In the early 2000s, a group of friends in Punta Arenas, Chile, came together to develop a new model of Antarctic tourism; one that would provide an alternative to the traditional navigation from South America across the stormy waters of the Drake Passage.
Their idea involved combining air and sea transportation: flying over the expansive ocean to deliver travelers to a waiting ship in Antarctica. This would avoid the difficult and uncomfortable navigation across the Drake Passage, while also reducing the total duration of the trip by four days. Like any fledgling project and given its uniqueness, the idea was received by the industry with some skepticism. Despite this hesitations, in November 2003 Antarctica21 began operation of its first air-cruise. A De Havilland Dash-7 aircraft left from Punta Arenas and landed at the Lt. Marsh Airfield on King George Island, Antarctica. There, clients boarded M/V Grigoriy Mikheev and spent six days visiting the South Shetland Islands, crossing the Bransfield Strait, and then sailing along the western coast of the Antarctic Peninsula.
More than a decade later, Antarctica21 now offers over 20 air-cruise departures each season aboard two different ice-class expedition vessels.
Thanks to our tireless expedition staff and our superior service, Antarctica21 offers the most extensive suite of Antarctic air-cruises in the world. We are proud of this achievement and we continue to improve. As the leading boutique Antarctic tour operator, we are constantly striving to innovate and develop our environmentally-responsible expeditions to the bottom of the world.
A group of international chefs will prepare a delicious selection of different cuisines during the trip. Please let us, know ahead of time, your dietary restrictions. The kitchen will not be able to prepare Kosher or Vegan meals.
They are integrated into a “pot” at the end of the trip for distribution among the crew. Tipping is a personal decision and the amount given is at your discretion.
The custom is about US$10-12 per day, per passenger. You may make this contribution in cash or charge it to your ship’s account and pay with credit card.