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HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

Melbourne, Australia
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HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

Hi,

Planning a cruise to south america on holland America next year. Is it worth doing the South America/ antactica cruise, or is South America cruise alone good enough.

Stanley, Falkland...
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1. Re: HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

It sorta depends on what your interests, experiences, budget, and expectations are....? Who could possibly say if a continent was "good enough"?

If you are happy with South America, then fine. Antarctica is different again. Your choice.

Melbourne, Australia
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for Perth, Antarctic Adventures
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2. Re: HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

Its two extremely different continents so I dont know how either could be compared !

What is it that you want to see and experience ?

On a ship that big the most you will get of Antarctica is a drive by experience. You wont be setting foot on it and experiencing life in a penguin colony.

It definitely comes down to what experiences you want to have and what your budget is.

Stanley, Falkland...
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3. Re: HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

PP - you could see penguin colonies up close in the Falklands or Punta Arenas or puerto Madryn.... :-).

Not necessary to go to Antarctica. But, I agree, they are very different places.

Michigan
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4. Re: HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

I have this (warped?) vision of passengers on a large cruise ship doing a sail-by watching passengers from a small ship go ashore in zodiacs and commenting:

"Hey, that looks like fun. Why didn't we take that ship?"

"Are those people crazy?"

"Those must be scientists. Is that ship the Calypso?"

"Get a picture of that!"

"Why don't we get to go ashore?"

Boston...
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for Walt Disney World, Orlando, Antarctic Adventures
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5. Re: HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

I recently was on safari with a couple that did one of the cruise-by cruises. They said they didn't feel the need to get off the ship and set foot on land...I felt the need to say, you didn't "really" do Antarctica then. Binoculars from the ship don't do it justice!

NYC
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6. Re: HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

I try not to judge what other people find enjoyable and worthwhile. What I find to be "great" can be another person's idea of abject misery. For instance, I've spoken to perfectly reasonable, intelligent people who raved about the "authentic" "high quality" luau they attended on their package tour in Hawaii. Personally, I would rather stay home with the flu than have to endure such a thing. For me, Hawaii means hiking the Napali Coast, going in search of lava flows, and finding a cottage nestled on an isolated cove for a romantic few days alone.

Similarly, the idea of having to walk around amid peguin poop after a wet, bumpy zodiac ride from a ship with no casino or dance floor or shows is way beyond some people's adventure threshold. I wouldn't say they did or didn't "really" do Antarctica--whatever that even means. They did it the way they found enjoyable. Just like my friends at the luau. Who am I to say what is the "right" or "wrong" way to see a place. It depends on what a person is like and likes. The best we can do is to help people make sure their expectations match the reality of what they are signing up for.

Boston...
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7. Re: HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

The OP asked what is "good enough." I gave my answer. When you ask for opinions, you tend to get them. I didn't actually say that to the other people, but I will say I think it's a waste on here to do Antarctica like that when someone asks.

Melbourne, Australia
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for Perth, Antarctic Adventures
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8. Re: HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

Yup agree. It's opinions being asked for so that is what would be given.

For me a drive by cruise would be like going to the jump zone and watching others skydive. What's the point of being there if I am not jumping too !

But to answer a question that involves comparing two continents. ? To me it's the equivilent of saying which is better out of Africa and Australia. The two are so different and have so many different things to offer.

Stanley, Falkland...
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9. Re: HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

On my Antarctic cruise, one very experienced (as in 200 cruises) cruise couple said they'd done a couple of "sail-by" cruises, and compared it with reading the menu outside the best restaurant in the world, and knowing you cant go in and eat!

I also met a family there who spent most of the cruise looking for the casino..."there must be one...."

Horsham, Australia
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10. Re: HAL cruise, South America alone VS South America/antarctica

Hi Michelle, although I agree with the other members' comments, we could go on forever about the pros and cons of sail-by versus landing cruises. Your cruise options are very cheap c/f most Antarctic Expeditions. What other costs are involved in the cruise though, besides of course, losing money at the casino?

It is quite costly to fly over to Sth America from Oz c/f flying to Europe so I wouldn,t hesitate to go for the Sth America/Antarctic option as you at least get to see the Great White Continent and ice-bergs and whales too. If cruising on these type of ships is what you like then whilst you are over there, you will at least be able to say that you have seen Antarctica as well as visiting SA. Depending on the weather, you may also get to visit the Falklands and see heaps of penguins, including king penguins, by buying an on-shore excursion. If you are a tad interested in an Antarctic Expedition, check out all of the options available by going to the Adventure Life website. They give a very comprehensive listing of nearly all the Antarctic tours and who knows, you may find something that is what you might like to do at a price that is nearer the mark of your HAL cruise. All the best in whatever you choose Michelle.