10 reasons why you should travel to South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands right now

Mahnoor Izha 12 October 2020 400 views 6 min. read

In a world full of unique destinations and to choose the perfect holiday spot is no less than a challenge. If you are looking for a fascinating travel destination, then South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands must be on your radar. Although the region is covered in perpetual snow, these islands still provide marvellous surprises and beautiful visuals that you expect from a fantastic holiday spot. They have become the top-rated travel destination by the tourists and people from around the world visit them quite often. Many travel experts recommend the islands. They are home to a staggering amount of wildlife as well.

1. South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands discovery

South Georgia And South Sandwich Islands statue

The first person to arrive and discover South Georgia was Captain James Cook back in 1775. But these islands were brought into the consciousness of the world by the passing Antarctic explorers. One of those Antarctic explorers was Sir Ernest Shackleton. Sir landed there and travelled across the mountains and found an abundance of wildlife there. Sir James also reported about nature, a significantly large number of seals and elephants. This fact caught the attention of seal and other wild animal hunters, and a massive amount of wildlife was captured and killed for multiple purposes. Despite this substantial historical massacre of animals, there are still millions of seals and rare species of penguins present on South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.

2. Where is South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

Old Ship

While thinking about visiting these splendid vacation points, you must be wondering where is South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands? Sub-Antarctic Islands present in the South Atlantic Ocean east of South America’s southern tip and north of Antarctica. To describe the location of South Georgia islands, they are situated 800 miles south-east of the Falkland Islands in the south Atlantic Ocean. Part of Scotia Arc and the South Sandwich Islands are north of the Weddell Sea, 470 miles south-east of South Georgia in the south Atlantic Ocean, part of Scotia Arc. Great Britain governs both of the regions. Administrations issues managed by the Falkland Islands but Argentina also claims them as their territory. Being this far away from normal civilization will make you think about society’s fragile nature as a whole. You will realize how small you are while you stand in the middle of the ocean.

3. South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands population

South Georgia And South Sandwich Islands animals

If you are wondering about South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands population, you will be surprised to know that it is almost an inhabited place. These islands are breathtaking regions, but they are not densely populated. No people are living in the South Sandwich Islands because of lack of infrastructure and remote location. In South Georgia islands, only a few people or non-permanent residents including some government personals, some museum staff and scientists live there. The inhabited regions make them perfect for seeing nature and what lively and mesmerizing scenes it can show you that you can’t see at populated places. There is no official statistics of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands population.

4. How to reach South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

South Georgia And South Sandwich Islands

If you have decided to travel to South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands then brace yourself for an exciting journey on ships. There are no airports, air facility or landing areas on the islands for air travel, so the only way to reach these islands is by using ships or any other sea vehicles. Thousands of tourists are brought to these Islands through cruise ships, big icebreaking vessels, and yachts every year. Travelling through sea route is also very splendid as you can see much mesmerizing scenery on your way. The place is no less than a challenging place to visit in the world, but there are numerous routes available to visit these islands. Numerous tourism companies having cruise facilities offer their services to take tourists who have the desire to travel to South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.

5. South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands weather

Cloudy South Georgia And South Sandwich Islands

Do you want to know about South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands weather? Typically, the climate of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands is polar, but South Georgia is less cold than the South Sandwich Islands. The reason behind this temperature difference is due to the placement of the South Sandwich Islands, making them exposed to cold outbreaks of Antarctic continents. If you participate in an expedition cruise to these islands, you will feel and experience different types of weather. At South Georgia, the temperature in summer is in between -4.8 to 1.5 degrees Celsius and can vary differently in winter at other places. Whereas at the South Sandwich Islands, the temperature in winter can be as low as -6 degrees Celsius and can be around 8 degree Celsius in summer. So, visiting the South Sandwich Islands during the period between May to December is almost impossible because of ice. The warmest time to visit these islands is the period between January to March. March and November is chiller than as compared to other months. There is no ideal visiting time of the year because South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands weather is ever-changing and a huge amount of wildlife. The popular season for visitors to get to these islands runs from the end of October to late March. 

6. Wildlife of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

Wildlife of South Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsThe islands are almost inhabited, and except for few people, nobody lives there.

They are full of a variety of wildlife animals that you can find there. Because of the slightly warm temperature of the islands as compared to Antarctica, coastlines and shores of these islands are an ideal breeding area for a lot of animals. If you visit these beautiful islands, you will spot nesting albatross, elephant seals, penguins, fur seals and many other animals. Remember to bring your cameras for some pictures as you will find penguin chicks beginning to lose their feathers or penguins negotiating some sleep deals. The South Sandwich Islands is recognized as an important bird area for seabirds and penguins by BirdLife International. It makes these islands a special place for birders which they should at least visit once in their lifetime. If you are thinking about seeing the marine life of these islands, you will find a diverse variety of marine animals across the sea to the islands. In the rich waters of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, you may spot minke whales and catch humpback enjoying themselves in the sea, but the chances are minimal.

7. South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands currency

five pound

As the British government officially claims the islands, so that United Kingdom pound is the currency in South Georgia and the South Sandwich. However, shops at islands also accept United States Dollars and credit cards.

8. Unique Features of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

Iceberg in South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

The islands are full of unique features that will impress you. There is a museum shop in South Georgia which is well sheltered and has become a famous place for newlywed couples. The South Sandwich Islands are mostly volcanic area, and there are few active volcanoes there as well. There are six passages through which you can travel in between the Sandwich Islands. The main tourist attractions of these islands are the location of these islands and lovely nature in combination with fantastic wildlife and massive icebergs. These islands are heavenly regions for wildlife lovers. So, prepare to capture some incredible and eye-catching scenes and show your photography skills. 

9. Challenge Yourself

Animals of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

Suppose you think that anyone can travel to South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands then you might be wrong. It is no less than a challenge to go to such a far from people and remote place. But the reward of visiting these islands is the charm and beauty of nature which you only witness here. You can also hike or climb mountains on these islands for having a lifetime experience. As an adventure, climbers and hikers climb mountains, but the terrains are very rugged and challenging to hike. For those who complete the hike, what they will find are snow-capped mountains, great adrenaline rushes and beautiful views. Yes, the environment here can be quite dangerous, so it is better to go with a team of expert climbers or professional hikers if you wish to see those breathtaking views from the top of the mountains.

10. Attractive places of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

Attractive places of South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands

There are multiple exclusive places which you should visit if you ever decide to travel to South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands. Some of these places are:

Fortune Bay

Fortune bay has amazing wildlife and spectacular scenery to observe. This area is full of cute penguins and birds wandering around. The place is a must-see and is worth a visit.

Grytviken Whaling Station

It is an attractive historical place of South Georgia, and tourists love to explore this area. Tourists are not allowed to go inside the station, but you can wander around storage towers and rusting buildings which are an excellent place for photography.

South Georgia Museum

South Georgia Museum

 is situated in Grytviken of South Georgia and has various attractions such as region’s natural history, exciting information about wars etc. You can also buy historical artefacts for some United Kingdom Pounds, which is South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands currency valid here.

Islands
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