Can You Fly to Antarctica and Skip the Drake Passage?
picture of the cover of a sample tour itinerary
  • Get This Itinerary Now! 📬
Antarctica Cruises

Can You Fly to Antarctica and Skip the Drake Passage?

3 min read

Apr 15, 2015


By Rebecca Deering

Share This Post

Last updated on October 28th, 2020 at 03:48 pm

Can You Fly to Antarctica?

If you’re planning a trip to Antarctica, you might ask, can you fly to Antarctica? The answer is yes. There are two options. One is to travel by boat through the infamous Drake Passage and the other is to fly to Antarctica Peninsula. In this post, we will discuss how to fly to Antarctica, and overall the best way to travel get there.

If you choose to travel there by boat you will be traveling through the Drake Passage, an open body of water between South America and the South Shetland Islands of Antarctica. This can be a treacherous boat ride due to the unpredictable weather, strong currents and gale-force winds. Cruises leave from the Southernmost tip of Argentina or Chile and at a minimum take 2 days to cross the passage. To get a good idea of what it feels like to cross the Drake Passage, go squeeze yourself into your washing machine, and hit the spin cycle for 2 days straight. Just kidding, don’t do that – just YouTube “The Drake Passage.”

How Can You Fly to Antarctica?

Lucky for you, there are a few Antarctica cruise companies like Antarctica XXI that offer direct flights to Antarctica.  This is by far the best way to travel to Antarctica.  After you fly to Antarctica you can then enjoy a pleasant cruise around the beautiful continent, but don’t take my word for it.  Take a look at the pros and cons of why you should fly to Antarctica.

Pro: Spend More time in Antarctica!

Orca-ZodiacBoard your flight from Punta Arenas, Chile, or Ushuaia, Argentina, and in just 2 short hours you are on King George Island, Antarctica! The airplanes generally used is a BAE-146. It looks just like a regular plane except it has high wings that allow you to land on shorter runways. If you fly to Antarctica you will gain 4 days, which means more time to explore the incredible continent. And now you have time to head further south to explore the Polar Circle or go on a Sea Kayaking excursion.

Pro: Avoid Getting Seasick!

Seal-iceEven if you are not prone to getting seasick, jumping into the spin cycle can make anyone queasy. When the waters are rough they suggest that you relax in your cabin, lay down, and try to enjoy a cup of tea – from a cup with a secure lid that is. Instead of spending your day taking in the sights, you’re stuck in bed nauseous. Then once you finally make it to Antarctica you have to turn around and endure the treacherous waters all over again? Leave the Dramamine and patches behind with a smooth 2-hour flight.

Cons: Potential Flight Delays

Fly-to-AntarcticaAs with any flight, there can be delays with your flight to Antarctica. The runway is short, so there must be high visibility at the airstrip for landing purposes. While delays are rare, they can happen. But, keep in mind delays can also happen while crossing the Drake Passage if the waters are too rough.  At least with an air-cruise, you’ll be in your hotel waiting for your guide to tell you your flight is ready.

Without a doubt, the best way to travel to Antarctica is by plane. If you fly to Antarctica you will have more time to spend traveling around the beautiful white continent while avoiding discomfort from traveling through rough waters.

Read More on’s Antarctica Air-Cruise or Contact our Travel Team today and start planning your own unique Antarctica Adventure.

Plan Your Trip to
Machu Picchu
the Amazon
the Galápagos
Create Your Own Custom Tour

Click your preferences: Destinations & Activities. Be as specific or general as you like - or click Help Me Decide! We'll spice it with hidden gems & personal tips to create your perfect trip.

Choose Amazon destinations (optional)
Choose destinations (optional)
Choose Bolivia destinations (optional)
Choose Brazil destinations (opt)
Choose Chile destinations (opt)
Choose Colombia destinations (optional)
Choose Ecuador & Galapagos destinations (optional)
Choose Paraguay destinations (optional)
Choose Patagonia & Antarctica destinations (optional)
Choose Peru destinations (optional)
Choose Interests
Choose activities
What category of accommodation?

You can choose more than one!

When would you like to go?
How many travelers?
age groups
age groups
Review my trip summary





Highly recommended - Phone: We ❤️ to talk! A brief chat with your personal Travel Consultant helps us create your perfect trip!


Last updated on October 28th, 2020 at 03:48 pm

Hooray! Thanks for Sharing!

If you have an additional 30 seconds we’d love to learn more about you…

Custom Form Blue Popup

  • Including accommodations, transportation and activities/tours.
  • One Moment Please

    We are matching your tour idea with the right Travel Consultant
    who will be in touch shortly.
    Thank you for your request!