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Reading Guide: Journey to Antarctica

Whether you're armchair traveling your way out of the pandemic paralysis, or actually planning to explore Antarctica, the best books are on this list, curated by our expedition team.


Antarctica: A Guide to the Wildlife

by Tony Soper
2013, Paper, 160 Pages


Antarctica: A Guide to the Wildlife

Designed for the field, this compact handbook features all the species of birds, seals, and whales the traveler is likely to encounter on an Antarctic voyage.



The Last Place on Earth: Scott and Amundsen's Race to the South Pole

by Ron Roland Huntford
1999, Paper, 576 Pages


The Last Place on Earth: Scott and Amundsen's Race to the South Pole

Igniting huge controversy when it first appeared, Huntford's rousing dual biography contrasts Amundsen's well-planned campaign to achieve the Pole with Scott's ill-fated quest.




Hoosh: Roast Penguin, Scurvy Day, and Other Stories of Antarctic Cuisine

by Jason C. Anthony
2012, Paper, 286 Pages


Hoosh: Roast Penguin, Scurvy Day, and Other Stories of Antarctic Cuisine

Antarctic traveler Jason Anthony tells the story of the continent's exploration through the celebrated 'hoosh' of early days and other polar fare.



The Crystal Desert

by David Campbell
2002, Paper, 308 Pages


The Crystal Desert

A biologist with the heart of a poet, Campbell focuses on the fossils, glaciers and wildlife of the Antarctic Peninsula in these vivid essays.


The Heart of the Great Alone: Scott, Shackleton and Antarctic Photography

by Sophie Gordon, David Hempleman-Adams, Emma Stuart
2009, Hardcover, 240 Pages


The Heart of the Great Alone

Here in one handsome book are hundreds of haunting photographs by Herbert George Ponting and Frank Hurley, drawn from the albums they created during the two most famous Antarctic explorations. The stunning images are accompanied by lively essays, maps, paintings and other ephemera from the Royal Collection.


Chasing Shackleton

by Tim Jarvis
2014, Hardcover, 272 pages


Chasing Shackleton

In this unique memoir of adventure and discovery based on the PBS documentary, veteran polar explorer Tim Jarvis retraces for the first time the epic 1914 expedition of Sir Ernest Shackleton in his inspiring attempt to cross the Antarctic continent.


Southern Light: Images from Antarctica

by David Neilson (Photographer)
2013, Hardcover, 306 Pages


Southern Light

Neilson has turned his six journeys to the ice (sometimes lugging a 30-pound large format camera), into a coffee-table tribute to the continent and its wildlife. Includes 130 color and 100 rich black-and-white oversized photographs.


Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage

by Ocean Explorer
2015, Hardcover, 416 Pages



Lansing's gripping day-by-day story of Shackleton's legendary perseverance is essential reading for any Antarctic traveler. This 100th anniversary edition is outfitted with maps, an expanded selection of Frank Hurley's photographs and an introduction by Nathaniel Philbrick.


Penguins of the World

by Wayne Lynch
2002 Paper, 176 Pages


Penguins of the World

Lynch weaves delightful tales of penguins and their habitats and habits with hundreds of glorious full-color photographs.


Antarctic Explorer Map

by Ocean Explorer
2009, Map

Antarctic Explorer Map

A full-color map of the Antarctic Peninsula, including Tierra del Fuego, the Falklands and South Georgia, at a scale of 1:2,750,000 with a map of the Antarctic continent on the reverse.


End of the Earth: Voyaging to Antarctica

by Peter Matthiessen
2004, Paper, 242 Pages

End of the Earth

In this fine book, the result of two voyages, Matthiessen captures the magic of polar landscapes and wildlife, along with the camaraderie of a ship-based polar expedition.


Antarctica, A Call to Action

by Sebastian Copeland
2008, Hardcover, 96 Pages

Antarctica: A Call to Action

Copeland's collection of striking photographs includes a three-page list of sensible suggestions to protect the planet.


Antarctic Wildlife

by James Lowen
2011, Flexi-Bound, 240 Pages

Antarctic Wildlife

Produced by a shipboard naturalist, this handy identification guide focuses on the Beagle Channel, Drake and Peninsula regions.


The Last Viking: The Life of Roald Amundsen

by Stephen R. Bown
2013, Paper, 356 Pages

The Last Viking

Bown plumbs newspaper archives, Amundsen's own words and contemporary accounts for this tale of the unusual and hugely accomplished explorer, first to the South Pole, first across both the Northeast and Northwest passages and a pioneer of polar aviation.


Melting Away: Images of the Arctic and Antarctic

by Camille Seaman
2014, Hardcover, 160 Pages

Melting Away

In her masterful series of 75 portraits and essays, Camille Seaman shows how climate change has wreaked havoc on both the North and South Poles.