Antarctica is the seventh continent of our planet, an unspoilt land that was completely unknown to man until the beginning of the 20th century.
Personally, Antarctica is the most remote place I’ve ever been to, a land where nature is extreme and where I was able to completely disconnect to fully reconnect with myself.
My trip began in Chilean Patagonia, at the Awasi Patagonia hotel, where I joined nature photographer Andoni Canela, who was visiting Torres del Paine National Park in search of the elusive puma while he was travelling around the world with his family.
From Awasi Patagonia, Andoni and I flew to Ushuaia, in Argentina, and we stayed at Los Cauquenes hotel while we waited to embark on our way to Antarctica.
The adventure began the moment we set foot on the Plancius, one of Oceanwide Expeditions’s ship, an excellent company with a fantastic crew. Embarking was a challenge in itself, both physically and mentally.
Crossing the Beagle Channel and the Drake Passage is a 3-day trip by boat, a journey that can be very rough sometimes, like mine was. The best remedy for seasickness is a very effective patch, and the tranquility of knowing that you are in good hands, in a boat that offers complete safety even with strong waves.
During the voyage I had plenty of time to reconnect with myself as well as to meet and interact with interesting people, from young adventurers to 80-year-old couples, stressed executives and solo travellers… I even made a good friend! We all felt the call of Antarctica, a place that united us and offered us a unique experience.
When I arrived in Antarctica, the first thing that surprised me was the immensity of its wonderful snowy landscapes, the Antarctic fauna and extreme nature at its best. And of course, at night, the infinity of the starry sky.
My trip to the southernmost continent in the world was not a typical trip, but a base camp program that focused entirely on outdoor activities. We got up every day at 6 o’clock in the morning to experience all kinds of adventures: kayaking among the icebergs, snowshoeing up the icy peaks and sighting of polar wildlife.
The first night we even slept in a tent, the first one I ever put together all by myself, and in the snow!
In addition, during the trip we were able to witness the activities going on around the Antarctic base of Port Lockroy.
At night, after a day full of adventures, I returned to the comfort of my cabin, aboard the Plancius. In addition, thanks to the high-tech Oceanwide Expeditions’ equipment, I almost didn’t feel the cold when I went outside.
My experience in Antarctica was much more than a trip: I embarked on an expedition and I lived a unique and extraordinary adventure. There, there was no stress, no tensions. The omnipresent feeling is the spirit of survival.
Andoni and I bid goodbye to our adventure as we went back to Ushuaia, though we will never forget all that we learned during those days of adventure in Antarctica.
I strongly believe that everyone should travel to Antarctica at least once in their life, to understand the fragility of our amazing planet. And it’s good to know that for less adventurous travellers there are more conventional trips, and you can even cross the Drake Passage by plane!