Don’t miss the chance to see one of Earth’s most wondrous cosmic events in one of Earth’s most fantastic places! An Antarctica viewing of the total solar eclipse is expected December 4, 2021. Though total solar eclipses occur roughly every 18 months, they can only be properly seen along a few key path locations. And what better location than one of the wildest and least-known places on the planet?
Three ships, 19 nights, and one very famous cosmic event
To witness the total eclipse, we’ll position our ships in the center of the moon shadow, at the edge of the sea ice in the Weddell Sea, between the South Orkneys and South Georgia. The ships making this voyage will be our three ice-strengthened vessels: Plancius, Ortelius, and Hondius. The full voyage lasts 19 nights, 20 days, and will visit the Falklands, South Georgia, and the Antarctic Peninsula.
Conditions of Antarctica’s sea and skies
Our goal on this itinerary is to see the total eclipse, but please keep in mind the polar regions are known for their unpredictability. There’s always the chance overcast skies may hinder visibility and that adverse conditions may alter certain details of the pre-planned route. Plancius and Ortelius are scheduled to make the trip clockwise, while Hondius will make it counter-clockwise.
• Discover Falkland Islands & visit Carcass Island & Saunders Island
• In South Georgia have an opportunity of exploring Fortuna Bay, Salisbury Plain, Grytviken & Cooper Bay
• Have a chance to see the total solar eclipse
• Enjoy awe-inspiring Antarctica
Vessel Type: Polar Class Expedition Ship
Length: 107.6 metres
Passenger Capacity: 170
Hondius is the first-registered Polar Class 6 vessel in the world, meeting the latest and highest Lloyd’s Register demands for ice-strengthened cruise vessels. Hondius also exceeds the requirements of the Polar Code as adopted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), allowing you to enjoy the polar regions as much as possible while impacting them as little as possible. Upon completion, Hondius will be the most flexible, advanced, innovative ice-strengthened vessel in the polar regions. It is optimized for exploratory voyages that provide you the utmost first-hand contact with the Arctic and Antarctica.
Hondius offers high-quality accommodation for 170 passengers in six grand suites with balconies (27 square meters, 291 square feet), eight junior suites (19 to 20 square meters, 205 to 215 square feet), eight superior cabins (20 to 21 square meters, 215 to 226 square feet), 11 twin deluxe cabins, (19 to 21 square meters, 205 to 226 square feet), 14 twin window cabins (12 to 14 square meters, 129 to 151 square feet) as well as 28 twin porthole cabins, two triple porthole cabins, and four quadruple porthole cabins that vary in size from 12 to 18 square meters, or 129 to 194 square feet. The passenger capacity certificate for Hondius is 196 persons. One deck consists of a large observation lounge and separate lecture room, which are reserved for a wide variety of interactive workshops, exhibitions, and performances particular to Hondius. Though elegantly designed in stylish mid-century modern décor, this vessel holds true to Oceanwide’s distinctive cozy and informal atmosphere.
It is our philosophy to keep sea time short so that we can focus instead on fast, effective access to shore and near-shore activities. To give you the maximum contact with the nature and wildlife you traveled so far to see, we employ a tough fleet of rigid-hull inflatable Zodiac boats that guarantee swift and safe landing operations for the passengers. Hondius has two separate gangways and a sheltered indoor Zodiac embarkation platform that can also be used for special outdoor activities, such as kayaking.
Our top priority is taking advantage of every wildlife and terrain opportunity as it occurs. To keep our itineraries flexible itineraries and our response time rapid, Hondius is equipped with advanced stabilizers and two main engines capable of powering the vessel up to 15 knots. But Hondius sacrifices no warmth to achieve its keen polar edge: You will have 72 crew and staff members (including expedition and hotel staff) at your service while on board, ensuring that what little time you do spend on the ship you will spend comfortably entertained.
Day 1: End of the world, start of a journey:
Your voyage begins where the world drops off. Ushuaia,Argentina, reputed to be the southernmost city on the planet,is located on the far southern tip of South America. Starting inthe afternoon, you embark from this small resort town onTierra del Fuego, nicknamed “The End of the World,” and sailthe mountain-fringed Beagle Channel for the remainder of theevening.
Day 2 – 3: Path of the polar explorers:
Over the next two days on the Drake Passage, you enjoy someof the same experiences encountered by the great polarexplorers who first charted these regions: cool salt breezes,rolling seas, maybe even a fin whale spouting up sea spray.After passing the Antarctic Convergence – Antarctica’s naturalboundary, formed when north-flowing cold waters collide with warmer sub-Antarctic seas – you are in the circum-Antarcticupwelling zone. Not only does the marine life change, the avian life changes too. Wandering albatrosses, grey-headedalbatrosses, black-browed albatrosses, light-mantled sooty albatrosses, cape pigeons, southern fulmars, Wilson’s stormpetrels, blue petrels, and Antarctic petrels are a few of the birds you might see.
Day 4 – 6: Entering Antarctica:
This extended voyage gives you the chance to sail even farther down the icy coast of the western Antarctic Peninsula. In theGerlache Strait are several opportunities for great landings where you might set foot on the Antarctic Continent, surroundedby an epic landscape of alpine peaks and mammoth glaciers calving at sea level. Gentoo penguins, leopard seals, Weddell seals,humpback whales, and minke whales are often seen here.The volcanic islands of the South Shetlands are windswept and often cloaked in mist, but they nonetheless offer many subtlepleasures. A wide variety of flora (mosses, lichens, flowering grasses) and fauna (gentoo penguins, chinstrap penguins,southern giant petrels) live here.On Deception Island, the ship plunges through Neptune’s Bellows and into the flooded caldera. Here you can find hot springs,an abandoned whaling station, and thousands of cape petrels. A number of kelp gulls, brown skuas, south polar skuas, andAntarctic terns can be spotted here too.If ice permits, you sail into the Weddell Sea. Here colossal tabular icebergs herald your arrival to the eastern side of the AntarcticPeninsula. You might visit Brown Bluff, located in the ice-clogged Antarctic Sound, where you could get the chance to set footon the continent. Paulet Island, with its large population of Adélie penguins, is another possible stop.
Day 7 – 8: East to the eclipse:
Giant icebergs and a good chance of fin whale sightings enliven this segment of the voyage. Also, your best chance to spotAntarctic petrels is here. Depending on ice and weather conditions, the aim is to venture into the pack ice to find the bestpossible position for viewing the solar eclipse.
Day 9: Weddell Sea pack ice & total solar eclipse (Dec 4, early morning):
The ship positions itself in the center of the shadow of the moon, and if possible, some distance into the Scotia Sea drift ice.The ice edge will be about 60°S, 41°W.Some coordinates for the path of the moon’s shadow:7.06 UTC: 58.47.7 S – 42.45.2 W, 1.39 minutes, 8 degrees above horizon7.08 UTC: 60.42.4 S – 40.59.8 W, 1.42 minutes, 9 degrees above horizon7.10 UTC: 62.22.3 S – 39.48.0 W, 1.44 minutes, 11 degrees above horizon
Day 10: Northward bound:
There may be sea ice on this route, and at the edge of the ice some south polar skuas and snow petrels could join the otherseabirds trailing the vessel north.
Day 11 – 14 : South Georgia journey:
Today you arrive at the first South Georgia activity site. Please keep in mind that weather conditions in this area can bechallenging, largely dictating the program.Over the next several days, you may visit the following sites:Cooper Bay – A Zodiac cruise in Cooper Bay offers a great opportunity to see macaroni penguins below a large rookery.Numerous fur and elephant seals are found on the beach, while majestic light-mantled albatrosses can be seeing gracefullygliding above.Grytviken – In this abandoned whaling station, king penguins walk the streets and elephant seals lie around like they own theplace – because they basically do. Here you might be able to see the South Georgia Museum as well as Shackleton’s grave.Fortuna Bay – Near beaches inhabited by various penguins and seals, you have the chance to follow the final leg of Shackleton’sroute to the abandoned whaling village of Stromness. This path cuts across the mountain pass beyond Shackleton’s Waterfall,and as the terrain is partly swampy, be prepared to cross a few small streams.Salisbury Plain, St. Andrews Bay, Gold Harbour – These sites not only house the three largest king penguin colonies in SouthGeorgia, they’re also three of the world’s largest breeding beaches for southern elephant seals. Only during this time of yeardo they peak in their breeding cycle. Watch the four-ton bulls keep a constant vigil (and occasionally fight) over territorieswhere dozens of females have just given birth or are about to deliver. You can also see a substantial number of Antarctic furseals here during the breeding season (December – January).
Day 15 – 16: Once more to the sea:
On the way to South Georgia, you cross the Antarctic Convergence. The temperature gradually cools, and nutritious water risesto the surface of the sea due to colliding water columns. This phenomenon sometimes attracts a multitude of seabirds nearthe ship, including several species of albatross, shearwaters, petrels, prions, and skuas.
Day 17: Porting in Port Stanley:
The capital of the Falklands and center of its culture, Port Stanley offers a little Victorian-era charm: colorful houses, welltendedgardens, and English-style pubs are all to be found here. You can also see several century-old clipper ships nearby,silent witnesses to the hardships of 19th century sailors. The small but interesting museum is also worth a visit, covering theearly days of settlement up to the Falklands War. Approximately 2,100 people live in Port Stanley. Feel free to wander at will,though be aware that admission fees to local attractions are not included in the voyage.
Day 18: Finding the Falklands:
The Falkland (Malvinas) Islands offer an abundance of wildlife that is easily approachable, though caution is always advised.These islands are largely unknown gems, the site of a 1982 war between the UK and Argentina. Not only do various species ofbird live here, but chances are great you’ll see both Peale’s dolphins and Commerson’s dolphins in the surrounding waters.
Day 19: The winged life of the westerlies:
Several species of albatross follow the vessel into the westerlies, along with storm petrels, shearwaters, and diving petrels.
Day 20: There and back again:
Every adventure, no matter how grand, must eventually come to an end. It’s now time to disembark in Ushuaia, but withmemories that will accompany you wherever your next adventure lies.
All itineraries are for guidance only. Programs may vary depending on local ice, weather, and wildlife conditions. Theonboard expedition leader will determine the final itinerary. Flexibility is paramount for expedition cruises.
2 portholes 2 upper & lower berths Small sofa Private shower & toilet Flatscreen TV Desk & chair Telephone and WiFi Coffee & tea maker Hair dryer Cabinet Wardrobe Safe This cabin is suitable for families traveling with children, or passengers who do not require a twin or more luxurious cabin
2 portholes 1 upper berth & 2 lower berths Small sofa Private shower & toilet Flatscreen TV Desk & chair Telephone and WiFi Coffee & tea maker Hair dryer Cabinet Wardrobe Safe This cabin is suitable for families traveling with children, or passengers who do not require a twin or more luxurious cabin
2 portholes 2 single beds Small sofa Private shower & toilet Flatscreen TV Desk & chair Telephone and WiFi Coffee & tea maker Hair dryer Cabinet Wardrobe Safe
1 window 2 single beds Small sofa Private shower & toilet Flatscreen TV Desk & chair Telephone and WiFi Coffee & tea maker Hair dryer Cabinet Wardrobe Safe
2 windows 2 single beds Sofa Private shower & toilet Flatscreen TV Desk & chair Telephone and WiFi Refrigerator Coffee & tea maker Hair dryer Cabinet Wardrobe Safe
2 windows 1 double bed Sofa Private shower & toilet Flatscreen TV Desk & chair Telephone and WiFi Refrigerator Coffee & tea maker Hair dryer Cabinet Wardrobe Safe
1 double window 1 double bed Private shower & toilet Flatscreen TV Desk & chair Telephone and WiFi Refrigerator Coffee & tea maker Hair dryer Cabinet Wardrobe Safe
1 double window 1 double bed Sofa Private balcony Private shower & toilet Flatscreen TV Desk & chair Telephone and WiFi Refrigerator Coffee & tea maker Hair dryer Cabinet Wardrobe Safe
Call: 1300 669 780
(1300 669 780)
Visit: 222A Barry Parade
(PO Box 132)
Fortitude Valley QLD 4006
We're on the corner Barry Parade and Gipps Street, next door to Rocksports Indoor Climbing