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For tourists in Antarctica, low temperatures and high winds are the primary health hazards. Antarctica is the coldest, windiest, and driest place on Earth. Temperatures vary significantly because the continent is covered by continuous darkness in winter and constant sunlight in summer, with several weeks of sunrises and sunsets between seasons.

The effects of the sun in Antarctica (due to the sun reflecting off the snow) can be harmful to eyes and skin, and protective measures should be taken.

The risk of influenza, measles, mumps, and other diseases easily spread from person to person is linked to travel and living conditions. People can travel to Antarctica on cruise ships from all over the world. Staying in a confined space with people from different places increases the risk of exposure to disease. Tourists should be up to date with routine vaccinations, including flu shots. Other travel vaccines should be considered depending on the countries you are traveling to on the way to Antarctica.

If you want to find out about the medical care in Antarctica, check out our article on this topic: Medical care in Antarctica.

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