Mariano has worked with Antarctica21 for 10 years and has extensive experience and a passion for polar regions. Recently, we sat down with him to discuss our boutique trips to Antarctica and the adventures you can have while onboard with us.
What is your expectation of Antarctica when leading guests in the White Continent?
Nature rules in Antarctica. Great planning is essential and flexibility is key to ensuring a wonderful experience. We have a roadmap to what we are doing and where we are going, but everyday, we still have to wake up, go outside and see what the continent brings.
When people go to Antarctica, what do you think they are most surprised about?
People seem most surprised by the impact of being in a place where nature is the same as it existed hundreds of years ago. It’s a life changing experience for many travelers, one that connects them back to the grandeur and majesty of our planet.
Antarctica21 offers hiking, snowshoeing and sea kayaking in Antarctica – what do you think these activities add to a wilderness adventure in Antarctica?
Our adventure options are an unconventional way of experiencing Antarctica by land and sea. You become a part of a smaller group and experience the continent in a more intimate way. There is nothing like watching wildlife from a kayak as you float in the blue waters or hiking up a cliff to take in the landscapes from above. For me, these are the moments that will stay with you forever.
What does it mean to be on a boutique Antarctic expedition?
Being on a small-ship means less noise, less distraction, more Antarctica! By default in extreme environments, plans will always change; being small allows for more flexibility and adaptability for travel plans. And probably, most importantly staff can establish a personal connection with guests. We can run into each other in the hallways and chat about the day in the observation lounges. During an expedition, it seems like we all become part of the same team that is exploring this amazing destination at the end of the world. For me, it’s one of the best parts of the job.