Antarctica holds the top spot on most travelers bucket lists. It’s one of the most challenging regions on earth. In the hot summer months, the population swells to 2,000 and drops to as few as 40 people during the winter months. Perhaps, there’s a huge ton of travelers heading there each year, so you may be wondering which one is the best time to visit Antarctica. That’s why I decided to answer this common question, take a look at this article to learn all about when is the best time to visit Antarctica.
Seeing the facts, the best time to visit Antarctica is in the summer, without much choice. It’s not recommended to visit the South Pole during the winter times. Nobody goes there for the rest of the year except those on a scientific expedition.
Although the average temperature in Antarctica is negative 49 degrees Celsius, you also have to account for the wind chill factor. Based on how strong the current blows, it can lower the temperature even further.
When you visit Antarctica, you will ordinarily hug the coast, so you should only be interested in the coastal temperature. On average, the coastal temperature in this part of the world is around negative 10 degrees Celsius, and further drops down to negative 30 degrees Celsius during winter. The temperature at higher elevations will be around negative 60 degrees Celsius, and it can even drop to negative 80 degrees Celsius during winter.
It should be noted that exposed skin can freeze in just 10 minutes at negative 28 degrees Celsius, so you must be properly clothed before going on a trip.
Best Time to Visit Antarctica
Stuck in Winter
On average, there are about 40 people who stay in Antarctica for expeditions during the winter months, as there is no way to leave the continent. It’s also dark all the time because the sun doesn’t rise for another six months. Of course, during the summer months, the sun doesn’t set for 24 hours. So you have day-long (also night-long?) sunlight.
The sun rises typically during September, and you won’t see the sun go down again until March.
While most people long to see the Aurora Borealis in Norway or Iceland, Antarctica also has its own light display. Unlike its northern counterpart, however, the Aurora Australis has conditions for them to make an appearance. For instance, you need to wait for winter to draw near. However, be careful as Antarctic winter’s temperature plummets to 50 degrees Celsius.
Your best chance of watching the spectacle is at South Georgia Island. During the warmer months, the island is populated by around 2,000 people, mostly tourists. Also, Antarctic cruise ships know when to travel so the passengers can have a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
When is the best time to go to Antarctica? If you have the chance to see the Aurora Australis, you have to take it and that is the optimal time to visit. A trivial amount of the global population is lucky enough to witness this natural phenomenon. You should schedule your Antarctica visit around this time.
While Antarctica has one of the most extreme weather conditions in the world, its untouched beauty is what draws people in. There is also the fact that you become part of the elite few who are lucky enough to have the opportunity to visit the continent.