MS Roald Amundsen sails into the Hurtigruten fleet in Spring 2019. This state-of-the-art expedition ship features new and environmentally-friendly hybrid technology and electrical power, which reduces fuel usage and CO2-emissions. Setting sail with a maximum of 530 passengers on board; you'll soon feel at home in your modern and well-equipped sea-facing cabin or suite and get to know your travelling companions and the resident crew and Expedition Team. The laid-back and friendly on-board lifestyle and the casual dress code are equally matched by the locally-inspired and tasty cuisine. The focus is very much on what you can experience ashore and the on and off ship activities. Spend your days at sea relaxing on the outdoor explorer deck and enjoying the views from the observation lounge. Work out in the fitness room and take a brisk stroll around the outdoor walking deck, before enjoying some downtime in the wellness area.
The cuisine on board is locally-sourced and made from the freshest of ingredients. Take your seat in the T Alune Main Dining restaurant at breakfast, lunch, and dinner to enjoy first-class service and a varied menu of starters, main courses, and desserts. Pay a small supplement to dine on gourmet fare in the Fredheim and Lindstrom Restaurants.
Explorer Lounge & Bar on Deck Ten is the social hub of the ship. From your morning coffee through to pre-dinner drinks and late evening nightcaps; this is the place to mix with your fellow passengers and take in the ever-changing outside views.
The entertainment on board MS Roald Amundsen is relaxed and low-key. The Expedition Team host a programme of enrichment talks and evening get-togethers; while out on deck they guide you through the points of interest, nature, and other fascinating sights. Enjoy ambient background music in the evening as you socialise with your fellow guests in the lounge and bar.
Day 1: Fly from the UK to Santiago de Chile and onward to Valparaiso
Fly from London to Santiago de Chile and transfer from airport to Valparaiso to join MS Roald Amundsen. This expedition starts in the wonderful, colourful, and poetic city of Valparaíso. One of the best ways of seeing this scenic city is by funicular; step aboard and admire sweeping views of the bay and the multi-coloured houses. Stroll through Valparaiso´s narrow streets, climb its many staircases, and discover a beautiful building, a remarkable art gallery, or some little gastronomic ‘find’ at each turn. Explore the port and fishing piers to get a real feel for Chile’s quirky seafaring history. Sample freshly-caught seafood at the market and enjoy the fishermen’s banter. A visit to the UNESCO-listed Historic Quarter is another must-do before embarking on MS Roald Amundsen.
Day 2 to 3: Sailing south - At sea
As the ship makes its way along the Pacific coast of Chile, the expedition team will commence the lecture program to prepare you for the experiences ahead. Explore the history and wildlife of the area at various workshops and presentations. Spend some time on deck to enjoy the fresh sea air and to catch sight of the wildlife. You'll also have plenty of time to make yourself at home on the expedition vessel and take advantage of the onboard facilities.
Day 4: Cosmopolitan Castro
Step ashore in Castro on Isla Grande de Chiloé. The city is famous for its colourful 'palafitos', wooden houses mounted on stilts along the water's edge. Enjoy the local Chilote character and curious energy, mixed with a dash of modern development, in this fascinating city. Visit the UNESCO-listed Iglesia San Francisco, bright yellow and orange with a lavender trim outside. The varnished-wood interior is stunning and the rows of stained-glass windows light up the space on a sunny day. Explore Plazuela del Tren by the waterfront with its odd collection of old trains. Stroll through the Cementerio Parroquial to view the grand and ornately-decorated tombs or stop by the lively Feria Campesina Yumbel fruit and vegetable market. Pay a visit to Feria Artesanal Lillo just south of the port to purchase hand-knitted woollen goods and handicrafts. Take a seat to taste the renowned meat, potato and seafood stew at one of the cafes and restaurants on Calle Blanco. Alternatively, you can join the excursion to the Chiloé National Park. Go trekking in this largely unexplored evergreen forest to discover the unique fauna, wide and deserted beaches, and the rugged coastline, home to dozens of seabird species, sea lions, and penguins.
Day 5: Waters of Patagonia - At Sea
The expedition continues south through the famous waters of Patagonia and onwards to one of the world’s most remote, undisturbed, and beautiful places: the southern province of Ultima Esperanza. As the ship sails through iconic Andean seascapes, you'll have plenty of time to gaze out on the glassy expanse of nature. You can also take part in trivia contests about explorer history and Antarctic wildlife or bid for lots in an auction to raise funds for specific causes such as the South Georgia restoration project, protection of the Albatross, and maintenance of Antarctica's research stations.
Day 6: Puerto Edén
After an unforgettable cruise through the Patagonian waters, the ship drops anchor at the unique village of Puerto Edén in Bernardo O’Higgins National Park. The isolated Puerto Edén is situated at the end of a deep fjord and surrounded by mountains and is a great place to experience the traditional indigenous culture of Patagonian tribes. The villagers sell fish, mussels, and shellfish products, which are taken to markets by a weekly transport boat. Buy traditional Kawéskar crafts such as wicker baskets and boats made from sea lion skins and tree bark to take home as souvenirs. Enjoy a stroll among the laneways and keep your eyes peeled for one of the many Magellan hummingbirds or you can join the expedition team for a hiking or kayaking adventure.
Days 7 to 8: Torres del Paine National Park - Puerto Natale
Puerto Natales is the gateway to the world-renowned Torres del Paine National Park, one of the world's most attractive national parks. View the park's colossal and unique impressive rock formation - Torres del Paine - which are made up of the Torre Central (9,186 feet high), Torre Sur (9,350 feet) and Torre Norte (7,375 feet). Hike through these amazing surroundings and gaze in awe at the azure lakes, emerald forests, roaring rivers, radiant blue glacier, and rich fauna and flora. You might also catch sight of llamas, pumas, chilla foxes, and skunks plus more than 100 species of birds like the Andean condor and black-chested buzzard eagle.
Day 9: A paradise for nature enthusiasts - Chilean Fjords
Nature enthusiasts will be enthralled by the channels, fjords, and mountains that plunge into the icy waters as the cruise continues through the Chilean fjords. This wild and remote area seems almost untouched by humans; the ice has eroded the mountains, creating the isolated islands and hidden bays that form Chile's unique fjord landscape. The snow-capped mountains and steep valleys offer a striking contrast to the otherwise very green area that is rich in wildlife.
Days 10 to 11: Cape Horn and the Drake Passage - At sea
This morning Roald Amundsen will sail through the Beagle Channel, named after the ship that carried Charles Darwin on his voyage of discovery – HMS Beagle. Continuing into open waters, and if the sometimes-extreme conditions allow, you may be able to step ashore on Cape Horn – the southernmost point of Chile and South America that lies almost 56 degrees south, marking the boundary between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and the northern end of the Drake Passage. The region is significant thanks to its location, history, discoveries, and trade routes. The cruise then continues over the Drake Passage, where two oceans meet, en-route to Antarctica. You can learn a great deal about Antarctica’s fantastic animals and history on the way through these notorious straits. The Drake Passage connects the southern Atlantic and Pacific oceans and is the point where the warm water from the north meets the cold, less salty water from the south; making it rich in both nutrients and unique marine life.
Days 12 to 15: The white wonder that is Antarctica
Weather, wind and ice conditions will have a great influence on the cruise programme and schedule and your experienced expedition team will select possible landing sites that will provide you with the best experiences available. It is easy to make the most of your days thanks to the long hours of daylight in Antarctica at this time of the year. Hopefully, you'll get the chance to land on sites both on the South Shetland Islands and on the Antarctic Peninsula and get up close to the wildlife and unexpected sights. Maybe you'll get to visit the Gentoo penguin rookeries on Cuverville Island and Neko Harbour, sail through the unique Lemaire Channel, and take on the challenging hike on Petermann Island. Port Lockroy, an old British base with a museum, is another fun destination to explore if weather permits. Spectacular views of tabular icebergs and glacial landscapes await as the ship sails through the Antarctic Sound and you can also see the distinct rock formation at Brown Bluff. The sturdy PolarCirkel boats will enable you to go ashore almost anywhere and explore bays and channels. The expedition team will explain what you see and ensure that as little as possible is done to disturb the local wildlife. From kayaking in untouched waters, guided hikes up snowy pathways, listening to the sounds of glaciers calving or penguins squabbling, spending the night on deck or in a tent ashore, or taking the polar plunge swim - this place is a real treat for the senses. Every day will be different and carefully crafted by the expedition team to educate you and create unforgettable memories.
Days 16 to 17: Crossing the Drake Passage - At sea
After four unforgettable days in Antarctica, MS Roald Amundsen takes you safely back across the famous Drake Passage. The voyage from the Antarctic Peninsula to the southern tip of Argentina is roughly 950km or 40 hours sailing time in good weather. During the voyage north, the team will carry on their lecture series and recap your experiences of Antarctica.
Day 18: Punta Arenas, Santiago de Chile
Day 19: Flying back to the UK
Transfer from your Santiago hotel to the airport for your return flight to the UK.