Toto’s southernmost adventure tour to the ‘Last Continent’ of Antarctica
Toto is no stranger to adventure travel—recent trips to the Amazon and Tanzania and Bolivia come to mind—so it’s about time we tackled what many dedicated world travelers consider the ultimate destination: Antarctica. Long an ambition of Toto founder Dan Ware, his southernmost journey was finally achieved Jan. 6 through 18 with the Last Continent tour—a 12-day cruise of the coast of the seventh continent on Le Lyrial, one of only 58 ships in the world licensed to make the voyage.
It was, as expected, an adventure of epic proportions, featuring countless breathtakingly beautiful vistas, ongoing encounters with exotic wildlife including numerous varieties of sea birds, seals and penguins (lots and lots of unfailingly entertaining penguins), three close encounters with whales, and the opportunity to witness ongoing research into the fragility of the Antarctic environment. Plus unceasing good fellowship with a warm and welcoming group of passengers.
“Great God, this is an awful place,” said Captain R.F. Scott regarding Antarctica, as we learned during one of many informative preliminary shipboard lectures. Capt. Scott died there, during one of the early explorations of the continent at the turn of the last century, so he certainly earned the right to his opinion. Even so, we couldn’t disagree more.