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Shackleton’s Discovery: Antarctica, South Georgia & The Falklands

27-day expedition cruise & stay from £17,995 pp incl. flights

Save 20% off cruise plus USD $300pp on board credit


Short description

Discover the wild wonders of the Antarctic in depth with Swan Hellenic

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Book with confidence. Find out more about our Flexibility Promise, available on holidays booked by 31st October 2021.


  • Watch whales play in the swells of the Valdes Peninsula
  • Discover the unique history and culture of the Falkland Islands
  • Follow in the footsteps of Shackleton on remote South Georgia
  • Watch vast colonies of penguins as you make land on the Antarctic Peninsula
  • Discover the colourful barrios of Buenos Aires and end with an estancia stay

In Brief

  • 1 Night Buenos Aires
  • 3 Nights At sea
  • 1 Night Puerto Madryn
  • 1 Night Saunders Island
  • 1 Night Port Stanley
  • 3 Nights South Georgia
  • 2 Nights At sea
  • 1 Night Elephant Island
  • 2 Nights Antarctic Peninsula
  • 1 Night South Shetland Islands
  • 2 Nights At sea
  • 2 Nights Estancia La Bamba de Areco


Recommended for:
Expedition cruise | Ocean cruise

This epic voyage is a spectacular showcase for the drama and beauty of Antarctica and the remote islands of the southern Atlantic. Sail out in style from Buenos Aires aboard your luxury expedition ship to spot whales of the Valdes Peninsula, discover the unique history and culture of the Falklands and follow in the bow wake of Shackleton himself on remote South Georgia. Then, the wonders of the Antarctic Peninsula await as you explore rugged coasts home to thousands-strong colonies of penguins and cruise between icebergs and glaciers on board a fleet of Zodiacs. It’s then on to the wonderfully wild South Shetland Islands before you cross the Drake Passage to Ushuaia and a few days of pampered relaxation at a luxury estancia on the Argentine pampas.  

Day by day itinerary

Day 1
Depart UK

Start your holiday in style with included UK airport lounge access before your overnight flight to Buenos Aires.

Day 2
Buenos Aires

Arrive in Argentina’s capital, where you’ll be met and transferred to your city-centre hotel. Check in and relax, or head out to explore, taking in the city’s vibrant barrios, from San Telmo to La Boca. A tango show is always a highlight in this wonderfully colourful city, as is a steak dinner, best enjoyed at one of the ubiquitous parillas. Our tip? Go for the bife de chorizo, washed down with a glass or two of Mendoza red.

Stay: Buenos Aires accommodation

Day 3
Depart Buenos Aires

Spend another day exploring Buenos Aires, perhaps visiting Recoleta and its famous cemetery where Eva ‘Evita’ Peron is buried. Or, simply wander city’s streets and parks, pausing for a coffee and to watch a street tango show. In the afternoon, transfer to the docks at Puerto Madero and board your luxury ship to begin your Antarctic adventure.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B D

Days 4-5
At sea

With two days at sea, take the time to sit back, relax and let the world go by. Head to one of the ship’s observation decks for stunning ocean views, take the opportunity to mingle fellow guests, or look ahead to your adventure with a visit to the library, stocked full of reference books. There’s also the chance to enjoy an expert lecture, or perhaps perfect your photography skills at the Expedition Lab.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Day 6
Puerto Madryn

You’ll spend today in and around the coastal city of Puerto Madryn, best-known for its sandy beaches and lighthouse, and for watching southern right whales play in the Atlantic swells off the beach at Playa El Doradillo. The city itself is a good place to find out more about Patagonia’s natural world, with a visit to the Ecocentro museum highly recommended. For adventures further afield, the Valdes Peninsula offers the chance to watch white bull elephant seals haul out next to colonies of penguins who are ever watchful for hunting orcas.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Days 7-8
At sea

Relax into two more days at sea as you enjoy more onboard lectures from your expert expedition team, indulge with a trip to the spa or simply take in the views with a stroll out on deck.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Day 9
West Point Island & Saunders Island

Settled by British explorers in 1765, this pair of weather-beaten islands in the west of the Falklands are home to a wealth of wildlife, from black-bowed albatross to Commerson’s dolphins. There’s a scattering of people, and sheep, but the star attractions are surely the fur seals, burrowing rockhopper penguins, magellanic penguins and imperial cormorants who roost in the jagged coastal cliffs.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Day 10
Port Stanley

Arrive in the Falkland Island’s small but character-packed capital, where red post boxes tell a story of long-term British rule and the excellent Dockyard Museum charts the islands’ seafaring heritage. For a walk on the wild side, head down to Gypsy Cove to watch sea lions and dolphins playing in the surf.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Days 11-12
At sea

Relax into two days at sea as you enjoy more onboard lectures from your expert expedition team, indulge with a trip to the spa or simply take in the views with a stroll out on deck.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Days 13-15
South Georgia

Find out why South Georgia is often referred to as the “Galapagos of the Poles”, as you travel by Zodiac to one of a number of landing sites where you’ll have the chance to get up close to some of the half a million king penguins or three million breeding pairs of macaroni penguins that make up the largest population in the world. If you’re lucky, you’ll also see harrumphing elephant seals - from a distance, of course. You’ll also have an opportunity to visit Grytviken, the historic whaling station where legendary British explorer Ernest Shackleton is buried.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Days 16-17
At sea

Spend two more relaxing days at sea as you enjoy onboard lectures from your expert expedition team, indulge with a trip to the spa or simply take in the views with a stroll out on deck.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Day 18
Elephant Island

Named for the seals that call this place home, Elephant Island is a harsh, glacier-covered outcrop on the outer reaches of the South Shetland Islands. It was here that Sir Ernest Shackleton and his crew from the Endurance were stranded for months in 1914. At Point Wild, his monument overlooks a colony of gentoo penguins, while at Cape Lookout, chinstrap and macaroni penguins gather alongside the island’s famous elephant seals.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Days 19-20
Antarctic Peninsula

Arrive on the shores of the White Continent where towering icebergs and mighty glaciers frame the vast colonies of penguins that make their home on this wild frontier. As the most accessible area of the continent, the region is host to several scientific bases alongside some truly spectacular scenery, such as the photogenic Lemaire Channel, a highlight of your voyage. Weather-dependent shore excursions might include Petermann Island where, among great numbers of Adelie penguins, blue-eyed shags and skuas, huge, you'll watch lumbering elephant seals haul out from the icy ocean.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Day 21
South Shetland Islands

The last great adventure of your polar voyage sees you to the South Shetland Islands, whose proximity to Antarctica makes the ice-bound sea impassable during winter (April to November). However, these are the first islands to see snow melt in spring, and the slightly warmer temperature means that the fauna is also different from what you’ll see on the peninsula itself. As you head ashore by Zodiac, you’ll notice ferns, grasses, lichens and native flora that might well seem at home in Patagonia rather than this remote polar outpost.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Days 22-23
At sea

Relax once more as you enjoy two final days at sea, recounting your adventures with fellow guests, taking in views of the iceberg-strewn Drake Passage and, of course, making last use of the onboard spa.

Stay: SH Vega

Meals: B L D

Days 24-25
Ushuaia/Estancia La Bamba de Areco

Arrive in Ushuaia and transfer to the airport for your flight to Buenos Aires. On arrival, you’ll be met for a private transfer to your luxury accommodation in the heart of the pampas. It’s the perfect way to shake off those sea legs as you dine on asado barbecues, relax with fine red wines, ride out into the wilds on horseback and indulge with optional spa treatments, pilates and yoga.

Stay: Estancia La Bamba de Areco, San Antonio (Superior)

Meals: B

Days 26-27
Depart for UK

Transfer back to Buenos Aires in time for your overnight flight home, arriving in the UK on day 27.

Meals: B



Any element of this cruise can be adjusted to suit your needs. Just contact us to find out more.


Accommodation rating: Deluxe

27-day expedition cruise & stay from £17,995 pp incl. flights

Departure: 14 November 2022

Save 20% off cruise plus USD $300pp on board credit
Book by: 31 October 2021


  • Return scheduled flights from the UK to Buenos Aires on economy class (upgrades available)
  • Return flights from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia in economy class 
  • One night pre-cruise hotel accommodation with breakfast
  • Two nights at Estancia La Bamba de Areco on full-board basis with selected drinks and activities included
  • All transfers from airport to accommodation and ship
  • 21 night Antarctic cruise
  • All meals onboard including room service 24 hours a day
  • Coffee, tea, soft drinks & select alcoholic beverages 24 hours a day
  • Lecture programmes by our experienced expedition team and guest speakers
  • Shore excursion programme led by our expert expedition team
  • Branded Swan Hellenic expedition parka
  • Use of rubber boots for shore landings
  • Basic WIFI (Premium WIFI available)
  • Onboard gratuities & port taxes

Solo traveller offer: no single supplement on selected cabins, please call for details. 

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At Wexas, we specialise in bespoke travel experiences. Our itineraries are just samples of what we can arrange, and can be changed depending on your precise needs, finances and ideas by our experienced destination specialists.

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