Photographer’s South Georgia & Antarctic Peninsula

Falkland Islands, South Georgia and Antarctic Peninsula are the focus of Joshua Holko’s photographic workshops on this springtime voyage. Capture perfect light as the days grow longer, king penguins shuffle eggs on their feet, elephant seals pup and fur seal males battle for mating rights. Toast the graves of Wild and Shackleton and visit Grytviken’s whaling museum. Sail to Elephant Island and the Antarctic Peninsula, with ample time to photograph penguin rookeries during nest-building and breeding, whales and seals, historic sites and the continent itself before crossing the Drake Passage to Ushuaia.


Day 1 – Ushuaia
Day 2 – At sea
Day 3 – Falkland Islands
Day 4 – Falkland Islands
Day 5 – 6 – Scotian Sea
Day 7 – 11 – South Georgia
Day 12 – 13 – Scotia Sea
Day 14 – Cape Wild
Day 15 -17 – South Shetland Islands
Day 18 – 19 – Drake Passage
Day 20 – Ushuaia

Polar Pioneer Ship – Polar Pioneer is a small and sturdy expedition ship. A regular in polar waters having initially been built in 1982 as an icestrengthened research vessel, she was refurbished in 2000 to provide a comfortable range of triple, twin and suite cabin options for a maximum of 54 expeditioners. Her excellent reputation for polar expedition cruising is due to her strength, maneuverability and size, allowing her to access areas where larger vessels simply can’t reach.

Day 1 – Embark Polar Pioneer in Ushuaia at 4 p.m. A warm welcome before we sail the Beagle Channel.

Day 2 – At sea, albatross, plunging dolphins and flighty petrels mesmerise us, our photography program begins and special briefings prepare us for landings.

Day 3 – Falkland Islands’ Camp life gives way to elephant seals, penguins, sea lions and an astounding mix of water-birds. Our Zodiacs offer plenty of room for camera gear.

Day 4 – Stanley, the Falklands undeniably British capital, features an excellent war museum, welcoming shops and pubs.

Days 5-6 – We cross the Scotia Sea, entertained by our expert naturalists and historians, review photographs and prepare for shooting in South Georgia.

Days 7-11 – Spring brings an explosion of life to South Georgia and we have ample time to explore and photograph the island’s spectacular northern coast. We visit wildlife havens that include the world’s largest king penguin rookeries, majestic albatross nests and beaches cluttered with basking elephant seals, feisty fur seals and penguins. Inspired by Shackleton’s epic, we hope to retrace the expedition’s final steps from Fortuna Bay to Stromness.

Days 12-13 – We cross the Scotia Sea, watch seabirds, our first iceberg and great whales including blues, fin and sei. We have time to reflect on South Georgia and prepare for Antarctica, the next leg of our adventure.

Day 14 – Conditions permitting, we approach Cape Wild, a bleak, rocky spit along Elephant Island’s dramatic north coast. If sea state allows, we’ll Zodiac cruise, possibly even step ashore, to pay tribute to Shackleton’s 22 men who survived four months here.

Days 15-17 – We hope to land in the South Shetland Islands before sailing down Gerlache Strait and awaken to the drama of Antarctica – a photographer’s paradise! We encounter pack ice and penguin rookeries alive with courtship, mating and nest-building, visit historic sites and land on the continent proper.

Days 18-19 – Return to the realm of the albatross – the Drake Passage. We celebrate, recap our many experiences and learn to manage our abundant collection of new photos.

Day 20 – Dawn greets us in the Beagle Channel. We bid farewell and continue onward travel, or stop in Ushuaia.

Falkland Islands
Wildlife sanctuaries
Explore Stanley
South Georgia Springtime
Albatross courtship
Thousands of king penguin chicks
Fur and elephant seal pups
Snow-covered peaks
Whaling history
Elephant Island Shackleton tribute
Antarctic Peninsula
Pack ice, icebergs
Penguin chicks hatching
Patrolling leopard seals
Historic sites

Complimentary Photography Option
Joshua Holko, a full-time professional landscape, nature and wilderness photographer and teacher, who specialises in polar and sub-polar regions, will conduct Canon-accredited photography workshops, including informal talks and image reviews, opportunities for one-on-one instruction and informal side-by-side shooting from the deck or Zodiacs and during landings.

Ushuaia – Ski town in winter, bustling port and Argentina’s “Gateway to Antarctica” on the Beagle Channel. Great shops, cafés, restaurants, museum and historic End of the World Train to Tierra del Fuego National Park.

Falkland Islands – Elephant seals, fur seals and sea lions, whales, dolphins, five penguin species (including the shy Magellanic penguin), albatross, cormorant and more than 200 other bird species can be seen. Capital Stanley offers a warm British welcome and comprehensive war museum.

South Georgia – Swept by krill-rich waters, its glaciated mountains, offshore islands and deep bays are home to albatross, fur and elephant seals, rockhopper, macaroni and king penguin colonies a quarter-million strong. Follow in Shackleton’s footsteps, and visit Grytviken’s fascinating museum.

Cape Wild – Elephant Island is an ice-covered mountainous island off the coast of Antarctica in the outer reaches of the South Shetland Islands, in the Southern Ocean.

The Drake Passage or Mar de Hoces—Sea of Hoces—is the body of water between the southern tip of South America at Cape Horn, Chile and the South Shetland Islands of Antarctica


3 November  to 22 November