Antarctica is returning to pre-pandemic capacity levels in the 2022-2023 season following a disrupted 2021-2022 season and no cruise traffic in 2020-2021.
According to the latest edition of the Cruise Industry News Annual Report, the destination will receive a total of 55 ships from several different brands, including Hurtigruten, Ponant, Viking and Seabourn.
Cruise Industry News looked at the plans of some of the operators in the region:
Ships: Three – Fridtjof Nansen, Roald Amundsen and Fram
Homeports: Ushuaia (Argentina); and Punta Arenas (Chile)
Itinerary highlights: Antarctic Peninsula, South Shetland Islands, South Georgia, Falkland Islands and more
Hurtigruten has three expeditions ships sailing in Antarctica during the entire 2022-2023 season.
Departing from Argentina and Chile, the company offers 12- to 23-night cruises in the region, visiting not only the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands but also South Georgia, the Falkland Islands and more.
Ships: Five – Le Commandant Charcot, Le Lyrial, Le Soléal, L’Austral and Le Boreal
Homeports: Ushuaia (Argentina); Dunedin and Lyttelton (New Zealand)
Itinerary highlights: Ross Sea, Amundsen Sea, Marie Byrd Land, Weddell Sea, South Shetlands, South Orkneys and more
Ponant is offering a complete season in Antarctica, with a total of five ships sailing in the Frozen Continent.
In addition to its four Boreal Class ships, the company is also operating the icebreaker Le Commandant Charcot in the region.
The 245-guest luxury vessel is able to explore further, visiting unusual parts of Antarctica, including the Amundsen Sea and Marie Byrd Land.
Ships: Three – Silver Endeavour, Silver Wind and Silver Cloud
Homeports: King George Island (Antarctica); and Puerto Williams (Chile)
Itinerary highlights: Antarctic Sound, Antarctic Peninsula, South Shetland Islands, Drake Passage and more
With three ships in the region for first time, Silversea Expeditions is offering one of its largest programs in Antarctica.
The highlight of the deployment is the new Silver Endeavour, which debuted in November. Acquired by the company in 2022, the 200-guest vessel is offering fly-cruises to the Antarctica Peninsula departing from King George Island.
Ships: Three – Hondius, Plancius and Ortelius
Homeports: Ushuaia (Argentina); and Bluff (New Zealand)
Itinerary highlights: Antarctic Peninsula, Peter I Island, Ross Sea, Macquarie Island, South Georgia and more
Oceanwide Expeditions is operating three ships in Antarctica this season. In addition to the 2019-built Hondius, the Plancius and Ortelius are also sailing in the region, offering itineraries to the Antarctica Peninsula, South Georgia, the Falkland Islands and more.
In January and February, the Ortelius is set to offer two month-long voyages to the Ross Sea, visiting remote parts of Antarctica that include the Campbell Island, the Macquarie Island and others.
Ships: Two – Viking Polaris and Viking Octantis
Homeport: Ushuaia (Argentina)
Itinerary highlights: Half Moon Island, Whalers Bay, Brown Bluff, Lemaire Channel, Neko Harbor, South Georgia and more
The new Viking Polaris is the highlight of Viking’s 2022-2023 program in Antarctica. Along with its sister ship, the Viking Octantis, the vessel is offering a series of 13- to 19-day expeditions in the region.
Sailing from Ushuaia, the exploration itineraries feature visits to several parts of the Frozen Continent, including the Half Moon Island, the Lemaire Channel and more.
Other cruise lines sailing in the region this winter include:
- Quark Expeditions
- Lindblad Expeditions
- Aurora Expeditions
- Albatros Expeditions
- Polar Latitudes
- Swan Hellenic
- G Adventures
- Poseidon Expeditions
- Atlas Ocean Voyages
- Vantage Travel
- Noble Caledonia