The Antarctic Peninsula commonly refers to just the very northernmost part of the 14,200,000 km2 continent. It is the most accessible spot in all of Antarctica and a main destination on 95% of the voyages we offer. Most cruises spend an average of 4 to 7 days exploring the Antarctic Peninsula.
The peninsula has an airport on a Chilean permanent base on King George Island. Travellers who want to avoid the Drake Passage, or are short on time, can look at Fly + Cruise voyages. Those on a budget with more time, who want to adventurously cross The Drake, can look at Cruise only voyages.
Antarctic Peninsula Overview
Geography & Climate
The peninsula’s Antarctic tundra features mountainous landscapes, glaciers and ice shelfs. The coastline and countless islands that make up the peninsula include gulfs, inlets, bays, sounds, channels, straights and every imaginable geographic classification.
The west coast of the peninsula, the area most commonly explored, has the mildest weather in all of Antarctica. The warmest month is January with an average temperature of 1 to 2 °C (34 to 36 °F).
The peninsula is home to many whales, seals, penguins and sea birds. Which animals you will see depends on when during the Antarctica season you travel. Orcas and minke whales, leopard and southern elephant seals, chinstrap and gentoo penguins all await you.
Each ship will offer a range of activities or day expeditions while cruising along the Antarctic Peninsula. Camping, mountaineering, kayaking, zodiac explorations, cross country skiing, scuba diving, helicopter flights and more are on offer while cruising the Antarctic Peninsula.
First-time visitors to the Antarctic Peninsula, are humbled by the staggering beauty of the Antarctic: icebergs, glaciers, snow-covered mountain tops and incredible wildlife. People who dream of visiting the 7th Continent typically start here on the peninsula, which is ice-covered and mountainous.
South Shetland Islands
The South Shetland Islands run along the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula and are made up of 11 main islands and many more small islands. Technically they lie about 120 kms north of the peninsula. However, almost all of the Antarctica cruises explore these islands on their Antarctic Peninsula voyages.
While King George Island is the largest, Deception Island and Elephant Island are two of the most well known. Elephant Island was a refuge for Shackleton’s crew on the famous Endurance expedition as he sailed to South Georgia for help.
Handpicked Antarctic Peninsula Voyages
- Up to30% Off
Wild AntarcticaAurora Expeditions – Fly & Cruise