Land of the Penguins

During the six expedition days on the Antarctica cruise, we made 8 different landings.

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Most of the stops provided a chance to get close up to different kinds of penguins.

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We also stopped at Arctowski, a polar research base on King George Island and had a quick look inside the base.

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Why isn’t everyone paying attention to the penguins? Well, there might be a baby seal around.

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Elephant seals can grow up to 6 metres in length and weigh up to 4 tonnes.

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We made an unscheduled stop in the pack ice and got to walk on frozen sea, which was an amazing experience.

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I’m not overly fond of flag-waving, but some other Australians had brought a flag with them and it does lend a certain visual flair to the photo. And since I had just stepped off a boat, and Australia is so welcoming of new arrivals by boat, I thought it was appropriate.

The expedition’s final stop before heading home was Deception Island. At first it seemed like we might miss out on landing due to strong winds, but fortunately we were able to go ashore. The island has been described as the mother lode for penguins and is home to more than 200,000 nesting penguins. There is a so-called penguin highway where the penguins make their way from the nests to the sea to collect fish or rocks (for making nests) from the sea.

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Then we went  around the other side of Deception Island to Whalers Bay.

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Some rather foolish people might have even gone for a swim in the icy water.

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Some of the guides put together a video with some images from the trip.

 

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