Do you want to investigate the unknown and head to Antarctica? The windy and freezing continent is open for brave tourists that want to satisfy their curiosity. Antarctica contains the highest percentage of ice on the Earth, with a total of 90%. This guarantees plenty of marvelous sights of glaciers and icebergs. But, how do you get to the southernmost continent? Nowadays, reaching Antarctica is open and available for everyone interested in tourism. If you are ready for the trip to Antarctica, this post is for you. We explain the viable ways to get there, so make sure to go through and don’t miss anything!
How to get there?
Tourists can arrive in Antarctica by aircraft or ship. You are free to choose the option that seems more convenient for you. It will take roughly two days to sail from Argentina to Antarctica. If you prefer to fly, there is a 2-hour flight from Chile to King George Island. From here, you will need to travel by ship. Every tourist needs to have a permit to visit Antarctica. Another essential thing to have in mind is the Antarctic Conservation Act, oriented towards protecting nature and wildlife against harm.
Many tourists who visit Antarctica get there by ship, facilitated by the tour operators. They will take care of every step of the process so that tourists can enjoy their trip. Tour operators cover itinerary plans, obtaining permits, and transport. The costs can vary but expect to pay somewhere between $5,500 to $25,000.
Ships sail from the southwest point in Argentina. Most of the tours start their entire journey from the port in Ushuaia. If you are from Europe or Africa, take a flight to this city. However, keep in mind that the town is worth seeing, so some operators include a tour around.
Other options for traveling by ship that you can consider are Tierra del Fuego in Argentina or Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands. Traveling by ship from Ushuaia to Antarctica will take around two to three days. Expect to experience delays due to bad weather.
Some like to bypass the Drake passage and catch a flight. This passage has a bad reputation for the severe weather and rough seas.
Australia and New Zealand also have starting points, but they take longer. Sailing will take around a week, depending on the weather conditions.
If you want to save yourself time or avoid the rough sea, a flight is a suitable choice. A flight will give you a chance to explore the inner side of Antarctica. However, there is no airport out there. Planes land on makeshift landing strips.
One of the available options is to go for a fly-over. It is preferred by people that want to witness the beauty of Antarctica but also stay comfy. These tours will take only one day, so it is perfect if you don’t have enough time in your hands. An expert operator will join the flight and share relevant information about Antarctica. However, the starting location is limited to Australia only. Also, they are pretty rare, so you need to book yours on time.
If you like to investigate Antarctica on foot, go for a fly-in tour. It allows you to see the continent’s natural beauty and have plenty of options, such as skiing to the South Pole. However, keep in mind that you need to be flexible regarding budget and time. Individual tours can cost around $30,000, as no airline flights are available. Also, the weather conditions might cancel your flight, so you must be adaptable with the travel dates.