Silver Travel Book Club - March 2021

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Silver Travel Book Club

Each month, we'll explore a different destination, and lucky Silver Travel Book Club readers can win a free copy of the month's book.

SilverseaThis month the Silver Travel Book Club – proudly sponsored by Silversea – is reading 'Away with the Penguins' by Hazel Prior.

Veronica McCreedy lives in a mansion by the sea. She loves a nice cup of Darjeeling tea whilst watching a good wildlife documentary. And she's never seen without her ruby-red lipstick. Although these days Veronica is rarely seen by anyone because, at 85, her days are spent mostly at home, alone. She can be found either collecting litter from the beach ('people who litter the countryside should be shot'), trying to locate her glasses ('someone must have moved them') or shouting instructions to her assistant, Eileen ('Eileen, door!'). Veronica doesn't have family or friends nearby. Not that she knows about, anyway. And she has no idea where she's going to leave her considerable wealth when she dies. But today Veronica is going to make a decision that will change all of this.

Silver Cloud entering the Lemaire Channel, Antarctica

Like Veronica, you too can fulfil your Antarctica dream on a Silversea Cruise.

A voyage to Antarctica is a trip of a lifetime. Pass sculpted icebergs and calving glaciers. Make Zodiac® landings on remote beaches where few have ever set foot. Spy some of the region’s captivating wildlife: penguins, seals, whales and seabirds. Learn from Silversea’s expedition team who are experts in their field.

Explore the Antarctica Peninsula in 10-12 days by crossing the iconic Drake Passage or fly straight to the Antarctica Peninsula for a 5-9 day voyage with Antarctica Bridge. Alternatively, choose a longer itinerary that visits the Falkland Islands, South Georgia, and Elephant Island to encounter species that do not inhabit the Antarctic Peninsula.

As if Antarctica wasn’t special enough, make your voyage unforgettable by experiencing the complete solar eclipse on 4 December 2021.

Zodiac cruising among the icebergs, Antarctica.
©Richard Sidey - All Rights Reserved
A group of King Penguins in South Georgia.

With no more than 240 guests aboard Silversea’s ultra-luxury all-inclusive ships, you'll be enjoying small group adventures by day and sharing experiences with like-minded friends by night.

For further details of the itineraries, availability and fares please click here.

Read Silversea's blog post on How to Choose Your Cruise: Antarctica.

Away with the Penguins by Hazel Prior

How to win a copy of 'Away with the Penguins' by Hazel Prior

Visiting the penguins in Antarctica is once in a lifetime experience.

Simply add a comment at the end of this page to tell us about an amazing wildlife experience you have enjoyed and the best two entries will win a copy of the book.


Read more about all of our Silver Travel Book Club books.

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Other Members' Thoughts - 45 Comment(s)

  • GrahamRobinson
    16 days ago
    Being jostled by a gang of drunk teenagers is perhaps not such an unusual event -except that in my case the unruly adolescents were a herd of elephants! On safari in South Africa, our party came upon a group of young male elephants who were happily gorging on the fallen and fermented fruit of an amarula tree and were only temporarily distracted from their carousing to jostle us. Luckily, we were protected from their boisterous attentions by a stout Land Rover with cage windows. I still enjoy the occasional glass of amarula liqueur and reminisce upon its effects on the local wildlife!
  • Emmormous
    17 days ago
    This story is very appropriate/topical.
    As a young soldier in 1985, I was sent to The Falkland islands. On my days off, I made the most of visiting the islands and seeing the wildlife. My most memorable trip (and one I will never forget) was when I visited a Rockhopper penguin colony.
    It was a bit naughty and I put my actions down to naivity and excitement but I managed to corner one and pick it up (please NEVER do this as it is so stressful for the animal). It was struggling like mad and ripping my Army issue leather padded gloves to bits, but it was an experience I will never forget. They are such stocky little things but all muscle and heavier than I thought they would be. I only held it for a couple of seconds before placing it back down and watch it waddle off to its mates. However, I can always say (and often do!) that I P-P-P-P-Picked Up A Penguin!
  • you
    20 days ago
    One has only to be more aware of their surroundings to see that we have a wide ranging and diverse wildlife area all around us.....unfortunately, some people are not aware of the variety of life we all live alongside. They miss so much !
  • KP
    20 days ago
    My husband and I went on a Parks and Canyons tour of Western USA, which included a trip to Yellowstone. Just as our tour bus entered into the park we stopped for a comfort break. A little further ahead I spotted an animal on the side and without going too close and disturbing them, I realised it was a Moose and their calf. It was a really wonderful moment and I managed to get some lovely photographs and the memory will always stay in my mind.
  • Hardyplant
    29 days ago
    We always have a lot of wildlife in our garden on the outskirts of Canterbury and today we actually saw two buzzards mating in the field opposite. However, the most amazing experience was when my husband was digging compost out of our mega compost heap and a ball of fluff rolled out - a lovely dormouse - fast asleep. One is not supposed to touch them but we couldn't leave it exposed to the elements and foxes so my husband picked it up in his gloved hand (at which point I took a photo) and then re-buried it in the heap. A couple of years previously a neighbour who had a dormouse handling certificate had installed dormouse boxes for us and routinely checked them for inhabitants, but none of them was ever used!
  • GypsyWanderer
    about 1 month ago
    I have been to Antarctica where we saw so many penguins, whales, seals, and bird life. The Galápagos Islands were a treat with many very close encounters, sitting next to baby seals, seeing a lone albatross, rescuing a fledgling and returning it to its nest. The fright while snorkelling when a very large dark shape swim just below me, not a shark but a large seal. Costa Rica with howling howler monkeys just above our heads, a sleepy eye lash viper on our path and an enormous bull frog on the doorstep as well as in invasion of soldier ants in our house.
    But my favourite close encounter was at home in Norfolk. I entered the green house to water and there was a young colour dove. It hardly seemed to panic so I continued the watering then went to fetch it some wild bird seeds. When I held them in the palm of my hand it fed. It was living in the green house so I fed it every day but my greatest delight was the first time it flew to me in the garden and settled on my shoulder. Magic, pure wildlife magic.
  • SilverTravelEditor
    about 1 month ago
    I am loving all your comments and it is making me long even more to be travelling again (not long now!) I have had many wildlife experiences but nothing can compete with sharing them for the first time with someone from a younger generation. I took my 12 year old niece to Sabi Sabi in South Africa in February 2019. We spotted a leopard and a kill on her first ever game drive. Lucky beginner's luck - I have done countless game drives but this was the first time I had seen a leopard in the wild, but seeing her delight was just as special.
  • LH
    about 1 month ago
    Starling murmerations are amazing, I have watched them swirl around Brighton pier, and out on the Somerset levels when the last of the light is in the sky, and over Otmoor when we thought it was not going to happen when suddenly out of nowhere they came flocking in swooping over our heads. Rome also has tremendous displays which we saw over the city.
  • doublet
    about 1 month ago
    We were in a gondola cable car in Whistler, Canada when we spotted below us a couple standing at a fork in a path obviously arguing over which way to go. Then, a little further on, we spotted a huge bear standing in the middle of one of the paths. We hope the couple took the other path! (Thankfully, we didn't spot any signs of bear mauling on the way back later on).
  • czechitout
    about 1 month ago
    Thought I might see a polar bear when I went to Svarlbard as one had come onto the beach the month before. Probably, luckily, none to be seen but plenty of birdlife around
  • TeresaBak
    about 1 month ago
    On our trip to Oman one evening as the sun was just going down we were enjoying a cocktail in a little bar by the beach when someone ran in declaring"they're hatching, they're hatching" We hurried down to the waters edge to see dozens of little baby turtles I merging from their nests in the sand and making their way out to sea. A once in a lifetime experience.
  • TravelerMg
    about 1 month ago
    Exciting and tranquil reads. Thanks.
  • Dave-SoS
    about 1 month ago
    I'm not sure it was an 'amazing' experience, but as a youngster, camping with my family at Yellowstone National Park, I was walking out to the family car when a bear approached our campsite. Scared the daylights out of me. You never saw anyone move so fast to get in and lock the door…and I didn’t even know if bears could open car doors!
  • Scootergirl1
    about 1 month ago
    We took our son to a zoo where he was picked to help feed the penguins. It was his birthday and he was so excited. Whilst feeding fish from bucket to the penguins he did not let go of one quickly enough and got his finger bitten. He still has a small scar on his finger. How many people can say they were bitten by a penguin?
  • Woofles
    about 1 month ago
    We stayed in a lodge in the middle of an animal park when our son was much younger. We spent the evening guessing which sound came from which animal. Then after breakfast sat watching all different animals being “herded” past the garden into their respective areas. I’ll never forget the look on his little face, priceless!!
  • Jules123
    about 1 month ago
    I visited an Otter Sanctuary in Devon when I was much younger. I bought a T-Shirt and I still have it.
  • Ruth
    about 1 month ago
    Sleeping in a tent in Yosemite national Park with black bears snuffling around outside was awesome and rather scary too.
  • you
    about 1 month ago
    I know I will never be able to travel to Antarctica now but at least I could still read about it, close my eyes and imagine I am there....maybe sat beside the open refrigerator...... just to add to the [imagined ] experience.
  • EddieLawrence
    about 1 month ago
    I once raised money for The National Asthma Campaign, by cycling 300km at altitude in the Peruvian Andes.
    At the highest point of the Trek, I stopped at the top of a Mountain, to wheeze and try and recover from another tortuous mornings ride complete with altitude sickness. There were some locals standing nearby with an Alpaca on a lead.
    Photos were taken and money given in lieu of their time and effort.
    I took one last look at the views across the horizon to take in the moment, when I felt two paws placed , one on each shoulder, and heard a shout from the Alpaca's handler, either warning me of an over amorous animal, or chiding it it to stop getting excited!!
    I quickly got back on my Bike, and joined the rest of the Party, who had left and were now going full steam down the mountain.
    My South American Wildlife experience story, has been told across many a Dinner Table since!!
  • The-lone-traveller
    about 1 month ago
    Some years ago, I was on a small boat sailing up Scooby Sund in east Greenland. Our object was to look and observe wild life, if anything was seen day or night we were to be called. One morning at 3am we were called to observe a mother polar bear and two small Cubs eating, we observed them until 10am. We not only witnessed this family but as they left a white arctic fox appeared to clear anything left over also an Ivory gull. Latter that day we saw a very large polar bear swimming a type of back stroke away from us doing a type of back while watching us. On that cruise we must have seen at least 40 polar bears, a wild life experience never to forget also being stuck in the pack ice for 48 hours.
  • wendybee
    about 1 month ago
    We used to live about an hour away from the Betla Tiger Reserve in Jharkhand, India. We would often travel there early in the morning where, for about 50p. you could hire an elephant for an hour to just wander around some of the tracks and look for a tiger. Only once in 26 years did I see a tiger (it looked as though he was ready for bed). The most exciting thing about these trips was always the chance of being taken hostage by the terrorists that seemed to inhabit the jungle although we always seemed to be safe as my husband was the local surgeon.
  • menina
    about 1 month ago
    Setting off from our moorings on the river wyre to begin our sailing trip via the isle of man up to oban and on to the outer hebrides. Very early in the morning the mist was hanging over the river but the light wind was helped by the outgoing tide as we ghosted along with hardly a sound but the ripple of the water on the hull. After the mad rush to get the boat loaded to catch the tide we were happy to just sit in silence and calm down and enjoy the dawn. Suddenly there was a whooshing sound coming nearer and nearer and then 5 or 6 swans flew up river and very low over the yacht. A marvellous moment. Later we were setting sail again from Ramsey IOM and the gannets were all diving into shoals of fish round the boat. As a silent sailing boat we get to see so much more as we are accepted by the wild life. It all added to our enjoyment of our holiday
  • philatel
    about 1 month ago
    Sleeping in a hammock in the Amazon Forest - and listening to howling monkeys and various birds and other animals, seeing the eyes of animals and hearing them running underneath our hammocks. I was too scared to get out of my hammock until the others had got up!
  • Doonhamer1
    about 1 month ago
    Walking between Kippford and Rockcliffe on a cold new year's day morning we saw a magnificent stag with all its antlers bounding along the sands. What am impressive animal!
  • Rowsie
    about 1 month ago
    In 2019, my 70th birthday present to myself was to go to Australia and swim with a whale shark on Ningaloo Reef. It is something I had always wanted to do and I was so excited although once out on the boat the Whale Sharks seemed to be playing hide and seek with us. A number of false starts meant getting ready in snorkelling gear and preparing to jump in only for the Whale Shark to dive deep and out of sight! Finally one was spotted near the surface and we all jumped in. It was incredible, it was huge and travelling much faster than I had expected. It was a real struggle to keep up with it but it was such a beautiful animal and such a wonderful experience that I will never forget it.