Antarctica Travel Guide : All you need to know

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Located on the surface of the earth. Antarctica is a polar desert. The place is twice the size of Australia and is extremely large. It wouldn’t be wrong to state that, this beautiful island is probably written on every traveler’s bucket list. The ice slopes and remoteness of this island count it to be one of the most beautiful and dreamy spots to visit and explore.

Antarctica is not a holiday destination though but, people love to come here on expedition and researches. The vast wildlife and scenic natural landscapes attract a lot of people to visit here and witness the beauty closely. Throwing some light on its unique feature, this place on earth alone stands as a spot where no leader or political government exists. Interesting right?

The classic treat that Antarctica has stored safely is the cute penguins that flop around the space. Watching these little creatures waddle up and the beautiful sun rising behind those icy mountains is extraordinarily beautiful.  One should visit this treasure island at least once in a lifetime. Right from kayaking, hanging with majestic penguins or maybe a simple session of photography, the experience at Antarctica is something that you surely cannot miss. Here’s a mini-guide tour that you need to know about the place before visiting in.

Antarctica Travel Guide

Start your trip to Antarctica:

  • Antarctica isn’t a place where you can visit anytime you plan to and with anyone, you plan with. It’s a pretty hard and expensive journey that only a few people get to travel.  Here are some basic doubts to keep your mind clarified, to begin with.
  • There is no proper authorized currency that you’ll have to take along to Antarctica. They may commonly accept U.S. dollars, Sterling Pound and Euro.
  • Russian and English are the most widely spoken languages in Antarctica so you don’t have to worry much about the communication gap. If you know English, that more than enough.
  • The population of Antarctica is 1,106 of (non-permanent residents)
  • Antarctica covers an approx. of total 5,400,000 sq. km in its space.

How to reach Antarctica?

Reaching Antarctica is a big task initially.  And one of the best and cheapest ways to opt for it is to reach there via sea route with the ship. People also believe that reaching here through ship gets you to explore a lot of beautiful sceneries and mind-blowing views on your way. Many reputable travel agencies take you to Antarctica making it accessible at a certain less cost. With an open heart memory and some budget savings, going there by ship will for sure become one of those special life experiences.

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The first ship route which is the most preferable departs from South America. Since the tip of South America is close to the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, it’s easy to reach here. There are many ports from where you can choose to pick up your cruise for Antarctica.

  • Ushuaia in Argentina
  • Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands
  • Punta Arenas in Chile
  • Buenos Aires in Argentina
  • Santiago in Chile

But Route via Ushuaia is the most preferable ones as it might take only two days to reach Antarctica from there.

Apart from South America, New Zealand and Australia are a very secondary option from where you can ship down to Antarctica. It isn’t for normal passengers but occasionally it is possible to reach out there. In New Zealand, Invercargill is one of the popular ports from where ships sail off to Antarctica and in Australia it is Hobart. Despite being an unpopular choice to reach Antarctica, we still absolutely love the routes via these places as the ship usually stops in between at some of the remote islands which are extremely beautiful and rich in different types of flora and fauna.

The stops at Auckland and Macquarie islands are worth experiencing before witnessing the beauty of real Antarctica.  The only rough side of these routes is that you need to make yourself prepared for some extra safety as the seas via these routes often get rough and hard in between.

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Flying to Antarctica:

Flying is much time-saving and safe as well, but somehow, the overall journey will cause you some extra bucks all along the way. Moreover, there is no commercial airport in Antarctica. You’ll have to contact a tour operator who’ll guide you and book you a tour.

If you are looking only for some tourism purpose visit, and not actual exploring then you can easily opt for Antarctica flights with Licensed expedition leaders which will cost you on an overall note $1199 for a 12-hour long journey flight from Australia for one day. 

Some interesting tips to remember:

Here are a few important tips that you should remember during your Antarctica Travel.

  • It is the coldest region on earth where the temperature might even drop down below -73°C. the place has a record of the lowest temperature ever seen on earth.
  • Antarctica has no permanent residents living there and having a normal life. There are only research space stations where people do researches and of course, travelers visiting the place to discover and explore more. 
  • Since Antarctica is located in the southern hemisphere of the earth, it does not have a normal routine in its atmospheric changes. Six months of this place continuously see night and the remaining six months see daylight.
  • Antarctica is the largest polar desert on the planet
  • Antarctica has 90% of the world’s freshwater resources

What’s the best time to visit Antarctica?

If you are someone who likes to simply enjoy winters then anytime will do the best for you but if you need to keep a check on a little moderate climate, let’s see what’s the best time in for your Antarctica Travel.

November

November is the best time to visit where the sun breaths softly inviting the new summer vibes of December in Antarctica. You can enjoy watching in some beautiful wildlife creatures such as sea whales, penguins, whales, seals and of course, the mesmerizing view of bird flocks across the place.  The only downside of November visits is that some places see extreme temperature changes which still makes this place inaccessible.

December to February

This is the best time to visit Antarctica where summer is at a pleasant peak and you get to fly or sail in sunlight.  It is one of the most popular times to visit the island so far. This time of the year welcomes incredible birdlife along with some plentiful penguins on the island. Make sure you contact your tour operators and know more beforehand.

March to April

By this time, most of the polar ice would have melted down and you might get to see huge amounts of humpbacks, whales, and minkes frolicking in the water. But you need to be careful as mid-April the climate starts transitioning to winters again. But this duration is very good and the best time for photographers and explorers to know more about the place and its nature.

Top places to visit in Antarctica

Antarctica Travel Guide

These are the best places that you should visit during your Antarctica Travel:

1. The Lemaire Channel

It is a narrow channel like space which is stunningly beautiful with towering peaks, tumbling glaciers and glistening icebergs in the surrounding.  You can also spot different kinds of seals, whales, orcas and much more of marine life here.

2. Deception Island

Deception Island has more of the human element with the old whaling station on it. The island is a caldera of an active volcano and the waters around this place are a bit warmer in comparison to other regions of the Antarctic peninsula. 

3. South Shetland Islands

This is a small group of islands located 120km north of the Antarctic Peninsula.  This place is another most visited place on the Island as one can spot here a huge population of elephant seals and penguins. 

4. Vernadsky Research Station

Vernadsky Research Station is a Ukrainian-run base where scientific researches take place. There’s a lot of history and new researches and facts to know at this place.

Traveling tips to Antarctica

Here are some tips for your Antarctica Travel:

1. Wear good layers of clothes and make sure you are warm in them.  Layering clothes help you to balance your very important body temperature. You may wear or take off one layer and how you wish to.

2. Pack up our camera and make sure to properly carry its batteries and lenses. The trip is worth every photo shot and trusts us, you don’t want to miss capturing any spot of the place.

3. Do proper research on your budget and discuss it properly with your travel agency. You need to have a clear picture of your entire visit to this place.

4. Get a good travel insurance policy. Antarctica is no less than a lifetime adventure with risks and unpredictable circumstances.  The travel policy will help you get an emergency evacuation charge. 

5. And of course, travel your bag with lots of snacks to eat. You’d probably feel your hunger very badly in this isolated polar dessert.

Essential Cloths to carry while Traveling to Antarctica

Here’s a rough idea on what to dress up for your Antarctica travel:

  • Waterproof jacket with Comfort temperature: -10°C
  • Waterproof pants
  • Boots
  • Thermal underwear
  • Thermal socks
  • Merino wool socks x3
  • T-shirts x4
  • Long sleeve shirt
  • Hooded jumper
  • Down jacket
  • Wind/rain jacket
  • Glove liners
  • Ski gloves
  • Buff bandana
  • Beanie
  • Sunglasses  

Note: Layer up these things depending upon your preferences.

Read More, Coldest countries in the world

We hope this blog helps you to draw an idea and plan your Antarctica Travel. And yes, don’t forget to share your pictures on social media and tag us. Antarctica is not an easy reach place so it’s no less than a lifetime achievement if you could visit this beautiful polar desert at least once in a lifetime.

Stay safe, happy journey.

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