Amenities, great food, camaraderie, comfort & wellness
It is a privilege to visit Antarctica, one of the planet’s most pristine places, and to this privilege, National Geographic Explorer and National Geographic Orion adds the luxury of comfort—a quality of shipboard life and a philosophy of wellness designed to relax and rejuvenate body, mind, and spirit.
Informal ambience, relaxed attitude
There’s no need to dress up ever; life aboard is casual all the way. There’s no assigned seating in the dining room—whether you choose the dining room or one of your ships’ more casual dining spaces. In fact, many tables accommodate uneven numbers, making for easy mingling and the fun of sharing breakfast, lunch, or dinner with different new friends, staff or guest speakers. And independent travelers can count on a welcome everywhere they turn. We invite you to freely roam the ship, discovering the nooks and crannies; and visit the bridge whenever you’d like to watch the calm, serious business of ice navigation unfold.
Our chefs use sustainable catch fish, whenever possible. Breakfast and lunch are buffet-style; dinner is served. There are fish or meat choices at every meal, and our chef will happily accommodate vegan or other special diet requests. The ships’ hospitable hotel staff maintain an always-open station for coffee, tea, hot chocolate, and soda. And you’ll find on-demand cappuccinos and lattes. Afternoon tea and cookies are served daily. And pre-dinner hors d’oeuvres and cocktails are served in the lounge at daily Recap. There are re-useable water bottles in every cabin and chilled fresh water stations in the hallways to make staying hydrated convenient and refreshing.
The personal ahhhhh factor
Your cabin, whether windowed or balconied, will be an inviting place to end your active day. You’ll find the bathroom stocked with organic botanical products. And your bed is cossetted in our signature feather duvet with an organic cotton cover and cotton sheeting.
Sociable spaces, quiet corners
You’ll find the lounge is the heart of the expedition community; where we gather for Recaps, and where the photographers aboard set up their laptops to organize photo files. The bow is another place where guests mingle with staff when underway to scan the sea for marine mammals. And there’s always a nearby space to duck into for hot beverages and convivial warmth. Explorer and Orion also offers any number of places to pass time enjoyably alone, or with a small group—from the quiet of the windowed library with its lode of books aboard Explorer, to the forward-facing observation lounge aboard Orion with its walls of glass, binoculars at the ready, plus cards, and games. On warm days, the ships’ expansive decks, furnished with tables, chairs, and chaises lounges, collects readers, watercolorists, journalers, and more.
Rise, shine and connect with wildness
Greet the polar morning with a pre-breakfast stretching session led by your wellness specialist in the observation lounge. Or sleep in and take advantage of the fitness center with exercise bikes, treadmills, stretch bands, and yoga mats at your convenience. And count on walking and kayaking during the voyage for an even deeper connection to the wild world.
On-board spa treatments
Massage therapy and body treatments, plus face, hand and foot treatments, inspired by the purity of the Antarctic environment are available by appointment in the wellness center. Choose to have a treatment instead of an activity, or to end an active day of exploring. Or drop in anytime to use the sauna to relax and rejuvenate.
What a fantastic journey! We appreciated the wonderful staff and crew and enjoyed this opportunity to explore such an unusual place.