A trip to the frozen stuff from the tip of South America has become a well-furrowed route for those who want an Antarctic adventure. The Ross Sea, on the opposite side of the southernmost continent and the most spectacular destination in Antarctica, is a very different proposition.This is the real deal.
“The Ross Sea is best suited for only the strongest of private yachts,” says Ben Lyons, CEO of EYOS Expeditions. “To sail there you have to be capable in the ice and ready for long ocean passages in some of the world’s most notorious waters.”
In 2014, Arctic P led the way for superyachts when she set a new record, venturing further south than any vessel in history, at 78°43.034’S – only 677 nautical miles from the South Pole. While no yacht has yet challenged this record, Antarctica has just experienced a bumper season, with 71.4 metre Enigma XK and 96 metre Vava II visiting the region.
What to do and see: “Amazing wildlife, spectacular icescapes and the chance to visit one of the world’s most remote and pristine areas make the Ross Sea an iconic Antarctic experience,” says Lyons. Arctic P’s guests saw emperor penguins, killer whales, minke whales and much more from the yacht. On land, there is fascinating history to delve into. “The Ross Sea was the starting point for heroic explorers attempting to reach the South Pole,” says Lyons. “The huts built by [Robert] Scott and [Ernest] Shackleton at the base of Mount Erebus still stand as well-preserved monuments to these lions of exploration.”
When to visit: Trips to Antarctica are possible only between late October and late March – summer months in the southern hemisphere.