Leisure & Travel
by Aspect County

Walk in the footsteps of the world’s greatest explorers

Ultra-luxury cruise operator Scenic has announced three new Scenic Eclipse II voyages in the East Antarctic and Ross Sea region. The new itineraries will give guests the opportunity to walk in the footsteps of the world’s greatest explorers including Dr Douglas Mawson, Robert Scott and Sir Ernest Shackleton. Scenic guests will be among just a few who make it that far south each year, immersing themselves in wild landscapes teeming with seabirds, penguins, whales and seal species.

SE Guest Weddell Sea 001

Exclusive to only a limited number of guests per season, three new itineraries are included in the 2024/2025 programme, each allowing guests to experience regions traditionally unexplored and unavailable to exploration cruise lines. 

The 28-day Mawson’s Hut & Commonwealth Bay, Australia’s Antarctic Expedition sailing from the spectacular Milford Sound fjord on New Zealand South Island to Hobart, Tasmania

  • Highlights include:
    A visit to the Mawson’s Huts complex at Cape Denison, Commonwealth Bay, in the far eastern sector of the Australian Antarctic Territory. The buildings here were built and occupied by the Australasian Antarctic Expedition of 1911 – 14, led by geologist and explorer Dr Douglas Mawson, a close friend and contemporary of Sir Ernest Shackleton. The site is one of just six still surviving from the so-called heroic era’ of Antarctic exploration.
  • Subject to permits, Scenic Eclipse II will make a landing on Macquarie Island, ones of the most wildlife rich places in the world, giving guests the chance to see the endemic royal penguins.

Scenic Eclipse Antarctica 1

  • The 28-day Antarctica’s Ross Sea: Both itineraries (weather permitting) include a visit to Ross Island, the ultimate in Antarctic experience. Here, on a clear day guests can view Mount Erebus, the southernmost active volcano on Earth and visit the historical hut of Sir Ernest Shackleton.
  • The Ross Sea Ice Shelf is the largest floating body of ice on the planet, estimated to be the size of France, with cliffs of up to 50 metres and ice extending across 800 kilometres.
  • On Cape Adare, guests will be able to take a Zodiac trip to marvel at the largest Adélie penguin rookery in Antarctica, while the volcanic past of Franklin Island offers another opportunity to explore the Adélie penguins and otherworldly landscapes such as the Mars-like Dry Valley, only accessible by helicopter.

Emperor Penguin Snow Hill Island 008

Claudius Docekal, VP Scenic Ocean Deployment, commented: We have introduced these new voyages in response to travellers’ demand for exclusive destinations combined with ultra-luxury experiences. 

Catering to a maximum of 200 guests, the Ultra-Luxury Discovery Yachts feature an impressive array of indoor and outdoor spaces for an intimate ultra-luxury voyage, whilst offering the opportunity for guests to take part in multiple landings each day.

During each Expedition Voyage, the onboard 20-strong Scenic Eclipse Discovery Team, compromising naturalists, marine biologists, and glaciologists, are on hand to enrich every site visit, while Zodiac, kayak and stand-up paddleboard excursions present a low-impact way to explore. Alternatively, guests can choose to take to the skies in one of two state-of-the-art helicopters or venture below the ocean’s surface in a custom-built submersible for an incomparable exploration.