Luxury polar travel company, White Desert, is inviting guests to experience Antarctica like never before, with ‘The Explorer Academy’ – a 4-day adventure led by the world record-breaking adventurer, Ben Saunders.Ben has covered more than 7,000km of Antarctic terrain in the past two decades, as well as having led the longest human-powered polar journey in history. He will be taking White Desert guests out of their comfort zone as he teaches them how to embrace their own explorer ambitions.
The exhilarating itinerary sees Ben teaching guests the art of man-hauling, navigation, and traversing dangerous crevasse fields on foot. From driving 6x6 vehicles across seemingly impossible terrain, to learning how to cook in one of the most remote campsites on earth – this is about experiencing what being a polar explorer is all about.
Start point: Cape Town, South Africa. Guests will be flown into Wolf’s Fang ice runway in a Gulfstream 550 Private Jet. They will then acclimatise at White Desert’s “Whichaway Camp” before the activities really begin. Day one starts with a rope walk over a 200ft cliff before delving into a maze of “crystal” ice caves hidden beneath the surface of the glacier. The next day sees our would-be explorers camped at the base of a stunning mountain range before climbing one of its smaller peaks. Each day, there is a new skill to learn and Ben will be there to guide guests every step of the way.
“We have condensed many of the aspects of being a polar explorer into 4-days. We will be cut off from the outside world and have to survive in one of the most immense landscapes imaginable. The Explorer Academy isn’t just a name. It’s about getting the chance to really experience my world,” says Ben Saunders.
Also new for White Desert in the 2019/20 season is the ‘Adventure to the South’ - a spectacular 11-night trip that combines the continents of Africa with Antarctica. The ‘Big 6’ takes guests from the warm bush lands of Kruger National Park, in South Africa, to the icy expanse of Antarctica to see 28,000 Emperor Penguins.
White Desert also continues to offer its epic (and most popular) 8-day ‘Emperors and the South Pole’ trip, whist remaining true to its Zero Impact policy. They are the only operator in Antarctica to be 100% Carbon Neutral (since 2007) and ensure that all waste is removed from the continent.