Travel to Antarctica for Totality 2021
For TravelQuest’s 2021 Antarctica, South Georgia & Falklands Total Solar Eclipse Expedition Cruise, we have chartered the 126-passenger National Geographic Endurance, a next-generation expedition ship purpose-built for polar navigation. On this 20-night cruise, Lindblad Expeditions takes care of all the cruise logistics and Antarctic expedition programming. Our on-board astronomers discuss the latest discoveries in astronomy, explain the science of eclipses, and describe what to expect on eclipse day. This is particularly important if you have never seen a total eclipse of the Sun. Our astronomers have witnessed numerous totalities, and they will help you get the best images of this mind-bending event. Since they’re present during the entire cruise, you can pick their brains about the eclipse at meals, or after talks, or at any time during our days at sea.
Sailing from Ushuaia at the tip of South America, we spend six days traveling alongside, and landing on, the Antarctic Peninsula and its surrounding islands. Then, after two days at sea, we reach Ernest Shackleton’s historic South Georgia Island. During the next five days, we discover the island’s breathtaking scenery and fascinating wildlife—including a vast colony that is home to tens of thousands of King penguins.
After our South Georgia visit, we strategically position ourselves for the December 4th total solar eclipse. Our preferred eclipse-viewing location is near the start of the eclipse track. This places us outside the gloomiest parts of the Southern Ocean, at a location where the cloud cover is not as obstinate. We’ll keep our sailing plans flexible and take advantage of real-time satellite images as well as hour-by-hour numerical models of the atmosphere. Working with the ship’s captain, our astronomer-meteorologist can use the ship’s mobility to nearly double our chances of seeing the eclipse. Post-eclipse, we enjoy two days among the natural and cultural attractions of the Falkland Islands, including the photogenic colonial port of Stanley, before returning to port at Ushuaia.
As per the description of our previous Antarctica trips, TravelQuest’s 2021 Antarctic Expedition to Totality begins with a flight from Punta Arenas to our fully equipped camp on Union Glacier, located deep in the Antarctic interior. Here we spend six nights at our private eclipse camp that features a complete kitchen and dining area, outlying structures housing a communications center, washroom facilities, and workshop, and guest accommodations consisting of spacious and comfortable walk-in, two-person clamshell tents. There are organized daily activities while on the ice, but the climax of this journey is the total eclipse of the Sun on December 4th.
On our 2021 Antarctica vacation, there are a number of optional expedition add-ons available for booking (for an extra cost) prior to departure. These include visiting the geographic South Pole, camping with Emperor Penguins, summiting 16,000-foot (4,850-meter) Mount Vinson, skiing the “Last Degree” (from 89°S to 90°S), or taking a scenic flight over the Heritage and Sentinel Ranges and, weather permitting, viewing Mount Vinson, Antarctica’s tallest peak. Space on these add-ons is very limited and is subject to local conditions.