From Montevideo to Ushuaia, this polar expedition cruise will take you through an unforgettable itinerary in the Antarctic. Enjoy breath-taking landscapes, impressive glaciers and wildlife in a once in a lifetime adventure. Start this voyage in the Falkland Islands and discover its wild beauty before heading to South Georgia where you'll find black-sand beaches full of king penguins. Continue your trip to the glaciers and mountainous landscapes of South Orkney Islands, where you can see chinstrap penguins and leopard seals. Before finishing your experience at the southernmost city of the world, Ushuaia, see all kinds of wildlife, weather and ice conditions permitting, in the Antarctic Peninsula. SPECIAL OFFER First-time PONANT cruisers can enjoy £450 discount on expedition cruises when booked before 31st March 2019. Full T&C’s apply.
Get in one of our Zodiac® inflatables and visit the shores with a team of experienced naturalist guides.
Attend the lectures and information sessions hosted by our naturalist-guides, covering wildlife, history, geopolitics, climate, environmental protection, etc.
Unique landscapes that will captivate you; white-sand and black-sand beaches, glaciers, turquoise waters, alpine landscapes, drifting icebergs, snow-capped mountains and much more.
Experience the Antarctic Odyssey alongside a National Geographic Photographer and Expert, who are specialised in the destination.
Itinerary - 21 Days
1 Montevideo, Uruguay
Montevideo, the capital city of Uruguay, is one of the most charming cities in South America. Enjoy its beautiful heritage from the Spanish rule: the Ciudad Vieja, formerly fortified, dating back from the 18th century; the cathedral and the former governmental palace of the Cabildo, both listed historical monuments. Located in a vast blue bay, the city is also blessed with beautiful beaches.
2-4 At Sea
Le Lyrial is an innovative and environmentally-friendly ship that embodies the subtle alliance between luxury, intimacy and wellbeing which is PONANT’s signature. The elegance of her exterior and interior lines and her intimate size (only 122 staterooms and suites) make this a rare and innovative yacht on the cruise market. These days at sea will give you the chance to explore the ship and enjoy all the services and activities on board.
5 Grave Cove and The Neck, Falkland Islands
Make your way through the turbulent Woolly Gut strait and emerge in the quietness of Grave Cove in the Falkland Islands. With its landscape of cliffs and white-sand beaches, it’s also a paradise for wildlife. If you are lucky, you’ll be able to spot some Commerson's dolphins, a few sheep in its interior vast plain of lush green grass, and one of the largest Gentoo penguin colonies in the area on the other side of the island.
You’ll also cross the Neck, a narrow stretch of land connecting the two sides of Saunders Island. With our experienced naturalist guides, you’ll explore this paradise of endless shoreline and turquoise waters and its unique wildlife.
6 Volunteer Point, Falkland Islands
Named after the ship, the Volunteer, Volunteer Point is located in the northeast of East Falkland. The peninsula boasts a stunning, long, white, sandy beach and is home to a variety of birdlife. It is a privately owned Nature Reserve and an Important Bird Area. You can also find the largest breeding group of king penguins.
7-8 At Sea
During these days at sea aboard Le Lyrial you’ll have a unique, intimate and comfortable experience. Be tempted by the swimming pool, the great conferences or shows going on, do some boutique shopping or simply enjoy the views from the upper deck.
9-11 South Georgia
Discover South Georgia aboard your ship, a region formed by an underwater mountain chain that extends from the Andes to the Antarctic Peninsula. Be enchanted by the unique polar landscapes of the area all the wildlife of the Far South that can be found there, from king and Gentoo penguins to elephant seals and fur seals.
12 At Sea
Enjoy the wide array of activities and entertainment on board during this day at sea. From treating yourself in the spa to exercising in the fitness centre or having a swim in the swimming pool, there’s a choice for everyone. You can also enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, or simply visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observer marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.
13-14 South Orkney Islands
Hidden in the Southern Ocean close to the Antarctic Peninsula and discovered by seal hunters in 1821, these far-flung mountainous islands have more than 85% of their surface glaciated. Despite the ravages caused by whale and seal hunting, today a sizeable leopard seal population can be found there, along with chinstrap penguins and snow petrels. One of its four main islands, Laurie Island is home to an old scientific station that is still in operation.
15 At Sea
Enjoy your last day at sea making the most of all the services Le Lyrial offers. If there are still some activities for you to try, you will be able to do it during this day at sea. Remember to check the shows and activities programme, as it offers different and unique experiences every day. If you haven’t done so yet, try visiting the National Geographic photographers and experts on board to make the most of your experience.
16-18 Antarctic Peninsula
Finally you’ll arrive to the Antarctic Peninsula, a place like no other. Enjoy the magic of this icy realm, which promises visitors unforgettable moments. Surrounded by incredible natural creations of blue and white, you’ll be fascinated by the exceptional wildlife. Based on ice and weather conditions, the Captain and the Expedition Leader will suggest Zodiac® outings to discover the endless treasures of the Antarctic Peninsula. You will sail in the wake of Jean-Baptiste Charcot, Adrien de Gerlache and Sir Ernest Shackleton, great Antarctic explorers who, from the 19th century, set out to conquer these remote and uninhabited lands.
19-20 Crossing the Drake Passage
The Drake Passage, located at the latitude of the infamous Furious Fifties winds, is the shortest route to Antarctica, and it’s one of the roughest seas in the world. Seasoned navigators will tell you that you must earn your visit to the White Continent! Drake Passage also harbours a very diverse marine fauna, due to its convergence of cold currents rising up from the South Pole and warmer equatorial water masses.
21 Ushuaia, Argentina
Located in the southernmost tip of Argentina, the capital of Tierra del Fuego province won’t disappoint you. Discover Ushuaia’s colourful houses framed against snow-capped towering mountains. Head to the End of the World Museum to learn about the area's natural and indigenous history, get into the Tierra del Fuego National Park, or cruise along Ushuaia Bay to spot sea lions and Magellanic penguins.