Swan Hellenic Announces Completion of Record-Breaking Antarctic Season with 90% occupancy, and Releases Details of 2025-2026 “Incredible Antarctica” Cruises

Ending its near sell-out Antarctic season with a 20-night voyage from Ushuaia to Cape Town, the cultural expedition cruise pioneer announces what’s in store for explorers of the “White Continent” in 2025-2026.

COURTESY SWAN HELLENIC: March 25, 2024 – Today, the ice-class Swan Hellenic cruise ship SH Vega sailed into Cape Town from Ushuaia, bringing the cultural expedition cruise pioneer’s 2023-2024 Antarctic season to a close.

And a very successful season it’s been. The figures speak for themselves. Almost 3,000 guests chose Swan Hellenic to discover the continent, and stateroom occupancy averaged just shy of 90%. Guests from the USA and UK continued to account for the majority, with an increasing number from China and Brazil. Bookings for the 2024-2025 Antarctic season are already equally strong on the back of powerful online buzz.

It’s clear that Swan Hellenic’s cultural expedition cruises have now built a strong reputation for being desirably different, with their elegant but informal boutique ships, expertly curated itineraries, gourmet cuisine, specialist talks and hands-on expeditions.

Marking the moment of SH Vega’s Cape Town arrival, Swan Hellenic has released full details of its 2025-2026 Antarctic Season, giving ample time to secure a booking in the face of this increasingly strong demand. Offering a wide choice of vacation lengths, the proven 9, 10, 11, 13, 17 and 20-night itineraries continue with subtle enhancements, offering 12 cultural expedition cruises aboard the five-star SH Vega and SH Diana, accommodating 152 and 192 guests respectively. The first cruise of the season departs Buenos Aires on 14 November 2025, and the concluding cruise sails from Ushuaia on 17 March 2026. Full details are already available on the Swan Hellenic Website, where you can also download a complete color brochure.

Swan Hellenic CEO Andrea Zito comments: “We’re delighted with the booming popularity and outstanding reputation we’ve earned for our Antarctica cultural expedition cruises – all true adventures of discovery while always being conducted to the highest standards of safety and environmental responsibility. But, above all, we’re over the moon with the feedback we’ve received from our guests, telling us all about their life-changing experiences aboard and ashore. That’s exactly what we work so hard to achieve and our recently announced 2025-2026 Antarctica cruises have been expertly designed to build even further on everything we’ve learned.”

The voyage to Cape Town was a spectacular 20-night cruise from Ushuaia, Argentina. After crossing the notorious Drake Passage, her intrepid voyagers explored the Antarctic Peninsula in depth and then struck out northeast to Paulet Island, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, subsequently sailing on to Gough Island, part of the most remote inhabited archipelago in the world, before finally reaching Cape Town.

Enriching the voyage as part of Swan Hellenic’s Explore Space at Sea Series in partnership with the SETI Institute, cruise guests were accompanied aboard and ashore by Dr. Jeffrey C. Smith, Expert in Planetary Science, AI and Data Analytics. During the voyage, Dr. Smith gave four fascinating talks: “How do Astronomers Find Exoplanets?”, “Yes, look up! Utilizing AI to Find Exploding Meteors and to Help Protect the Earth from Dangerous Asteroids”, “Why do Scientists Love Antarctica so much?” and “Will we ever really find E.T.?”


About Swan Hellenic

Swan Hellenic was relaunched in July 2020 to proudly advance the spirit of cultural expedition cruising the company pioneered in the 1950s. Building on its British roots, the new company has a distinctly cosmopolitan culture dedicated to providing guests with global opportunities to see what others don’t.

Swan Hellenic’s purpose-built boutique ships feature elegant Scandi-design interiors, extensive outdoor spaces and dedicated expedition facilities. SH Minerva and SH Vega, two 5-star Polar Code PC 5 expedition cruise ships with ice-strengthened hulls, launched in December 2021 and July 2022. Both accommodate 152 guests in 76 spacious suites and staterooms, the majority with large balconies. A slightly larger PC 6 ice-class vessel, SH Diana, accommodating 192 guests in the same distinctive comfort and style in 96 staterooms and suites, was launched in April 2023.

While sharing the unique design features of her sister ships, SH Diana also introduces certain key enhancements, including a dedicated presentation and lecture theatre overlooking the lounge, and on-board Tender boats to take guests ashore in addition to and in greater comfort than the customary expedition Zodiacs. Like her siblings, SH Diana features a state-of-the-art gym, spa, panoramic sauna, club room and swimming pool with poolside grill.

All three ships feature three dining venues – the Swan Restaurant, Club Lounge and Pool Bar & Grill – and are built in full compliance with SOLAS Safe Return to Port requirements. Dedicated to guests with a passion for adventure and cultural exploration, the company’s meticulously planned itineraries explore the wild landscapes, wildlife, peoples and cultures of the world’s less travelled and most historic regions.

The crews each include a team of 12 seasoned expedition guides, expert speakers and lecturers, for a total complement of 120 and 140 persons respectively, offering outstanding staff-to-guest ratios to deliver the highest standards of attentive personal service.

Swan Hellenic’s cultural expedition cruises have always been distinguished by the company, guidance and expert lectures of famous explorers, seasoned expedition guides and leading authorities in their fields. Now, many of the cruises are also enriched by partnerships with unique organizations to bring very different experts on board in the same way, including JRE-Jeunes Restaurateurs, Chopra and the SETI Institute.

Maris Culinary Discovery at Sea brings a different JRE gourmet chef aboard each in a series of exclusive cruises which take guests on a parallel voyage of gastronomic discovery. Chopra Explore & Restore well-being voyages pair inward journeys with outward exploration, resulting in a deeply enriching, healing experience with impacts that last long after the voyage has concluded. While the SETI Explore Space at Sea Series brings a different world-renowned scientist from the SETI Institute aboard each cruise to provide guests with expert insights into the history and latest discoveries in astronomy, astrophysics, astrobiology and planetary science, as well as the quest to find other forms of life within and beyond our solar system.

On many cruises, guests can also participate in Swan Hellenic’s Citizen Science partnerships, contributing valuable data obtained during their expeditions and on board, reporting cloud data with NASA, recording whale sightings with Happywhale, monitoring phytoplankton with the Secchi Disk Study, and Antarctic seabird numbers with Stony Brook University.

Headquartered in Cyprus with offices in London, Dusseldorf, Monaco, Fort Lauderdale (serving the North American market), Hong Kong (serving Greater China, India and South-East Asia), Sydney (serving Australia-New Zealand) and Copenhagen (serving Scandinavia and Iceland), together with a partnership serving Japan, Swan Hellenic supports the travel trade with local specialist partners to provide customers with expert personal service worldwide.

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