5 Reasons to visit Antarctica
It seems visiting Antarctica in your life time becomes an urgency due to disappearing landscapes and declining wildlife. I ask one thing from you though. When you decide to travel into the unknown you have to promise to yourself to protect the environment by only using small, expedition ships (under 200 passenger).
These vessels are more innovative and sustainable with better technology not to mention their flexibility. If you are deeply fascinated by this land you would want to spend more than a couple of days there while you want to reach places large cruise liners cannot.
So, why would you travel to Antarctica?
Here are some suggestions.
As the climate gets hotter Antarctica’s icebergs starts to break off and eventually melt making it harder to reach ice sheets previously was possible. You do not have to worry about not seeing icebergs and snow in Antarctica though but the damage is obviously visible – especially for those are exposed to the snowy environment for a longer period.
Best time to travel to Antarctica is in the summer months of November to March when the sunlight is up 24 hours a day and the wildlife is the most active.
If you are an adventure seeker you should really try Antarctica. And not just for the sake of observation but for engaging in various activities. I would definitely try sea kayaking there even though I have never tried ‘normal’ kayaking. It is just for the purpose of the thrill to experience something you have never experienced before. And why not in the Antarctic.
Also, Zodiac – an inflatable boat – looks fun to ride passing by enormous ice formations and watch wildlife activities onshore and from the boat.
If you have ever been to a country with snow capped high peak mountains like Alaska or Switzerland you know the feeling of being surrounded by these beautiful nature. Antarctica differs from the above mentioned places due to its vast icy landmasses without any trees or plants around. It’s just you, the ice and your tour companion. Even though it is very cold exploring the unknown will ease your pain and let you absorb the scenery you can only imagine.
I do not know about you but I am fascinated about animals and if we are talking about Antarctica I am especially attracted to the Emperor penguins. These are the largest penguin species in the world. While they look beautiful they are also funny how they walk. For me a trip just to see these animals would be worth the money.
They breed in the middle of winter between April and December close to the coast on sea ice. Most of the colonies are found on frozen ice all around the coasts of Antarctica so you have a good chance to see them. Apparently, they extraordinary divers and can hold their breath for 22 minutes. What is more interesting is their breeding ritual. The mother lays the eggs in the beginning of winter passing the rest of the responsibility onto the male penguins after. While the males keep the eggs warm on the their feet in a special skin for 4 months in the middle of the coldest and darkest months of winter the mothers go back to the sea and only come back at around when the chicks were born.
You can also see seals (leopard and elephant), whales (orca and blue), other type of penguins, snow petrels and birds like albatross.
If you are into photography going on a tour to Antarctica would be one of your best bet. First of all, not many people can visit those places you are just doing and snapping photos of wildlife would be a rare and unique moment. So, you have to be ready to grab your camera and take a shoot of those seconds. I personally would love to have a picture with an emperor penguin but since you can not take a photo of yourself nor touch any animals someone else has to do it for you. Being friendly and make friends on an expedition cruise has its advantages.
These are the tour companies we feel we can suggest without hesitation due to their contribution to the environment, following strict guidelines, safety standards and their high quality education onboard.
1. Oceanwide Expeditions – www.https://oceanwide-expeditions.com/
2. Hurtigruten – https://www.hurtigruten.com/
3. Lindblad Expeditions – https://www.expeditions.com/
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About Lexi Randazzo
Lexi is the founder of Travel Forever, a sustainable travel company and she blogs about responsible travel, fun facts about travel and travel tips to travel more sustainably.