Sailing Expedition to Antarctica

Aboard the Santa Maria Australis


Puerto Williams/ Chile - Antarctica

Polar sailing expedition with the Santa Maria Australis

22-days Antarctic Expedition (EX22-551):
Chile – Beagle Canal – Drake-Passage – Shetland Islands – Antarctica – Drake-Passage – Puerto Williams

Price: from 11.980 EUR

Travel broschure for the season 2024.

    What to expect on a polar expedition?

    Expeditionsreise Antarktis

    This unique sailing expedition to Antarctica will create unforgettable and unique impressions, its effects and experiences are very hard to put into words. From Puerto Williams/Chile, the Santa Maria Australis follows the traditional sailing route taken by brave explorers over centuries. She first sails eastwards along the Beagle Channel, then southwards to cross the Drake Passage.

    Regardless of the weather or the time of day we reach Antarctica, the landscape remains incredibly bright, even when the sun disappears just briefly beyond the horizon.

    Depending on the conditions, you will explore the northern areas of the Antarctic Peninsula and then choose the best places to experience the incredible amount of wildlife of the South Pole - birds, penguins, seals and whales.

    How to spend time on an Antarctic Expedition?

    No matter if you're more of an active person or just want to soak up the magic of an Antarctic expedition, there's a huge variety of things to enjoy there: Hiking, tubing around the icebergs, snowshoeing, visiting penguin colonies or simply spending time on the ice.

    On the SV Santa Maria Australis, we know from many years of experience that 3 weeks is the minimum for such an Antarctic expedition adventure. To visit these silent and untouched places that are only accessible by ships like the Santa Maria Australis, and to experience them in all their depth, even 4 weeks are recommended. This is a particularly important requirement to fully immerse yourself in this incredible and unique place. It seems a lot, but at second glance you will understand that 3 weeks is a comprehensible minimum to adequately process all the impressions.


    Antarktis Forschungsreise

    The observation of wildlife begins at the arrival at Fireland. On the sailing route through the Beagle Canal, the Drake Passage and Antarctica there is a rich and unique amount of animals in their natural habitat to be observed. 

    Birds: You can discover birds from the south american continent, seabirds from the Drake Passage and special birds of the Antarctica. 

    Penguins: In the water of Fireland you can discover the Magellan penguins. But the really big colonies of the gentoo penguins, chinstrap penguins and Adelie penguins are only seen in the depths of Antarctica. 

    Seals: There are two kinds of seals which can be seen in Antarctica, the bigger variety of the ear seal and the Weddell seal. 

    Whales: You can see whales during the whole Summer - even in the Beagle Canal and at Kap Hoorn. Nevertheless you will only get to see big colonies in the depths of Antarctica. There are humpback whales, sei whales, fin whales, killer whales (Orcas) and sometimes the magestic blue whale. If they are curious or being fed you can observe them for hours.

    Video gallery

    Puerto Williams/ Chile - Antarctica

    Polar sailing expedition with the Santa Maria Australis


    Puerto Williams/ Chile - Antarctica

    Polar sailing expedition with the Santa Maria Australis

    Itinerary, Day 1-11

    Antarktis Segeltörn

    Day 1: Puerto Williams
    Already at the beginning of your antarctic sailing expedition, before landing in Puerto Williams, you will see the fascinating beauty of the region with its many glaciers. It´s the southernmost city in the world and the starting point of your antarctic expedition.
    The journey leads you from Santiago to Punta Arenas, from where you will fly with the local airline DAP via the Darwin Cordilliera and the Beagle Channel to Puerto Williams.
    A member of the team of SIM Expedition will pick you up at the airport and bring you to the Micalvi Yacht Club, where you will meet your fellow passengers.
    The skipper welcomes you on board of the Santa Maria Australis and introduces you to the ship. As soon as the weather conditions allow, your epic sailing expedition through the Beagle Channel begins.

    Day 2: Puerto Williams - Caleta Lennox

    Day 3 - 5: Drake Passage
    Today you sail through the Drake Passage, passing Bahia Nassau and the famous Cape Horn. While sailing through the Drake Passage your participation is assumed. After passing the antarctic convergence zone the water temperatur falls from 5° to 1° Celsius. The water becomes green and rich in species.

    Day 6: Deception Island
    Further to the south there is the ring-shaped Deception Island. Your ship sails right into the island’s impressive crater. At Pendulum Cave, a bay formerly used by whalers, you can experience the unique features of the island during an excursion or, in case of good weather, even have a bath in one of the warm springs at the beach. Furthermore it is possible to visit the biggest colony of chinstrap penguins of the antarctic peninsula at Bailey’s Head.

    Day 7: Bransfield Strait - Gerlache Strait - Enterprise Island
    Today, you will pass Bransfield Strait and visit Cierva Cove with its impressive icebergs. With a little bit of luck you will be able to spot a humpback whale. The mammals are frequently visitors of the Gerlache Strait. Afterwards the Santa Maria Australis berths at Enterprise Island. Its gravel beaches and sandy slopes are the habitat for a lot of different plants and wildlife that can be observed, for example elephant seals, nesting penguins, king cormorants, giant petrels and whales.

    Day 8: Cuverville Island
    Your south pole expedition takes you to Cuverville Island, which is characterized by its glaciers and steep cliffs. It is populated by a variety of seafowl. The island as well offers a splendid view of the Errera Channel and the Gerlache Strait. For this journey, this is your chance for a last kayak trip with antarctic sunset. 

    Day 9: Cuverville - chilean González Videla Antartic Base - Paradise Bay

    Day 10: Paradise Bay - Le Maire Strait - Port Pleneau
    Today, the Santa Maria Australis sails to Paradise Bay where you can observe leopard seals, penguins and whales. You will make a trip with a Zodiac rubber dinghy and visit the chilean station Videla. 

    Day 11: Port Pleneau - Argentine Islands
    You visit the Akademik Vernadsky Research Station, the southernmost point of your epic expedition.

    Itinerary, Day 12-22

    Antarktis mit dem Segelschiff

    Day 12: Peterman Island - Port Lockroy
    Today you will pass the Lemaire Channel, also called the Kodak Gap, where you will be surrounded by cliffs up to 1.000m high. You sail to the Circumcision Bay on Peterman Island. There you can discover the bizarre landscape by kayak or Zodiac rubber boat.
    The sailing ship berths at one of the most beautiful places of Antartica. You visit Port Lockroy. The british harbour shelters a museum and the only post office of the antarctic continent. The island hosts a colony of gentoo penguins which occasionally even nests on the footway of the office.

    Day 13: Port Lockroy - Dorian Bay

    Day 14: Dorian Bay - Melchior Islands

    Day 15: Melchior Islands
    Here, you will check the weather conditions for the crossing of the Drake Passage.

    Day 16 - 18: Drake Passage
    Organisation of the shift for the lookout station (2 persons - each 2-4 hours)

    Day 19: Tierra del Fuego
    Depending on the weather conditions, you will get the chance to visit Cape Horn. The Santa Maria Australis will berth at Caletta Martial or Caletta Lennox.

    Day 20: Caletta Banner
    A day to relax before crossing the Drake Passage.

    Day 21: Puerto Williams
    Arrival at Puerto Williams. Big celebration of your successful and unforgettable Antarctica expedition at the Micalvi club house.

    Day 22: Ending of the expedition
    Disembarkation and flight to Punta Arenas.

    Ship description

    Puerto Williams/ Chile - Antarctica

    Polar sailing expedition with the Santa Maria Australis

    Santa Maria Australis

    Ship type: Hydra Duo 66
    Yard: Euro Aluship Ltd Gdansk
    Long: 20,20 m
    Width: 5,50 m
    Draught: 2,30 m
    Year of built: 1998
    Sail area: 222,00 qm
    Fuel: 5,100 Liter
    Cabins: 4
    Capacity: 12 Passengers

    The Santa Maria Australis sails under German flag with home port Berlin. She reached the high southern latitudes in 2006 and to date has completed over 40 successful Antarctic expeditions.


    Puerto Williams/ Chile - Antarctica

    Polar sailing expedition with the Santa Maria Australis

    For booking your Sailing Expedtion with the SANTA MARIA AUSTRALIS, please send back the following documents (see the links for the pdf-files) filled-out and signed best by email or fax:

    After receiving your booking forms, we will send you the booking confirmation and invoice whereupon a deposit of 1/3 is due. The second third is payable until 3 months prior departure and the last third until 1.5 months prior departure. If you pay from outside the EURO-zone, paying by credit card might be the cheapest option. But still we have to charge a non-refundable credit card fee of 2.5%.

    Further Documents required not later than 30 days prior departure (without those it will not be possible for the skipper to accept you for the expedition):

    • Expedition Medical Form: The earliest 60 days prior departure. It might be helpful to fill out the form together with your medical doctor.
    • Travel Health Insurance
    • Fully vaccinated against covid-19 or a negativ PCR-Test (not earlier than 48 hours prior departure)
    • Waiver of Liability

    For further details we refer to:

    Besides to those please read the following leaflets and explanatory notes referring our behaviour at the Antarctica, how to protect the environment and reduce our ecolocical footprint:

    You will travel on a modern Sailing Vessel. Please keep in mind, that safety first is the highest priority for all sailors on board. For this reason the exact route cannot be predicted and has to be adjusted by the captain/ skipper continuously according to the conditions - for the well-being of the whole team.

    Travel Specific comments

    Payment Terms

    • 1/3 of the payment is due with the booking
    • 1/3 to be paid 3 months prior to departure
    • 1/3 one month prior to departure is due

    Included within the price:

    • Accommodation within the booked cabin
    • Heating on board
    • Food and beverages (Coffee and Tea)
    • Linen: Synthetic duvet and cover, pillow, pillow case and towel
    • All port entry, exit and landing fees whilst on board
    • 110v, 240 and 12v AC for charging electronics (such as computer, cell phone, camera, iPod, etc.) please check your owner’s manual for specifics
    • Diesel and consumables for yacht and inflatable Zodiac boat operations
    • CO2-Offset via atmosfair

    Not included:

    • Rubber boots, sailing and shore hiking boots, sailing suits and snow shoes
    • Winter clothing
    • Sleeping bag if required for shore activities
    • Specific food for onshore expeditions
    • Beverages from the bar
    • Personal medical supplies
    • Transmission costs for satellite phone calls and email connections (see communication agreement)
    • Travel costs to and from port of departure and arrival
    • Travel insurance for remote areas
    • Travel cancelation insurance

    Embarkation is around noon, disembarkation by 9 am on the day of departure.

    General advice

    Weather and ice conditions are a constant changing parameter, and are an integral part of travelling in the South. Depending on the conditions at the time, the itinerary may be adapted accordingly to maximise the experience for everyone on board and to ensure the safety of the vessel and personnel.

    The agency 'SLOWTRAVEL experience' is not the organizer, rather the agent of this travel. Therefore the Terms & Conditions of the shipping company are applicable.

    For further information please do not hesitate to contact us. Changes and errors excepted!