South Pole & Emperors

Two Antarctic icons, one spectacular trip.

Buckle up for a magical Antarctic adventure.

South Pole Emperor Odyssey offers an exciting itinerary that includes a flight to the South Pole, an overnight camp high on the Antarctic Plateau and a visit of one of the greatest spectacles on Earth, Antarctica's majestic Emperor penguins.

  • Gateway Cape Town, South Africa
  • Distance no ski
  • Nights on Ice 14
  • Ski days no ski
  • Daily Distance no ski
  • Sled Weight no ski
  • Temp. Range -5 to -30°C / 25 to -31°F
  • Challenge 3 What's this?
  • Conditions cool coastal to cold plateau
  • Challenges minimal cold exposure

Trip Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive Cape Town. Meet your Icetrek guide and check-in to hotel

Day 2

Review itinerary, equipment and food. Pre-flight briefing.

Day 3

Free time then late evening Ilyushin-76 flight to ALCI Airbase in Antarctica.

Day 4

Arrive Antarctica. Rest then visit Russian Novolazarevskaya (Novo) Station & local sightseeing.

Day 5

Local trek around Schirmacher Oasis and visit Adelie Penguin rookery. Evening activities at Oasis.

Day 6

Basler flight to Atka Bay Emperor Penguin colony via Queen Maud Mountains. Return to Oasis for evening activity.

Day 7

Over-snow vehicle to nearby trekking mountain and ice wall. Climb non-technical mountain. Evening activity at Oasis and prepare for South Pole flight.

Day 8

Basler flight to Antarctic Plateau camp. Stay in expedition tents. (Optional local ski tour)

Day 9

Breakfast and morning flight to South Pole Station, visit for two hours. Flight to airbase and return to Oasis Guesthouse by the evening. Celebratory dinner.

Day 10

Rest or reserve day with local activities. Evening activity at Oasis.

Day 11

Day walk to Blue Ice Tunnel. Evening activity at Oasis.

Day 12

Local sightseeing and tours. Evening activity at Oasis.

Day 13

Morning relax and prepare to return to South Africa. Afternoon flight to Cape Town. End of services.


  • Briefing followed by refreshments one day prior to departure
  • Cape Town airport transfers for Antarctic flights
  • All plane flights associated with the expedition program
  • Meals and accommodation at Oasis Guesthouse
  • Meals and accommodation at Plateau camp
  • Icetrek guide(s)
  • Use of specialist clothing and equipment (see equipment list).
  • Safety/navigation/communications equipment
  • 25kg weight allowance (inc. food and group equipment)


  • Travel to and from Cape Town, South Africa
  • Hotel transfers for non-Antarctic flights
  • Hotel accommodation in Cape Town (we can help you find appropriate accommodation at your preferred budget).
  • Excess baggage above the allowance
  • Additional costs (accommodation, meals etc.) due to changes beyond our control ie. weather delays
  • Evacuation, hospitalization and repatriation costs and/or insurance
  • Satellite telephone airtime
  • Commercial use of footage or images provided by Icetrek

In Cape Town we board an Ilyushin-76 jet and fly 5.5 hours over the Southern Ocean to the ALCI Antarctic Airbase near Russia's Novolazarevskaya station.

We drive a short distance to your accommodated at Oasis Guesthouse. Situated on Schirmacher Oasis, an ice-free area 14km from the runway, the wooden houses of our heated Guesthouse are warm and cosy and offer comfortable beds, dining room, a cinema, bathrooms and an authentic banya (Russian sauna).

After your long overnight flight you have time to sleep or relax. After lunch we visit the permanent research station, Novolazarevskaya (Novo). You will have a chance to speak to the scientists and learn about life and work at an Antarctica base.

At the Guesthouse a host of activities are available at your leisure, including local walks and sightseeing, games and entertainment, lectures about Antarctica and of course the Russian sauna. And you have plenty of time to indulge yourself in reading, music, socialising or just resting.

Further afield we undertake exploratory walks in the Schirmacher Oasis, search for Adeliepenguin rookeries, visit the icewall and ice tunnel, climb local peaks, trek on the ice waves of the Iceshelf, ski on the frozen lakes and build an igloo.

With good weather we fly 2.5 hours by Basler aircraft to the Atka Bay Emperor penguin colony. You will have several hours to observe the penguins and their chicks and to walk to castle-like icebergs trapped by the fast ice. It is a truly magical place and a highlight of your Antarctic Odyssey.

The pinnacle of the journey is the flight to the South Pole. Once we have weather clearance we fly over the stunning Queen Maud Mountains onto the Antarctic Plateau landing at our comfortable camp where we stay for the night. The next day we fly onward to the South Pole. The South Pole! Yes, you are standing at the bottom of the world, a place that very few people have the opportunity to visit. You will have around two hours to take photos, complete a Round-the-World walk around the symbolic Pole and tour the scientific base.

After our visit we fly north and return to ALCI airbase and the Guesthouse where we celebrate our achievement with good food and wine.

After two weeks dof adventuring, relaxing, socialising and learning about the southern continent we bring you to the ALCI airbase for your flight back to Cape Town.

This is truly an adventure of a lifetime.

Icetrek Cape Town to Antarctica Trips Icetrek Cape Town Emperpr Penguins South Pole

Many airlines fly to Cape Town, South Africa, including South African Airways, British Airways, KLM, Qatar, Lufthansa, Air France, Singapore and others.

South Pole & Emperors

Nov 23 - Dec 6 2017 Availability: 8
per person ex-Cape Town
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