Humpback whale tail with kayak in the background

Weddell Sea Cruise

Sail the eastern Antarctic Peninsula in search of emperor penguins
Starting at:
Per Person
$ 8,519

Highlights

  • Travel the lesser-visited eastern coast of the Antarctic Peninsula and into the rarely seen wilderness of the Weddell Sea
  • View and photograph astonishingly large and beautiful tabular icebergs
  • Spy perhaps the most sought-after creature on the White Continent at the Snow Hill emperor penguin colony
  • Watch for a variety of other sealife, including various ice seals (Weddell, crabeater, leopard, etc.), krill-munching minke and humpback whales, and penguin- and seal-hunting orcas
  • Sail into history, following not only James Weddell’s footsteps but also Ernest Shackleton’s: The Weddell Sea is famously where his ship, the Endurance, was trapped in ice and eventually foundered (to be discovered on the Weddell seafloor only in 2022)

It’s said that the Weddell Sea—occupying more than a million square miles between the Antarctic Peninsula and East Antarctic coastline of Coats Land—lays claim to the cleanest waters on Earth. A lucky handful of visitors to Antarctica experience this magical realm on Weddell Sea expeditions during a relatively brief window of the austral summer when the sea’s northwestern expanse becomes accessible to ice-strengthened ships. Gigantic tabular icebergs are a defining sight in the Weddell Sea, edged by multiple ice shelves, among them the second-biggest on Earth (the Filcher-Ronne Ice Shelf).

You’ll feel like an explorer of bygone days sailing east of the Peninsula into the Weddell—named, by the way, for James Weddell of Scotland, who plied these waters back in 1823. The titanic icebergs and tantalizing feeling of away-from-it-all remoteness are reasons enough to visit, but then there’s the wildlife: leopard and Weddell seals, baleen whales and orcas, and plenty of penguins—including, notably, the northernmost colony of emperor penguins in Antarctica, located off Snow Hill Island.

Colorful iceberg near Andvord Bay. Adelie penguins and a leopard seal on an ice floe.

Weddell Sea Expeditions

Join our captivating cruises and venture to one of the most remote and untouched regions of Antarctica. Discover awe-inspiring ice formations, encounter incredible wildlife, and create unforgettable memories on our extraordinary Weddell Sea expeditions.

Unexplored Antarctica Between Two Continents

Length: 30 Day / 29 Night
Ships: Le Commandant Charcot
$ 52,810 - $ 188,640
Per Person
Up to 30% savings

Falkland Islands, South Georgia & Antarctica

Length: 18 Day / 17 Night
Ships: Ocean Albatros, Ocean Victory
$ 10,497 - $ 47,195
Per Person
Up to 20% savings

Wild Antarctica

Length: 12 Day / 11 Night
Ships: Sylvia Earle, Greg Mortimer
$ 10,716 - $ 23,516
Per Person
Up to 10% savings

Emperor Penguin Quest: Expedition To Snow Hill

Length: 14 Day / 13 Night
Ships: Ultramarine
$ 24,930 - $ 57,330
Per Person
Up to 10% savings

In Shackleton’s Footsteps

Length: 20 Day / 19 Night
Ships: Greg Mortimer
$ 20,336 - $ 41,756
Per Person

Antarctica - Elephant Island - Weddell Sea - Polar Circle

Length: 15 Day / 14 Night
Ships: Plancius
$ 10,500 - $ 15,300
Per Person
Up to 31% savings

Best of Antarctica: In Depth

Length: 14 Day / 13 Night
Ships: Ocean Endeavour
$ 8,519 - $ 15,119
Per Person
Up to 30% savings

Antarctica, South Georgia & Falklands Islands

Length: 19 Day / 18 Night
Ships: Ocean Albatros, Ocean Victory
$ 11,267 - $ 47,195
Per Person

Weddell Sea Map

FAQ About Weddell Sea Cruises

What are Weddell Sea cruises?

Weddell Sea cruises are expeditions that take you to the icy waters of the Weddell Sea in Antarctica. These cruises offer a unique opportunity to explore this remote and pristine region known for its stunning landscapes, impressive ice formations, and abundant wildlife.

What can I expect during a Weddell Sea cruise?

During a Weddell Sea cruise, you can expect to witness towering icebergs, vast ice shelves, and stunning scenery. You may have the chance to encounter wildlife such as penguins, seals, and whales. The Weddell Sea also offers opportunities for thrilling Zodiac cruises and shore landings.

When is the best time to go on a Weddell Sea cruise?

The best time for Weddell Sea cruises is during the Antarctic summer months from November to March. This period offers more favorable weather conditions and better access to the Weddell Sea, allowing for a higher chance of exploration and wildlife encounters.

How long do Weddell Sea cruises typically last?

Weddell Sea cruises typically last around 10-14 days, although the duration can vary. These expeditions provide sufficient time to explore the Weddell Sea region, including visits to various landing sites, opportunities for wildlife observation, and Zodiac excursions.

Are Weddell Sea cruises suitable for all travelers?

Weddell Sea cruises are generally suitable for travelers with a spirit of adventure and a love for remote and pristine environments. However, due to the potential for rough seas and challenging conditions, these cruises may be more suitable for those with a higher level of physical fitness and stamina.

Ships Sailing The Weddell Sea

Set sail on an extraordinary journey through the icy wonders of the Weddell Sea. Our exceptional ships are your gateway to this remote Antarctic realm, where towering icebergs, dramatic landscapes, and captivating wildlife await.

Le Commandant Charcot

16-30 Days, 4 Itineraries
245 Guests, Luxury
$ 52,810 - $ 188,640
Per Person
Up to 30% savings

Ultramarine

12-23 Days, 5 Itineraries
199 Guests, Luxury
$ 11,421 - $ 77,311
Per Person
Up to 26% savings

Sylvia Earle

12-23 Days, 14 Itineraries
132 Guests, Mid-Range
$ 10,716 - $ 56,521
Per Person
Up to 41% savings

Ocean Albatros

9-19 Days, 7 Itineraries
169 Guests, Mid-Range
$ 4,424 - $ 47,195
Per Person
Up to 26% savings

Greg Mortimer

9-24 Days, 12 Itineraries
132 Guests, Mid-Range
$ 10,236 - $ 49,976
Per Person
Up to 41% savings

Ocean Victory

9-19 Days, 8 Itineraries
189 Guests, Mid-Range
$ 7,137 - $ 34,846
Per Person
Up to 31% savings

Ocean Endeavour

11-23 Days, 8 Itineraries
200 Guests, Mid-Range
$ 6,319 - $ 33,599
Per Person

MV Ushuaia

10-22 Days, 5 Itineraries
90 Guests, Authentic
$ 4,860 - $ 20,180
Per Person

Plancius

11-21 Days, 9 Itineraries
108 Guests, Authentic
$ 7,700 - $ 26,860
Per Person