Antarctica, Terra Incognita

Antarctica is sometimes known as terra incognita, the unknown land. It’s also the last untouched continent and one of the most pristine wilderness locations on Earth. With ten thousand foot peaks rising straight from the ocean, crystal blue icebergs the size of office buildings, hundreds of glaciers (on the Antarctic Peninsula alone), and beaches teeming with seals and penguins, my trip to the continent at the bottom of the world didn’t disappoint. With a turn of the ship into every harbor or bay, more of the same awaited us. And most of this magnificent  landscape has never had a human foot tread upon it. This amazing place most certainly is terra incognita.

Below are just a sample of the photos I captured on my recent trip. Sorry for the abundance of penguin images but they are so plentiful and such photogenic, expressive creatures. Enjoy!


“Adelie Waddle” Adelie penguins at Brown Bluff, East Coast of Tabarin Peninsula, Antarctica

“Terra Incognita” Iceberg and foggy mountains in the Gerlache Straight, Antarctica

“Half Moon Solitude” A chinstrap penguin surveying the icy landscape at sunset, Half Moon Island, Antarctica

“Weddell Seal at Yankee Harbor” A Waddell seal catches some rays while on the ice, Robert Island in the South Shetlands, Antartica

“Rock Thief” Chinstrap penguins at Half Moon Island, Antarctica. The penguin in the middle has just stolen a rock from a nest and the others are justifiably upset.

“Branford Ice” A lone seabird flies by the face of an enormous blue iceberg, Branford Straight, Antarctica

“Braving the Storm” A Gentoo penguin during a gust of harsh wind and snow, King George Island, Antarctica

“Nesting Gentoos” Gentoo penguins sitting on their nests, Useful Island, Antarctica

“Larsen’s Shelf” A giant iceberg from a broken piece of the Larsen Ice Shelf, Branford Straight, Antarctica

“Catching Snowflakes” A pair of gentoo penguins appear to be catching snowflakes – or singing. Actually, they are vocalizing, the method they use to attract mates, Paradise Bay, Antarctica




A fascinating website that offers information on conserving the southern continent’s ecosystem, promoting responsible tourism, and the latest news is the Antarctic and Southern Ocean Coalition. Take a look when you get the chance.

Richard Bernabe is a professional photographer specializing in travel, wildlife, and nature as well as an author of books, magazine articles, and travel essays published world-wide. Richard is a global influencer is the fields of photography, travel, and wildlife conservation with more than one million followers on social media platforms. He leads several photography tours and workshops all over the world and is invited to speak to photography and conservation groups all across the globe. For more great information on new images, gear reviews, book projects, and photography workshops and tours, Sign Up For Our Newsletter.