• Royal Penguins

30th November to 12th of December 2021


Join us on this 13-day photographic adventure starting in Dunedin, NZ. We travel by small expedition ship, heading south and exploring some of New Zealand’s amazing subantarctic islands, reaching as far south as Australia’s Macquarie Island. We return to Invercargill on the southern tip of NZ’s South Island.

We will be exploring rarely-visited wilderness hotspots, photographing wildlife (largely birds but also some mammals), plants, and stunning landscapes.

We will have a maximum of 9 photographers on this expedition, led by professional nature photographers and tutor, Michael Snedic

Photographers of all experience levels are welcome. Michael will be guiding you and supporting your photography during the expedition. Not just in taking photographs in the field, but also in reviewing and refining your photos along the way.

Contact Michael Snedic directly
on +61 408 941 965

© Aaron Russ | Subantarctic Islands Photo Adventure

© Aaron Russ

© Ewen Bell | Subantarctic Islands Photo Adventure

© Ewen Bell


On this expedition you will have access every day to a professional nature photographer and instructor. Michael is there to help you photograph the stunning scenery and wildlife we will encounter. Michael will be conducting a series of classes throughout the voyage, as well as being on-hand throughout the outings.

As a full-time professional, Michael is an accredited members of the Australian Institute of Professional Photographers (AIPP). As well as being an experienced photographer, his is an experienced photographic tutor.

Michael Snedic

Michael is an experienced (24 years) and widely published wildlife and nature photographer, writer and tutor. His articles and images have featured in many magazines, calendars, diaries, books, brochures, billboards and many other publications. He is the author of two books on Australian wildlife, and is a Nikon School tutor for Australia. Michael regularly presents audio-visual presentations at photographic organisations, and has been conducting photography workshops and tours across Australia for many years. He also conducts photography tours to Africa, Antarctica, the Arctic (Svalbard and the Russian Far East), Sri Lanka and the Subantarctic Islands. Michael loves sharing his photographic knowledge and passion with workshop participants, helping them improve their photographic skills.

Australian Institute of Professional Photography


Day 1 (30th of November)

Today you arrive in Dunedin, where overnight hotel accommodation is included in your fare. We meet up in the afternoon for a welcome briefing and a photographic “warm-up”. This evening we meet the rest of the ship’s travellers over dinner. Sunset this evening is after 9 PM.

© T Bickford
© T Bickford

Day 2 – at sea

This morning we board the ship and head south. As well as the mandatory safety briefings and introduction to ship-board routine, there’ll be plenty to photograph around the ship, and time to practice our digital download, backup and processing routines.

Day 3 – The Snares

Today we visit North East Island in The Snares, a nesting site for huge numbers of seabirds. We explore the coast by Zodiac, and will see Snares Crested Penguins, Cape Petrels, and Buller’s Albatross. We should also find various gulls and terns, as well as several land-based birds.

 © Meghan Kelly
© Meghan Kelly

Days 4-5 – Auckland Islands

At the northern end of the Auckland Islands we get to land on Enderby Island, another great birding location where we expect to find Southern Royal Albatross and Northern Giant Petrel, endemic cormorants and ducks, and a breeding ground of the rare Hooker’s Sea Lion. We also explore Carnley Harbour in the south, hopefully visiting a colony of Shy Albatross.

Day 6 – at sea

As well as preparing for our visit to Macquarie Island, we should have lots of opportunities for photographing exciting bird species from the ship. Around six species of albatross, as well as giant petrels, smaller shearwaters, petrels, storm-petrels, and prions.

Royal Penguins © Meghan Kelly
© Meghan Kelly

Days 7-8 – Macquarie Island

Macquarie Island is sometimes regarded as the Pacific’s equivalent of the Atlantic’s South Georgia Island: a haven for wildlife from all over the ocean. It’s the only breeding location for the Royal Penguin, and we will also see (and smell) King, Gentoo, and Rockhopper penguins up close and personal. And of course the huge Southern Elephant Seals. We visit the Australian research station at the northern end of the island.

photo by Katya Ovsyanikova
© Katya Ovsyanikova

Day 9 – at sea

Days 10-11 – Campbell Island

This island was once settled, but is now a nature preserve. We spend two days here exploring the island, with huge flowering plants, and wildlife colonies including Southern Royal and Light-mantled Sooty Albatross, cormorants, and sea-lions.

photo by Katya Ovsyanikova

© Katya Ovsyanikova

Day 12 – at sea

Day 13 (12 December)

This morning we arrive in the port of Bluff, and you’ll be transferred by bus either to Invercargill Airport or to Invercargill itself, as suits your onward travel plans.

King Penguins

Health and Fitness

Anyone in normal good health can join us on this adventure. There are no special fitness requirements, although we will be often climbing into and out of the inflatable Zodiac boats, and walking on shore. Out on the ocean and exposed to the elements it can get quite cold. But it is summer and at times in the sun it can be quite warm.
The ship has a doctor and basic medical facilities on board. If you have specific health concerns or dietary requirements the staff at Heritage will be able to advise you. There’s also a gym on board if you feel the need to get extra workouts. Actually, with the excellent meals provided on these trips it’s not hard to put weight on, so some people like this option.

© Samuel Blanc
© Samuel Blanc

Our Ship

Heritage Expeditions’ Spirit of Enderby is a great small expedition ship. Although we won’t be seeing ice on this voyage, the ship regularly visits both polar regions and is a very capable vessel. She also has plenty of vantage points for scenic and wildlife photography from all around the ship.

The ship will also have non-photographer passengers (she takes up to 50 in total) and while we will be mingling with them and sharing the ship and the general expedition experience, the photographic advice/instruction will be for our group. On outings we will usually operate as a group with two Zodiacs, with David in one and Michael in the other. LuminOdyssey works closely with the Heritage expedition team throughout (and before) the voyage to optimise operations on both sides to help everyone.

Spirit of Enderby © Pete Tyree

© Pete Tyree

Heritage Expeditions


  • Photography tuition throughout the expedition with Michael Snedic.
  • One night accommodation (with breakfast) in Dunedin.
  • Shipboard accommodation.
  • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners onboard.
Coffee, tea, cocoa available around the clock.
  • All zodiac and land excursions.
  • Transfer from Dunedin airport, and to Invercargill on completion of the voyage.
  • Pre- and post-departure materials.


  • Airfares and other travel expenses to/from Dunedin/Invercargill.
  • Meals in Dunedin (other than as above).
  • Passport/visa expenses.
  • Personal/travel insurance coverage.
Heritage will discuss with you the required insurance coverage (due to the remoteness of our destination).
  • Onboard bar, laundry, and telecommunications charges. Internet access is not available onboard.


The trip is being put together with our partners at Heritage Expeditions in Christchurch, and they take care of the bookings and travel arrangements for us, while Michael runs the photography program.

There are a variety of cabin classes: several three-berth cabins and a range of twin-share cabin types. As usual with these ships your choice of berth/cabin type directly impacts the price of your ticket.

These prices are in US dollars per berth. There’s also an additional charge of US$800 pp to cover landing fees on these protected islands.

Double beds are available in suite accommodation only (and cabin 411). Single guests are matched with a sharer of the same gender in a twin-share cabin. Payment of a single supplement guarantees the sole use of a cabin (1.8 times the p/p rate for cabins, 2 times for suites).


Main deck (triple):US$8750.00 pp
Main deck (twin):US$9300.00 pp
Superior (twin):US$9800.00 pp
Superior Plus (twin):US$10600.00 pp
Mini Suite:US$10900.00 pp
Heritage Suite:US$11600.00 pp

A 25% deposit is required to secure your place.


How to book

To reserve your place or just to ask more questions about this photo expedition, please contact Michael either via his Contact Form or by calling +61 408 941 965.


Would you like a FREE copy of my new Ebook?

Download Button

ebook The Art of Wildlife Photography by Michael Snedic

You have Successfully Subscribed!