Trip Details at-a-Glance
|Cost From:||$5600 see pricing|
|Arrive:||Dunedin, New Zealand|
|Depart:||Invercargill, New Zealand|
|Lodging:||12 nights aboard expedition vessel describe|
|Meals:||All meals aboard ship included|
|Activity:||Wildlife & Natural History, Small Ship Cruising|
Expedition cruise, nature walks, Zodiac explorations
- Extraordinary sub-Antarctic wildlife oases, from Macquarie Island to the Snares
- Endemic wildlife from royal penguins to Hooker’s sea lions, rare flora including sub-Antarctic wildflowers
- Shore excursions by Zodiac
- Expert guest lecturers to enrich your experience
Choosing the Right Trip
We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.
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Home to nearly half the world’s penguin and albatross species, the sub-Antarctic Islands of New Zealand are spectacular birding paradises hidden in the remote reaches of the Southern Ocean. Millions of penguins populate these islands—on tiny Macquarie Island alone are more than 850,000 pairs of royal penguins, found nowhere else in the world—and the biodiversity includes endangered yellow-eyed penguins, endemic species of albatross, and amazing flora. Aboard the 50-guest Spirit of Enderby, an ice-strengthened ship, we have the rare privilege of exploring these dramatic islands, one of the wildest, least visited, and most intriguing parts of our planet.
Itinerary at a Glance
For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary
Note: The December 30 departure begins and ends in Invercargill, with a pre-expedition overnight in Invercargill.
Dunedin, New Zealand / Port of Otago
The Snares / Auckland Islands
In “the Snares,” our Zodiacs bring us along sheltered bays to see endemics including Snares crested penguin and Buller’s albatross. Six million sooty shearwaters nest here. Everything from penguins to parakeets can be seen on the Aucklands, the remains of two eroded volcanoes. On Enderby Island, we visit the world’s main breeding ground for Hooker’s sea lion and look for bellbird, red-crowned parakeet, yellow-eyed penguin, and possibly sub-Antarctic snipe.
At Sea / Macquarie Island / At Sea
After a day at sea, we explore Macquarie Island World Heritage Area—54° 38' degrees south! It is the only place to see royal penguin (Eudyptes schlegeli), found in the hundreds of thousands here. They share this extraordinary sub-Antarctic wildlife refuge with stately king penguins as well as gentoo and rockhopper, as we discover on our landings at Sandy Bay and the Australian scientific station. Day 9 is at sea.
On magnificent Campbell Island Nature Preserve, a World Heritage Site 400 miles south of New Zealand, introduced species have been removed successfully, resulting in a phenomenal renaissance of birdlife and endemic flora including early-flowering megaherbs, creating a wildflower spectacle to behold. Birdlife includes Campbell Island shag, southern skua, Antarctic tern, rare New Zealand pipit, and the beautiful light-mantled sooty albatross.
At Sea / Port of Bluff / Invercargill
The Snares / North East Island
The closest Subantarctic Islands to New Zealand, they were appropriately called The Snares as they were once considered a hazard for passing ships. Comprising of two main islands and a smattering of rocky islets, they are uninhabited and highly protected. North East Island is the largest of The Snares and, staggeringly, this one island is home to more nesting seabirds than all of the British Isles together. We will arrive early in the morning and cruise the rugged coastline by Zodiac if weather and sea conditions are suitable (landings are not permitted) along the sheltered eastern side. In sheltered bays, we should see the endemic Snares crested penguins, Snares Island tomtit and fernbirds. Cape pigeons, antarctic terns, white-fronted terns and redbilled gulls also abound. There are an estimated six million sooty shearwaters nesting on the snares and Buller’s albatross breed here from early January onwards. Cape petrel can be identified on the imposing cliffs and overhead.
For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary
Note: These cruises are not exclusive Wilderness Travel departures. The itinerary, lecturers, and other arrangements are subject to change at the discretion of the ship operator.
What the Trip is Like
The trip is rated Level 2, Easy to Moderate. It is appropriate for anyone in good health who is physically active. There are shore excursions featuring short walks. Please be aware that this expedition takes place in the Southern Ocean, where seas are typically much rougher than those around the Antarctic Peninsula. Agility is required for getting in and out of the Zodiac landing crafts. Good balance and quick reflexes are necessary when sea swells cause rolling and pitching of the ship. Landing sites vary depending on weather and sea conditions. There is the possibility that rough seas will make some Zodiac cruises and island landings impossible.
Dec 2-14, 2013
Dec 30, 2013-Jan 11, 2014
Prices for December 2013
Aboard the Spirit of Enderby
Per person, double occupancy
|Cabin Category||Rate per person|
Single supplement: 180% of the cost of the cabin, and 200% of the cost of the suite
Landing fees: $650 per person
Trip Cost Includes:
- Accommodations and meals aboard the ship; some cabin categories have shared bathrooms
- All shore excursions as outlined in the itinerary
- Services of Expedition Leadership/tour staff
- Post-trip expedition log
- Transfer from Dunedin or Invercargill hotel to the ship, transfer from the ship to Invercargill
Trip Cost Does Not Include:Airfare to or from New Zealand; landing fees ($650 per person); alcoholic and other beverages; gratuities to ship staff; optional hotel accommodation; meals ashore; fuel charges; baggage, cancellation and accident insurance; personal expenses such as laundry, telephone calls and e-mail service.
Trip Payment Schedule*
At time of reservation: 25%
90 days prior to departure: Balance
*Please note that this differs from our regular catalog departures.
Spirit of Enderby
The 50-guest expedition vessel Spirit of Enderby, while offering very basic cabins, some with shared bathrooms, has a warm and intimate atmosphere, a professional staff, and excellent cuisine prepared by New Zealand and Australian chefs. The vessel has a bar, small lecture room, and library. She is fully ice-strengthened and equipped with a fleet of go-anywhere Zodiacs. Designed and built as a research vessel, she still undertakes research expeditions when not focused on passenger cruises. The ship is accompanied by a veteran team of experienced naturalists and guides who have devoted a lifetime to field research in the areas that the ship visits.