Come aboard the Seabourn Venture, a 2023 10Best Readers' Choice Award pick
Seabourn Cruise Line is no stranger to USA TODAY 10Best Readers' Choice Awards, having won this designation in a wide variety of categories over the years. This year, Seabourn ranked among the 10 best in Best Adventure Cruise Line, Best Boutique Cruise Line, Best Cruise Line for Solo Travelers and Best Ocean Cruise Line.
Get an insider's look at the Seabourn Venture, which combines a 5-star luxury cruise experience with adventure itineraries that take you through the wonders of the world — in this case, through the dreamlike landscapes of Chilean Patagonia and Antarctica.
Gazing at a surreal view of Chile's magnificent Pio XI Glacier
As the Seabourn Venture made its way through the Patagonia ice fields, it was positioned for several hours in front of this mesmerizing view of the Pio XI Glacier. This photo was taken from the observation deck of the ship, while some passengers boarded zodiacs for a closer look at this monumental glacier. The Pio XI is considered the longest glacier in the Southern Hemisphere. It's actually growing in height, length and density every day, contrary to glaciers in most areas of the world.
Admiring jaw-dropping vistas from the stern
The Seabourn Venture's stern is the perfect spot to contemplate the awe-inspiring natural beauty of this part of the planet. From this vantage point, you can truly admire the ever-changing views of the Chilean Patagonia as you make your way toward Antarctica.
Exploring the port city of Punta Arenas, Chile
After an unforgettable sail through the Chilean fjords, the Seabourn Venture docks at the port of Punta Arenas, Chile, in preparation for the voyage through the Drake Passage to Antarctica. Here, passengers have the opportunity to spend the day touring the city's lovely historic center or pay a visit to a maritime museum featuring replicas of Magellan's ship, along with Charles Darwin's famous vessel, the HMS Beagle.
Spotting wildlife from the deck (and from zodiac boats)
Every lounge on the Seabourn Venture has access to an outside deck — and for a good reason. Wildlife-spotting from the ship is an exhilarating experience, and passengers are always alerted about these enchanting sightings. In this photo, not only were the passengers on the zodiacs lucky enough to see whales rising to the surface, but even the guests on board got a terrific view.
Learning all about your next day's unique adventure
The ship's state-of-the-art Discovery Center acts as the teaching and academic hub for natural history and cultural programming. Onboard, passengers can interact with the Venture's robust expedition team of wilderness experts, scientists, historians and naturalists. Each evening, guests have the opportunity to learn about the next day's adventure (and get any questions answered about the upcoming activity) through insightful lectures and briefings.
Watching penguins in their natural habitat
Getting a front-row seat to watching penguins waddling along the ice and interacting in the wild can definitely put a smile on your face. We were sipping our morning coffee in the lounge when the captain announced that some frisky penguins were in view. Through their energetic antics, these delightful creatures appeared to be putting on a dance performance for us on the ice!
Soaking in the scenery while relaxing aboard the ship
You can soak in the hot water while immersing yourself in the magnificent views of Antarctica while vacationing on the Seabourn Venture. If you enjoy relaxing after a day of wildlife activities, you're in the right place! You'll find a variety of hot tubs and pools located on various decks. You're likely to have a view like this one from several of these warm, bubbling spas!
Celebrating the Seabourn Venture's naming ceremony
The Seabourn Venture marked its inaugural voyage to Antarctica with an official naming ceremony when the ship came to a stop in the shimmering ice of the Weddell Sea, which is a part of the Southern Ocean. The ship's guests joined in the festivities under stunning blue skies. Cruisers were treated to another unexpected thrill — walking on an Antarctica ice field.
Nibbling on caviar during the ship's festivities
Caviar, together with superb champagne, was offered to passengers as part of the onboard celebration of the naming ceremony. This delicacy, created from sturgeon fish eggs, is definitely a coveted item in the culinary world. Fortunately for the cruisers, this specialty can also be found on the menu of the the ship's restaurants.
Indulging in some fun evening entertainment
After an exhilarating day exploring Antarctica and sitting down to a memorable gourmet dinner, it's time to indulge in some fun evening excitement. The Seabourn Venture offers several entertainment venues throughout the ship, from intimate piano bars to professional musical and dance productions.
Dining on delectable specialties
Not only are Seabourn cruises famous for luxurious accommodations, adventurous excursions and top-notch entertainment, they are also renowned for their exceptional cuisine. The daily menu offers a wide variety of culinary selections, and all dietary requirements are happily fulfilled. Wine aficionados especially appreciate the selection of world-class vintages offered with every meal.
Nibbling on heavenly desserts is part of this cruise experience
If you have a sweet tooth, this cruise will definitely satisfy your every desire. The dessert selection on the Seabourn Venture is truly extraordinary. Featuring homemade pastries, fruit sorbets and other tasty temptations, everything is prepared by the galley chefs from fresh, quality ingredients.
Relaxing within the ship's magnificent lounge
The highest indoor viewing point on Seabourn Venture is the Constellation Lounge, with stunning panoramic views as far as the eye can see. A central bar, created from metal and stone, is dramatically illuminated by a unique diamond-shaped lighting cove. It's the ideal spot to sip a cocktail and watch the glorious landscapes of Antarctica roll by.
Dining at the exclusive sushi bar while at sea
If you are in the mood for some fantastic sushi, The Club Lounge serves it up every evening. You can enjoy this delicacy in a variety of ways, meticulously prepared by Seabourn's outstanding sushi chefs. While you dine, you can listen to equally tasty musical selections performed by a variety of talented musicians.
Plunging into the icy depths for a memorable adventure
The Seabourn's polar plunge is a long-standing tradition and a much-anticipated activity during the cruise. Brave guests of all ages jump into the frigid waters to "take the plunge" — and return home with great photos and fun stories to tell of their unique adventure.
Diving into the deep to explore the unknown
You can discover the wonders that await under Antarctica's ice-covered surface in Seabourn's luxurious expedition submarine. The innovative, new exploration vehicles are capable of diving to depths of 984 feet, offering passengers an awe-inspiring perspective of the marine world deep below the ocean's surface.
Getting pampered in a rose petal bubble bath
Speaking of a lovely soak, what a surprise it was for us to return from a zodiac excursion through the ice fields to find a rose petal bubble bath awaiting us, thanks to our attentive stewards. Our suite featured not only a tub, but a separate shower and an array of luxury Molton Brown bath products. Another welcome amenity is a built-in heated wardrobe, where you can hang your wet parkas and other gear to dry after your outdoor adventures.
Enjoying a one-of-a-kind spa treatment on the Venture
Massages are always relaxing, but can you imagine how wonderful it is to watch the beauty of the Antarctic roll by as you savor your spa treatment? Seabourn Venture offers massages (and couples massages) during this exceptional cruise. Guests are sure to feel rested and rejuvenated after a customized service.
Experiencing excellent customer service during your cruise
During your voyage, you may want to change your excursion itinerary, add a special package that just became available or check on your cruise balance. Day and night, the friendly and dedicated service desk team stands by to help you with any questions or issues.
Ordering an in-room gourmet meal is also a delightful option
You can indulge in in-room dining whenever the spirit moves you, as the Venture offers a varied menu that's available around the clock. In this photo, we prepare for a multi-course feast, starting with a sublime soup followed by a variety of choice entrées. You can even choose a selection of items from The Restaurant's gourmet menu, which is served course-by-course in your suite or on your veranda.
Shopping with a view of icebergs
It's not every day you can go shopping with a view of icebergs out your window. Whether you're buying souvenirs for your friends or want a memento of your fabulous cruise, the onboard shops will provide a variety of unique gifts, clothing, jewelry and more.
Sipping gourmet coffee during your vacation
In addition to serving sandwiches, pastries and gelato, Seabourn Square is the place to go onboard to enjoy espresso, cappuccino and other delicious coffee drinks. The coffee beans are actually roasted on site, so coffee lovers are definitely in for a treat. The connecting "living room" is a welcoming lounge that's filled with comfortable sofas and chairs, as well as several computer workstations.
Watching a brilliant sunrise over an icy landscape
Watching the sunrise from your room or the deck of the ship is an unforgettable moment. The brilliant light casts golden reflections over Antarctica's frozen landscape. Cruisers agree that it's worth waking up early to witness this especially enchanting sight.
Appreciating the amazing colors of nature
While — stark white — is definitely the "color" of the Antarctic landscape. However, from time to time you'll come across shades of red and blue, as seen in this photo. It was taken as the ship slowly cruised past these unforgettable and jaw-dropping vistas. Passengers love to catch glimpses of these dramatic hues along the voyage.
Viewing research stations while cruising through Antarctica
The majority of Antarctic is covered with ice, there are no cities or villages on the continent — only scientific research stations. Various countries around the world have established these stations to monitor the climate, weather and geological conditions throughout the year. This view of the Argentine Esperanza research station is an example of one of these facilities, where scientists stay for several months, or even more than a year.
Reflecting on the enchanting Seabourn experience
We captured this unique image of ship's reflection from the top deck of the Seabourn Venture as it sailed out of the Weddell Sea, en route to its next destination. Luckily for us, the sun was situated in the ideal position to successfully take this stunning and memorable photo.
Recalling incredible maritime memories that will last a lifetime
A visit to this amazing and fragile part of our Earth, especially on the ultimate luxury cruise experience that Seabourn offers, is guaranteed to remain among your most precious travel memories. We thoroughly enjoyed all the spectacular views, excursions and experiences during this unforgettable voyage.
This article originally appeared on 10Best.com: Tour the Seabourn Venture, a 2023 10Best Readers' Choice Award pick