Last Updated on September 21, 2021 by

Ice in various shapes and shades of blue sparkle and shimmer under the midnight sun. A few crabeater seals and Gentoo penguins squawk and wiggle on the ice floes nearby, surrounded by water so crystal clear the reflection of the sun’s rays is almost blinding. It’s fiercely quiet; all we can hear are the crackling of the glaciers in the far distance and the snap and pop of the melting ice around us.

This is Antarctica. It’s harsh, remote, and truly far beyond. One can really get a sense of being at the edge of the world here – there’s hardly any sign of humanity, and we only saw one other ship during our 11-day expedition. Antarctica makes you feel like you’re the first person ever to have arrived, even on a ship with 120 other passengers. Aboard the G Adventures MS Expedition, we are voyeurs – taking a peek into a different world, one that belongs to Mother Earth.

Each day of our Antarctic expedition was better than the previous: from sailing into a playground of icebergs and glaciers at the start of the voyage, to watching Antarctica light up in bright vermilion at midnight the next, and cruising alongside playful whales towards the end of the trip. Through our cabin windows, I awoke to mammoth icebergs and jagged sharp peaks surrounding us.

Our first landing on Dangor Island

Our first landing on Danco Island and we were surrounded by rookeries of Gentoo penguins.

An enormous iceberg with arcs and curves

On our way back to the Drake Passage, we came across these massive icebergs that were bigger than our ship. This one in particular had beautiful arches and curves.

Cruising in Lemaire Channel

Cruising into Lemaire Channel aboard the MS Expedition

One of the glaciers that fall off the edge of the Antarctic continent

 A close up on one of the glaciers that spill out from the Antarctic continent

An iceberg in turquoise water

The water is so clear that you can see the extension of the iceberg deep into the water

Kayakers paddling through ice

Kayakers paddling through ice at Paradise Bay

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Wedding photo

This couple from Hongkong are on their honeymoon and had the brilliant idea of bringing their wedding suits along for an impromptu photo shoot.

Crabeater seals

The silky fur of the crabeater seal shimmers under the bright sunlight

Zodiac right next to the Weddell Seal

Look how close we got to the crabeater seal on our zodiac – the seal could barely be bothered by us and continued snoozing

Yawning

This elephant seal on King George Island belched and burped over a dozen times as I watched it in awe

Minke whale at Paradise Bay

Several minke whales playfully swam alongside our zodiac at Paradise Bay

A gentoo couple in love

Holding hands and looking into each other’s eyes, this pair of Gentoo penguins look like they’re in love

A chinstrap penguin

 A chinstrap penguin waddles along the beach at Turret Point on King George Island.

The Penguin Highway

At the penguin highway, watching the gentoos busy at work.

Spectacular sunset off Dangor Island

 Antarctica on fire as the sun washed everything in vermilion that evening at Port Lockroy

Midnight at Lemaire Channel

Midnight at Peltier Channel – both the sun and moon made an appearance that night.


Disclaimer: I traveled with G Adventures on the Antarctica Classic In Depth (XVAESX) trip as a part of the Wanderers In Residence program, but all opinions expressed here are entirely my own. Follow my journey on this blog, or on Twitter with the #WJAntarctica hashtag.