Antarctica's Ross Sea Cruises
Nature so grand there are no words to describe it!
One of the most remote places on Earth and one of the last pristine ecosystems. Wildlife abounds during these brief summer months: expedition cruise from New Zealand and encounter Emperor and Adélie penguins, Snow Petrels, Southern Fulmars and many more species of bird; and enjoy magnificent whale watching opportunities including Minke, Orca, Southern Right that feed in these nutrient-rich waters. Discover massive penguin rookeries and colossal ice shelves, visit McMurdo Station and Scott Base, and venture to the historic huts of Shackleton and Scott. Each day is an epic adventure of discovery - as seen on slow TV documentary Go Further South and Antarctica from Above.
Whether you’re a birder, photographer, wildlife enthusiast, or simply an adventurous spirit, these expeditions offer an unparalleled travel experience.
About Heritage Expeditions
Ambassadors for conservation, pioneers of discovery, and leaders in expedition travel to the world’s best-kept secrets.
For over 35 years, Heritage Expeditions has pioneered voyages to some of the most wild and biologically rich regions on the planet. Our mission is to increase awareness and conservation of the natural world through responsible expedition travel.
Our team of naturalists, historians, biologists and ornithologists bring an enormous wealth of experience, knowledge and passion to our expeditions, both in the field and onboard our ship during our lecture series.
Our new flagship, the 140-guest Heritage Adventurer, combines the highest passenger ship iceclass rating with an international flair and luxury amenities. Guests enjoy spacious suites, elegant common areas and cuisine prepared by top chefs.
Heritage Adventurer, formerly known as MS Hanseatic, is a true pioneering expedition vessel of exceptional pedigree. Originally designed for 184 guests, Heritage Adventurer now welcomes just 140 travellers ensuring spacious, stylish and comfortable voyages, and with a fleet of 14 Zodiacs to maximise the adventure. Savor daily international gourmet cuisine from talented chefs across two lavish restaurants, and settle into spacious and well-appointed accommodations each night. Enjoy 360-degree views and comfortable sun loungers on the Observation Deck, relax in the Observation Lounge with library, bar and panoramic views, and reinvigorate in the heated salt water pool, well-equipped gym, hot tub, sauna and steam room.
Year Built: 1991
Shipyard: Rauma, Finland
Classification: Lloyds 1AS, GL E4
Accommodation: 140 guests
Length: 124 metres
Cruising Speed: 12 knots
Antarctica Season 2024-2025
Join us in Antarctica's extraordinary Ross Sea
In the Wake of Scott & Shackleton: Ross Sea Antarctica
9 Jan – 5 Feb 2024
4 Feb – 2 Mar 2024
7 Jan – 3 Feb 2025 NEW VOYAGE
2 Feb – 1 Mar 2025 NEW VOYAGE
Queenstown-Bluff, New Zealand and return
- Walk in Sir Ernest Shackleton’s footsteps at his hut at Cape Royds
- Venture back in time at Borchgrevink’s Hut at Cape Adare
- Be welcomed ashore at research stations in Terra Nova Bay
- Visit Enderby Island in sea lion breeding season
- See the Royal Penguins on Macquarie Island at their peak
- Emperor Penguins, Royals, Kings, Adelie Penguins, whales, seals...
- Adelie Penguins are flourishing with chicks about to start fledging
- Catch the peak flowering of the Megaherbs in the Subantarctic
- 24-hour sunlight in the Ross Sea
- Orca feeding amongst the ice, especially in McMurdo Sound
- Navigate through pack ice that guards the entrance to the Ross Sea
For all voyages, exact landings depend on weather and ice conditions and wildlife sightings can never be guaranteed; however, our 35+ years of experience in operating expeditions mean that we are well equipped to make the most of the conditions at the time. Past trip logs and species lists are available for all expeditions.
What our travellers are saying:
We are overwhelmed by the excellence of absolutely every aspect of this trip. The staff were so professional, engaging, helpful, knowledgeable, and friendly. We felt safe and well looked after at all times. I doubt having that level of experience and knowledge about Antarctica in one place has not been done before! We were amazed by the quality of the meals, and the cabins and life on board were also more than expected. Please DO NOT CHANGE ANYTHING. It was worth every cent... We truly believe you guys are one of the best travel companies we have ever dealt with...
Ben and Ros
We had such a wondrous time on the ship... still reeling from it all, it was just fabulous and the thousands of penguins we saw were just amazing and exceeded all our expectations! Four new species for us seen was just amazing...Snares, Royals, SIX EMPERORS and an Erect-crested! We were in penguin heaven! We've now seen 15 of the 18 penguins in the wild! Thanks to wonderful Heritage – you have all made dreams come true for us. We loved the islands, the ice, all the birds, whales, seals, ice, crazy sea, calm sea, bergs, sky, peace, beauty and wonder of so far south. We loved the walks on land, all the landings, Zodiac cruises, food, crew, staff, passengers. It was all just fantastic.
Julie and Tim
A fantastic time! Trip of a lifetime and memories to last for ever. To experience the historic huts and especially to go into Scott's hut at Cape Evans where my grandfather had been in the early 1900s and 60s... Rodney kept on saying "You don't know how blessed you are..." and he was so right. Thank you for your help, advise and assistance you gave me in the months leading up to my departure.
All guest funds are held in a separate trust account and only used for their future travel with Heritage Expeditions.
Heritage Expeditions continues to closely monitor COVID-19 pandemic, and the safety and wellbeing of its guests, expedition team and crew continues to be one of the company’s top priorities.