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1. Posted by Philymop (Full Member 110 posts) 8y

Has anyone been to the Antarctic? I really want to go at some stage and have been looking at some (very pricey) trips and was just wondering if anyone had any experience of who is good to go with and whether it is worth the expense and cold?! Thanks

2. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5596 posts) 8y

One of the moderators, Marlis, has just been there a month ago or so. Probably she reads your forum question as well, but in case she doesn't, you can always send here a PM.
One advice, don't send postcards from Antarctica, they might not be in time before you go home again The one for me is still on his way;)

3. Posted by bentivogli (Travel Guru 2398 posts) 8y

I don't think people should want to go to Antarctica; pollution is the obvious reason. It's one of the last more or less pristine place on the planet, let's try to keep it that way.

4. Posted by marlis (Travel Guru 1167 posts) 8y

yes I was there in February and it was worth every cent
I would do it again,on the same ship,the M.S.Andrea.
OK it is not the cheapest trip of your live but maybe the most interesting.
about the cold: Weather is changing in Antarctica within minutes,sun,rain,snow,fog cold wind you can have it all and still it is fantastic.
Check the web for CRUCEROS TEMPORADA there you find the ships who offer the excursiones to Antarctica and when the leave.Be in Ushuaia a few days before and check the traveloffice in the mainstreet of Ushuaia the San Martin for last minute offers.If you are lucky it will safe you about $1000.00 or more and you will get a nice cabin for two pax.This was on my cruise where about 12 joung people had booked this way.Still expect $4500-5000.00 for a 9 day cruise.
if you need more info about the ship I was,send me a PM

cheers
Marlis

5. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5596 posts) 8y

Quoting bentivogli

I don't think people should want to go to Antarctica; pollution is the obvious reason. It's one of the last more or less pristine place on the planet, let's try to keep it that way.

Explain please?

6. Posted by bentivogli (Travel Guru 2398 posts) 8y

I'm sure I explained my position before. But maybe that was in relation to Galapagos :)

The same argumentation applies to both destinations anyway. We all know about detrimental effects of tourism on fragile ecosystems. Plenty of reason not to go there, but to watch a documentary instead. More in general (and not necesssarily related to the previous point), I feel quite strongly about the desire of (predominantly western) travellers to visit remote corners of the earth, but without making any real sacrifice whatsoever to their standards of comfort. To me, it is both selfish and pathetic. But let's not get into that debate... again :)

7. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5596 posts) 8y

Hear ya!
No, no debating, you got my PM;)
Cheers!

8. Posted by sharkeyv (Budding Member 9 posts) 8y

I totally agree. Stay away from these places unless you can help.

We are already ruining these areas from afar with our consumerist lifestyles. Last thing we need is the same people arriving and stamping all over the place.

Just because you can afford to doesn't mean you should. How selfish is it to satisfy your own curiosity regardless of the consequences?

Then again, I have no expertise on the matter so maybe I'm wrong. Are there any botanists/ecologists/sandle-wearers out there who can throw more light on the subject.

I love debate!!.....well worth a sticky!

Cheers,

Darren.

9. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5596 posts) 8y

Ok, you started it;)

Of course no visit can be done withouth a few people leaving something. But I do think visiting Antarctica is strictly regulated and most people who do visit this place love nature and are very very careful. It's not without its problems I am sure, but why not visit Antarctica but we all visit national parks in the world, which are nature paradises as well and we leave lots of junk over there?
So travelling to all places, except a few is ok? That's like saying now to India and China that they can not develop, it is so polluting over there with all those cars but didn't we do the same years ago?
I think the biggest problems for Antarctica are not those visits but external factors, like we all know I guess. And just a mere part of 1% of the continent is visited, unlike most other continents in the world where we can all leave our thraces and roam freely?
Ideological we should all stay away, but this does not apply more for Antarctica than let's say Yosemite NP which is overloaded with tourists.
There are other ways of controlling it and like the Galapagos where the number of tourists allowed has been cut back (still the case?) this is a way of doing it.

Just because you can afford to doesn't mean you should. How selfish is it to satisfy your own curiosity regardless of the consequences?

P.S. Do you have a car Ride buses?

[ Edit: Edited on Mar 21, 2008, at 3:06 AM by Utrecht ]

10. Posted by sharkeyv (Budding Member 9 posts) 8y

Don't have a car anymore because I'm about to go travelling, and yes I use buses. A weak counter-argument by you as I use them out of necessity and yes, they are affordable.

I agree, visiting Antartica (and Galapagos) is regulated but that is mainly by keeping prices high.

Quoting the tourist numbers that plague Yosemite Park is also not relevant. The US are so money-obsessed that you could pay for pretty much anything in their country, and boy do they need it at the mo'!!

Alligning the development of India & China to my argument is also irrelevant. As it happens, I disagree with the unnatural rate of growth these countries are going through. I also realise that this opinion is totally unfair and I have no intentions to run for office! And it's a debate for another forum.

So, to answer your paradoxical question, travelling to all places except a few is ok, yes, that's exactly what I mean.

Fact is though, I would love to visit Galpagos one day, and I probably will. Then again, I've got a load of stuff made in China too.