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8.3.09

MOST EXPENSIVE TRAVEL

Freezing wind, icebergs, penguins and a dearth of hotel rooms—these are the things you’ll find in the most expensive cruise destination in the world. Antarctica may not be the most hospitable region in the world, but it’s popular enough to guarantee that cruises destined for the southernmost continent will have passengers aplenty.
The tourist season in the Antarctic region is relatively short. The four months from November to February are the only time the temperatures are high enough to make the trip. The tourist season is also the time when the region gets the most sunlight. In December and January, days can last up to 20 hours.
The wildlife you’ll see also depends on when you go. Hatching penguins can be seen in December and November while slightly more mature young can be seen in February. February also brings more whale sightings than any other time of year.
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The operational cost of an Antarctic voyage, as well as a lack of tourist infrastructure on the mainland, ensures that ticket prices won’t be going down anytime soon.
Antarctic cruises most often start in South America. The largest ships only offer sail-by tours of the continent—no disembarkation from the ship. A cruise to the world’s most expensive destination may cost as little as $5,000 and could climb as high as $26,000 or higher!

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