Unexplored Antarctica between Two Continents on Le Commandant Charcot
Overnight in Santiago + flight Santiago/Ushuaia + transfers + flight Dunedin/Auckland
Charcot, Bellingshausen, Dean, Fisher, Ross, Amundsen… Aboard Le Commandant Charcot, the names of these legendary explorers resonate at every moment. Thanks to its unique capacity to sail into the very heart of the ice, Le Commandant Charcot invites you, with respect and humility, to set off in the footsteps of these great Antarctic figures during an all-new and unrivalled half-circumnavigation that will sail from the far south of the American continent to New Zealand.
Antarctic exploration cannot be separated from the pioneers who travelled in these territories at the edges of the Earth. They left their names everywhere. Inaccessible and elusive are certainly the adjectives that best describe these lands that are among our planet’s most little-known and remote. Like a real explorer, you will cross the legendary southern seas of Bellingshausen and Amundsen, approach Marie Byrd Land, one of the last Terra nullius of our planet, and attempt to reach the Charcot and Peter I Islands, enveloped in their blankets of ice. Very significant in the history of South Pole exploration, Ross Sea is also the world’s largest marine protected area, the kingdom of prodigious wildlife. As a privileged witness, keep a watchful eye and observe the Antarctic petrels, whales, orcas, seals and penguins that are to be found here.
The power of the polar world will conquer you, leaving you with unforgettable memories of the impressive Drygalski glacier scattered with blue, the endless and constant Ross Ice Shelf, the majestic Witkins and Getz ice shelves, and the ice floe taking over the Amundsen Sea. Here and there, you will notice clues to the past presence of Shackleton and Scott who have forever marked this continent of extremes with their historic exploits. At the foot of Mount Erebus, the highest volcano in Antarctica, their memory becomes tangible: the former base camp has remained intact.
We are privileged guests in these extreme lands where we are at the mercy of weather and ice conditions. Our navigation will be determined by the type of ice we come across; as the coastal ice must be preserved, we will take this factor into account from day to day in our itineraries. The sailing schedule and any landings, activities and wildlife encounters are subject to weather and ice conditions. These experiences are unique and vary with each departure. The Captain and the Expedition Leader will make every effort to ensure that your experience is as rich as possible, while respecting safety instructions and regulations imposed by the IAATO.
An eco-friendly sailing
PONANT’s latest addition to the fleet, Le Commandant Charcot - the very first luxury hybrid electric polar exploration ship powered by liquified natural gas, is the epitome of responsible and sustainable sailing. Safe and low impact polar navigation is her area of expertise, taking advantage of the latest innovations and even developing new, market-leading technologies and solutions to make Le Commandant Charcot one of the most advanced polar vessels at sea today.
The art of polar navigation
Le Commandant Charcot is the world's first passenger ship to be fitted with a Polar Class 2 (PC2) hull. This gives it the ability to sail between the sheets of drifting sea ice and reach the most remote and isolated regions, when conditions allow. Protecting the polar ecosystems and the coastal sea ice – a vital habitat for marine wildlife – is our priority. Expertise, innovation, humility before nature, cooperation with local peoples and ensuring a minimal impact on the environment are the fundamental concepts behind responsible exploration.
Pioneer of safety regulations in the polar regions
The rescue and safety equipment developed and designed from scratch by PONANT for Le Commandant Charcot (Ice Cube, group survival kit, floating polar shelters and survival suits) currently exceed the existing safety criteria established by the tourism industry as well as the military, raise the bar for maritime safety and standards in polar tourism, and help experts across the world to devise new safety strategies.
PONANT is the World Leader in Luxury Expeditions with ultra-modern, intimate ships, offering attentive service and well-designed itineraries that touch all corners of the globe. Every cruise is a blend of adventure, exploration, and discovery—all experienced in luxurious comfort, even in the heart of extreme landscapes.
Why cruise with PONANT?
• 12 luxury small ships, able to easily navigate small waterways and visit remote destinations not accessible by large cruise ships.
• Le Commandant Charcot, the world’s first luxury hybrid-electric polar exploration yacht, sails further into the polar regions (including the Geographic North Pole).
• The youngest expedition fleet afloat.
• The leader in luxury polar expeditions for over 20 years and cultural cruising for over 30 years.
• Over 400 awe-inspiring cruises, calling at over 450 ports on all seven continents.
• Experts on board our voyages of discovery and learning to enrich guests’ understanding of the destinations.
• An exclusive partnership with Smithsonian Journeys, the the travel program of the Smithsonian Institution.
• Understated elegance on board with French-inspired cuisine, fine wines, and chic design.
• Proud to partner with Sothys, Veuve Clicquot, and Ducasse Conseil. Ships feature fabrics by Pierre Frey, beauty products from Hermès, macarons by Ladurée, and tea from Palais des Thés.
• 100% of our staterooms have a sea view and 95% have a balcony (100% on the PONANT EXPLORERS).
• Attentive yet discreet service from an experienced, multilingual onboard staff and crew.
• Open bridge access (requires approval from Captain).
• “Clean Ship” certification for the fleet in recognition of their eco-friendly features.
• All-inclusive pricing with open bar, gratuities, port fees, and taxes (including Zodiac explorations/landings on expeditions).
• The world’s first underwater passenger lounge, the Blue Eye, featured exclusively on the PONANT EXPLORER ships.
|2||Crossing The Drake Passage|
|3||Crossing The Drake Passage|
|4||Crossing The Antarctic Circle|
|5||Exploration Of Charcot Island|
|7||Exploration Of Peter I Island|
|9||Marie Byrd Land Exploration|
|10||Marie Byrd Land Exploration|
|11||Marie Byrd Land Exploration|
|12||Marie Byrd Land Exploration|
|13||Marie Byrd Land Exploration|
|14||Marie Byrd Land Exploration|
|15||Marie Byrd Land Exploration|
|16||The Ross Sea Exploration|
|17||Crossing The International Date Line|
|18||The Ross Sea Exploration|
|19||The Ross Sea Exploration|
|20||The Ross Sea Exploration|
|21||The Ross Sea Exploration|
|22||The Ross Sea Exploration|
|23||At Sea Aboard Le Commandant Charcot|
|25||At Sea Aboard Le Commandant Charcot|
|26||At Sea Aboard Le Commandant Charcot|
|27||At Sea Aboard Le Commandant Charcot|
|28||At Sea Aboard Le Commandant Charcot|