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Packing

Maybe you are preparing for a voyage on board the Bark EUROPA or you are just curious of what to think about when packing your bag.

What to bring

Keep in mind to bring the following: 

  • Certificates of medical and travel insurance
  • A valid passport. It is important that you check with your own embassy for visa requirements and vaccinations pertaining to each country you visit during your voyage
  • Toiletries and personal medication
  • For use on deck: watertight shoes with a flexible non-slippery profile
  • Swimming gear and sandals
  • Clothing for all types of weather

Layering is the best approach to be able to adapt to various weather conditions. Keep in mind that at especially at night it can be cold at sea.

Packing for Antarctica

For Antarctica expeditions please think about bringing:

  • Base layer/ thermal underware:
    Breathable, light-weight tops and bottoms provide warmth without bulk. We recommend merino wool, as wool is warmer, has natural odor control, is softer on the skin, and more environmentally friendly. Capilene wicks, dries quickly, and is a great option if you are allergic to wool. We suggest at least two sets, based on the length of your trip.


  • In between layer:
    Loft jackets trap heat with remarkable efficiency, even when wet. It is feather light and compacts for easy packing. Loft garments are water repellent and windproof and double as outerwear in mild weather. Fleece is also an insulation layer option but it tends to bunch up when worn with layers.

  • Outer layer: the most important thing is to stay dry while on deck!
    -Jacket for sailing: wind and waterproof, and large enough to fit over the layers you have on to keep warm. Suggestions: Musto, Helly Hansen, Gill or oil skins.

    -Jacket for Antarctica: Parkas for Antarctica are typically insulated or designed to add a loft jacket under the outer shell. You could use your sailing gear, but from experience we know people start sweating in these quit fast during a hike.

    - Pants for sailing: wind and water proof, large enough to fit over your boots and to fit over your layers. Suggestions: Musto, Helly Hansen, Gill or oil skins.

    - Pants for Antarctica: Breathable and wide enough to fit over boots. Knee-high side zippers are preferred so you can get your boots on and off easily. Buy a size larger than your base layer to ensure you are comfortable sitting in the Zodiac with one or two layers under your pants.

  • Footwear:
    - During sailing: hiking boots provide a nice amount of grip on deck, but when it starts raining they might start leaking, for these moments you could purchase sailing boots (Magic Marine, Gill)

    - During landings and hikes: Rubber boots for getting ashore out of the zodiac trough ankle deep icy water. Flexible, pull-on boots with sturdy soles that are suitable for Antarctica (easy to clean penguin guano from the soles). As you will step into icy water during Zodiac landings, boots are essential and must be at least mid-calf high (12-15 inches / 30.5-38 cm in height). If they are too tight they will give you cold feet, space for 2 socks is great. Suggestions: Wellingtons, Muckboots or Gum boots.

  • Hats & Gloves
    - Hat: Fleece is excellent because it is lightweight and extremely warm. Wool is also recommended. Choose a hat with a visor to shade your eyes and flaps to protect your ears, the best choice for Antarctica.

    - Neck gaiter: A practical and stylish way to protect your neck. Neck gaiters are more flexible than balaclavas and don't fly around like scarves. You can wear a neck gaiter around your neck or use it as a headband. For added warmth, wear two and pull one over your face to protect your mouth and nose.

    - Gloves and glove liners: Windproof and waterproof gloves. Gloves that keep your hands warm are expensive but are absolutely necessary and a great investment. Select gloves that provide excellent warmth and durability. A breathable lining is a must. The liners provide extra warmth in the cold. Some glove liners are wind-resistant and will protect your hands when you slip off your glove to take photos.

  • Foot/Hand warmers: To put between your feet and your socks and to slip into your hands for extra warmth.

What not to bring

  • Your bunk has a comforter/duvet with cover, one pillow with pillowcase and a sheet
  • You do not need to bring a sleeping bag
  • Towels will be provided too
  • Suitcases take up a lot of space in your cabin and cannot be stowed, so we recommend you use soft luggage bags
  • It is not allowed to bring large amounts of food, drinks or any alcoholic beverages on board
  • Jewellery and other valuables

Other facilities

There is a washing machine on board. However, its use is limited. We can only use it if there is not too much swell. That means that you can only sometimes give a small amount of clothes to the crew to wash. To prevent you from running out of clean clothes, bring some laundry detergent for a quick hand wash.

Books: on board there are many books about maritime history, but there is also a wide collection of novels (in Dutch and English).