Antarctic Peninsula: Basecamp Plancius 2015/16

Aboard Plancius

Embarkation and disembarkation: Ushuaia

  • 10/11 days Nov/Dec 2015 & Dec/Jan 2016

Day 1

Ushuaia – Beagle Channel

In the afternoon, we embark in Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, the southernmost city in the world located at the Beagle Channel and sail through this scenic waterway for the rest of the evening.

Day 2-3

Drake Passage

During these two days we sail across the Drake Passage. When we cross the Antarctic Convergence, we arrive in the circum-Antarctic up welling zone. In this area we may see Wandering Albatrosses, Grey Headed Albatrosses, Black- browed Albatrosses, Light- mantled Sooty Albatrosses, Cape Pigeons, Southern Fulmars, Wilson?s Storm Petrels, Blue Petrels and Antarctic Petrels. Near the South Shetland Islands, we glimpse at the first icebergs.

Day 4-8 (9)

Weddell Sea – Antarctic Peninsula

We will sail directly to ‘High Antarctica’, passing the Melchior islands and the Schollaert Channel between Brabant and Anvers Island. We will sail to the Neumayer Channel, where we position our ship for the multi activity base camp. The protected waters around Wiencke Island will become our playground for all activities. In this alpine environment there great opportunities to scout the region on foot, per zodiac and during kayak trips. Walkers will find opportunities to use snowshoes on hikes near the shore lines and the mountaineers will find their challenge by climbing hills and view points further inland, ie. Jabet Peak (540 m). All climbs and excursions can only be conducted in good weather conditions. We plan to stay two overnights at anchor in order to implement two camp nights and two full activity days. We will visit the British research station and post office Port Lockroy on Goudier Island. Close to Port Lockroy we may also offer a landing on Jougla Point with Gentoo Penguins and Imperial Shags. We sail through the spectacular Lemaire Channel to Pleneau and Petermann Island where we can find Adelie Penguins and Blue-eyed Shags. In this area there are good chances to encounter Humpback Whales, Minke Whales and Fin Whales. Our second Basecamp night will be erected near the continent, we choose a camp site which is suitable and close to next days activity. The mountaineers hope to reach the summit of Mt Demaria (640 m) at Waddington Bay. A visit to one of the scientific stations in Antarctica will give you an insight about the life of modern Antarcticans working on the White Continent. Further south we may have time to visit the Ukrainian Vernadsky Station, where we will receive a warm welcome from the station crew. When sailing to Paradise Bay, with its myriad icebergs and deep cut fjords, we will have the opportunity for zodiac cruising and kayaking between the icebergs in the inner parts of the fjords. In this area we have good chances to see Humpback Whales and Minke Whales. Hikers, mountaineers and photographers will spend time ashore. In afternoon at Neko Harbour we will have the opportunity to set foot on the Antarctic Continent in a magnificent landscape of huge glacier and enjoy the landscape during zodiac cruises, hikes and kayak excursions. A small group of mountaineers may climb up on higher grounds of the glacier. We will spend the night at Neko or near Paradise Bay with a camp erected ashore. We will leave Neko Harbour in the early morning after breaking our last camp. We sail via Melchior Islands towards the open sea of the Drake Passage. We have again a chance of seeing many seabirds.

Day 9-10 (10-11)

Drake Passage

In the Drake Passage we have again a chance of seeing many seabirds and to take advantage of the knowledge of our lecture team.

Day 11 (12)


We arrive in the morning and disembark in Ushuaia.


The itinerary descriptions reflect the plans for this expedition and should be read as general guides only. These are expeditions to remote and rarely visited regions of the world, and flexibility is required. Our exact program will vary based on local weather and ice conditions, availability of local permissions, and government orders.

Dates and cost 2014/2015

  • Plancius – 11 days 21 Nov – 1 Dec,  2015 CDKMPS
Quadruple Triple + Porthole Twin + Porthole Twin + Window Twin Deluxe Superior
US$7,050 US$7,950 US$8,650 US$9,150 US$9,650 US$10,550
  • Plancius – 11 days 28 Dec – 7 Jan 2016 CDHKMP
Quadruple Triple + Porthole Twin + Porthole Twin + Window Twin Deluxe Superior
US$7,950 US$8,950 US$9,650 US$10,250 US$10,850 US$11,850

Single Occupancy: All cabins 1.7 times the share price.

Note: If world fuel prices reach or exceed US Dollar 120 per Barrel Brent 90 days prior to departure, a fuel surcharge of USD25 per passenger per night may be applied.

What’s included

  • Voyage aboard the individual vessel as indicated
  • All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including, snacks, coffee and tea
  • All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac
  • Programme of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff
  • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the programme
  • Comprehensive pre-departure material.
  • Onboard M/V Plancius free loan of boots & snow shoes

What’s not included

  • Any airfare, whether on scheduled or charter flights
  • pre and post land arrangements
  • transfers to/from the vessel
  • passport and visa expenses
  • Government arrival and departure taxes
  • meals ashore
  • baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is strongly recommended)
  • excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges
  • and the customary gratuity at the end of the voyages for stewards and other service personnel aboard (guidelines will be provided)

How to book

To initiate your reservation, please contact us as soon as possible to place an option on the voyage and cabin grade of your choice. The Booking Form in the brochure is to be signed, completed and returned to Adventure Associates along with your deposit. Reservations are established only when you receive written confirmation and acceptance of the deposit payment and Booking Form.


Optional Activities

All activities are free of charge on this expedition.

  • C: Camping.Camping: Group size: minimum 8, maximum 30 campers. Supplement: USD180 per person per night.
    Camping is free of charge during “Basecamp Plancius” voyages.
  • K: Kayaking.Kayaking. Group size: minimum 4, maximum 14 kayakers. Supplement: USD465 per person.
    Kayaking is free of charge during “Basecamp Plancius” voyages.
  • H: Hiking.Hikes of approx. 2-3 hours or longer. The activity is free of charge.
  • M: Mountaineering.
    Mountaineering is free of charge during “Basecamp Plancius” voyages.
  • P: Photo Workshop.
    Photo Workshop is free of charge during “Basecamp Plancius” voyages.
  • S: SNOW SHOEING.No surcharge, free use of snowshoes.
  • D: Scuba Diving.Group size: minimum 8, maximum 24 divers. Supplement: USD530 per person.

During our “Basecamp Plancius” departures all offered activities (including camping, kayaking, snowshoe/hiking,
mountaineering, photo workshops as well as our standard included shore excursions and zodiac cruises) are free of charge, except for scuba diving (USD530 per person).

MV Plancius

Ice-strengthened Expedition Vessel

MV Plancius was built in 1976 as an oceanographic research vessel for the Royal Dutch Navy and was named ‘Hr. Ms.Tydeman’. The ship sailed for the Dutch Navy until June 2004 and was finally purchased by Oceanwide Expeditions. The MV Plancius has been completely rebuilt as a 110-passenger vessel and complies with the latest SOLAS-regulations (Safety Of Life At Sea), offering a restaurant/lecture room on deck 3 and a spacious observation lounge (with bar) on deck 5 with large windows, with full panorama view. The vessell has large open deck spaces (with full walk-around possibilities on deck 3), giving excellent opportunities to enjoy the scenery and wildlife. She is furthermore equipped with 10 Mark V zodiacs, including 40 HP 4-stroke outboard engines and 2 gangways on starboard side, guaranteeing a swift zodiac operation. The vessel is equipped with a diesel-electric propulsion system which reduces the noise and vibration of the engines considerably. The 3 diesel engines generate 1.230 horse-power each, giving the vessel a speed of 10 – 12 knots. The vessel is ice-strengthened and was specially built for oceanographic voyages.

MV Plancius is comfortable and nicely decorated, but is not a luxurious vessel. The voyages in the Arctic and Antarctic regions are and will still be primarily defined by an exploratory educational travel programme, spending as much time ashore as possible. This vessel is manned by 17 nautical crew, 19 hotel staff (6 chefs, 1 hotel manager, 1 steward-barman and 11 stewards / cabin cleaners), 8 expedition staff (1 expedition leader and 7 guides-lecturers) and 1 doctor.

Deck Plans



MV Plancius accommodates 53 passenger cabins, all with private toilet and shower, as follows:

  • Quadruple: 5 cabins with private facilities.
  • Triple Porthole: 2 cabins with private facilities.
  • Twin Porthole: 9 cabins with porthole, private facilities, lower berths.
  • Twin Window: 26 cabins with window, private facilities, lower berths.
  • Twin Deluxe: 2 cabins with 2 windows (aft and side view), private facilities, lower berths.
  • Superior: 10 cabins with private facilities, double beds.



Ship Specifications

Crew & Staff: 45
Guests: 116 in 53 Cabins
Length: 89 m
Breadth: 14.50 m
Draft: 4.50 m
Ice Class: 1D (Plancius has a Lloyds class notation 100A1 Passenger ship, Ice Class 1D at a draught of 5 meters.)
Propulsion: 3 x Diesel-electric engines – 1.230 total horsepower
Cruising Speed: 10-12 knots
Registered: In the Netherlands by Oceanwide Expeditions