Our first day in Antarctica was full of action, early in the morning everybody’s expectations were exceeded once we assessed the conditions at Brown Bluff. Our first landing was perfect in terms of weather, site, and companions.

After taking Zodiacs to shore, our guests could walk on the coast at Brown Bluff and were able to have plenty of time to admire thousands of gentoo and Adélie penguins nesting.

We then started heading our way to explore the Weddell Sea with excellent weather conditions. Our first encounter with a humpback whale came soon later. A marvelous experience which we all hope we will get to reprise with other cetaceans on these Antarctic waters.

National Geographic photographer Ralph Lee Hopkins and Photo Instructor Steve Morello gave and introductory lecture on Expedition Photography, sharing their knowledge and hands on tips for our guests.

We continued sailing towards Snow Hill Island when we saw for the first time an emperor penguin standing on the ice. After dinner, during a never-ending sunset, we had the best end to a fruitful day with a group of emperor penguins standing not far from our ship. The calmness of the moment turned this encounter into a magical one.

And this was only our first day in Antarctica, certainly a good omen of our expedition to come.