For a Select Few | Original Senses

Blow the Budget

For a Select Few

Thousands of cruise ship passengers visit Antarctica every year, but only about 300 intrepid explorers set foot on the seventh continent. Fly into the interior of Antarctica on a private jet — a carbon-neutral experience that is as luxurious as it is adventurous.

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On the five-and-a-half-hour Gulfstream flight from Cape Town, you enter the Antarctic Circle and 24 hours of non-stop sunshine. (Expeditions only run from November to the end of January, since Antarctica is in total darkness the rest of the year.)

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Touch down on the blue ice runway of Antarctica's Unknown International Airport, and you’re transferred to one of six fibreglass ‘sleeping pods’. Hunkered down between a frozen lake and towering walls of ice, the camp is powered by solar and wind energy. But the cosy interiors don’t feel remotely like roughing it, with their fur throws, plentiful champagne, and hearty meals prepared by a personal chef.

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Who knew that Antarctica is the size of North America? Daily excursions are tailored to how energetic or daring you feel. You could wander through fluorescent ice tunnels, or trek along the coast, where ice waves rise up in surreal formations. Learn to kite-ski, abseil across crevasses, scale glacial peaks, or, for ultimate bragging rights, hit the lowest point on earth: the South Pole is a 7-hour flight from base camp.

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One experience nobody will pass up is the two-hour flight to Atka Bay, home to a colony of over 6,000 penguins and their chicks. Unafraid of humans, these creatures will approach you with curiosity. So you can get up close and personal with one of the greatest, but least seen, wildlife wonders of the world.

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