South Georgia

Hidden amidst the icy Southern Ocean lies the island of South Georgia – a wild and pristine sub-Antarctic land, which has only been home to 20th Century whalers, sealers and today’s scientists. Oh, and thousands upon thousands of penguins and seals.

Species vary – from the metre-tall King penguins, to the much-smaller Gentoos. Fur seal pups start off no longer than a few centimetres. Elephant seal bulls grow to weigh three tonnes. My favourite spot on the island is Gold Harbour – a black sandy beach, absolutely blanketed in penguins and Elephant seals. We arrive on expedition ship, the Silver Explorer in November, mating season, which means there were countless adults as far as the eye can see. In January, the coastline would have been full of fluffy brown penguin chicks and baby seals, suckling from their mums. What an extraordinary world.