For the everyday tourist an expedition cruise sounds pretty risky….not so. The fleet of expedition ships that ply the Antarctic waters are far more comfortable than Shackleton would have ever imagined. Embarking in Ushuaia, Argentina you’ll find Russian icebreakers, refitted scientific ships, luxury yachts, converted Norwegian ferry ships and a various assortment of other types of cruise vessels headed south into the turbulent Drake Passage. Be sure to check that the ship you choose has excellent stabilizers. These make all the difference in rough waters. And for the most part you will experience rough waters either going or coming back from the Antarctic peninsula. Don’t let that deter you though, remember that the journey itself is at the heart of your travels. Anyone can handle smooth sailing but if you have an exciting crossing you will have a lot more stories to exaggerate when you return home. With all the various methods of preventing motion sickness available today, if you are smart and prepare ahead of time, it should’nt be any problem what-so-ever. Relax and enjoy the ride. And don’t worry, once you pass the Drake the waters are similar to the Alaskan Inside Passage. Surrounded by mountains, glaciers and huge icebergs cruising is an ultimate joy.
Expedition ships have a host of naturalist staff constantly available to fill your head with a myriad of details about all the sites you’ll see. Marine Biologists will familiarize you with the creatures of the sea, historians will breathe life into the explorers of the region and birders will endoctrine you to the antics of penguins and fantastic journeys of the great Wandering Albatross. I recommend that you check out a great website- http://www.polarcruises.com/antarctica/ the folks here are the ultimate experts for the various cruises, ships and operators for a great adventure to Antarctica. Don’t be shy, you don’t have to be an explorer to join an expedition.