Antarctica Trip Preparation

Antarctica Vacation

Answering all your Antarctica vacation preparation questions: What do you bring on your Antarctica trip? Which camera to use and most important: what kind of clothes do you pack for your South Pole trip?




antarctica-trip-sunglassesThe first thing to look for are very good sun-glasses. Since you are focusing on your Antarctica trip to be cold, you could tend to forget that. With all the reflections of the sun:

  • on the Antarctica sea and
  • on the Antarctic ice,

you do need strong sun glasses! Also bring glasses when you wear contact-lenses: the salty water and wind can irritate your eyes.  

Don't get sunburned on your Antarctica Trip!

With all the sun reflections on Antarctica and because of the ozone hole, make sure to bring a high factor sun-cream and put it everywhere the Antarctic sun and it's reflections can reach you.


Whatever you should use for a ski trip, you can also use for an Antarctica trip!


Lip lotion during your Antarctica trip


antarctica trip lip protectionYour lips can get sunburned or dry out due to the Antarctic cold and the Antarctic dry winds.

Make sure you bring lip lotion on your Antarctica trip!


Antarctica Trip and Motion sickness


Since you are most of your time on an Antarctica Cruise ship: bring seasickness medication and a medicine called "Lomotil" against vomiting. Be prepared for rough water, especially when crossing the Drake Passage.


Antarctica Trip Clothes


Packing clothes for your Antarctica trip can be a bit of a nuisance when you live in a warm country like me.


I mean: it would be much easier for the Antarctic tourist if he could just borrow Antarctica clothes from the Antarctica cruise ships.


Of course the Antarctica ships provide you with the life-jackets you need on the rubber zodiacs for your Antarctica expeditions, but apart from that, you are on your own...


  1. antarctica-trip-zodiacsThe main thing you need to bring on your Antarctica trip is water-proofed clothes!

    Why? Well, it was a sunny day, so I just took my normal hand-gloves and went out on the zodiacs. Then the Antarctic weather changed to snow and my gloves got wet.

    My fingers got very, very cold and I could feel the cold even 6 months after my Antarctica trip!

    So look for water repellent outer clothes that will keep you dry on the outside and still "breathe" enough so that moisture from your body can escape.

    It's no use when you start sweating on Antarctica either...

    And if you are going to be on the zodiacs-rubber boats, for sure your boots and pants will get wet.

  2. antarctica-trip-windWhat is water-proofed should also be wind-proofed.

    And since the Antarctic weather like mentioned above can be quite unpredictable for an Antarctic tourist, zippers on clothes are always practical: unzip on a sunny Antarctic expedition, zip on a windy Antarctic day.

    Since you will notice wind-mills on your Antarctica trip, you can imagine it can very windy on Antarctica

  3. antarctica trip wearHead, ear, hand and foot protection is the most crucial on you Antarctica trip, as these parts tend to cool down the fastest.

    When you are in the zodiacs or on the Antarctic ice, make sure your boots are waterproofed!
    For gloves: take at least 2 pairs: have a thin one under a thick one, so you can remove the thick one if you need to take pictures.

    Also bring a scarf on your Antarctica trip.

  4. The clothes on your Antarctica should not be too tight, as the air trapped inside loose clothes is actually what keeps you warm.  

    Wool, silk and new synthetic fibers like polar fleece retain heat better than cotton.

    For underwear, you have thermic underwear with long trousers and long sleeves. Especially the long sleeves are a recommendation!


Antarctica Trip Clothes: what do Antarctica residents wear?


People who work and live in Antarctica wear the following Antarctica clothes:


  • balaclavalong underwear
  • thick wool socks
  • insulated boots, either rubber or canvas, with extra-thick soles
  • jeans & a sweater
  • insulated canvas pants
  • down-filled parka
  • wool glove liners and thick leather mittens
  • balaclava (polar fleece "hat" that covers your ears and neck, too, see picture)
  • neck gaiter (polar fleece tube worn around the neck)
  • warm hat with earflaps
  • goggles


Antarctica Trip Conclusion

antarctica-trip-clothesIf you come from a country with a cold winter, you bring your winter-clothes for your Antarctica Trip.

If you have been on a ski-trip, you bring the clothes you used for your ski-trip on your Antarctic trip.

And if you are like me from a warm country, better read the above tips before you embark on an Antarctica trip.