Has anyone ever travelled on this ship?
we are going on jan 2011. if this is any good will let you know.
We have just got back from a two week trip on the MS Expedition (to the Arctic). It's a great ship - very comfortable. It'll serve you well for Antarctica.
Just got off the boat in Antarctica.. UNBELIEVABLE. Clearly one of the better ships going down there. Modern inside and spacious. Crew are magnificent from the expedition staff to the service staff. 20 of us are planning an Arctic trip on the boat, which speaks volumes for how good it was!
any tips or advise of your recent trip. we off on jan 23. really excited to do this.
we are going on jan 23. what was good and any bad. any advice for us. was the drake passage really bad. i am dreading that.
The Drake Passage was only a 1 out of 10 in severity for us (maybe a 2 on the way down. In fact on the return leg we were allowed to approach within 3 Nautical Miles of Cape Horn on essentially a flat sea. The first night on the boat `seemed` like we rocked and rolled a bit, but we didn´t. So my advice for you is to ensure that you are out on Deck or at least in the Lounge so that you can see the waves for yourself, and associate the level of rocking. So when you are lying in bed and you feel the boat rolling, you will know that it´s only swell making it do that, and then you´ll feel fine.
I honestly can´t think of anything bad on the ship. It was a thoroughly pleasant experience for all the reasons I wrote. If there is anything specific that you have concerns about let me know!
These are my photos from the trip. It was the first trip of the season, so ice conditions were heavy. so what you see in these pictures is not necessarily what it will be like when you change there. www.facebook.com/album.php…
Also, if you google Frank S Todd and Penguins together, you will realise that the guy giving a lot of speaches is actually quite acclaimed.
i enjoyed your comments about your trip. watched the recent boat in freak wave on the drake passage. Wow! If its that rough, will be something to tell the grandkids about. More nervous of flying Qantas at the moment than the cruise.
We are leaving tomorrow on the M/S Expedition. Here are some small things we have run into, just so you know. It's nothing serious, but it's nice to be able to do some planning.
1. GAP Adventures' information is often slightly conflicting. For example, when we arrived at the starting point, the Hotel Ushuaia, there was a notice that the GAP Adventures rep would be available in the dining room from 5 to 8:30 that night. Instead she was available from 6-7 in one of the offices. We were supposed to get a welcome letter on arrival. Nope. In the office after 6 pm. The voucher you print prior to your cruise that you are supposed to give to the trip leader? Nope. It goes to the hotel desk. The trip leader just wants to see your passports. So keep asking questions and checking back.
2. Laundry. We have been travelling a while already, so we tried to do some laundry in Ushuaia. We looked for a self-service laundry (lavanderia). There was a lavanderia, and it advertised self-service, but no. Full service only, 24 hours advance notice, about $10. We needed clean clothes, so we agreed, reluctantly. I was pretty unhappy that they lost one of my socks. And then we saw the charges for laundry on the ship, and the lavanderia suddenly seemed like a much better deal. $4 US to launder a pair of pants. $1.50 to launder a pair of underwear. $3 US for a shirt. I'm glad I didn't wait.
3. The Hotel Ushuaia is the starting and ending point for this trip. It's very attractive and spacious and has free, high speed wifi. It also has self-service safes in each room, but no refrigerator,or tea/coffee in the room. It does not have a pool or workout room. The only serious negative is that it is up on a hillside above the town, about a 30 minute walk through a residential area from the downtown where everything is located. Sidewalks are hit or miss along the route, and there was one fairly dangerous street where we had no choice but to walk in the driving way. It was a good hike hauling a bag of clean laundry. We were in a hotel in the downtown for a night prior to moving to this hotel though, and the downtown hotels are NOISY! At least the Hotel Ushuaia doesn't have drunken revelers outside your window at 2 am, the way our other hotel did.
4. For workout buffs, the info we got from the ship says they have a treadmill, an elliptical trainer and some stationary bicycles in the workout room, along with some other equipment.
5. You check into the Hotel Ushuaia at 3 pm the day prior to embarkation, as you know already. You check out at 10 am, leaving your bags behind. The crew move them to your room on the ship. You meet in the downtown of Ushuaia near the pier at 4 pm for transport to the ship itself on buses That means you have 6 hours to kill between the time you check out of the hotel and the time you go to the ship.
I will post again when we get back, but I hope these details may be of some use!
Re the above, in my experience
1. We had the same issue also. GAP ground crew were hopeless and inconsistent. Single travellers were thrown together in any room just matched up by sex only. The voucher is for the hotel. When you check onto the boat, you will hand your passport to the purser who keep it for the duration until they hand it back to you (standard maritime practice)
2. Laundry. Can't really comment except the laundry on the boat is expensive. But when you do your engine room tour at the end you'll see why. I stayed at a hostel for a few nights before, which did a full laundry load for only 20 Pesos or $7. so that was good. I would recommend anyone who had been travelling for a while to head to a hostel. I found the people at Antarctica Hostel very very helpful, so I recomment that hostel. It's slightly off to the side of downtown away from the street, but not noisy at all. But there are a two big stripclub brothels (discreet, except for the tango signs) in the same street (Avenida Antartida)
3. Hotel Ushuaia is crap in my opinion. It might have been a grand hotel in the 1980's, but the staff aren't friendly, the restaurant and bar hardly open. The Wifi kept dropping in and out on us.. Not even Tea or Coffee in the room either. Despite being seriously uphill, it is only a 10 Peso tax ride from anywhere downtown. and for those that want to hike to the glaciar, it's already on the way.
4. don't get too excited about the facilities on the boat. They do have all of that, but the rower wasn't the best, but was ok. But unless you are a SERIOUS workout buff, your best to spend your time on deck looking at scenery, or talking to others. Some try to use it on the drake which is ok in calm conditions, but I challenge anyone to run on a treadmill when your boat is gettnig rocked and rolled by big waves
The GREAT news is that once onboard the boat, EVERYTHING is great, and it's 100% english speaking. So leave Ushuaia annoyances in Ushuaia, as the people who run the boat, are not the same as those that organise the Ushuaia part.
laughed when i read about gym equiptment. not into buffing on holidays. starting to get excited about holiday. love reading all the hi-lights.