Need something to look forward to? 2021 is almost here and it’s bringing with it a total solar eclipse! On December 4, 2021, the moon will fully pass between the Sun and the Earth, obscuring the sun for a period of a few minutes. The catch? The only area in the world where the solar eclipse will be 100 percent visible is Antarctica’s Weddell Sea.
Thankfully, PONANT has stepped up to offer a solar eclipse cruise departing on November 30, 2021 for 15 days on board the line’s brand new luxury hybrid electric polar-class vessel, Le Commandant-Charcot.
Leaving from the Argentinian city of Ushuaia, Le Commandant-Charcot will cruise through the Drake Passage, a staple for any Antarctic voyage, before arriving at the Weddell Sea ice pack on December 4. Passengers will disembark onto the ice pack to witness the total solar eclipse as the moon passes between Earth and the sun. In an area of the world where the sun never really sets, it will be complete darkness for a few minutes. That’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience you won’t want to miss out on.
“We will be positioned in the heart of the sea ice, where the pristine white creates a high-pressure zone that will allow for clearer skies. Guests will have the privilege of witnessing this rare phenomenon from the ice pack,” says Nicolas Dubreuil, Polar and Tropical Expedition Expert and Director of Sustainability at PONANT.
A team of naturalist guides and on-board scientists offer added insight and guests will be able to participate in the research and analyses of the event.
“This journey is one of a kind in a lifetime, full of meaning for future guests who will realize how important it is to preserve this incredible place,” Dubreuil continued.
The 15-day cruise also includes a visit to the Larsen Ice Shelf, the ice barrier that helps prevent the erosion of the Antarctic ice sheet; a stop at the South Shetland Islands, home to a number of key scientific research stations; and the opportunity to experience variety of wildlife including Weddell seals, Adelie penguins and humpback whales.
About Le Commandant-Charcot
Boasting 135 staterooms and suites, Le Commandant-Charcot is set to become the first luxury hybrid electric polar exploration vessel powered by LNG. PONANT’s commitment to sustainable cruising with minimal environmental impact is admirable and the ship will be equipped with scientific laboratories and research equipment providing scientists with an observation, research and analysis platform to study the water, air, ice and biodiversity of extreme polar regions. Guest activities include participative science, hovercraft, hot air balloon, snowmobiles and conferences by experts.
Have you ever seen a total solar eclipse? Would you like to see one from a cruise ship? Let us know in the comments!