Le Commandant Charcot sets new world record in the Antarctic

March 16th, 2022

On February 27, 2022, PONANT’s Le Commandant Charcot set a new world record in reaching the latitude of 78°44.3’ South, the closet geographic latitude to the South Pole located in the Bay of Whales in the Ross Sea.

Captain Patrick Marchesseau, who was at the helm, describes the moment when the vessel reached this point, “The Bay of Whales was the point of departure for the Amundsen expedition which was the first to reach the South Pole on December 14, 1911. The temperature was around -15°C. It was in this beautiful landscape, as striking as the cold which reigns here, that Le Commandant Charcot reached 78°44.3’ South, which is the closest geographical latitude to the South Pole by sea on the entire Antarctic continent.”

The latest addition to the PONANT fleet, Le Commandant Charcot is the first hybrid electric high polar exploration ship powered by liquified natural gas (LNG). It is a leading innovation that signals the company’s commitment to sustainable tourism and to minimizing the environmental impact. A ship of scientific opportunity, she is also the only cruise ship to host researchers on board and provide them with a dedicated scientific laboratory. With Le Commandant Charcot, PONANT is collaborating with the scientific world to collect data and gain new insights into these extreme polar regions with that society becomes the best ambassadors once experienced firsthand.


Founded in 1988 by French Merchant Navy officers, PONANT offers a new style of cruises under the French flag with its own concept of sea travel and commitment to promoting sustainable and responsible tourism. Centered around sailing to exceptional and unusual destinations aboard refined design yachts, where lifestyle and excellent cuisine take pride of place, the promise of a voyage with PONANT is that it will be truly unique and authentic. For more information: us.ponant.com






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