Orne Harbour. 24th December 2017

Orne Harbour is a mile wide cove on Graham Land on the Antarctic mainland, rising to nearly 1,000 feet. The landing was onto the rocks, after which we had a steep energetic climb to a vantage point where the scenery was quite spectacular. Someone said that if you can describe Antarctica, then you have never been there, and this harbour confirms it.

At the top was another colony of nesting chinstrap penguins - only 12 people at a time were allowed up there. The penguins build their nests from stones. They are almost human at times ! And of course, penguins mate for life, spending 9 months at sea, returning to breed and then to share the responsibility for rearing the chicks. We even managed to get a photograph of a hump-back whale diving - as it turned out, one of several !

Back on board there was Christmas carol singing around the impressive lift shaft, with passengers looking down from each floor. Before dinner, the captain read John 1, 1-14 and gave the toast with a glass of sparkling wine.

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