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 out there 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 25 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.
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 and longer landings without rushing from one site to the next because our trip is longer and we have more Zodiac drivers. Years of experience gives us the knowledge to hand pick the most productive sites. Plus we spend significant time Zodiac cruising to get you close to the spectacular scenery, ice, 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. 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 along the Antarctic Peninsula. These are undeniably two of the most fantastic sites in the world for breeding albatross and penguins.
While on shore, we offer you photography seminars and 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.
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 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.
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. Read a few of our participant testimonials.
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 rat eradication programs. We are full members of the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO), and Ted Cheeseman regularly attends meetings that set Antarctic policies. 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.
Experience the vibrant spring of this Antarctic wildlife paradise. Observe and photograph special wildlife behaviors seldom experienced beneath the towering, snow blanketed mountains of South Georgia Island. Southern Elephant Seal bulls fight for breeding rights while females nurse young, vast colonies of loafing King Penguins, Macaroni Penguins launching into the ocean, distinctly marked Gray-headed Albatross attending to their cliffside nests, and awkward Wandering Albatross young attempting first flight. Discover this and much more with our experienced leaders on this island without a permanent human population. Our itinerary includes eight landing days on South Georgia, plus one day with Rockhopper Penguins bounding from rock to rock and Magellanic Penguins standing watch at their nesting burrows at Sea Lion Island in the Falklands. To commemorate the 100th anniversary of Shackleton's famous self-rescue crossing South Georgia, we also offer an optional trek retracing their steps. Through our twenty years of experience in the Antarctic, we commit to an in-depth experience of one of the densest wildlife spectacles found anywhere in the world, and with only 100 passengers, we create opportunities to completely immerse yourself at each landing.
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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 unparalleled 17 landing 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. 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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Since the first explorers discovered this unknown continent, they've shared stories of incredible vistas and abundant mammals. This exciting expedition will combine years of experience on the Antarctic Peninsula with a scientific focus on marine mammals, in partnership with the American Cetacean Society (ACS). We designed this itinerary to maximize our opportunities to study and watch the whales that inhabit this vibrant and nutrient filled area from the South Shetland Islands to Crystal Sound south of the Antarctic Circle! Happily, here we find some of the best whale feeding grounds in the midst of Antarctica's most stunning landscapes, taking full advantage of the season's golden light. Landscape photography, time with Humpbacks, Antarctic Minke Whales, and Orcas, and visits to penguin and seal colonies will surpass your wildest expectations. Our priority on this special expedition is to give you the maximum field time during a unique period on the Peninsula and to share our passion and experience in the Antarctic with a special scientific component. Come and experience the Antarctic Peninsula with us!
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