Experience Antarctica the way the early explorers would have (sort of) by spending a night in a tent surrounded by dramatic snowy peaks and icebergs the size of office buildings. No prior experience required and all ages/fitness levels are welcome. It’s a very reasonably-priced add-on to your Antarctic adventure and available on almost all Antarctic Peninsula trips. Good to know: participation is usually limited to 30 people and space sells out well in advance so be sure to request your spot at the time of booking!
You don’t have to be an experienced kayaker to paddle your way past sculpted icebergs and watch curious seals swimming underneath you playfully. Some basic knowledge of paddling is enough to sign up for this adventure activity and it’s easily one of the passenger favorites, up there with camping. There’s something about the serenity of gliding along in the sparkly calm waters of the Antarctic Peninsula that makes the rest of the world seem to melt away. Kayaking programs carry an add-on cost, and usually have limited space so do let us know of your request when you place your initial deposit. Not all ships offer kayaking so be sure to check with us!
Why not partake in your favourite winter activity down on the Great White Continent and gain some serious street cred in the process? Snowshoeing in Antarctica is a great way to see a larger area around the usual landing sites, and importantly, get the best views! Not every vessel traveling to Antarctica offers snowshoeing so it’s important to ask us when we’re looking at booking something whether it’s an option. The good news is that many companies offer it free of charge.
Mountaineering in Antarctica is available on select ships and usually requires some basic knowledge of roping up, and walking in crampons. You will also need a reasonable degree of physical fitness to take part and be comfortable navigating rugged terrain. If mountaineering is on your Antarctic bucket list, let us know so we can find an expedition that has it on offer and get you signed up. Keep in mind there is an add-on fee for mountaineering activities that varies from ship to ship.
Kayaking in Greenland is a serious adventure expedition. Because it’s more remote than most areas, you have to take three flights just to get to your starting point! But once you’re there it truly is a nature lovers paradise. Landscapes that stretch on forever, icebergs the size of cathedrals, and a sense of remoteness that completely brings you back to what matters. We don’t often offer these expeditions - once a season if possible - so if you are interested please get in touch and we’ll put you on the interest list. Spaces go quick.
A very few number of operators in the polar regions offer activities like scuba diving, snorkeling, paddle boarding, and in the extreme south and north you can even take helicopter tours.
There are some companies that have entire voyages dedicated to adventure activities so be sure to let us know what’s on your “must do” list.
REAL ADVENTURES. REAL PEOPLE
If you are thinking about going – don’t look back!
Antarctica was truly a once in a lifetime experience and I realize as I write this most people will wonder if I just suffer from a lack of creative ability to describe an experience, but honestly it was. Maybe the easiest way to think about it is – think back to any visual experience that was both incredibly satisfying but also thought provoking in the most personal of ways and that is a sense of how I felt on the trip.
It was actually a bit of a miracle that I made it considering people plan this trip at least a year in advance – that is where Heather comes in. Heather was a friend of a good friend of mine and when I told him I would have some time off in the next few weeks, he immediately suggested I reach out to her and that I should really consider Antarctica. I had met this friend of mine in Nepal and somehow he thought Antarctica could be a fit – before that moment, I had never considered it.
Long story short, I got in touch with Heather who was a joy to interact with and incredibly encouraging. She had this wonderful approach of providing information in a thoughtful way, so that in the end, the decision to go was all mine. Behind the scenes, she did an incredible job linking my personality and preferences to a ship that embraced them. I ended up going with G adventures which I would highly recommend to anyone who is looking to be a bit adventurous, is not too caught up in luxury and would appreciate an education to go with the breathtaking scenery that is Antarctica.
If you are thinking about going – don’t look back, and tell Heather I said hello!
We’re a different kind of agency. We work on the ships, with the teams, and are currently active in the polar regions. Our insider advice is truly that - straight from the field - and it's updated in real time if things change.