Peak season on the Antarctic Peninsula, rookeries are full of chicks, parents dodge leopard seals and skuas scan for the unattended. Crabeater and Weddell seals lounge on ice floes, females often nursing newborn pups. Ice retreats enough to allow easier access to the Antarctic Circle and the Weddell Sea and opens up new vistas to enjoy from our two custom built helicopters. As summer winds down, adolescent chicks fledge and are curious, often approaching visitors before running the leopard seal gauntlet on their first swims.
On South Georgia, penguin chicks almost as big as their parents need constant feeding and are old enough to play with juvenile seals. Days continue to be long and temperatures rise above 5°C, the warmest of the year. On board Scenic Neptune, explore waters never dived before by submarine. Enjoy a seal ballet, schooling pelagic fish and maybe even whales. In the Falkland Islands, Magellenic penguin chicks emerge from burrows, and King penguin chicks hatch.
Our Beyond the Antarctic Circle voyage journeys into the Weddell Sea
to visit the famous Snow Hill Island, where thousands of Emperor penguins nurture their young, before returning to the Antarctic Peninsula’s west side. Navigating south, further then most expedition ships go, discover exquisite waterways like Lemaire Channel, the Gullet and Crystal Sound to celebrate crossing the Antarctic Circle (66°33’S). If ice conditions allow, we may reach rarely-visited Marguerite Bay for a true Discovery Adventure.