Sultry South American cities, vast waterfalls and Antarctica at Christmas

Contrast the vibrant pulse of two of South America’s liveliest cities with the stark and glacial beauty of Antarctica on this 18-day tour, including a trip to one of the world’s grandest series of waterfalls and a very unique Christmas. Take in the unique atmosphere of Rio before flying to immense Iguazu Falls. Soak up the heat in Buenos Aires before flying to the world’s southernmost city for an unforgettable expedition to the Great White Continent.

€1 deposit now on

Book a trip by 30 September and you’ll only pay a €1 deposit to secure your spot.

Terms & Conditions

Start
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Finish
Ushuaia, Argentina
Destinations
Antarctica, Argentina, Brazil
Style
Comfort
Theme
Polar
Code
GQSCR
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 200

Why you'll love this trip

  • With two full days at Iguazu Falls, you can marvel at this beauty up close on the Argentinean side and get sweeping panoramas from the Brazilian side.

  • Be among orca and humpback whales, hear cracking glaciers pierce the Antarctic silence, and experience, with all the senses, scenes that seem windows to another world.

  • Wake up to the whitest of white Christmases and enjoy the festive spirit in Antarctica plus the usual daily excursions in search of wildlife.

  • Our experienced leaders have made hundreds of polar voyages. Learn about the history, geography and wildlife of the Antarctic from experts in marine biology, glaciology and history.

  • Rest assured you will leave only footprints behind. Our Antarctica expeditions are carbon offset, we serve only sustainably-sourced seafood, avoid single-use plastics and use biodegradable cleaning products on board.

Is this trip right for you?

  • There are several orientation walks and city tours during this trip. It’s important to always bring plenty of water, wear comfortable walking shoes and ensure you use adequate sun protection. Wearing layers is a good way to tackle the heat.

  • Although our ice strengthened ships are big and sturdy, Antarctic waters can be unpredictable and rough. Some people may experience seasickness, especially through the Drake Passage and other open water crossings. Please be prepared with medications to combat this. There is also a doctor on-board should you need further assistance.

  • As you’d expect, temperatures in the Antarctic can be freezing. And yet it can get surprisingly warm at times – when the sun comes out, for instance, or with increased physical activity. It is wise to dress in layers when you journey outside. We provide you with waterproof boots that are sturdy and warm. Please see the trip notes for further important information about what to bring.

  • Weather depending, you will be making regular excursions in a Zodiac boat to explore the local area and look for wildlife. It can get very cold and wet on the Zodiac, so make sure you are dressed appropriately and that you keep your camera safe and dry. Sturdy sea legs are needed as you make wet and dry landings from the boat, and on steep terrain, snow and other uneven surfaces. Some ships have a lot of stairs, so please hold on to the handrails if seas are rough.

  • The weather plays a pivotal part in this adventure and although there’s an itinerary in place, there are no guarantees that you’ll be able to do everything that is planned for. A level of flexibility and openness to embracing the unexpected are important in expedition travel, especially to such a remote area. Keep in mind the landing sites listed in the trip notes may change. The wellness centre, onboard library and educational lectures are ideal ways for keeping entertained during downtime.

Itinerary

Ola! Welcome to Rio! Enjoy a complimentary transfer from the airport to this evening’s accommodation. Your adventure truly begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm. If you have the time, you’re free to explore on your own before the meeting, but don’t feel too rushed – there will be a full-day tour of the city tomorrow to acquaint you with it.
Accommodation
  • Hotel Arena Copacabana or similar (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
It’s very important that you attend the welcome meeting as we will be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this time. If you are going to be late please let your travel agent or hotel reception know. Ask reception or look for a note in the lobby for more information on where and when the meeting will take place.

Please provide your booking agent with your flight details no later than 14 days before your tour begins.
Embark on a full-day guided tour of Rio. Visit Santa Teresa, a beautiful artistic neighbourhood situated on a hill overlooking the city. Continue to scenic Corcovado and witness the grand open-armed Christ the Redeemer statue that surveys the city. Give your feet a break during a lunch stop at an incredible NGO called Gastromotiva, where creative dishes are made with donated produce and the cooks are marginalised members of the community given free culinary training. Finish the day with a walking tour of the Port area. This area, a little more off the beaten track, has been recognized for its cultural and historical importance as it was a main port for the slave trade in Brazil. We will be joined by a local guide from the Pretos Novos Institute, which aims to preserve the area’s Afro-Caribbean heritage.
Accommodation
  • Hotel Arena Copacabana or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Rio de Janeiro - Total Rio Tour Combo 1: Santa Teresa, Corcovado, Christ & Copacabana
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
This morning fly to Puerto Iguazu in Argentina (2 hours), gateway to the mighty Iguazu Falls. Travel to the Brazilian side of the falls to get a panoramic perspective on this immense wonder of nature. The falls are two-kilometres-long and are made up of 275 waterfalls in total, some of which stretch up to 80-metres-high. This makes them both higher than Niagara Falls and wider than Victoria Falls. This evening return to Argentina and your whitewashed accommodation and perhaps relax with a cocktail in the gardens.
Accommodation
  • Hotel El Pueblito or Similar, Feature Stay (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Iguazu Falls - Entrance & tour of the Brazilian side of the falls
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
You will be visiting the Brazilian side of the falls today and returning to your hotel on the Argentinean side in the evening. You will visit the Argentinean side of the falls tomorrow.

If you’re interested in getting a birds-eye views of the falls, you can organise an optional helicopter flight over the top of them. Speak to your booking agent or leader before you fly to Iguazu Falls.
Rise and shine at 7.30 am to visit the Argentinean side of the falls. Walk along the boardwalks built into the hard rock on top of the falls, which allow you to feel the power (and water spray) of these immense falls. You can choose to get another exhilarating perspective on Iguazu Falls with an optional zodiac boat ride below. At approximately 3 pm, you can choose to accompany your leader on a visit to a nearby Guarani community or return to the hotel. If you do choose to partake in this optional excursion, you will return to the hotel at approximately 5 pm.
Accommodation
  • Hotel El Pueblito or Similar, Feature Stay (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Iguazu Falls - Entrance & tour of the Argentinian side of the falls
  • Iguazu Falls - Guarani community visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Board a flight to Buenos Aires and arrive in the afternoon. The rest of your day is free for you to explore this vibrant city at your leisure. Tomorrow brings with it a guided tour of essential local sights, so perhaps spend today discovering at a more relaxed pace. You could ask your leader where to find a fine glass of malbec and picada (Argentinian tapas), or maybe pay a visit to the Latin American Art Museum of Buenos Aires (MALBA).
Accommodation
  • Hotel Tango de Mayo or similar (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Enjoy a morning exploring Buenos Aires. Visit the Recoleta Cemetery, the final resting place of some of the city’s most famous residents. Walk around La Boca and its well-known ‘Caminito’ district, before moving on to the lesser-known side of this colourful neighbourhood to visit an artist's gallery. Next, wander the cobbled streets of San Telmo and finish the tour getting to know the iconic Plaza de Mayo. Stop for a group lunch at a local NGO, Abriendo Caminos, where local women learn to make alfajores (a local delicacy). After lunch, get ready to be captivated by Argentina’s famous tango. In a private space a professional dance couple will explain the origin and history of the tango, as well as demonstrating the passionate steps. You will then have the chance to join a 1-hour beginner’s class to learn some of the basic techniques and understand the rhythm.
Accommodation
  • Hotel Tango de Mayo (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Buenos Aires - Tango demonstration by professional dancers
  • Buenos Aires - Tango dance lesson
  • Buenos Aires - Full-day guided tour
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Enjoy a free day in delightful Buenos Aires. Perhaps explore the antique markets of San Telmo or browse the museums in the well-to-do neighbourhood of Recoleta. If you’re a foodie or a wine connoisseur, maybe take part in the Malbec Trail of Palermo or Gourmet Buenos Aires Food Urban Adventure day tour.
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Your Antarctic adventure begins with a transfer to the airport and domestic flight to Ushuaia, the world’s southernmost city. On arrival at the airport in Ushuaia, meet a Peregrine representative who will transfer you to your hotel. Attend a briefing at 7.30 pm to run through the details of the tomorrow’s embarkation. If you have time you are free to explore Ushuaia as you please. This city has quite the dramatic setting, overlooking the Beagle Channel and surrounded by mountains.
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
You will not be escorted on your flight from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia. On arrival, you will be meet a representative for a transfer to your hotel for the night.

As this is a combination trip, your group leader and the composition of your group will likely change today. There will be a group meeting to discuss the next stage of your itinerary. It’s important that you attend the meeting as your new group leader will be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this time. Ask reception or look for a note in the lobby for more information on where the meeting will take place.
This afternoon you’ll be transferred to the city’s port for boarding the Ocean Endeavour. After meeting your fellow passengers and settling into your cabin, begin the journey through the famed Beagle Channel. Look around at the incredible views as we glimpse our last sight of land and head south towards Antarctica.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Spend two days travelling across the legendary waters of the Drake Passage, named after the famous English seafarer, Sir Frances Drake. If conditions allow, enjoy the outer deck space for your first sightings of dolphins, whales and orcas as well as seabirds including the iconic albatross. A comprehensive optional lecture program will also get under way, with some fascinating insights into Antarctic history, geology, biology and everything in-between. Today we continue crossing the Drake Passage, scheduled to reach the Antarctic Peninsula by early evening if conditions are favourable. The first sighting of land always brings great excitement on any expedition south.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast (2)
  • Lunch (2)
  • Dinner (2)
The Antarctic Peninsula gives access to a high number of wildlife sightings on a mountainous backdrop of ice and water. Zodiac rides allow for a closer encounter with marine life such as whales and seals. Onshore exploration takes you to penguin rookeries with optional activities for the active adventurer – snowshoeing, kayaking and camping overnight (these must be booked before departure). Landing sites will depend on the ship's location and weather conditions, but a full list of sites can be found at https://www.peregrineadventures.com/en-au/antarctica/landing-sites. Our lecture program from experts in polar wildlife continues during our voyage and throughout the trip the team is on-hand to answer any questions you may have.

If the weather conditions make an excursion unsafe, the crew will arrange for alternative activities on the ship – such as wildlife presentations, documentary screenings or you can make the most of the wellness spa, heated pool and sauna, library and gym on board.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast (3)
  • Lunch (3)
  • Dinner (3)
Wake up to the whitest of white Christmases and see if Santa has found his way from the North to the South Pole. Enjoy the festive spirit on board the ship. Of course, there are still landings to be made and all things Antarctica to marvel at. Wildlife encounters along the Antarctic Peninsula are likely to include Weddell, crabeater and leopard seals; gentoo, Adelie and chinstrap penguins, and elephant seals.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Leaving Antarctica behind we cruise north to our home port of Ushuaia. Now is the time to reflect on the amazing journey. We are scheduled to reach the waters of the Beagle Channel by the evening, ensuring a restful night’s sleep before the last day of departure. Our last meal together is often a highlight, so live it up and enjoy as you celebrate the trip with your fellow travellers.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast (2)
  • Lunch (2)
  • Dinner (2)
After breakfast we disembark the ship as the journey comes to an end. Transfer to the airport is included for flights departing today.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

15 breakfasts, 10 lunches, 9 dinners

Transport

Private vehicle, Plane, Boat, Expedition Cruise Ship, Zodiac

Accommodation

Hotel (6 nights), Hotel Feature Stay (2 nights), Expedition Voyage (9 nights)

Included activities

  • Rio de Janeiro - Total Rio Tour Combo 1: Santa Teresa, Corcovado, Christ & Copacabana
  • Iguazu Falls - Entrance & tour of the Brazilian side of the falls
  • Iguazu Falls - Entrance & tour of the Argentinian side of the falls
  • Iguazu Falls - Guarani community visit
  • Buenos Aires - Tango demonstration by professional dancers
  • Buenos Aires - Tango dance lesson
  • Buenos Aires - Full-day guided tour

Dates & availability

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Important notes

BOOKING CONDITIONS
Arctic and Antarctic bookings have an increased deposit requirement of 20 per cent of the full voyage cost (before any discount). The balance is due 120 days before departure.

If a booking is cancelled 120 days or more before departure: the cancellation fee is the full loss of the deposit paid.

If a booking is cancelled between 119 days and departure: the cancellation fee is 100 per cent of the total price of the voyage.

Other fees may apply for air tickets and other arrangements booked in conjunction with a Polar voyage.

ADVENTURE ADD ON's
Kayaking and a photography programme are available to book on all Antarctic voyages. Some voyages also offer camping. All of these activities must be booked prior to departure and incur an additional cost. Spaces are limited so please enquire at time of booking. For kayaking recent experience is essential.

Your voyage is operated by our sister company, Intrepid Travel. Your group will be a mixture of Peregrine booked passengers and other international like-minded travellers from Intrepid.

PASSPORT DETAILS REQUIRED
Full passport details are required at the time of booking in order to purchase entrance fees to certain sites. Additionally on certain trips it's needed to book bus, train or flight tickets. Delays to provide this information may result in booking fees or changes to your itinerary.

ARRIVAL TRANSFER:
An airport arrival transfer is included. Please advise your arrival flight details at least 14 days prior to departure.

DOMESTIC FLIGHTS:
This trip includes a domestic flight. Argentina is particularly strict on excess baggage and usually enforces a maximum allowance of 15 kilograms for checked luggage.

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT:
A single supplement is available on this trip.

BRAZILIAN VISA:
Please note you may require a Brazilian Visa for this trip. Processing can take around 2–5 weeks at the discretion of the embassy or consulate. Please speak with your travel agent well in advance for further advice.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

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