Come watch wildlife with us! Cheesemans' Ecology Safaris' distinctive worldwide tours travel to destinations unique for abundant and photogenic mammals, birds and nature. We emphasize maximum field time and action-packed wildlife photography during the best season at each destination. Hand-picked leaders and local guides combine amiable personalities with extensive knowledge of each region. All our tours provide a non-smoking policy in small groups. As a small company, we provide a personal touch and attention to every detail - just as we have done for over thirty years. We are dedicated to delivering the best possible wildlife encounters to you. Join us for an amazing experience!
Reserve early! Our trips can fill fast. To reserve your space, follow the instructions in each itinerary. Please contact us if you have any questions. If a trip is full, ask us about our wait list and other options.
Abundant Time Ashore
We spare no effort to be able to offer you as much time in the field as physically possible. Of course, how much time you spend ashore is up to you, but the choice is yours, not ours. We strive to offer at least eight hours of shore time for each landing day and often far exceed that amount. Don't go to Antarctica and find yourself stuck on a ship when you want to be exploring this magical place!
We maximize the number of zodiac drivers on our staff so we can quickly ferry our participants ashore, without waiting in a long queue. More drivers also allows participants greater flexibility in deciding when they would like to go ashore and return.
Jam-Packed Itinerary with
Since 1994 we have led over 20 expeditions to the Antarctic regions and now use this experience to continuously perfect and update our itinerary to make it the most in-depth you will find.
We make more landings than other voyages. Please compare the number of landings we plan to other tours - we are sure that we will come out on top! We can offer more landings without rushing from one site to the next because our trip is longer. Years of experience give us the knowledge to hand pick the most fantastic sites. In fact, our voyages to the Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia Island and the Falkland Islands plan 25 or more landings! Plus we spend significant time zodiac cruising to get you close to the spectacular scenery and wildlife in the waters of this unique area.
Expert Leaders and Staff
Excellence, expertise, and genuine interest in your enjoyment define our leaders and staff. While on shore, we offer you photography seminars, wildlife drawing classes (on our Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia and Falklands expedition), plus geology, bird, and nature walks to enhance your visit. Also, while on board the ship at sea, we offer ecology, geology, photography, and history lectures. Staff members are on watch from the ship's bridge and deck to spot and identify marine mammals and seabirds. Our full slate of diverse leaders brings you a richer experience.
Our numerous and experienced staff will help you safely land ashore in challenging sea conditions. For this reason, we rarely miss landings, especially at such fantastic but difficult sites as Steeple Jason in the Falklands and Bailey Head on Deception Island in the Antarctic Peninsula. These are undeniably two of the most fantastic sites in the world for breeding albatross and penguins.
We have accessible expedition leaders - when you contact us you can often talk directly to an expedition leader who is glad to answer all your questions, no matter how small! We can also provide names and contacts of former travelers upon request.
Small Cohesive Group
IAATO rules state that only 100 people are allowed to go ashore at one time (except on Prion Island, where only 50 are allowed). Having fewer than 100 participants on board allows everyone to be ashore at the same time, eliminating timed shifts and maximizing field time. Our groups are small enough so we can land ashore at the same time without creating a crowd, yet large enough to allow us to bring a diverse array of knowledgeable leaders.
We charter the entire ship to make sure that our group is cohesive and passionate about their wildlife experience. We talk to each and every participant about the natural history focus of our expedition to assure the best experience for all. We also provide a non-smoking policy for the comfort of everyone.
We charter the best possible ships, such as the Ortelius and Hans Hansson, for these types of wildlife expeditions. These ships are strong and fast, perfect for the Southern Ocean, yet small enough to provide an intimate experience. The Ortelius has the highest ice-class notation (UL1 equivalent to 1A) so you can feel safe as you explore the icy waters around the Antarctic Peninsula.
Chartering the entire ship puts our expedition leader in charge resulting in more time ashore and zodiac cruising than other expeditions. Our experienced expedition leaders and ship crew know these waters well and can put together agreeable alternate plans when sea and weather conditions change.
Great Value and Quality
Our tour is the best value of any Antarctic voyage. This is primarily because we are a small, efficient company so you are not paying for a lot of advertising and travel agent commissions. Be sure to compare the number of days, landings, and leaders, plus the hours spent ashore against other tours before you sign-up. Read independent reviews on Epinions.com.
Our leaders and participants are a most enthusiastic, excited, and fun bunch of people. Many of our travelmates are repeat participants, so you will likely see a familiar face or two on our tours. Many new and lasting friendships have been started on a Cheesemans' expedition. The high number of repeat travelers is a testament to our high quality and value.
We are concerned about protecting the polar environments and have supported many conservation efforts over the years. We promote protection of the Wandering Albatross and other albatross species. We are full members of the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO), and Ted Cheeseman is a member of their Executive Committee. IAATO is a membership organization that advocates, promotes, and practices safe and environmentally responsible travel to the Antarctic.
We initiated an annual beach cleanup of Dyke Bay on Carcass Island in the Falklands where we removed over a hundred bags full of trash the first year. Thanks to our many generous staff and travelmates who volunteered to give up valuable time to benefit this spectacular place.
Join us on a voyage of discovery to an awe-inspiring world devoted to nature, wildlife, science, and peace. This safari will have you completely captivated, from the stunning vistas of Tierra del Fuego to the busy penguin rookeries of the Falklands, from the dramatic landscapes of South Georgia to the ice-covered terrain of the Antarctic. Board the comfortable, safe and newly upgraded MV Ortelius for an expedition offering an unparalleled 17 landing days in the Southern Ocean. Our voyage includes three days in the Falklands with a huge diversity of species, six days at South Georgia Island, the all but undiscovered rugged land of towering mountains and thriving colonies of penguins, seals, and albatross, one day at the South Orkneys with nesting Snow Petrels, and seven days along the Antarctic Peninsula, the wonderland of ice and inconceivably vibrant polar wildlife. During days at sea, our naturalists on the ship's bridge and stern share sightings of whales and seabirds, including many of the world's species of albatross. Maximum time both on shore and Zodiac cruising will be available for photography, wildlife experiences, and exploring the landscapes of the great Southern Ocean. Our priority is assuring the most in-depth wildlife experience in the Antarctic, an experience made possible by our excellent itinerary and committed expedition staff.
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Discover the Ross Sea deep into the Antarctic of the Heroic Age of Polar Exploration. Our expedition sails from New Zealand as far south into the Ross Sea as possible into a stunningly tranquil world of abundant wildlife and scenery. On our way south, we visit the famous New Zealand and Australian Subantarctic Islands: Snares, Auckland, Macquarie and Campbell, vibrant with breeding penguins and albatross in some of the world's greatest bird colonies. During these brief summer months of soft 24-hour light fantastic for photography, you will be amazed by the plentiful wildlife crowding the headlands and beaches. We visit USA's McMurdo, New Zealand's Scott and Italy's Terra Nova Bay Research Bases to witness how scientists conduct cutting-edge research in this challenging polar climate. Our journey takes us among scenic icebergs calved from the Ross Ice Shelf, past glaciers spilling into the sea and near active volcano, Mt Erebus. We plan to visit several historical and perfectly preserved explorers' huts once occupied by heroic early twentieth century explorers such as Shackleton, Borchgrevink and Scott. This unique expedition cruises the Ross Sea for an unparalleled ten days with a maximum of time ashore and Zodiac cruising to give you the experience of a lifetime among penguins such as Emperor, Royal, and Adelie and whales such as Orca, Minke, and Humpback. Join five of our carefully chosen veteran polar leaders on this unique adventure aboard the comfortable ice-strengthened ship, Akademik Shokalskiy.
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South Georgia is the diamond in the Southern Ocean's crown of Subantarctic islands, a spectacular glaciated landscape home to some of the greatest wildlife densities found anywhere on earth. The island remains extremely difficult to access and few expeditions do it justice. Consequently, we are extremely pleased and excited to have pioneered a ten-participant expedition headed by an exceptionally experienced and knowledgeable staff of four for an unparalled 17 days intimately exploring South Georgia. Our small group will benefit from an exciting science component to the voyage which, in combination with the ease of getting such a small number of folks ashore, means a strong likelihood of visiting sites rarely or never accessed by tour vessels. And as far as time ashore, there will be simply no comparison; we will be able to explore in quiet serenity, and even camp ashore for those who wish. With the safe and comfortable vessel Hans Hansson at our disposal, we will not be inhibited like larger ships, needing dozens of zodiacs back and forth from shore at any site, nor constrained by the limitations of small yachts. This expedition offers great depth of exploration, contributes significantly to conservation science, and provides unparalleled experiences for a small, intimate group.
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