Polar Regions Antarctica Cruise

Antarctic Express: Fly the Drake

Time. Rough seas. There are many reasons to fly to Antarctica, skipping the customary sea crossing of the Drake Passage. This Antarctic Express: Fly the Drake cruise shaves up to 100 hours off your trip, flying directly from southern Chile to King George Island in the South Shetlands. This quick 3-hour flight crossing won’t reduce the scale of your adventure—you’ll first experience breathtaking aerial views then join the ship with camera ready to spot wildlife and ice while exploring the Antarctic Peninsula. Beaches dotted with leopard seals and penguins give way to icy plateaus with snowcapped mountains looming behind. Cruise in a Zodiac in search of whales, search the skies for seabirds and perhaps paddle amongst blue icebergs.

In addition to the main Antarctic Express: Fly the Drake itinerary that cruises over 8 days, there are 10-day options that cruise one way, either beginning or ending in Ushuaia, Argentina. There is also a longer 11-day option that includes the opportunity to cross the Antarctic Circle. Two small ships operate the itineraries: the 138-guest Ocean Explorer and the 172-passenger World Explorer. Each departure includes up-close exploration on guided hikes, shore walks and small craft excursions. Optional activities (additional cost) include kayaking, one-time paddling excursions and stand-up paddleboarding.

Find yourself in near-constant sunlight, flying high above the legendary Drake Passage. Some believe sailing the Drake is a rite of passage, but others enjoy the smooth 3-hour flight before setting foot on the 7th Continent.

Read on for details about this trip, or learn more about AdventureSmith’s Antarctica cruises and trips to Antarctica, including even more ways to fly the Drake Passage.