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First Chimu Antarctica Scenic Flight = 200 traveller minds-blown

Saturday 4 December saw over 200 excited travellers take off from Sydney Airport on an incredible sightseeing adventure for the day over Antarctica thanks to Chimu Adventures and Qantas.

Saturday 4 December saw over 200 excited travellers take off from Sydney Airport on an incredible sightseeing adventure for the day over Antarctica thanks to Chimu Adventures and Qantas.

What did you do last Saturday? “Not much, just went to Antarctica for the day.”


This was the most epic of scenic flights and the first of the season, chartered by polar travel specialists Chimu Adventures, that takes you in style to one of the world’s last frontiers and affords unobstructed views of some of Antarctica’s greatest but lesser-seen highlights.

For approximately 4 hours last Saturday, the Qantas 787 Dreamliner circled low over some of Antarctica’s most historically significant and stunningly beautiful regions.

As the aircraft descended out of the clouds towards Ross Island and the Antarctic continent, shrieks of joy emanated throughout the cabin.

The weather was perfect, and excited passengers were treated to uninterrupted views of the pristine Great White Continent.

Pic: Corin Dimopoulos

Chimu Adventures onboard experts work in conjunction with the Qantas flight team to pinpoint the best possible route for each flight. Depending on the weather over Antarctica, there are multiple routes available, and the teams work together to ensure the best experience possible.

“On Saturday, our flight, led by Captain Alex Passerini, was able to get into one of Antarctica’s most spectacular and historically significant regions. It was an incredible day exploring an area even seasoned Antarctica experts have rarely visited.” – Chad Carey, Co-founder, Chimu Adventures.

Bucket lists were ticked as lucky passengers enjoyed front-row seats of Antarctic highlights such as Mt Erebus, Mt Terror, the Dry Valleys, McMurdo Station, and the shacks of the early heroic explorers.

Mt Erebus, Pic: Meg Hall

Onboard experts Howard Whelan and Narelle Campbell regaled passengers with tales of the early explorers and life today in Antarctica as they looked out on the shacks of Scott and Shackleton and modern-day research stations such as McMurdo.

Antarctica’s Dry Valleys were an unexpected highlight for many, as they stared in disbelief out of the windows at the ice-free black valleys – one of the driest places on earth – contrasted against the seemingly endless white of the rest of Antarctica.

After more than 4 hours of incredible scenery outside the large Dreamliner windows, the plane headed north, flying over the sea ice towards Sydney as travellers relaxed in their seats, contemplating the magnitude of what they had experienced.

What was the experience like for the travellers onboard?

The crew!

Michelle Desmarchelier from Travel Managers said, “I didn’t expect it to be as mind-blowing as it was, but from the first glimpse of sea-ice to weaving in and around the untouched wilderness up close and personal from above with great and informative first-hand commentary from the Chimu Expedition crew kept me enthralled and left me wanting more. Thank you Chimu, you guys are awesome!”

Meanwhile, our very own Dani Tuffield, Karryon’s Partnerships Manager, said, “The excitement started at the check-in line and grew to the point where it felt like we were all having a shared experience with the entire aircraft of passengers, Chimu staff, the Antarctica experts and the crew. That connection alone was pure joy, and then you add to that the overwhelming sight of actually seeing Antarctica. To fly over and witness the pristine and surprisingly diverse environment was pure magic. I was blown away by the entire experience.”

Dani Tuffield, Karryon Partnerships Manager

Sharing her experience of the epic day, TravelManager Anita Medcalf said, “We had fantastic views of the Antarctic mountains, numerous glaciers, the incredibly Dry inland valleys, and then the endless ice in the distance, on a continent double the size of Australia.”

Passenger Neville Dwyer said, “In many respects, It’s outside everything we know and experience. It’s like a hidden treasure chest that has come from somewhere else.”

On arrival back in Sydney, the smiles emanating around the cabin summed up just how truly incredible the experience was for all involved.

Meg Hall, Marketing Manager for Chimu Adventures who was onboard, summed it up best, by saying “Every time I visit or now see Antarctica people say, I don’t know how to describe how I feel. Now after a few visits, I’ve worked out why. It’s because they have never felt that way before. There is no adjective.”

“When you cast your eyes out over the vast horizons of Antarctica, absorbing the sublimity of the driest, the windiest, coldest, highest and most remote continent on the planet, it is impossible to get a handle on how you feel.

“For you have never felt that way before. She speaks to you in ways you’ve never been spoken to and reaches accesses of your heart never before opened. You return from your journey, feeling forever unlocked. Limitless.”

Get onboard the next departure for Antarctica!

Chimu Adventures operate Antarctica Scenic Flights out of multiple cities across Australia. Head to Chimu’s Great Southern Flights page for more information.