Quark Expeditions has announced the highly anticipated Legendary Snow Hill: March to the Emperor Penguins voyage. Exclusive to Quark, this remarkably rare opportunity to visit the Emperor penguin colony at Snow Hill Island is expedition travel in its truest form. Snow Hill is known for being one of the hardest destinations to reach on Earth as the area is capped in snow and ice almost all year round. The chance to get there is limited and there’s no telling when the trip can be offered again—if ever.
Quark was able to conduct its first ground visit to this isolated realm of the Emperor penguin in 2004. The last expedition was successfully completed eight years ago and has been brought into further spotlight during the filming of BBC’s documentary Frozen Planet. When the BBC filmed the series in 2009, they turned to Quark Expeditions for support.
Due to extreme weather and ice conditions, this destination can only be accessed by completing an adventurous journey aboard the Kapitan Khlebnikov, one of the world’s most powerful icebreakers, an exclusive helicopter ride and a final trek on foot, which gives travellers a real taste of how the first polar explorers must have felt when they braved Snow Hill.
Emperor penguins live a life only few animals could manage, but being the largest and strongest of its species, they are up for the challenges the pilgrimage brings every year. Quark visits the penguin colony early in the season, a perfect opportunity to see the chicks when they are still young and grouped together in communal daycares.
Thanks to the relaunch of this iconic polar trip, travellers get to witness one of the most captivating wildlife events in Antarctica during only four exclusive voyages in 2018 – an experience that will bring adventurers closer to the action than any wildlife documentary could ever do.
“Emperor penguins are geographically inaccessible birds and the window of opportunity for successful sightings is extremely narrow. The extreme conditions in early season in the region makes it next to impossible to get there. This unique and exciting polar adventure is back on our roster with the legendary Kapitan Khlebnikov, one of the most powerful icebreakers in the world,” explains Malcolm Ellis, senior vice president of
operations at Quark Expeditions.
“As the leader in polar adventures, we are beyond proud to be the only polar providers which ventured to the ultimate remoteness that is Snow Hill for the first time years ago. Now, we’re able to bring the experience back to the polar market in 2018. Our goal is to offer the most authentic experiences, and we believe that this expedition allows travellers to really capture the spirit of polar exploration at its best,” says Quark
Expeditions president Andrew White.
- Cross the infamous Drake Passage, the legendary rite of passage on the journey to the Antarctic
- Take a helicopter from the ship to the edge of the colony
- Continue the final trek by foot along a marked route
- Witness thousands of Emperor penguins and their chicks
- Be guided by some of Quark’s most seasoned and beloved expedition leaders including Solan Jensen, who was born and raised in coastal Alaska and calls the polar wilderness home, as well as Shane Evoy, who has been to Snow Hill more often than any other expedition leader and has led over 125 expeditions with Quark
- Listen to inspiring lectures from Bob Headland (Historian), Fabrice Genevois (Ornithologist and Naturalist), Dr Tom Hart (Penguinologist) and Sue Flood (Photographer)
- Experience the legendary Kapitan Khlebnikov, the only passenger ship to circumnavigate Antarctica—twice
Dates and rates
Four exclusive 14-day departures in 2018
- 6-19 October
- 18-31 October
- 30 October to 12 November
- 11-24 November
Cost: From $24,985