Antarctica is one of those destinations that is not for the faint of heart, and often remains buried on people’s bucket lists as a ‘someday’ trip due to its limited accessibility and freezing climate.
Another once-in-a-lifetime experience that eludes most is the witnessing of a total solar eclipse – where the moon is orbiting Earth and, at one point, moves between the sun and Earth, thus blocking the light of the sun from reaching Earth and casting a shadow.
Quark Expeditions is one company that is turning these dreams of travellers into reality – in fact, it’s been helping them tick off these bucket-list items since 2003, when it became the first operator to successfully lead a total solar eclipse voyage in Antarctica.
To commemorate that achievement, the polar adventure specialist is reuniting experts from the original voyage to join two new Antarctic eclipse journeys in 2021.
This is only the second opportunity human beings have ever had to see an eclipse from Antarctica. So, if seeing an eclipse from all seven continents is also on your clients’ bucket lists, this will be their last chance for 18 years!
Special guests on the Antarctic eclipse journeys will include NASA’s “Mr. Eclipse,” Fred Espenak; and Babak Tafreshi, an award-winning National Geographic photographer.
Both Espenak and Tafreshi participated in the original 2003 voyage and will be joined on next year’s journeys by American Eclipse author David Baron, whose TED Talk “You owe it to yourself to experience a total solar eclipse” has over two million online views.
As part of the planning process, the team at Quark Expeditions will be conducting an expert summit in May 2020 where special guests, expedition leaders and its head of guest experiences will come together to discuss key learnings from the 2003 voyage and how to use them to ensure the ultimate guest experience on the 2021 voyages.
To figure out which voyage is the right one for your clients, we’ve provided a handy breakdown of both below:
Solar Eclipse 2021: Totality in Antarctica with South Georgia (one departure only)
Sailing aboard the all-suites, all-balcony World Explorer, guests will travel to South Georgia and the Antarctic Peninsula, enjoying the best of the Antarctic region and special presentations from Baron and Tafreshi.
This voyage is ideal for those who prioritise the destination (Antarctica) over the total solar eclipse, and the special guest hosts will speak more to the human experience behind viewing the rare spectacle.
Starting from $37,000 per person (twin-share), the 17-day voyage will run between 26 November and 12 December 2021.
Solar Eclipse 2021: Totality in Antarctica, with South Georgia and Falkland Islands (one departure only)
On the super-yacht Ocean Diamond, passengers will journey to the Falklands, South Georgia and the Antarctic Peninsula. This slightly longer voyage is tailored to eclipse chasers and will feature special presentations from Espenak that delve into the more scientific and technical aspects of solar eclipses.
Starting from $36,200 per person (twin-share), the 20-day voyage will run from 25 November to 14 December 2021.
Passengers on both trips will receive special eyewear for observing the eclipse and enjoy a celebratory dinner on the evening of the monumental event.
Guests will also have the have opportunity to participate in complimentary eclipse photography webinars led by Tafreshi before the event and receive one of his professional photographs of the occasion to keep.
These voyages are all now available to book and qualify for an early booking bonus of up to 10 per cent off, plus an additional 10 per cent discount, if paid in full before 20 May 2020.
To take advantage of Quark Expeditions’ special offer and help your clients move one or even two steps closer to completing their bucket lists, contact your preferred polar wholesaler or click HERE.
Main image credit: David Merron