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The Leader in Small Ship and River Cruising Worldwide
Worldwide Discovery at Extraordinary Value Since 1958

2016 Antarctica's White Wilderness

14 Days from only $10,095 including international airfare

ABOARD OUR PRIVATELY OWNED 98-PASSENGER CORINTHIAN DESIGNED FOR AMERICAN TRAVELERS

Buenos Aires • Ushuaia • Tierra del Fuego • 9-night Expedition Cruise in Antarctica

Trip Experience

Watch travelers embark on land excursions aboard Zodiac raft, and encounter Antarctic wildlife.

Trip Itinerary

Get more information about your detailed itinerary, like included and optional tours, and more.

Program Director

Find out why Maria Copello’s background as a naturalist enhances travelers’ experiences in Antarctica.

Program Director

Meet Argentine Program Director David Hilton, who explains how visiting Antarctica helps him feel connected to his past.

Trip Extension: Iguassu Falls

Watch travelers trek through the rainforest and marvel at thundering Iguassu Falls on their optional extension.

Discover the Corinthian

Explore our 98-passenger small ship—and see how it will enrich your international travel experience.

Courtesy Vanessa Stephen and Kirsten Horne
Penguins with Punk Looks

Join two South African filmmakers as they brave the extreme Antarctic climate to observe quirky rockhopper penguins.

Courtesy Vanessa Stephen and Kirsten Horne
Friendliest Seals Ever?

Discover trusting elephant seal pups lounging by the water and a massive King penguin rookery.

Courtesy Vanessa Stephen and Kirsten Horne
Soaked Penguins and Mating Seals

A South African film team encounters molting penguins, families of fur seals, and breathtakingly blue icebergs.

Courtesy Vanessa Stephen and Kirsten Horne
Awesome Antarctica!

The South African team finally reaches the Seventh Continent—Antarctica—and marvel at its stark beauty.

Courtesy Lisa Dupenois and Ian Cross
Bazaar: Buenos Aires

Explore the many sides of Buenos Aires, from its luxurious shops to its bustling, colorful barrios.

Courtesy Kico Santos
A Maquina

Get a glimpse of daily life in Brazil, which you can experience on our post-trip extension.

New Year, New Stories

Take a look at the films that inspire filmmaker David Conover—and preview the stories that await this year.

Climate Change & Travel

Travel with David Conover to see how people—from street protesters to Heads of State—respond to a changing climate and ocean.

Produced for CuriosityStream
Big Picture Earth Trailer

David Conover's newest television series takes us from Stonehenge to Petra, from Iceland to the Oracle at Delphi ... and beyond.

Sharing Travel Moments

Hear why visual storytelling helps to build a conversation about the world from filmmaker David Conover.

Solo Traveler Experience

Hear about one solo traveler’s experiences in Turkey and Greece.

The Grand Circle Cruise Line Experience

Travel aboard Grand Circle Cruise Line’s selection of river and small ships—from the Adriatic Sea to the Danube River.

Travel Protection Plan

Learn about the benefits of Grand Circle's plan—and how you can protect your entire trip investment.

FROM
$10,095
14 DAYS
$722/DAY
including international airfare
13 DAYS FROM $8995 Small Ship Cruise Tour Only
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Itinerary Overview

Journey to the pristine wilds of Antarctica and discover icebergs in a fantastic array of shapes, a pink-hued polar sun that never sets in summer, and a surprising abundance of marine wildlife. Our privately owned, 98-passenger Corinthian will bring you to remote landscapes inhabited by chinstrap, Adélie, and gentoo penguins, along with seals, whales, and seabirds. On this Antarctica cruise, you’ll travel to a realm once known only to explorers like Robert Falcon Scott and Ernest Shackleton and witness the rugged, glacier-clad shores they saw. Antarctica will change you—with its extraordinary plenitude, profound stillness, and your sure knowledge that you are visiting one of the last pure places on Earth.

Day-to-Day Itinerary

  • 5 nights from only $1695

    Bazaar: Buenos Aires
    Produced by Lisa Dupenois and Ian Cross
    This independent film features destinations you can visit on this pre-trip extension.

    Majestic peaks rise above glittering lakes in Bariloche, a nature-lover’s playground. The rugged landscapes of Patagonia and the influence of German culture combine for an Alpine experience in the foothills of the Andes. From a working ranch to a local brewery, we'll experience the vibrant culture that thrives in Argentina’s “Little Switzerland.” And we'll take in the area's natural beauty from lofty viewpoints.

    View Extension Itinerary
Buenos Aires Drake Passage Expand All
  • Your overnight flight to Buenos Aires departs in the evening.

  • View Plaza San Martin while touring Buenos Aires

    When you arrive in the morning, a Grand Circle representative meets you at the Buenos Aires airport and escorts you to your hotel. Relax until mid-afternoon, and then join a short orientation walk in the neighborhood around the hotel if you wish. Then join your Program Director and travel companions for a trip briefing.

    This evening, enjoy a Welcome Dinner hosted by your Program Director at a traditional Argentinean steakhouse.

  • Explore Buenos Aires colorful bohemian district La Boca

    After breakfast, set off on a tour of Buenos Aires, an elegant mixture of Spanish Colonial architecture and several traditional European styles. See the monument-filled Avenida 9 de Julio and the Plaza de Mayo, where many buildings important to Argentinean history stand. Your exploration continues in La Boca, a colorful bohemian district where you'll stroll streets filled with artists selling their work and performers practicing their tango. You'll then visit Recoleta, where you'll see elegant homes, fashionable shops and restaurants, and the famously ornate cemetery where Eva Peron is buried.

    Your afternoon is free. Later, you'll enjoy a discussion on the economy of Argentina. Dinner is on your own this evening, or join an optional tour to take in a tango show with dinner.

  • Explore Ushuaia and view Tierra del Fuego in the distance

    After a pre-dawn wake up, transfer to the airport for your flight to Ushuaia, Argentina. Known as the “City at the End of the World,” Ushuaia is a former penal colony whose name is a Yamana Indian word for “bay that stretches into the sunset.” Today, it’s a small but busy port with a frontier atmosphere. The snowcapped Andes rise on one side of town, while the magnificent Beagle Channel extends from the other.

    You’ll take a tour from the coastal area, overlooking Beagle Channel to Main Street in the city center. Then you’ll visit the Prison Museum, with exhibits on the area's early penal colonies. Tonight, dinner is on your own. Perhaps you'll try one of the many great restaurants specializing in local king crab.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    View Les Eclaireurs Lighthouse in the Beagle Channel

    After breakfast, you'll visit Tierra del Fuego National Park. This is Argentina's only coastal national park, remarkable for its remote location, raging winds, and rugged landscape. The park protects unique flora and fauna including Austral parakeets and the Fuegian fox. After the visit to the park, you'll enjoy a traditional Argentine asado de cordero (lamb barbecue) lunch.

    In the late afternoon, you embark on your Antarctic expedition ship, the Corinthian. Your cruise begins with a thrilling passage through the scenic Beagle Channel as we head east for the storied Drake Passage. Onboard, you'll meet our Expedition Team, an enthusiastic group of explorers, researchers, and naturalists, many of whom return to the Antarctic every year. At this initial session, they'll preview your journey, outlining the course your ship will follow and detailing the stunning sights that lie ahead. Then, as we travel, they'll become your steady companions, teaching you about all aspects of your voyage.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:

    Your first full day at sea takes you across the Drake Passage, named after the 16th-century English navigator Sir Francis Drake and the point where the Atlantic and Pacific oceans meet. This passage is notorious among sea captains and voyagers worldwide for having some of the most turbulent waters on the planet. If sea conditions are characteristically rough, the ship will roll considerably and, depending on the intensity, you’ll need to stay in your cabin until calmer waters are reached. For safety, all portholes will be closed while cruising the Drake Passage. (If you have problems with seasickness, we recommend that you carry—and use—patches and pills for seasickness.)

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    Discover the wildlife of Antarctica

    During much of this part of the trip, depending on the time of year, your ship may be accompanied by an impressive variety of sea birds—such as the magnificent Wandering Albatross. You have a good chance of spotting whales and dolphins; many different species have been encountered in these rich waters over the years. You'll also cross the Antarctic Convergence, a biological barrier where cold polar waters sink beneath the warmer waters of the more temperate zones.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    Explore the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands

    The following itinerary for your Antarctic cruise is for guidance only. Due to constantly changing weather, ice conditions, and wildlife-viewing opportunities, no two Antarctic voyages can ever be exactly the same—which is precisely what makes this trip such a unique experience. Flexibility is the key to creating the best possible trip, as all landings are dependent on the current weather. Your Captain and Expedition Leader continually assess daily weather conditions and wildlife opportunities to take full advantage of the almost continuous daylight and to maximize time ashore. Visits to research stations depend upon receiving final permission. Although it is impossible to guarantee precisely what you will see and when you will see it, because sightings and encounters inevitably vary from trip to trip, we are confident that your voyage to Antarctica will be an unforgettable experience.

    When you catch sight of land for the first time after crossing the Drake Passage, you will have reached the South Shetland Islands. This impressive group of islands, lying to the north and roughly parallel to the Antarctic Peninsula, is a haven for wildlife. You'll visit vast penguin rookeries, land on beaches ruled by Antarctic fur seals, and observe wallowing southern elephant seals. We also hope to visit one of the many research bases in the archipelago and look for either of Antarctica's only two flowering plants, Antarctic hair grass (Deschampsia antarctica) and Antarctic pearlwort (Colobanthus quitensis), which thrive here during the short southern summer. A highlight of your visit to the South Shetlands will be sailing through a narrow passage into the flooded caldera of Deception Island.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    View glaciers and a wide variety of Antarctic wildlife

    You continue cruising the region of the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetlands. As we go, you’ll have plenty of time to experience the special magic of this awe-inspiring wilderness of snow, ice, waterways, and mountains, and you can expect to see a wide variety of Antarctic wildlife. Enormous rookeries of gentoo, chinstrap, and Adélie penguins; blue-eyed shags; kelp gulls; Cape petrels; snowy sheathbills; and Antarctic terns are just some of the many birds found here in abundance. You are also likely to see Weddell, crabeater and leopard seals. Depending on the season, you may also encounter orcas, humpback, and Minke whales at close range.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    Explore the South Shetlands on zodiac expeditions

    You continue cruising the region of the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetlands. The Antarctic Peninsula has a remarkable history and, during the voyage, your Expedition Team will regale you with tales of the most important and dramatic expeditions to this remote corner of the world. As you watch from the ship and make excursions in Zodiacs, you will certainly feel the same sense of excitement as many of those early explorers.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    View Antarctica's stunning landscape and wildlife during zodiac tours

    You continue cruising the region of the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetlands. If they are not choked with pack ice and icebergs, we plan to navigate some of the most beautiful waterways in the world: the Neumayer and Lemaire channels, narrow passages between towering rock faces and spectacular glaciers. You may also sail south of the Lemaire Channel to Petermann Island, where Adélie and gentoo penguins, skuas, and blue-eyed shags nest close to the landing site.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:

    Begin your journey back to Ushuaia, crossing the Drake Passage. Known as the “Drake Lake”or the “Drake Shake” (depending on the severity of conditions), this famous passage is a travel milestone. Depending on the degree to which the seas are rolling, you may need to stay in your cabin during the crossing.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    View southern right whales off the coast of Argentina

    As you cruise the Drake Passage, you can watch for birds and whales, enjoy some final lectures by your Expedition Team, and relax and reflect upon your discoveries.

    • Meals included:

    You disembark the ship after breakfast to board a return flight for Buenos Aires. If you are ending your trip at this point, you will depart for the U.S. in the late evening. If you are continuing on the optional post-trip extension, you transfer to your Buenos Aires hotel for the night.

  • POST-TRIP EXTENSION:
    Iguassu Falls, Argentina & Brazil

    3 nights from only $995

    It’s easy to add thundering Iguassu Falls—twice as wide and 65 feet higher than Niagara Falls—to your explorations of the southern hemisphere’s natural wonders. On this extension, we’ll visit both the Argentinean and Brazilian sides of this astonishing array of 275 separate cascades and waterfalls. Enjoy spending time in this lush tropical environment as a vivid contrast to your Antarctic adventure.

    View Extension Itinerary
  • 5 nights from only $1695

    Bazaar: Buenos Aires
    Produced by Lisa Dupenois and Ian Cross
    This independent film features destinations you can visit on this pre-trip extension.

    Majestic peaks rise above glittering lakes in Bariloche, a nature-lover’s playground. The rugged landscapes of Patagonia and the influence of German culture combine for an Alpine experience in the foothills of the Andes. From a working ranch to a local brewery, we'll experience the vibrant culture that thrives in Argentina’s “Little Switzerland.” And we'll take in the area's natural beauty from lofty viewpoints.

    View Extension Itinerary
Buenos Aires Drake Passage Expand All
  • Your overnight flight to Buenos Aires departs in the evening.

  • View Plaza San Martin while touring Buenos Aires

    When you arrive in the morning, a Grand Circle representative meets you at the Buenos Aires airport and escorts you to your hotel. Relax until mid-afternoon, and then join a short orientation walk in the neighborhood around the hotel if you wish. Then join your Program Director and travel companions for a trip briefing.

    This evening, enjoy a Welcome Dinner hosted by your Program Director at a traditional Argentinean steakhouse.

  • Explore Buenos Aires colorful bohemian district La Boca

    After breakfast, set off on a tour of Buenos Aires, an elegant mixture of Spanish Colonial architecture and several traditional European styles. See the monument-filled Avenida 9 de Julio and the Plaza de Mayo, where many buildings important to Argentinean history stand. Your exploration continues in La Boca, a colorful bohemian district where you'll stroll streets filled with artists selling their work and performers practicing their tango. You'll then visit Recoleta, where you'll see elegant homes, fashionable shops and restaurants, and the famously ornate cemetery where Eva Peron is buried.

    Your afternoon is free. Later, you'll enjoy a discussion on the economy of Argentina. Dinner is on your own this evening, or join an optional tour to take in a tango show with dinner.

  • Explore Ushuaia and view Tierra del Fuego in the distance

    After breakfast, spend the morning touring the huge delta where the Parana River empties into the Rio de la Plata on its way to the Atlantic. This exotic landscape is just half an hour from Buenos Aires, but seems a million miles away. Traditional houses on pilotes (stilts) are surrounded by lush subtropical vegetation and built on islands that are separated by a twisting maze of waterways.

    After an included lunch, you’ll return to Buenos Aires, where you have the afternoon and evening free to make your own discoveries. Dinner is on your own tonight.

  • Explore Ushuaia and view Tierra del Fuego in the distance

    After a pre-dawn wake up, transfer to the airport for your flight to Ushuaia, Argentina. Known as the “City at the End of the World,” Ushuaia is a former penal colony whose name is a Yamana Indian word for “bay that stretches into the sunset.” Today, it’s a small but busy port with a frontier atmosphere. The snowcapped Andes rise on one side of town, while the magnificent Beagle Channel extends from the other.

    You’ll take a tour from the coastal area, overlooking Beagle Channel to Main Street in the city center. Then you’ll visit the Prison Museum, with exhibits on the area's early penal colonies. Tonight, dinner is on your own. Perhaps you'll try one of the many great restaurants specializing in local king crab.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    View Les Eclaireurs Lighthouse in the Beagle Channel

    After breakfast, you'll visit Tierra del Fuego National Park. This is Argentina's only coastal national park, remarkable for its remote location, raging winds, and rugged landscape. The park protects unique flora and fauna including Austral parakeets and the Fuegian fox. After the visit to the park, you'll enjoy a traditional Argentine asado de cordero (lamb barbecue) lunch.

    In the late afternoon, you embark on your Antarctic expedition ship, the Corinthian. Your cruise begins with a thrilling passage through the scenic Beagle Channel as we head east for the storied Drake Passage. Onboard, you'll meet our Expedition Team, an enthusiastic group of explorers, researchers, and naturalists, many of whom return to the Antarctic every year. At this initial session, they'll preview your journey, outlining the course your ship will follow and detailing the stunning sights that lie ahead. Then, as we travel, they'll become your steady companions, teaching you about all aspects of your voyage.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:

    Your first full day at sea takes you across the Drake Passage, named after the 16th-century English navigator Sir Francis Drake and the point where the Atlantic and Pacific oceans meet. This passage is notorious among sea captains and voyagers worldwide for having some of the most turbulent waters on the planet. If sea conditions are characteristically rough, the ship will roll considerably and, depending on the intensity, you’ll need to stay in your cabin until calmer waters are reached. For safety, all portholes will be closed while cruising the Drake Passage. (If you have problems with seasickness, we recommend that you carry—and use—patches and pills for seasickness.)

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    Discover the wildlife of Antarctica

    During much of this part of the trip, depending on the time of year, your ship may be accompanied by an impressive variety of sea birds—such as the magnificent Wandering Albatross. You have a good chance of spotting whales and dolphins; many different species have been encountered in these rich waters over the years. You'll also cross the Antarctic Convergence, a biological barrier where cold polar waters sink beneath the warmer waters of the more temperate zones.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    Explore the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands

    The following itinerary for your Antarctic cruise is for guidance only. Due to constantly changing weather, ice conditions, and wildlife-viewing opportunities, no two Antarctic voyages can ever be exactly the same—which is precisely what makes this trip such a unique experience. Flexibility is the key to creating the best possible trip, as all landings are dependent on the current weather. Your Captain and Expedition Leader continually assess daily weather conditions and wildlife opportunities to take full advantage of the almost continuous daylight and to maximize time ashore. Visits to research stations depend upon receiving final permission. Although it is impossible to guarantee precisely what you will see and when you will see it, because sightings and encounters inevitably vary from trip to trip, we are confident that your voyage to Antarctica will be an unforgettable experience.

    When you catch sight of land for the first time after crossing the Drake Passage, you will have reached the South Shetland Islands. This impressive group of islands, lying to the north and roughly parallel to the Antarctic Peninsula, is a haven for wildlife. You'll visit vast penguin rookeries, land on beaches ruled by Antarctic fur seals, and observe wallowing southern elephant seals. We also hope to visit one of the many research bases in the archipelago and look for either of Antarctica's only two flowering plants, Antarctic hair grass (Deschampsia antarctica) and Antarctic pearlwort (Colobanthus quitensis), which thrive here during the short southern summer. A highlight of your visit to the South Shetlands will be sailing through a narrow passage into the flooded caldera of Deception Island.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    View glaciers and a wide variety of Antarctic wildlife

    You continue cruising the region of the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetlands. As we go, you'll have plenty of time to experience the special magic of this awe-inspiring wilderness of snow, ice, waterways, and mountains, and you can expect to see a wide variety of Antarctic wildlife. Enormous rookeries of gentoo, chinstrap, and Adélie penguins; blue-eyed shags; kelp gulls; Cape petrels; snowy sheathbills; and Antarctic terns are just some of the many birds found here in abundance. You are also likely to see Weddell, crabeater and leopard seals. Depending on the season, you may also encounter orcas, humpback, and Minke whales at close range.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    Explore the South Shetlands on zodiac expeditions

    You continue cruising the region of the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetlands. The Antarctic Peninsula has a remarkable history and, during the voyage, your Expedition Team will regale you with tales of the most important and dramatic expeditions to this remote corner of the world. As you watch from the ship and make excursions in Zodiacs, you will certainly feel the same sense of excitement as many of those early explorers.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    View Antarctica's stunning landscape and wildlife during zodiac tours

    You continue cruising the region of the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetlands. If they are not choked with pack ice and icebergs, we plan to navigate some of the most beautiful waterways in the world: the Neumayer and Lemaire channels, narrow passages between towering rock faces and spectacular glaciers. You may also sail south of the Lemaire Channel to Petermann Island, where Adélie and gentoo penguins, skuas, and blue-eyed shags nest close to the landing site.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:

    Begin your journey back to Ushuaia, crossing the Drake Passage. Known as the “Drake Lake”or the “Drake Shake” (depending on the severity of conditions), this famous passage is a travel milestone. Depending on the degree to which the seas are rolling, you may need to stay in your cabin during the crossing.

    • Meals included:
    • Accommodations:
    View southern right whales off the coast of Argentina

    As you cruise the Drake Passage, you can watch for birds and whales, enjoy some final lectures by your Expedition Team, and relax and reflect upon your discoveries.

    • Meals included:

    You disembark the ship after breakfast to board a return flight for Buenos Aires. If you are ending your trip at this point, you will depart for the U.S. in the late evening. If you are continuing on the optional post-trip extension, you transfer to your Buenos Aires hotel for the night.

  • POST-TRIP EXTENSION:
    Iguassu Falls, Argentina & Brazil

    3 nights from only $995

    It’s easy to add thundering Iguassu Falls—twice as wide and 65 feet higher than Niagara Falls—to your explorations of the southern hemisphere’s natural wonders. On this extension, we’ll visit both the Argentinean and Brazilian sides of this astonishing array of 275 separate cascades and waterfalls. Enjoy spending time in this lush tropical environment as a vivid contrast to your Antarctic adventure.

    View Extension Itinerary

Click below to read our Travel Planning Guide on Antarctica's White Wilderness

Read Travel Planning Guide