More and more crew are sharing with us the trend in their guests wanting to explore the more unusual, off the beaten track Superyacht destinations. And as the yachting industry continuously evolves, West Nautical have also seen an inquiry of yachts wanting to visit more diverse locations, such as the Galapagos, Svalbard and more recently, Antarctica. Below, the UK-Based charter brokerage reveals an insight into Antartica by Superyacht and what this incredible off-the beaten track has to offer to both guests and crew.
Antarctica is the home an array of incredible wildlife, isolated ice bergs and snow-covered deserts – often the last continent to be checked off of ones geographical bucket list! It’s the largest single mass of ice in the world and can be up to four miles thick in some places. This means that this icy continent as a whole, contains about 90% of the planets freshwater ice. As well as, around 70% of the total fresh water on earth. The polar region is also home to the southern-most active volcano, and Lake Vostok (which is buried 4km’s under a sheet of ice and is the size of Lake Ontario in Canada).
Wildlife in Antartica:
The uninhabited nature of Antarctica means that the wildlife found on this icy continent is unique and diverse. Crew and guests can expect to come across an impressive array of marine animals and birds, including 18 different species of penguins. Travelling to Antarctica to witness the feeding and breeding grounds of these incredible creatures gives you a hint of what their life is like in the wild.
Antarctica is known as one of the best places in the world to go whale watching. Solemnly due to the fact that during the summer months, there are up to 10 different species of whale that migrate here to breed and feed. When cruising or kayaking in the Antarctic Peninsula, it is not unheard of for curious whales to seemingly appear out of nowhere to explore.
The killer whale is most commonly found in the Southern Ocean around Antarctica. These whales are at the top of the food chain and are the biggest carnivores on earth with some reaching up to 10 metres in length. Further down in the food chain are seals. Six different species, including the elephant seal, call the continent home.
READ MORE: Off The Beaten Track Superyacht Destinations
Summer in Antartica:
During the summer months, when most Superyachts cruise Antarctica, guests will be able to enjoy non-stop sunshine as the sun does not set meaning that Antarctica receives more sunlight than the equator during that time. Superyacht guests can enjoy a truly adventurous holiday including kayaking, hiking and photographing this untouched continent environment.
Discover Antarctica’s oceans by submersible:
Due to the nature of the ocean in Antarctica, most Superyachts that cruise these waters need specialist ice certifications. Meaning, that the most likely style of Superyacht to be found here is an expedition yacht. These are designed especially for cruising remote locations for longer periods of time. Expedition yachts can facilitate several unique toys; one of which is often a deep-sea submersible.
Submersibles are often found on expedition yachts, and can travel to extremely low depths of up to 2,200 M / 7,500 FT – The height of 5 empire state building stacked on top of each other! Therefore, they provide access to Antarctica’s wildlife far beyond what scuba diving allows. As well as eliminating the need to decompress between dives. Superyacht guests who don’t have a diving licence needn’t worry as each sub is accompanied by a pilot to take you down to under the waves.
What better way to view this amazing array of wildlife than to join them in their natural habitat below the surface? And what better way to explore the world above the surface than from the luxurious decks of a Superyacht? The perfect relationship between luxury and adventure. Antartica is the ideal yachting destinations to spend the days exploring and the evenings making most of the elegant dinners prepared on board.
As technology has developed, so have the submersibles. Over time, they’ve been adapted for the Superyacht industry, including aspects of their design, technology and how they are launched and manoeuvred. These mini subs are fully equipped with lights, 4K cameras and sometimes robotic arms.
In a 2017 article on Superyacht Life, Jan Verkerk, owner of 77m explorer yacht Legend said:
“The sub is very popular with charter guests. The best place we’ve taken it so far is Antarctica. It is just indescribable to dive there alongside large whales, penguins and seals. You can also see large underwater portions of icebergs. It’s like nothing else.”
3 Activities for your guests visiting Antartica by Superyacht:
- A whole group activity: Take a trip to a private camp on ice and sleep in comfort in a truly wild setting.
- For wildlife enthusiasts: Cooksons adventures can connect you with leading marine scientists to help your vessel track and follow resident pods of humpback whales.
- For the active Superyacht guests: Hiking, skiing, ice climbing and mountaineering with expert guides in Antartica is just a small slice of the cake that this continent has to offer to thrill seeking guests!
Visiting Antarctica is a truly life-changing experience. So, why not pair it with the luxurious, unique experience of cruising on a Superyacht, with all the adventurous amenities and activities any person could dream of?
For enquiries about discovering Antartica by Superyacht, contact: Charter@westnautical.com