Antarctica! The name sends chills down the spine. Its splendid landscapes, exotic wildlife and historical sites amongst chilly weather conditions hypnotise the enthusiastic traveller within you, and it unveils like a beautiful picture painted on the canvas of life. Being the coldest, driest and windiest continent on earth, Antarctica definitely is worth a visit, especially for ardent adventure-lovers and explorers who dare to reach out to remote corners of the globe to quench their thirst for travel to distant, unique new lands.
Why is it important to choose the right time for travel to Antarctica?
Antarctica is surrounded by water on all sides, only 2% of which is ice-free.
Several thousand feet of ice cover this region, and strong stormy weather conditions loom over it at all times. This tends to create an ocean current that circles over the continent, thereby reducing the warm water which reaches this region. Hence it is important to decide with care the best time to travel to Antarctica – to ensure you have the best cruise experience as you traverse across the Polar Regions in a small, comfortable and ice-strengthened vessel, made specifically for polar travelling.
Which is the best time to visit Antarctica?
Keeping in mind the sudden changes in weather conditions around the Antarctica peninsula, the best time to visit this place on an Antarctica cruise is through their spring and summer months, which span the period from October to March. The rest of the year is extremely cold with very short days, which in turn prohibitstravel through the icy waters.
- The Spring Months
Weather conditions- The Antarctica Spring months begin in October and last until December. These are considered the early summer months, yet the region is snow-clad even during this time. This is the best time to get experience the stunning landscapes of Antarctica. The snow conditions and icebergs are great for tourists during this time of the year, as the packs of ice are not yet stacked with birds’ nests and their excrements.
What you spot-This is the best time to spot Southern Elephant seals and baby Crab-eater seals. The zooplanktons constitute whales of Humpback, Minke and Southern Right species. The Antarctica’s penguins have their mating season and lay their eggs in the November time period.
- The Summer Months
Weather conditions- Antarctica experiences its summer months in January and February when the temperatures reach 40-50 degrees Fahrenheit. This is the time when cruisers can spot the stunning rocky headlands, owing to the fact that the snow dissipates to higher altitudes during this time of the year. What is unique about this part of the year is that the continent receives sunlight almost throughout all the 24 hours of the day. The partially melted ice makes way for extensive cruise expeditions during this time.
What you spot- This is the best time to experience baby penguins and seal pups roaming around the islands of Antarctica, thereby providing splendid and outstanding eye-catching views to cruise passengers. Penguin parents feeding their young ones are a common sight. If you are lucky enough, you might even spot whales in the region.
- The Fall Season- March/April
Weather conditions- The fall season sets in with the onset of March in Antarctica. During this time, one can witness the breathtaking evening sunsets across the crimson skies. The temperatures dip and sea ice stems from nighttime frosts.
What you spot- Beautiful sights of algae converting ice cliffs into pink and green hues is a common sight in March in the Antarctica. Cruisers can spot whales, Gentoo penguins, and – with some luck – the Aurora Australis beautifying the Antarctica skies can be seen from the month of March to September.
How to determine the best time to travel to Antarctica?
Choosing the best cruise to Antarctica depends on various factors including the personal interests of the traveller. Three main factors are in play:
- whether you would love to scale through the waters during mild or chilly weather conditions
- what species of animals would you like to watch
- any personal preferences regarding the month you want to travel in
Once you have narrowed down your search window, all you need to do is contact Polar Holidays to pick the best cruise expedition to Antarctica. With more than 2 decades of experience and in-depth knowledge of the Arctic and Antarctic regions, Polar Holidays offer the best Antarctica cruise expeditions, customised tour-packages, door-to-door service and high levels of customer service, thereby ensuring you have memories worth cherishing for a lifetime.