Antarctica - cold paradise

Trip Start Feb 02, 2013
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40
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Trip End Mar 25, 2013


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MV Expedition
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Flag of Antarctica  ,
Sunday, March 10, 2013

 I am already back in Buenos Aires after the Antarctic leg of our travels.  I cannot begin to explain the impact of Antarctica on me and just about every other one of the 130ish people on our gorgeous ship, Expedition.  It was a trip where being totally looked after was just the norm.  The staff, from cleaning, to expedition, to the kitchen, the chefs, the wait staff, the reception, the Captain, the expedition leader, HR department, you get it, every person on the ship was a delight!  They are so passionate about what they do and so keen to give the passengers the best experiences possible, I am still just in awe.  
Then there is the stunning scenery.  It is the stuff you have all seen in photographs and listened to Richard talk about, and seen on telly, but let me tell you, it is so much more.  I will forever be in debt to Julie for having the Antarctic Dream as I doubt I would have dared to dream so grandly.  I cannot find even one of the hundreds of photos I took that even begins to tell the story of this place.  It is grand and impressive.  It is gentle and ferocious.  It is white and it is colours that are almost unnatural in their intensity.  It is glass and it is all angles and shards.  It is truly amazing!
and don't get me started on the wildlife!   Penguins!  One quote from someone says, if you had never seen a penguin would you believe they could exist (or something like that).  They have no fear of people and the younger ones are so curious they will come up and just look you in the eye, peck at your clothes, and chomp on your fingers.   They are truly hilarious and chase each other, chase anyone's parent for food, run in small circles seemingly for the pure joy of it, and swim with such speed and grace that it is a total contrast to them on land.  They swim alone or in groups sometimes of enormous numbers.  They flash out of the water and you get to see their entire bodies.  Such wonderful animals.
Then there is the much maligned leopard seals.   They eat the cute little penguins and can be seen tossing their bodies around in what looks like a game.  They kill sometimes and don't even eat them...  Despite that, they are among my favourite animals here.  They too are pretty ungainly on land and elegant and refined in their aquatic movements.  We spent quite a bit of time watching them as they showed off their skills around our zodiacs (the inflatable boats we went exploring in).  
The whales were not as plentiful as was e pelted but we saw them in all their enormous majesty on most days.  I spent slabs of time sitting on the window sill of the Discovery Lounge on the lookout for them.  I got quite good at spotting their blows, that spray that happens when they exhale as they surface.  There was not one whale that did not bring me to joy.  





 
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Comments

janetH on

So glad to read your glorious Antarctic post Robyn - have missed hearing from you for what has seemed like ages, then Neil told us where you were. We were at Splash at the time - we've saved Tha Fish for when you are here!

sista on

hey....yay!! good to hear from you...and to see the first pics from the antarctic trek....so beautiful hey? look forward to seeing you and hearing all the lovely-stories-with-many-amazing-pics.....one more sleep on this your greatest adventure to date....and back to the adventure of being home......life is so full of surprises!! thanks for enjoying and sharing yours.....love you

mum on

Everyone is asking when you will be home - so reckon that means you have been missed just a little! Has been wonderful reading of your fabulous adventure and looking forward to seeing you tomorrow!! Yay! luv Mum

cathyandles england on

WOW! We have snow here and its cold but I think you could better that! and we have no penguins. Wish I was at home waiting with the family to welcome you home and hear all about it. It has been fantastic reading about your travels my lucky and adventurous girl! Have a safe trip home. I will phone soon/ Love you lots and lots xxx

Renee on

I love that picture of you! So lovely to see your happy glowing face after such a long time not hearing from you! Travel safely my wonderful friend!

sean on

What does penguin taste like?

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