The Geodyssey Guide to Antarctica

A short practical guide to Antarctica to help you choose your expedition cruise

Most expedition cruises to Antarctica aim for the Antarctic Peninsula and call at the South Shetlands on their way down or back.

Early in the season, when the waters around the Peninsula may still be clogged with ice, some ships make voyages to the Falklands, or to South Georgia.

Later in the season, some strive to sail far south down the Peninsula with the aim of crossing the Antarctic Circle, while others venture into the Weddell Sea.

Very few ships sail to the remote South Orkneys.

Within each area there are specific sites designated by IAATO where ships can land passengers. There's a great rush each season as ships lodge their plans with the coordinators. Some of the best sites are grabbed very quickly.

Our 'cruising guides' describe the sites in each region and what they offer. You will find this a really useful tool for comparing different voyages. Even so, you should always bear in mind that in Antarctica any plan can be no more than an aspiration - changes can happen at any time and for a multitude of reasons.