Ushuaia – Antarctica – Valparaíso
This expedition takes you from Antarctica to the highlights of the South American coast. Experience the magnificent wilderness of Antarctica, then sail via the legendary Cape Horn to discover scenic national parks, see the rich wildlife of Patagonia, and cruise the Chilean fjords. Enjoy spending time ashore, kayaking, and hiking and experiencing close encounters with penguins, birds, and seals.
• Experience Patagonia and Antarctica on one expedition
• Visit Torres del Paine National Park
• Sail into the Chilean fjords and see Cape Horn
• Enjoy kayaking, hiking, and seeing wildlife up close in Antarctica
Travel Period: March 01, 2020
Duration: 20 days
This is an expedition where the elements rule, and the weather, wind and ice conditions will determine our final schedule. Safety is paramount and the captain will decide the sailing itinerary during the voyage. Therefore, this itinerary is just an indication of what you can experience, and why every expedition with Hurtigruten is unique.
Departure March 01, 2020
Departs from Buenos Aires
Explore the `Birthplace of Tango´
Location : Buenos Aires, Argentina
Your expedition starts with an overnight stay in Buenos Aires, the bustling capital of Argentina. We offer an optional city tour in the afternoon. Spend the evening at your leisure and discover the “Paris of South America” for yourself.
Embarking the Expedition
Location : Buenos Aires/Ushuaia
The following day, you fly to Ushuaia. The flight leaves Buenos Aires early in the morning, allowing you a few hours to explore Ushuaia or to join an optional excursion to Tierra del Fuego National Park, before embarking on MS Fram. In the evening, we will sail through the scenic Beagle Channel.
Crossing the Fabled Drake Passage
Location : At Sea
MS Fram takes us safely across the famous Drake Passage. The voyage from the Antarctic Peninsula to the southern tip of Argentina is roughly 600 miles or 40 hours sailing time in good weather. During the voyage south, the Expedition Team will prepare you for your exploration of Antarctica through a series of informative lectures, demonstrations and equipment issue. The excitement builds with each passing hour as we strain to see the first iceberg! Familiarize yourself with our expedition vessel and take advantage of all the facilities on board.
The White Wonder that is Antarctica
Location : Antarctica
This unending, white wilderness is full of overwhelming impressions on a grand scale. The elements rule in Antarctica, so weather, wind and ice conditions will influence our program. Your experienced Expedition Team will select the best possible landing sites to create unforgettable experiences, and take advantage of the long hours of daylight. We will attempt to land at sites on the South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula. Flexibility allows us to take advantage of the unexpected, and wildlife will be at the forefront of our plans.
Located in the South Shetlands, Half Moon Island is nestled in a glaciated bay and is home to noisy chinstrap penguins. We might call at the gentoo penguin rookeries on Cuverville Island and cruise through scenic Neko Harbor. We hope to sail through the incomparable Lemaire Channel and take on the challenging hike on Petermann Island to be rewarded with panoramic views. If weather permits, we will call on Port Lockroy, an old British base with a museum. Sailing through the Antarctic Sound offers spectacular views of tabular icebergs and glacial landscapes, and Brown Bluff has amazing rock formations. Our sturdy PolarCirkel boats will enable us to go ashore almost anywhere to truly explore bays and channels. The Expedition Team will guide you, always ensuring we don’t disturb local wildlife.
Our excursions offer you the chance to experience Antarctica with all your senses. Kayak in untouched waters with icebergs floating by, hike up snowy pathways to spectacular views, listen to the sounds of glaciers calving or penguins squabbling, spend the night on deck or in a tent on this remote and untouched continent, or for the most daring, take the polar plunge swim. Every day will be different and each will be carefully designed by our Expedition Team to create lasting memories.
Location : At Sea
Sailing northbound across the Drake Passage is chance to re-cap on all we have seen, smelled and heard in Antarctica. The Expedition Team will continue their lecture program to prepare you for the delights ahead. Enjoy priming your knowledge about the history and wildlife of the area. Make sure to spend some time on deck to enjoy the fresh sea air and look out for wildlife.
Location : At Sea
If conditions allow, we will make an attempt to land on Cape Horn – the southernmost tip of South America. (Going ashore can be very difficult because of the sometimes-extreme weather in this area). This is the southernmost point of South America at almost 56 degrees south, marking the boundary between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, and the northern end of the Drake Passage. The region is of great historical significance for the development of exploration and trade routes. If we anchor off Cape Horn, you will be able to go ashore to explore this barren and romantic headland at the very end of the world. Next, we will sail on to the sheltered waters of the Beagle Channel.
A Paradise for Nature Enthusiasts
Location : Chilean Fjords
The Chilean fjords’ deep channels, fjords and mountains plunging into the icy water always leave a profound impression on visitors. This wild and remote area seems almost untouched by humans. The ice has scoured its way between the mountains, creating the isolated islands and hidden bays that form the unique fjord landscape of Chile. Snow-capped mountains and steep valleys make a striking contrast to a lush coastline that is rich in wildlife. You might be lucky enough to spot sea lions, Andean condors and several bird species that can only be found here.
Torres del Paine National Park
Location : Puerto Natales
Puerto Natales is the gateway to the world-renowned Torres del Paine National Park, one of the most attractive nature sanctuaries in the world. Its main feature is the “towers” themselves; impressive rock formations, called “Torres del Paine” (Towers of Paine). The formations are made up of the Torre Central (9,186 feet high), Torre Sur (9,350 feet) and Torre Norte (7,375 feet). The park features azure lakes, trails that meander through emerald forests, roaring rivers, (which you’ll cross on rickety bridges) and one big, radiant blue glacier.
Torres del Paine hosts stunning variety, from the vast open steppe to rugged mountain terrain topped by looming peaks. This diversity of environments here has led to the flourish of a wide variety of a fauna and flora. While we are here you might see llamas, pumas, chilla foxes and skunks in addition to more than 100 species of birds like the Andean condor and black-chested buzzard eagle. Enjoy hiking in these amazing surroundings.
A Small and Isolated Village at the End of the Fjord
Location : Puerto Edén
After an unforgettable cruise through Patagonian waters, the unique village of Puerto Edén will enchant you. It is a tiny settlement in Bernardo O’Higgins National Park, situated at the end of a deep fjord and surrounded by mountains. Its population of 250 includes the 15 remaining members of the Kawéskar people. There are no roads, only wooden walkways, and electricity is only available during a few hours every day. Puerto Edén is a great place to experience the traditional indigenous culture of Patagonian tribes.
The villagers sell fish, mussels and shellfish products, which are taken to markets by a weekly transport boat. For souvenirs, buy traditional Kawéskar crafts such as wicker baskets and boats made from sea lion skins and tree bark. Enjoy a stroll among the laneways, and maybe you will spot one of the many Magellan hummingbirds found here when you join the Expedition team for hiking or kayaking.
Waters of Patagonia
Location : At Sea
The expedition continues north through the fabled waters of Patagonia. As we sail through iconic Andean seascapes, you have plenty of time to gaze out on the magnificent natural expanse. There might also be trivia contests covering questions about explorer history and Antarctic wildlife. We might also hold auctions to raise money for specific causes. These on board auctions have contributed to the most ambitious habitat restoration project on Earth; South Georgia, protection of the Albatross and maintenance of research stations in Antarctica. With the help of our guests, we will continue to raises funds and awareness of opportunities and challenges in the areas we visit.
Location : Castro
Located on Isla Grande de Chiloé, Castro is set among windswept hills and green vegetation. The city is known for its colourful “palafitos”, wooden houses mounted on stilts along the water’s edge. Come ashore and enjoy the local Chilote character and curious energy, mixed with a dash of modern development. The Iglesia San Francisco is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The church is a visual delight: bright yellow and orange with a lavender trim. The varnished-wood interior is stunning, illuminated by rows of stained-glass windows. Other sights include Plazuela del Tren, a small plaza right by the waterfront with an odd collection of old trains. A stroll in the Cementerio Parroquial is fascinating, as some of the tombs are quite grand and ornately decorated. Feria Campesina Yumbel is a bustling fruit and vegetable market. There are also household goods and fish stalls here. In the shop Feria Artesanal Lillo, located just south of the port, you can buy excellent hand-knit woolen goods and handicrafts. Most of the restaurants and cafes in Castro are concentrated along the Calle Blanco, running from the southern end of the plaza down to the waterfront, and this is where you can get a taste of the renowned meat, potato and seafood stew, curanto.
Close to the town is Chiloé National Park, a largely unexplored wilderness hosting rare flora and fauna. The park features wide deserted beaches and long stretches of rugged coastline, and is home to dozens of seabird species, penguins and sea lions.
Location : At Sea
Heading towards Valparaiso for our last two days at sea, you have the chance to relax and enjoy the deep relaxation of a day at sea. On board, the Expedition Team will entertain you with stories of the area, help you to plan your next exploration with the MS Fram or show you an interesting creature or two under the microscope.
The “Jewel Of The Pacific”
Location : Valparaíso, Chile
Sadly, every expedition must come to an end. This voyage ends in the wonderful, colorful and poetic city of Valparaíso. One of the best ways to see this scenic town is through its funiculars. These constructions, which are scattered around the entire natural amphitheater surrounding the city, allow sweeping views of the bay, and highlight the multi-hued houses, creating a rainbow of colour and light.
Stroll Valparaíso’s narrow streets, climb its endless staircases and discover something new at every turn: a beautiful building, a remarkable art gallery or some little gastronomic ‘find’. Don’t forget to explore the port and fishing piers, where you’ll get a real feel for Chile’s quirky seafaring side. Buy or sample freshly caught seafood at the market and enjoy the fishermen’s banter. We also recommend a visit to the UNESCO-listed Historic Quarter.
Arrival March 20, 2020
Location Valparaíso, Chile
The original Fram was the most famous explorer ship of its time, and the achievements of her expeditions are unparalleled. MS Fram honors the heritage of the original Fram, using the most advanced technology and making her exceptionally well suited for expedition voyages in polar regions.
Fram means ‘forward’ – lifting expectations of the voyage at hand. MS Fram was built in 2007 with one mission in mind – to bring her guests closer to nature, wildlife and unforgettable experiences. The spacious outside decks include access to the very front of the ship – a great place to observe marine wildlife.
The ship is purpose built as an expedition vessel with a higher ice-class, chart drawing tools,ship depth sounding database, extractable forward sounding sonar, iceberg search lights, autonomous tracking system, oversized oil retention system for self-sufficiency, and a full ‘expedition tools-deck’ equivalent to a car-deck that holds 25 vehicles. We believe that as an explorer you need an ‘expedition base-camp’ that is comfortable – something that combines ‘all oceans capabilities’ with safety, flexibility and environmental friendliness. That’s Fram – simply the best expedition ship imaginable.
The observation lounge, with comfortable sitting areas at the top of the ship and large panoramic windows, gives you incredible views of nature. A pair of binoculars is installed for spotting wildlife and details of the ever changing landscape.
In the restaurant on deck 5, you can enjoy the finest cuisine. The floor has different levels, so no matter where your table is placed; there are views to the outdoors. The restaurant is located in the aft of the ship, on your way there you walk through an exhibition of original artefacts from the historic expeditions of Amundsen and Nansen. At the far end of the restaurant there is a balcony for taking pictures when wildlife show up during a meal. On deck 7 you will find a well-equipped fitness room, with its panoramic ocean view there is no better place to exercise. On top of the ship you can get warm and cosy in the sauna or bathe in one of the outdoor Jacuzzis. Let the warm water surround you while the icebergs float silently past the side of the ship.
With 127 cabins on MS Fram, you have a choice of comfortable cabins and a number of superior suites to choose from. Our suites are named after Norwegian polar heroes, MS Fram travels in the wake of these great explorers. We are very proud of the art commissioned for MS Fram – local artists from the Arctic have contributed to making her a modern masterpiece. The ‘tender pit’ is where we embark, fully dressed in suitable expedition and excursion gear, on our sturdy Polarcirkel boats to take you safely from ship to shore. The original Fram was a ship for broadening the understanding of the world – let the new MS Fram do the same for you.