Discovering the wonders of Antarctica

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March 8

Yep, that’s an iceberg. Today we really discovered the wonders of the Antarctic!

We awoke to find ourselves sailing in front of the South Shetland Islands – huge, mountainous islands of ice, snow and dark rock. Wildlife dotted all along the shores.

Finally, we were able to put all our hard work from kayak training into practise. Plonking down the gangway, and then cruising along in a zodiac, we made our way out to the calm waters of Yankee Bay on Greenwich Island. Getting into a kayak from over the side of a zodiac is much easier than we’d imagined (with many hands to help). Seals and penguins watched us from the shore, as we paddled around the coast.

One Ocean Expeditions

Antarctic birdlife

It was such an amazing experience to be able to see Chinstrap and Gentu penguins, fur seals and Antarctic shags bobbing through the water, swimming alongside the kayaks and entertaining us all. Picture three juvenile seals wrestling with each other on top of an iceberg. One of the many, many highlights was kayaking through brash ice close to the shore.

One Ocean Expeditions

Weddell Seal

The glaciers are beautiful – just like paintings. The scale is hard to capture in photographs because they look so flat, but there is a vibrant arctic blue that glows through the ice.

In the afternoon we made it to Half Moon Island. The water was a bit more choppy, and we got the chance to thread through some rocks close to shore. Again, getting up close to wildlife and being absolutely in awe of the mountainous glaciers all around us. We exited the kayaks onshore (bar Alex, who had more photographing to do from the kayak) and walked around the island to get up close to the animals – including a Weddell seal and some elephant seals. We even came across a washed up whale jawbone.

What a day. We are thoroughly fed, as always, and ready for bed.

Written by Inspiring Explorer Rosanna Price.

AHT/Nigel Watson

Kayaking in Antarctica