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A21 Magellan Explorer

Classic Antarctica Air-Cruise

An unforgettable 8-day expedition cruise to Antarctica aboard the Magellan Explorer Antarctica Cruises

Length

8 Days

Ship category

Premium

Ship type

Small Ship

Capacity

73 Passengers

Classic Antarctica Air-Cruise

17 Reviews

Trip highlights

South Shetland Islands

Whale watching from the open deck

Immense icebergs and glaciers

Observe penguins in their natural habitat

The Polartours experience

Best price guaranteed

Up to 5 hours of excursion per day

Your booking contributes to our Conservation Project

Fly the Drake Passage

The Classic Antarctica air-cruise is one of the most popular Antarctica expedition trip. Once arriving by flight to Antarctica, you will sail between the South Shetland Islands and the western coast of the Antarctic Peninsula. Enjoy seeing ice-filled fjords and spectacular icebergs, while spotting penguins, seals, and whales that call the beautiful Antarctica home.

Your ship: Magellan Explorer

Magellan Explorer
Magellan Explorer

Welcome aboard the Magellan Explorer, an ultra-modern expedition cruise ship built for the Antarctic. An Antarctic trip aboard the Magellan Explorer is unlike the rest. Instead of boarding your cruise ship right away and spending long days crossing the Drake Passage to get to the Antarctica, you’ll take a two-hour plane ride from Punta Arenas straight to the continent itself. This flight will save you time, and you’ll be able to head straight to the Antarctic action. A Magellan Explorer is a pioneer air-cruise is designed for adventure and with your comfort in mind.

To manage environmental im … Read more about Magellan Explorer

Cabins

Porthole Cabin

Type:

Twins

Max. occupancy:

2

More about this cabin

Deluxe Veranda Cabins

Type:

Double/Matrimionial (convertible)

Max. occupancy:

2

More about this cabin

Penthouse Suites

Type:

Double/Matrimionial (convertible)

Max. occupancy:

2

More about this cabin

Veranda Cabin

Type:

Double/Matrimionial (convertible)

Max. occupancy:

2

More about this cabin

Triple Suite

Type:

Triple

Max. occupancy:

3

More about this cabin

Suite

Type:

Double/Matrimionial (convertible)

Max. occupancy:

2

More about this cabin

Single Cabin

Type:

Single

Max. occupancy:

1

More about this cabin

Map

Itinerary

Keep in mind this is an expedition cruise, so your itinerary will depend greatly on the weather, amount of ice and wildlife breeding behavior.

Sea-Kayaking-What-To-Wear-In-Antarctica

0 Days

5.0

(1)

Sea Kayaking

Embark on an exhilarating sea kayaking adventure in some of the world's most magnificent and biodiverse wilderness areas, including Antarctica and the Arctic. Take in the breathtaking scenery as you navigate through ice and icebergs of all shapes and sizes. In Antarctica, spend unforgettable moments with penguins, seals and whales, and keep an eye out for the occasional encounter with leopard seals or killer whales. In the Arctic, paddle through bird colonies, past massive glaciers and around huge icebergs. Led by experienced guides, you will join a small group of like-minded adventurers to explore the picturesque coastlines of these wild and remote destinations. Paddling offers an intimate and unique way to experience the beauty of these regions and make the most of your time there. Important: This activity is subject to weather conditions and logistics.

Price on request

Punta Arenas
Punta Arenas

Arrival at Punta Arenas

Punta Arenas ("Sandy Point" in Spanish) is the capital city of Chile's southernmost region, Magallanes and Antarctica Chilena.

Punta Arenas is the largest city below the 46th parallel and is one of the largest cities in the entire Patagonian Region.

It is only 870 miles from the coast of Antarctica, yet Punta Arenas is a vibrant and modern city that's the perfect starting point for Antarctic exploration.

Punta Arenas
Punta Arenas

Arrival at Punta Arenas

Flight to King George Island

Embark at King George Island

Punta Arenas ("Sandy Point" in Spanish) is the capital city of Chile's southernmost region, Magallanes and Antarctica Chilena.

Punta Arenas is the largest city below the 46th parallel and is one of the largest cities in the entire Patagonian Region.

It is only 870 miles from the coast of Antarctica, yet Punta Arenas is a vibrant and modern city that's the perfect starting point for Antarctic exploration.

South Shetland Islands
South Shetland Islands
South Shetland Islands

Northeast beach Ardley Island

Penguin Island

Telefon Bay

Hannah Point

Pendulum Cove

Elephant Island

Point Wild

Turret Point

Barrientos Island

Whalers Bay

Baily Head on Deception Island

Sometimes overlooked as a destination by people keen to set foot on the Antarctic Peninsula, the South Shetland Islands are a must-see destination in their own right.

Often the first and last landfall on an Antarctic cruise, many people are taken aback by the stunning beauty of these islands. What better way to make contact with the Antarctic than by making your first beach landing here surrounded by gentoo penguins?

Apart from some of the most southerly species of penguin, the South Shetlands are home to a huge range of Antarctic wildlife, and they make a superb introduction to the wildlife of the whole region, including key species like elephant seals, humpback whales, and more.

With active volcanoes, the relics and remains of its history as a centre for whaling, and some of the most beautiful Antarctic mountain scenery, the South Shetland Islands are a fitting first destination for any Antarctic cruise.

Business Flight to King George Island
King George Island
King George Island

The largest of the South Shetland Islands, King George Island lies only 75 miles from the coast of the Antarctic continent. With historical claims made by Britain, Chile and Argentina, the island is also known as Isla Rey Jorge and Isla 25 de Mayo.

The importance of King George Island to many Antarctic bases is the 1,300m long airstrip maintained by the permanently occupied Chilean Base Presidente Eduardo Frei Montalva. This provides a lifeline as an airbridge for personnel and supplies for many other Antarctic bases and research stations.

The presence of the airstrip allows King George Island to be used as a "fly-cruise" destination. Flying from Chile across the Drake Passage saves up to 3 days at sea, allowing Antarctic exploration for those with less time to take a full cruise.

Punta Arenas
Punta Arenas

End of Air Cruise

Punta Arenas ("Sandy Point" in Spanish) is the capital city of Chile's southernmost region, Magallanes and Antarctica Chilena.

Punta Arenas is the largest city below the 46th parallel and is one of the largest cities in the entire Patagonian Region.

It is only 870 miles from the coast of Antarctica, yet Punta Arenas is a vibrant and modern city that's the perfect starting point for Antarctic exploration.

Dates & Prices

When do you want to travel?

From

Until

Info

Availability

Price

6

Dec

2024

13

Dec

2024

Available

From

EUR 20,235

6

Dec

2024

13

Dec

2024

Available

From

EUR 20,235

11

Dec

2024

18

Dec

2024

Available

From

EUR 20,235

11

Dec

2024

18

Dec

2024

Available

From

EUR 20,235

16

Dec

2024

23

Dec

2024

Available

From

EUR 22,995

16

Dec

2024

23

Dec

2024

Available

From

EUR 22,995

26

Dec

2024

2

Jan

2025

2 Spots

Almost full

From

EUR 25,755

26

Dec

2024

2

Jan

2025

2 Spots

Almost full

From

EUR 25,755

31

Dec

2024

7

Jan

2025

Full

From

EUR 27,595

31

Dec

2024

7

Jan

2025

Full

From

EUR 27,595

9

Jan

2025

16

Jan

2025

Available

From

EUR 16,555

9

Jan

2025

16

Jan

2025

Available

From

EUR 16,555

19

Jan

2025

26

Jan

2025

2 Spots

Almost full

From

EUR 20,235

19

Jan

2025

26

Jan

2025

2 Spots

Almost full

From

EUR 20,235

5

Feb

2025

12

Feb

2025

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From

EUR 25,295

5

Feb

2025

12

Feb

2025

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EUR 25,295

10

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2025

17

Feb

2025

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From

EUR 22,075

10

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2025

17

Feb

2025

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EUR 22,075

15

Feb

2025

22

Feb

2025

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From

EUR 20,235

15

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2025

22

Feb

2025

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From

EUR 20,235

20

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2025

27

Feb

2025

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From

EUR 20,235

20

Feb

2025

27

Feb

2025

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EUR 20,235

25

Feb

2025

4

Mar

2025

Available

From

EUR 14,715

25

Feb

2025

4

Mar

2025

Available

From

EUR 14,715

2

Mar

2025

9

Mar

2025

Available

From

EUR 18,395

2

Mar

2025

9

Mar

2025

Available

From

EUR 18,395

26

Nov

2025

3

Dec

2025

Available

From

EUR 14,715

26

Nov

2025

3

Dec

2025

Available

From

EUR 14,715

6

Dec

2025

13

Dec

2025

Available

From

EUR 17,475

6

Dec

2025

13

Dec

2025

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From

EUR 17,475

11

Dec

2025

18

Dec

2025

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From

EUR 21,615

11

Dec

2025

18

Dec

2025

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EUR 21,615

16

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2025

23

Dec

2025

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From

EUR 17,475

16

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2025

23

Dec

2025

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EUR 17,475

21

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2025

28

Dec

2025

Available

From

EUR 18,395

21

Dec

2025

28

Dec

2025

Available

From

EUR 18,395

26

Dec

2025

2

Jan

2026

Available

From

EUR 22,995

26

Dec

2025

2

Jan

2026

Available

From

EUR 22,995

31

Dec

2025

7

Jan

2026

Available

From

EUR 20,695

31

Dec

2025

7

Jan

2026

Available

From

EUR 20,695

5

Jan

2026

12

Jan

2026

Available

From

EUR 17,475

5

Jan

2026

12

Jan

2026

Available

From

EUR 17,475

10

Jan

2026

17

Jan

2026

Available

From

EUR 17,475

10

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2026

17

Jan

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EUR 17,475

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2026

22

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2026

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EUR 17,475

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22

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2026

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EUR 17,475

20

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27

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EUR 19,315

20

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27

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EUR 19,315

25

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2026

1

Feb

2026

Available

From

EUR 17,475

25

Jan

2026

1

Feb

2026

Available

From

EUR 17,475

Preferred date unavailable? Contact us

Info

Single Cabin Supplement

When booking online, you can choose the option to "Upgrade to single occupancy". This will guarantee you the whole cabin to yourself, for an additional fee. If you don't select this option, then another traveler of the same sex might be placed into the same cabin with you.

What's included

For air-cruises starting in Punta Arenas, group transfers airport/hotel on Day 1.

For air-cruises starting in Punta Arenas, one overnight with breakfast in Punta Arenas at the Cabo de Hornos Hotel or similar, with a welcome dinner including drinks on Day 1.

1 overnight with breakfast in Punta Arenas at the Cabo de Hornos Hotel or similar on the Day of the Scheduled Return Flight from Antarctica.

For air-cruises starting in Punta Arenas, enjoy special access to Explorers House.

Group transfers airport/hotel on the Day of the Scheduled Return Flight from Antarctica, and group transfers hotel/airport on last Day of the air-cruise.

Flight from Punta Arenas to Frei Station on King George Island and/or vice versa as indicated in the program corresponding to each voyage.

Daily breakfast and lunch on board ship offering a wide choice of dishes.

Daily served dinner on board ship offering a choice of three main courses.

Wine, beer, juice, and soft drinks served with lunch and dinner on board ship.

Coffee, tea, chocolate, cappuccino, water and snacks on board ship throughout the expedition.

All guided shore excursions.

Lectures and entertainment on board.

Comprehensive pre- and post-voyage information material.

Loan of waterproof boots for landing in Antarctica.

Contingency Plan.

IAATO passenger fee.

What's not included

Accommodation, meals, excursions and transfers other than those included in the itinerary and the Contingency Plan corresponding to each voyage. Specifically, dinner in Punta Arenas upon return from Antarctica is not included.

Beverages purchased at the ship’s bar.

Internet connection on board the ship.

Personal travel insurance.

Extra expenses (communication, laundry, souvenirs, etc.).

Gratuities.

Visas for Chile and/or Argentina, passport expenses, and any arrival and/or departure tax, if applicable.

Credit Card charges may apply

A fuel surcharge may apply at a later stage. More info

Reviews

Marion K

Magellan Explorer Antarctica Cruises

Premium

It was an AMAZING journey through one of the most spectacular landscapes I have ever scene (if not the most). The boat was top of the line, the professional crew incredibly professional, knowledgeable and fun to hang out with. The service crew took well care of us during all the journey. The kayak pack is specially recommended and if you are lucky you will also a face to face hunch whale experience you will remember as your top wildlife adventure for life (copied from Trip Advisor)

Cristian Coudeu

Magellan Explorer Antarctica Cruises

Premium

Impressive trip, a beautiful destination that thanks to A21 becomes unforgettable. The concern for every detail, the professional level of the team, the joy with which they do their work make this experience something unique. Discovering Antarctica with A21 is a dream that we should all have. (copied from Trip Advisor)

Till K

Magellan Explorer Antarctica Cruises

Premium

We booked the 2.5 week trip incl. Antarctic peninsula and South Georgia. We received good information on clothing, recommended literature, itinerary etc. previously. The one night in Punta Arenas extended due to fog around the antarctic landing strip to three days, with an OK emergency program. The difficulty to get to Antarctica shows that it a somehow adventurous place and not normal tourism. Once arrived on board, we were welcomed nicely and shown the beautiful new vessel, the Magellan Explorer. The expedition staff and the crew are very friendly and professional. The cabins and excellent, all have balconies, mini bars are refilled all the time. Food on boards in really good and varied every day. Wine is OK. The expeditions are what you came for. Protocols are very strict, in order to protect wild life. Whats you see is totally amazing, in Antarctica the icebergs and white sceneries, later on in South Georgia the immense amount of king penguins, seals with puppies, etc. During the days of pure navigation, you can spot whales, albatrosses etc., and get very interesting lectures of Antarctic related topics (history, political situation, animals, etc.). Lecturers are excellent professionals, some are also funny. What could be improved? On our specific trip, the three days lost in the beginning were cut off just from the Antarctic peninsula part of the trip, nothing from South Georgia. Could have been more balanced. And in general, on zodiac tours without landing, people could be grouped by interest (photographers have other needs than the rest, some older people get cold earlier than some younger, etc.). Overall… a trip of the lifetime. I intend to do the pure Antarctic trip with the same company and the same vessel. (Copied from Trip Advisor)

FAQ

When it comes to traveling to Antarctica, one of the first questions that often arises is, "Can I fly to Antarctica?". The answer is: Yes, you can. Most trips start in Patagonia (Ushuaia and Punta Arenas) and cross the Drake Passage by ship, but there are also trips that use planes to cross that infamous sea passage. Here are the Pros and Cons for each method:

Flying to Antarctica:

  • Pros: Flying to Antarctica is the quickest way to reach the continent. It offers convenience and is often the choice for those with very limited time.

  • Cons: There are limited commercial flights to Antarctica, and these are primarily reserved for research and expedition purposes. Tourist accessibility is limited, and it can be costly. Also, as not many trips include flights, you'll be limiting your choice a lot if you decide to only look for such trips.

Crossing the Drake Passage by ship:

  • Pros: If you choose to cross the Drake Passage by ship, you embark on an incredible adventure. This journey is not just a means of transportation; it's an expedition in itself. The crossing takes 1.5 - 2 days, which are filled with scientific lectures that prepare you for the experience. You'll witness diverse wildlife, including penguins and whales, as your anticipation starts building up. To us, the crossing is a quintessential experience of a true Antarctic explorer.

  • Cons: Crossing the Drake Passage takes some time, and the seas can be rough. It's not the quickest way to reach the continent, and you need to allocate more time for your expedition.

In conclusion, when it comes to traveling to Antarctica, you have these two choices. Flying offers efficiency and direct access, perfect for specific purposes. Crossing the Drake Passage by ship provides an unmatched adventure and connection with Antarctica's unique environment. Consider what truly matters to you, and you'll find the Antarctic transportation choice that suits your goals and spirit of exploration.

All cruises in the polar regions operate to itineraries that are more-or-less fixed. We say "more or less", because wildlife (breeding, seasonality) and weather always play an important role in routing. Most cruises will offer a range of land-based and water-based activities that you will enjoy at various points in your cruise, including:

  • Land excursions (including hiking trails, visitor centers, time relaxing on beaches, observing animals, etc.)
  • Bird Watching
  • Snorkeling (from ship or beaches)
  • Dinghy rides
  • Kayaking
  • Diving (on ships with diving itineraries)
  • Naturalist presentations. These usually take place every evening - on board the bigger ships also with help of projectors, microscopes etc.

All boats carry English speaking, scientifically trained guides. They will lead you on your excursions, allowing you to learn as much as possible about the unique wildlife and habitats of the Polar Regions.

Choosing the right ship for a cruise to Antarctica or the Arctic seems difficult, but it doesn't have to be. Our fleet is over 30 vessels, we are sure that there is the perfect one for you. Please, follow these simple steps, and you will be able to find your ideal ship:

  • Determine your budget and desired level of comfort: Are you looking for luxury or more budget-friendly options? On our website you can set the price range.
  • Consider ship size: Large ships offer more amenities and facilities, but they can also feel crowded and impersonal. Smaller ships offer a more personal experience, but may not have as many amenities.
  • Look at the cabins: Although you probably won’t spend much time in your cabin, look at the photos and read the descriptions to make sure you're happy with the one you choose.
  • Consider the activities on board: Are you interested in kayaking, camping, diving or a photography workshop? Or maybe you want to take part in a Citizen Science Program? These activities can enhance your overall experience. See what our ships have to offer.
  • Read customer reviews: Learn about other travelers' experiences by reading reviews.
  • Ask your Polar Specialist: Feel free to contact your Polar Specialist. They are happy to share their knowledge and are always ready to help.

In addition: We work with responsible partners who provide a great experience for their passengers. All of our providers are committed to sustainability and to preserving the beauty of the polar regions. You don’t need to worry about the impact of your cruise, because we’ve already taken care of it.

We love to help people find their dream vacation to the Arctic and Antarctic. Whether you give us a call, contact us via email, or use our website inquiry form, one of our Polar travel experts will be more than happy to answer any questions, recommend ships and itineraries, and walk you through the whole process!

Step 1: Find your perfect trip. If you have already started looking for Polar Cruises, you will have quickly noticed that the sheer amount of options can be quite overwhelming. To help you navigate the countless departures and itineraries that our fleet offers, we have put together a great filter page for Antarctic and Arctic Expedition Cruises. Use this page to filter all trips by price, date, ship category, and even destinations you wish to visit. We update all dates, prices, and availabilities daily, and are proud to host what is doubtlessly the world's most complete collection of information.

Step 2: Found something you love? We'll hold your spaces, free of charge! If you find a cruise you like, you can either inquire directly with us or make an unbinding booking online. We will then reach out to the shipowners to put a hold on your spaces for a limited time, free of charge. Once we have confirmed your block with the ship, we will send you a written confirmation of your reservation and include full payment details in an invoice. Typically, we are able to hold unpaid reservations for up to 1 week*. This gives us time to clarify all your remaining questions, and also ensures that no other passengers can book your spaces, while we continue our conversation.

Step 3: Confirm your booking. In order to confirm your booking, we ask for a deposit payment. You can pay via bank transfer or credit card. Keep in mind, that we can only hold your spaces for a limited amount of time. If we don't receive your payment after this time, we can no longer guarantee that the places will be available or that the price won't increase. To prevent disappointment, we will automatically cancel your reservation if we don't receive your deposit by the due date stated on your booking reservation.

Step 4: Booking confirmation & Payment. As soon as we have received your deposit and a completed passenger information form, we will be pleased to send your booking confirmation and updated invoice, along with your trip itinerary, important information, and other great tips for your cruise.

Step 5: Final payment. In your initial invoice, we will define a final payment date by when you need to pay us the remaining amount of your trip. Once we have received your final payment we'll send you your cruise documents and voucher. As your trip approaches, we make sure to pass along all necessary information, so you feel super prepared and stress-free.

*For last-minute bookings, we might not be able to hold your spaces for so long. We will also require the full payment of your cruise upon booking.

An expedition cruise to Antarctica or the Arctic is a big deal! Most people plan for this type of trip at least 8 months in advance. This means the earlier you book, the better chance you'll have to reserve your prefered cabins. Early bird discounts are also popular and a great way to get 10-30% off your cruise.

Most expedition cruises offer optional activities like camping and kayaking, but the spaces are limited. A cruise with 120 passengers can have only 10-15 spaces for kayaking. These are reserved on a first come first served basis. The earlier you book, the higher your chance of grabbing a spot.

Even though last minute deals do occur, keep in mind that the airline prices will be much higher if you purchase them last minute. You may save a few hundred on your cruise, but you may end up paying the most for airfare.

If you are prone to motion sickness then here are a few hints to help you.

Firstly, book a cabin in the middle of the ship. The middle of the ship will move less, both in roll and in pitch. Secondly, chose a larger ship. Bigger vessels typically are more stable, and some of them are even equipped with "stabilizers", fins under water that remove the rolling in the swells. Thirdly, take medical advice on anti-seasickness medication. Some traditional remedies are said to be very effective, such as taking ginger or using commercially-available acupressure wristbands.

Watch this informative video about life onboard an expedition ship and seasickness from our expert guide and Polartours Brand Ambassador, Kevin.

Life Onboard & Seasickness
Classic Antarctica Air-Cruise

4.8

(17)

Premium

From

EUR 12,875



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