Exploring Antarctica has always been “exclusive” simply because it’s hard to get to, the weather can be harsh, and thankfully, we humans haven’t developed it too much…yet.
And there are in fact, several different levels of luxury one can employ to “explore” Antarctica. But now that two highly experienced luxury polar expedition companies have teamed up to offer a 24-day tour they simply call “Ultimate Antarctica,” they may have organized the most exclusive (and socially distanced) vacation in the world.
The unique 24-day trip is the result of collaboration between two highly experienced polar tour companies—White Desert and Cookson Adventures—which were both founded by record-breaking polar explorers.
The journey starts with New Year’s Eve celebrations at the One & Only Cape Town under the backdrop of Table Mountain. Then guests are flown directly to Whichaway Oasis, White Desert’s newly relaunched eco-camp in the remote interior of Antarctica onboard the companies Gulfstream 550 jet. From those luxury accommodations, they will explore iridescent blue ice tunnels and visit a colony of over 28,000 emperor penguins and their chicks at the “bottom of the world.”
Patrick Woodhead, CEO of White Desert, says: “After 15 years of operations, we know a great deal about the Antarctic interior. However, in all that time, I’ve barely seen an iceberg! So, it’s an absolute privilege to combine our expertise with Cookson Adventures’ to enable guests to see totally different but equally incredible aspects of this immense continent.”
The highlight of the adventure flying to the Geographic South Pole onboard the Gulfstream. But going to the ends of the Earth (literally!) is only the begining. Once they’ve visited the Geographic South Pole, guests fly across to the snow-tipped mountains and emerald rivers of Torres del Paine in Patagonia. Patagonia offers a totally different landscape where guests can ride horses with cowboys, mountain bike and glacier hike before they return to the extraordinary coastline of Antarctica to board the 254-foot long luxury explorer yacht Legend.
On board Legend, they will visit remote inlets, search for orca and humpback whales and ski entirely untouched routes. With both a helicopter and 3-seater submersible onboard, adventurers can take in the magnitude of Antarctica’s icebergs from the sky or from deep underwater as penguins dive in and leopard seals hunt for prey.
They will also have the chance to meet with leading climate scientists and contribute to wildlife research as part of their extraordinary Antarctic experience.
Henry Cookson, founder of Cookson Adventures sums up this extraordinary trip perfectly by saying, “I’m spellbound by Antarctica every single time I arrive at its shores.”
And it’s safe to say anyone who experiences “Ultimate Antarctica” by White Desert and Cookson Adventures will feel the same way.