(1:05 p.m. EST) -- Seabourn Quest was forced to leave Antarctica a day early due to a medical emergency requiring an air ambulance, which could not land on the continent.
The 450-passenger ship, which is in the middle of its 21-night Ultimate Antarctica and Patagonia itinerary, was rerouted to the South Shetland Islands for the evacuation.
Cruise Critic first learned of the incident from Cruise Critic member whystayhome, who said on the forums: "We have been having a wonderful cruise to Antarctica. Unfortunately, there is a medical emergency on board and the ship had to leave the continent last night and return to the South Shetlands for an evacuation."
Seabourn issued a statement: "Due to a medical emergency onboard, Seabourn Quest departed Antarctica on January 22, one day earlier than scheduled. The ship is currently making a few updates to the overall itinerary over the next week and will remain on schedule for disembarkation on February 2."
Details of the adjusted itinerary have not yet been revealed, though whystayhome later added the ship spent January 22 at sea. Seabourn Quest was originally scheduled to be in Antarctica until January 24.
The ship's next cruise, a 57-night Antarctica and Americas Exploration itinerary, will depart February 2 from Valparaiso to Fort Lauderdale, as planned.
--By Gina Kramer, Associate Editor