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20 Reasons to Travel to Antarctica Now (Before It Changes)

Midnight Sunset in Antarctica

There are more opportunities to travel to Antarctica today than there ever have been before, but most people still relegate this trip to the “someday” category.

A bucket list destination for many nature lovers, Antarctica is a remote and isolated continent full of inspiring natural wonder.

It’s widely regarded as one of the most strikingly beautiful places on the planet, with pristine landscapes and a wealth of wildlife thriving in one of the last corners of the Earth that development hasn’t truly touched. 

But with a rapidly warming climate changing the ice-covered landscape and limited space to satisfy an ever-increasing tourism demand, those who wait might find themselves too late to see the continent at its best. 

The following are 20 great reasons to travel to Antarctica now, before your personal “someday” never comes. 

READ MORE: What Is Ecotourism? (The History & Principles of Responsible Travel)

Midnight Sunset in Antarctica

Reasons to Travel to Antarctica Guide

  1. The Antarctic Islands
  2. Antarctic Wildlife
  3. Penguins
  4. Seals
  5. Whales
  6. Dolphins
  7. Birds of Antarctica
  8. The Adventure
  9. Hiking
  10. Kayaking
  11. Visiting a Scientific Research Base
  12. Zodiac Rides
  13. Camping on the Ice
  14. Taking the Polar Plunge
  15. Unique Antarctica Photo Opportunities
  16. Luxury Small Ship Cruising
  17. Exploring a Relatively Untouched Frontier
  18. Because the Climate is Changing
  19. The Price Mirrors the Temperature
  20. The Future of Antarctic Tourism is Uncertain

READ MORE: 60 Earth Day Tips You Can Use Every Day

Weddell Seal in Antarctica
A Weddell Seal Waves at the Ocean Nova ship from a nearby Iceberg

1. Travel to the Antarctic Islands

While the mainland is often the primary attraction for people traveling to Antarctica, Antarctic cruises also take in many fascinating islands.

These sub-Antarctic islands can be just as much a highlight of your trip, as they’re teeming with wildlife and a diverse landscape that ranges from ice shelves to volcanos.

The famous Falkland Islands are a true wildlife haven where you can see several species of penguin you won’t find on the mainland (including the Rockhopper, Magellanic, and Macaroni penguin).

Charles Darwin actually spent more time on the Falkland Islands than he did in the Galapagos islands, because these islands are so rich in a diverse array of polar wildlife. 

Elephant Island is much closer to the Antarctic Peninsula. Here travelers get to see first-hand the place where Ernest Shackleton and his crew sought refuge from the shipwreck of the Endurance.

The island is also…

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