but you will most likely be responsible for anything else that you will need such as water bottles, warm clothing, shoes, etc.
Antarctica is a very fragile environment so extra precautions are taken to make sure its ecosystems stay intact. Everything you take onto the continent needs to be thoroughly washed, inspected, and decontaminated before your voyage to make sure you aren’t introducing any other life to the continent that doesn’t exist there already.
You also aren’t supposed to touch or lure any animals you may see, (most likely penguins while camping) while they may approach you, you cannot try to approach them or lure them to approach you.
While there is not much need for one with the lack of people you encounter on the continent, you should know that you are not allowed to bring any sort of firearm onto the continent.
While it may be tempting, you are not allowed to take any sort of souvenirs. Nothing at all, not even a small rock, feather, or even soil, it is banned. However, you can take a photo of the item to keep forever.
When camping, you are not allowed to bring anything such as food, drink (other than water), or even relieve yourself on the continent. It would honestly be easier to just let you know what you can bring, so limit it to your gear, necessary clothing, a waste bucket, your camera gear, and a few water bottles (preferably reusable).
Camping is normally an optional activity and therefore is offered at extra cost if you would like to do it. The average cost of the trip is relatively inexpensive costing about $150-$300 per person. Noting that this includes rental gear, the guide, travel to the continent by zodiac, and any extras that they provide.
Many people who have ventured out and camped on the continent say that the views are breathtaking during the day and at night. If you are a photographer, it is a great time to get some sunset shots, wildlife shots, and night shots of the vast night sky that you can see in Antarctica with no light pollution in sight.
The fact that you are doing something that you have not done before is invigorating. Yes, you may have gone camping, but have you gone camping in temperatures that average out well below freezing level possibly surrounded by penguins underneath the night sky? Probably not.
Contact our team to book your Antarctic vacation cruise!
Antarctica is one of the most beautiful and breathtaking places to visit and definingly a bucket-list worthy vacation destination. There are so many amazing things to do that picking what you should really do could be a challenge, the list below is to give you an idea of amazing things to do that people who have visited frequently suggest, and a couple reasons to give them a try!
Antarctica is a beautiful place that nearly 30,000 people visit each year. Of those, only about 20,000 people set foot on the continent, and of those, only a few dare CAMP on it. Camping in Antarctica is no easy or comfortable task, but the few who have done it say it is an experience like no other.
Camping in Antarctica is a great way to become one with nature, see the stars in the most open and darkest climate possible, get amazing photos, and have the experience of a lifetime. It is typically a short trip being that you cannot bring food or drink other than water. Most excursions drop you off around 8pm and pick you up around 5am.
Deception Bay is an abandoned whaling station littered with old buildings, shells of boats, and old whaling equipment making it a historical area while also being a great place to take a “Polar Plunge” as it has the warmest water on the continent. The reason for this being that it is located at the caldera of an active volcano. It also has natural hot springs that you can enjoy, being in a bathing suit surrounded by glaciers is an experience that many cannot say they have enjoyed.
Deception bay is also the home of the largest chinstrap penguin colony. The chinstrap penguins there are extremely curious and it is an amazing opportunity for a close up penguin photo-op.
Zodiac boats are a fantastic way to travel around Antarctica off the ship and gives you an opportunity to get up close and personal in a way that staying on the ship can’t give you. A Zodiac is a very stable, inflatable boat that can carry 16 passengers at a time. The boat is so stable because it has a low center of gravity that allows it to navigate in many different conditions safely. These boats are perfect for traveling around Antarctic waters because of this and allow you to take spontaneous trips off of the main boat when you see anything interesting in the water. Manned by an experienced driver, you can just sit back and relax while experiencing Antarctica in a very up-close and personal way!
Science AND vodka?! Count us in.
The Vernadsky Research Station is one of 75 active research stations on the continent located on the Galindez Island. When you visit, you can get a tour from one of the scientists that live there. The scientists there will tell you about the important work that they are doing such as studying ecology, glaciology, biology, meteorology, physics, and seismology. This station is even the station that discovered the hole in the ozone layer!
After this, you can visit the Faraday Bar, the southernmost bar in the world! At this bar, they distil their own vodka and ladies can even trade in their bra for three free shots.
Seeing penguins is an almost guaranteed part of any Antarctica visit if you step on the continent and a tourist favorite. Penguins in Antarctica are extremely curious and have no land predators so they are very confident and will quite literally walk right up to you with makes it a surreal experience no zoo could ever give you!
This particular event requires a strong mountaineering background, but if you have that, don’t miss out on this opportunity. Mount Vinson is Antarctica’s tallest mountain at 16,050 feet and one of the world’s seven summits. The climb is a 14-day expedition at minimum and only about 1,200 people have taken on this challenge and I would say none have regretted it.
Antarctica offers an experience to encounter an abundance of wildlife such as penguins, whales, and seals. Penguins in Antarctica have no fear of humans as they have no land predators making them confident and curious to meet people. The best place to encounter whales and seals would be to visit their breeding grounds, most expeditions will have this on their itinerary as well giving you the best chance to see Antarctic wildlife.
Whale watching is a wonder to see in the Antartic. Being one of the major hubs for whale hunting back in the day, it is a beautiful sight to see these magnificent abundant creatures in the wild today. Of the many species you can see, two of the most interesting are the Minke and Humpback. Minke are some of the most common species to see while in Antarctica and are very curious so they are known to commonly approach boats making a once-in a life time experience that much more surreal. Humpbacks are known for quite literally jumping out of the water making for a fantastic show if you have the chance to see it. Most cruises will travel through breeding grounds giving tourists the opportunity to witness these massive and breathtaking creatures of the sea.
Whales can be seen year-round, but February and March are the peak months for whale sightings in Antarctica. The most popular places that you can visit to see the whales include Wilhelmina Bay and the Lemaire Channel. Wilhelmina bay is also referred to as “Whale-mina Bay” because of how frequently people see whales there while the Lemaire Channel is also referred to as the “Kodak Gap” as it is a breathtaking photo-op as well.
Sea kayaking is one of the most intimate ways to explore Antarctica and is recommended by all who have done it. Kayaking in Antarctica allows you to see penguins, whales, and seals more intimately and if you are lucky you might even be visited by a curious whale up close making for an unmatched photo-op.
While there is an abundance of amazing things to do on your visit to Antarctica, if you do even a few of the thigs on this list, you are set to have an unforgettable trip.
Interested in traveling to Antarctica? Reach out to our team! We’d love to help you with any questions you may have, or assist you with booking your cruise.
While cruising, you will have the opportunity to expand your experience through different Antarctica activities. This one-of-a-kind opportunity opens many Antarctica activities to experience while you are exploring. Want to experience camping in Antarctica, or snowshoeing the snowy lands, or take things to the water by kayaking the brisk waters? So many Antarctica activities lie ahead of you! Immerse yourself fully into the Antarctica lands and waters. Personalize your experience by leaving the cruise ship to experience different Antarctica activities that best appeal to you.
First, experience Antarctica activities to the fullest by ditching the comforts of the cruise ship and camping in the Antarctica crisp air for a few nights. This activity is one that you will remember for a lifetime and make stories that are one in a billion. I mean, how many people can say they have CAMPED in ANTARCTICA?! Use this opportunity to embrace the Antarctic’s fresh airs, open lands, and incredible silence. This chance to camp on the snowy land will be a life-changing experience. When else will you have the opportunity to camp surrounded by penguins in pure silence that is only broken by the crackling of icebergs? Your only chance to experience it is while camping as one of your Antarctica activities.
Also, the length of nights you can camp vary depending on which trip you select. Feel free to contact us with any questions.
Imagine the soothing feeling of swaying on the seemingly endless waters. Paddle your way through the crisp and expansive waters by selecting sea kayaking as one of your Antarctica activities. Embrace the icebergs that surround you as you gaze at their immense size. The sight is one of a kind. As you continue paddling, you will see wildlife right below your kayak swimming in the deep waters. The kayaking opportunity is a wonderful option when wanting to explore the waters in a more intimate manner, without drenching yourself in the subzero waters.
Everything will be provided for the kayaking Antarctica activities. Besides that, our team recommends you to have basic kayaking knowledge and skills prior to the kayaking Antarctica activities.
Are you wanting to experience Antarctica activities and combine it with your passion or hobby for photography? Capture your experience through your camera lens by going on our photography excursions! Different than other Antarctica activities, this photography activity enables you to be creative by taking neat pictures while exploring outdoors. These images will last you a life time and help illustrate your once in a lifetime experience to friends and family. If you want to learn from the professionals in photography workshops and outings, then this is the perfect activity for you!
Is your goal to experience breathtaking views while exploring on your Antarctica activities? Take advantage of this cross-country skiing opportunity while visiting the one of a kind, Antarctica. You can experience endless new landscapes while cross-country skiing across the snow and admire the variety of sights.
Cross-country needs advanced reservations and has an additional cost. Additionally, the excursion can last for several hours, so it may be strenuous for some. Overall, I would not let any costs deter you from this breathtaking opportunity to cross-country ski in the serine setting of Antarctica. Furthermore, the cost depends on your ship, so feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
Hiking Antarctica’s glaciers? All in a day’s work! One of the many Antarctica activities available is mountaineering. With this opportunity, you will hike across harsh landscapes and glacial lands to admire some of the most special and beautiful views Antarctica can offer. You and your group will be hiking up snow covered mountains and near immense glacial crevasses.
Mountaineering equipment will be included for this experience, so you do not need any extra preparation there. But, the mountaineering activity is not available for some trips. If you are interested in our mountaineering excursion, ensure ahead of time that you are on a cruise that has it available.
Wanting to explore and see beautiful Antarctic on foot? Out of all Antarctica activities, hiking and snowshoeing is the perfect one for you! These trips can range in difficulty depending on what you are searching for. These Antarctica activities can be an easy stroll or an intense hilly, mountainous hiking experience. This opportunity can vary and be personalized according to your needs; helping you have the most amazing experience. You will be informed ahead of time what to expect, and then have the chance to decide if it is the activity for you.
Say what?! Imagine diving into the deep Antarctic waters swimming making friends with the penguins and seals. This opportunity provides with to explore Antarctica more extensively by swimming below the surface of the waters. During this scuba diving experience, you will have the opportunity to dive under the waters up to 60 feet below the surface. The beauty below the surface is unimaginable: combining the sun rays, brisk waters, amazing wildlife, and underwater ice formations.
Like kayaking, you will have the chance to experience another neat one of the Antarctica activities. Stand-up paddleboarding is a wonderful opportunity to embrace the waters and different landscapes of Antarctica. Have fun with nine others floating on the water enjoying the views with you. This opportunity has limited space, since only 10 can sign up during this experience.
We recommend that you book your adventure activities as soon as possible. Once you decide on your cruise, make sure to let us know which activities you are interested in so that we can reserve your spots for you. These activities are often limited and spaces go quickly.
If you have any questions or want more information, please do not hesitate to contact us! We have a decade of polar travel experience, especially in Antarctica, and would love to pair you with the perfect cruise and adventure activities. Experience the trip of a lifetime when you book your Antarctica cruise with Polar Holidays.