Welcome to the St Andrews Antarctic Expedition blog!

This is the expedition blog for University of St Andrews students embarking on an educational experience of a very different and unique kind – exploring the Southern Ocean and Antarctica. Follow us as we share this experience of a life time from pre-trip activities, travelling to and experiencing Antarctica up close and personal.

Our student expedition to Antarctica begins  with a trip to “World’s End” – as the southern-most city of the world, Ushuaia, likes to call itself. Ushuaia is situated picturesquely at the shores of the Beagle Channel in southern Argentina, and is the gateway to Antarctica. There, our St Andrews team consisting of Biology Masters and final year undergraduate students (plus two staff)  join fellow Antarctic enthusiasts aboard a state-of-the-art expedition cruiseship which serves as floating home and platform of operations during the Antarctic expedition. We cross the infamous Drake Passage with the aim to explore the frozen coasts of the Antarctic Peninsula. Our main goals are not only to become Antarctic ambassadors but also to collect important scientific information on the wildlife we encounter and the fast changing environments we are privilidged enough to visit.

The St Andrews students are enrolled in a credit-bearing polar ecology module offered by the School of Biology with teaching staff from the Sea Mammal Research Unit. During the expedition students conduct surveys for whales, seals and seabirds, observe the behaviour of these polar predators and explore the effects of climate change and human activities on the Antarctic ecosystem.

Since 2023 we’ve been travelling with Hurtigruten Expeditions. In 2024 we will venture further south to Marguerite Bay, south of the Polar Circle.

We try and post regular dispatches of our adventures and scientific activities. Join us here as we share our exploration and experiences in the frozen South!