Antarctica
Gentoo Rocks

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    • Day126

      Paradise Bay / Skontorp Cove

      January 9 in Antarctica ⋅ 🌧 1 °C

      64.53°S 62.50°W

      Easily the most photogenic place on our journey, Paradise Bay was named for the ease with which whalers used to be able to hunt whale here.

      Now the home of Argentinian research station Almirante Brown, Paradise Bay immediately moved us to tears when we stepped on to the deck for the first time here.

      It is tranquil beyond words. The water was a mirror, not a breath of wind, the only sound whales blowing all around the bay.

      We hiked up to a panoramic viewpoint to take in the entire bay, and had another incredibly successful whale watching tour. The whales here just didn't care that you're around, and we got appreciate the humpbacks feeding up close and personal.

      We saw them lunge feeding, we saw the adults teaching the calves to bubble net feed, and we were surrounded at times by these whales feeding on the abundant krill.

      As much as I try, there just aren't words to convey how spectacular it was to be surrounded by all this.
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      Traveler

      So peaceful

      Traveler

      looks like your on another planet !

      Traveler

      Oh wow ! National geographic worthy!

      2 more comments
       
    • Day57

      Antarctique : paradise harbour

      January 6 in Antarctica ⋅ 🌧 1 °C

      2 ème escale, là nous avons vraiment foulé le continent, sa péninsule. On s'est retrouvé au milieu d'une colonie de pingouins gentoos, ils ne font pas plus de 50 cm adultes, ils sont mignons mais qu'est ce qu'ils puent la merde... On a quand même apprécié leur présence même si ça sentait la poissonnerie pourrie, c'est très drôle à regarder. Parfois ils courent, ils tombent beaucoup, ramassent des cailloux on sait pas trop pourquoi, et ils gueulent au loin. Dans l'eau ils sont plus impressionnants, ils vont relativement vite malgré qui ne se servent que de leurs nageoires/pas de leurs pieds. Sinon, la veille au soir, depuis le bateaux, nous sommes tombé sur un immense festival de baleines à bosses (qui sont habituellement très solitaires). Partout autour de nous, elles mangeaient, plongeaient, on ne savait plus où donner de la tête. C'était rare et incroyableRead more

      Traveler

      Incroyable 🤩🤩🤩 c’est vraiment un truc de fou ce voyage ! P.s j’ai une explication pour les pingouins qui me vient d’Happy feet (super dessin animé), ils font des montagnes de cailloux à titre de parade nuptiale pour attirer les femelles et ils leur offrent un caillou lorsqu’ils ont trouvé l’élue de leur cœur 🥲 je les adore

      Traveler

      tout a fait Thierry ! mais la franchement ils faisaient tous un même tas. peut être il n'y avait qu'une femelle 🤔

      Traveler

      La fameuse pingouine schtroumpfette Jamy !

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    • Day15

      Paradise Bay

      February 13, 2018 in Antarctica ⋅ ☀️ 28 °C

      A stunning morning with water like glass meant that the expedition could see some spectacular scenery. The divers saw jellyfish which lit up like LEDs. The kayakers had minke whales surface only metres from them. The name said it all.Read more

    • Nov21

      Stunning

      November 21, 2014 in Antarctica

      We were awakened at 0515 and were on the zodiac by 0600. We started our day early, in order to accommodate three landings. Our first, and snowy, stop was Danco Island. As we approached the landing point, a group of penguins porpoised by, gaining momentum to jump ashore. We watched them squirt from the water right to their feet. Unfortunately, some of the individuals didn't get enough propulsion to make it onto land, and they sadly slipped back into the water for another try. I could have watched this mayhem for hours, but we had to alight and move onto shore.

      We used switchbacks to ascend the mountain, stopping frequently to watch the penguins. From shore, they moved upward. Some would get tired and flop to their belly for a well-deserved rest. Others, arms straight out, waddled in lines, creating "highways" of penguin transit. We had to give way several times, as the birds have the right of way here.

      Kim and I spent time at the top, taking in the views and the penguin activity. We enjoyed a penguin "tiff," where the offended beat the other penguin with his flipper, then chased him off. It was comical for us, but a very serious matter for the birds.

      We returned to the ship for breakfast and a pair of warm, dry socks. Our next stop was Neko Harbor. We opted for the zodiac cruise, rather than the landing. Ali was our zodiac pilot, and she provided a great deal of information about the area. She also made sure we enjoyed some limited whale watching. Another zodiac pilot had spotted a minke whale, and she tracked it down for us. It was beautiful to watch the whale glide across the ocean surface, with an iceberg as backdrop.

      Although we rejoined the boat, the whale display was not over. We worked our way down the Strait and sighted some orca and a humpback whale. They made themselves available for all onboard, before diving out of sight.

      We had a special "Polar BBQ" for lunch. That's right, they were grilling burgers, dogs, brats, and ribs on the deck. It was just like a Caribbean cruise, with alcoholic drinks and sassy dance music; of course, the temperature was just a tad cooler. I skipped the ice cream bar, since I was already freezing from eating outside.

      Our last stop for the day was Paradise Harbor. We cruised first and got an intimate view of the Petzel Glacier. The glacier towers above the ocean, with gigantic rectangular columns of ice, now covered by snow. There were two large archways carved out at the waterline that seemed to invite us to enter. Beyond the glacier were unique rock formations, described in-depth by the ship's geologist. Please see me for more details.

      The zodiac then took us to the landing point, where we saw gentoo penguins, who had overrun an Argentine science base. We hiked up to the top of the point for an amazing view of the harbor below. The ocean was a dark blue, dotted with sea ice and floating icebergs, and punctuated by our tiny little ship; all surrounded by a ring of mountains and sheer cliffs. Several people decided to slide down the slope, so I gave it a try. I was one of the last to go, so the track was like an icy, bobsled run. I tucked my coat under my bum and gave a push. About 100 feet later, at a slope of about 25 degrees, I realized I probably wouldn't be able to see a chiropractor soon enough.
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    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Gentoo Rocks, Q21476321

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