Yup, you saw the right title. I know quite a few Nigerian travellers who have made it to the 6th continent, but I didn’t see one of us visiting Antarctica.
Just incase you didn’t know, Antarctica is a virtually uninhabited, ice-covered landmass.
To get there you’ll need to join Fly-Cruise trips whereby you can take a flight to Frei Station (Chile) on King George Island in around two hours flying from Punta Arenas, Chile.
It’s not cheap either (I believe it’s starts from $8,000).
It’s luckily not visa regulated (green passport problems..lol) but you would need a visa for the country you’ll join your cruise ship.
Meet Joanne, our travel inspiration to Antartica.
1. Omgggg! You went to Antarctica? What inspired you?
I had visited all 6 continents and I have a soft spot for
penguins. After watching ‘Happy feet’, I decided; why not see these fun creatures live? It was well worth it.
2. Did you have any fears about the cold.
To be honest, I don’t like the cold at all. However, I live in Ohio and it does get very cold here. I thought the temperatures will be in the
negatives the whole time but the coldest it got was -3 degree Fahrenheit. It gets colder than that in Ohio. The wind chill factor makes it feel colder
but if you expect the worst, bad seems bearable!
3. How did you plan your journey? Have you got any advice, recommendations or pointers?
I signed up for all the email lists of websites that sell trips to Antarctica, read blogs and researched best routes to get there. When I got an email with sales and dates I could go, I emailed Sarah (an agent)
and booked with quark expedition. I had 6 months to pay for it… it’s not cheap! I didn’t have to buy a lot of clothes since I have winter clothes but I bought a couple of overall waterproof pants and a jacket.
I had 9 months so I gradually purchased what I wanted to based on recommendations. Nothing unique though, I just had to make sure I had enough layers.
In hindsight, I wish I had more moisturizer because my skin and hair was so dry. I flew to Buenos Aires then flew to
Usuhuaia, Argentina and then cruised from there to Antartica.
4. How many countries have you been in total?
Joanne: 30, should be 38 by May.
5. Favourite and least favourite countries
If I had to choose a favourite, Dubai, Venice and South Korea
would be my top 3.
China is my least favourite. Antartica is not a country so I did not necessarily list it but it is by far, the most inspiring and spectacular trip I’ve ever had.
6. Next stop?
Joanne: I’ll be heading to Europe in May; I plan to go to Portugal, Berlin, Florence, Iceland and Paris.
WORDS OF WISDOM FROM JOANNE
1. Life is an expedition. Every day we choose safety or a bit of risk in the direction of the unknown. Never underestimate the power of a made-up mind. Just do it!
2. Those who travel gain a level of education no amount of manipulated journalism can ever offer you: This may be my biased opinion.
3. We can choose to live our dreams or we can wait for others… better yet, we can continue to blame the media, our government, parents, spouses, children, education, religion etc. You get the idea, fill in the blank with
whatever fear is currently crippling you. You are your limitations, face that mirror and deal with your truth.
4. There is such a thing as a privilege! Forget the BS. There is also providence. I honestly can’t tell you where one ends or the other begins, maybe they are just bedfellows.
5 Solo female travels are a thing and it gives me wings.
6. Yes, Antarctica is cold, but so are Columbus, Canada, Boston and New York!
7. The conflict between luxury and environmental protection is something I realize I have difficulty resolving. Antarctica is protected which makes it spectacular. Nature is very much alive.
I want the cell phone and the car but I also want nature walks and birds chirping.
Can I have street lights to feel safe and also the stars to feel God? We are not destroying the environment, we are destroying ourselves.
Remember, many like us have come and gone but nature is still here. Do we really need to plastic everything to come alive as human beings?
Do heavy metals in
everything help with our transcendence?
If you don’t have beef for breakfast lunch and dinner, are you sure you are going to die?
Let us all make some little effort…maybe?
8. Whoever said ‘Happy Feet’ was an unrealistic movie clearly had not met
those friendly and inquisitive cuties. I am officially in love!
9. There are more good peoplethan the media will have you believe.
Unplug and go out there and, meet them. You are a good person, right?
There are so many like you! Having no technology forced us to talk. It was very difficult using some muscles we haven’t used in a while but it’s like
riding a bike as they say, once you start moving your jaws; you discover coherent sound comes out. Don’t believe me, just try!
10. Maybe the most important lesson I learned… whoever said black don’t crack has not been to Antarctica!!!
I feel a new and special connection to the alligator! Black might not crack in the tropics but Antarctica is another story altogether.
The secret to black beauty is a good moisturizer that works across continents