The Antarctic cruises are in many ways the deepest level of cruises you could go on. You spend the most time on the open ocean (as opposed to just hopping from port to port) short of actually crossing the Atlantic or Pacific), and it’s definitely a cruise for the adventurous, in every sense of the word.

Once you’ve found out the best way to travel to Antarctica, be prepared for one of the great experiences of your life! Here are some interesting facts about Antarctica that you may not have known.

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-Antarctica is the driest place on earth.

Antarctica gets almost no precipitation. Despite the extreme cold, it’s officially known as a desert because of this.

-Antarctica doesn’t have a time zone

Because it’s located all around the South Pole, there’s no point in really having a time zone there. They get continuous sun for 6 months, and continuous dark for another 6 months, so our normal concepts of day and night don’t really apply there. Of course, almost all cruises go during the summer when it’s always light out, so don’t worry about any “30 days of night” nightmares coming true.

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-Antarctica has no permanent residents.

The only people living there at all are research scientists and the like, and a class of people who maintain the machinery and systems they need to live and do their research. People typically go there for 3-6 months and then have to go home. Living even that long in Antarctica is psychologically very challenging.

-In Antarctica even the air freezes

Well, not quite. Little droplets of water in the air that would normally be humidity can freeze with extremely cold temperatures and slowly fall to earth. It’s known as clear-sky precipitation or “diamond dust”. If you are lucky you will see it on your cruise.

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Let’s talk a bit about what you should pack for your Antarctic cruise trip. Firstly, remember to dress in layers, as it will be cold but the temperature can jump around quite a bit due to various factors. Sunscreen and sunglasses are also super important; the sun reflects viciously off of all that ice and snow! Make sure you have a waterproof outer layer as well, as the wet makes you many times colder. If you already ski, your ski clothes will be perfect for an Antarctic cruise. Don’t forget also something to take pictures and videos of all the amazing scenery you will come across on your voyage.

Now you’re ready for the adventure of a lifetime.