Patagonia, Chilean Fjords & Antarctica 18 daysAboard: MS Roald Amundsen
This fantastic Southern expedition offers the chance to sail through the stunning Chilean fjords region where snow-tipped volcanoes, beautiful lakes, raging rivers and lush vegetation combine to create some of the world’s most fascinating landscapes, before sailing across the famous Drake Passage to discover Antarctica, an outstanding part of the world that needs little introduction. With an exploration of the truly remarkable Torres del Paine National Park and an attempt to land at Cape Horn in between, this unique itinerary will certainly be one to remember. Accompanied by your experienced and highly knowledgeable expedition team you can enjoy remarkable wildlife encounters, adventures and breathtaking scenery at every turn.
- Experience the Chilean fjords, Patagonia and Antarctica in one fantastic voyage
- Sail through the exceptionally scenic Chilean Fjords
- Step foot on the Antarctic continent
- Discover one of the world's most impressive national parks
- Spectacular and contrasting scenery throughout including glaciers, icebergs & towering cliffs
- Land and marine wildlife and myriad birds including thousands of penguins
- Exciting Zodiac landings and excursions
- Informative lecture programme
- Kayaking options
- Full board accommodation on board ship
- Economy flight Punta Arenas to Santiago
- Transfers from ship to airport in Punta Arenas
- Wind and water-resistant jacket
- Landings with small boats and activities on board and ashore
- Professional English-speaking Expedition team that provides lectures as well as accompanying landings and activities
- Free tea and coffee
So much to experience
Too much to choose from? This is where we come in
Take advantage of our vast experience, passion and expertise to help you hand craft the perfect Antarctica, Argentina, Chile adventure for you.
Mike has more than fifteen years hands-on experience in the industry, travelling to some of the most incredible wild places on the planet. His far-reaching knowledge and invaluable skills will ensure that your wildlife travel adventure is a dream come true.
Simon’s deep passion for and first-hand knowledge of a vast range of destinations all over the world gives him the ideal skills to help you create a truly unforgettable wildlife inspired adventure to the most exciting places on the planet.
Having amassed a host of extraordinary adventures in destinations all over the world, Zoe’s experience, skills and enthusiasm for helping clients plan their ideal itinerary will help make your holiday unforgettable, action packed and life-changing.
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All our itinerary holidays are fully customisable
Your exciting Southern exploration voyage begins in Valparaíso, where after having arrived independently you can enjoy some time exploring the beautiful narrow streets of this colourful city before making your way to the port to board your expedition ship. After settling into your comfortable cabin and exploring your new surroundings we recommend spending some time on deck watching as this scenic city fades into the distance as we sail into the Pacific and our journey commences.
The first two full days of our expedition will be spent at sea sailing south along the Pacific coast of Chile. As we sail your entertaining and informative lecture programme will begin, covering everything from the wildlife and geological features you will discover throughout your voyage to the history of Polar exploration. Various workshops and presentations will also be available and there will be briefings to prepare you for the small boat landings you will be taking throughout your trip. We recommend spending some time on deck soaking up the wilderness around you and looking out for wildlife and the myriad birds following the ship.
Today we arrive at Isla Grande de Chiloé to visit Castro, a colourful city set among windswept hills where vibrant wooden houses mounted on stilts dot the landscape along the water’s edge. We will spend some time here on shore to get a sample of the area’s culture and take a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Iglesia San Francisco as well as the Plazuela del Tren, Cementerio Parroquial and the bustling market of Feria Campesina Yumbel. A walk along the waterfront with its welcoming restaurants and cafes will delight, and for a more active day you can join an excursion to the Chiloé National Park for a trek through the forest. This largely unexplored area is home to an abundance of flora and fauna that is unique to the area and we can expect to see numerous penguins, sea lions and dozens of seabird species.
Today we sail further south into the southern province of Ultima Esperanza (last hope), which is one of the most remote, undisturbed and scenic places on earth. As we sail through the fabled waters of Patagonia you can enjoy some time on deck with your camera soaking up your unique surroundings, whilst inside your programme of lectures and presentations will continue.
After a day of unforgettable sailing through the Patagonian waters our stop this morning will be the unique village of Puerto Edén in Bernardo O’Higgins National Park. This tiny, isolated island at the end of a deep fjord surrounded by mountains is home to just 250 people, including the 15 remaining members of the Kawéskar people, and we will go ashore to learn more about the traditional indigenous culture of Patagonian tribes and spend some time browsing the traditional Kawéskar crafts on offer. We can also enjoy a stroll along the laneways in search of sightings of the numerous bird species that reside here including Magellan hummingbirds. There will also be opportunities for enjoyable hikes and optional kayaking excursions.
Torres del Paine National Park
For some these next two days may be the highlight of the whole voyage as we arrive at one of the most visually stunning national parks in the world. We will dock at Puerto Natales to spend two days exploring the park with its azure lakes, meandering trails through the emerald forests, looming peaks and famous rock formation towers the “Torres del Paine”. We will have ample opportunities for hikes here through the contrasting landscapes of wide open spaces and rugged mountain terrain in search of wildlife encounters including pumas, llamas, chilla foxes, skunks and over 100 different species of birds. Birds we can expect to see here include the black-chested buzzard eagle and the Andean condor.
As we spend the day sailing through the exceptionally scenic fjords you will want to be out on deck soaking up the remarkable landscapes and scenic opportunities on offer. In this wild and remote area we will sail by countless fjords and mountains plunging straight into the water, and you may find that by the end of our passage through the fjords your cameras will already be bursting with fabulous landscape photos. The unique fjord landscape of Chile is one of the country’s most impressive features and a day sailing through this area is likely to rank high on your list of experiences.
Cape Horn & Drake Passage
After sailing through the scenic Beagle Channel, the iconic Cape Horn is next on our list and we hope to board our small boats here at this southernmost point of South America to soak up the unique views and enjoy some photo opportunities at the famous albatross-shaped Cape Horn monument which pays homage to the thousands of seafarers who perished here in days gone by when it used to be the only route to cross from one side of the Americas to the other. Cape Horn is renowned for its high seas and challenging conditions so although we have often been successful in landing here, it cannot be guaranteed.
Following our visit to Cape Horn we will venture into the famous Drake Passage for a 1 ½ to 2 days crossing to Antarctica. This unpredictable massive churn of water can often give us a rocky crossing but your first class Polar expedition vessel has been designed to cope comfortably with crossings exactly like these. Whilst at sea you can enjoy the informative and entertaining lecture and presentation programme delivered by your team of onboard experts, spend time on deck watching for seabirds and whales following the ship, or simply relax in one of the comfortable lounges and prepare for your time on the white continent. The first sightings of icebergs on the horizon will signal our arrival in the magical lands of Antarctica.
Today we have reached one of the most remote areas on earth…Antarctica! We will spend our days here exploring by small boat and on foot to get up close to this land of superlatives that will without doubt take your breath away. As you set foot on the endless expanse of snow and ice it is not uncommon to feel a sense of euphoria as you discover a land where few have been and experience unforgettable scenery and wildlife encounters. Throughout your time here you are likely to see thousands of penguins along with numerous seals, whales and seabirds, all set amongst the most picture perfect landscapes you could imagine.
Any expedition to Antarctica requires an element of flexibility as ice and sea conditions can often dictate the routes taken, and your captain will choose each day the best route to take to ensure you experience everything that this amazing region has to offer, with each day offering a new and exciting experience. Areas we expect to visit on the Peninsula itself include Cuverville Island to see one of the largest known colonies of Gentoo penguins, the aptly named Paradise Bay and beautifully scenic Neko Harbour. For whale spotting we will visit Wilhelmina Bay, often called “Whale-mina Bay”, because of the large number of humpback whales that are often spotted here. We will also stop at the often mist-shrouded volcanic islands of the South Shetland Islands group, and make sure to have your cameras ready as we visit the staggeringly photogenic Half Moon Island, home to the most beautiful Antarctic scenery imaginable, and Yankee Harbour to visit another large colony of Gentoo penguins. We also plan to sail into the Antarctic Sound to visit Brown Bluff. Each day will bring a new adventure and focus, with planned activities designed to ensure every moment is memorable.
Antarctica has been outlined in the Antarctic Treaty as being a continent dedicated to peace, science and tourism, and as such we will be adhering throughout to strict environmental guidelines. The rule is to leave nothing but footprints, and take nothing but memories and pictures.
Whilst in Antarctica the fun isn’t restricted to land, as your expert expedition crew will deliver activities and talks to suit a wide range of interests. If you prefer to spend some time on board there will be excellent viewing opportunities from the deck or observation lounges.
From hiking across the snowscapes and optional kayaking excursions to small boat cruises in search of wildlife and expert lectures and discussions, your time in Antarctica is likely to be the pinnacle of this trip of a lifetime.
At Sea - Drake Passage
As our fantastic adventure comes to an end we will leave Antarctica behind to sail back through the fabled Drake Passage towards Punta Arenas. This voyage back to South America can take up to 40 hours in good weather and so this is an excellent time to recap on the countless experiences you will have had throughout your voyage. You can attend the last of your lecture and talk programme and spend some time on deck looking for those final wildlife sightings.
Punta Arenas to Santiago
Having sailed through the Beagle Channel overnight, arrival into the port in Punta Arenas, on the edge of the Magellan Strait, will signal the end of our Antarctica and Chilean Fjords adventure. After disembarkation you will join your transfer to the airport for your included flight to Santiago. Both Santiago and Punta Arenas offer a huge range of post-voyage options and excursions so please ask us for more details should you wish to extend your stay here.
A view from Above
In July 2018, Hurtigruten will add a brand new ship to its fleet: the MS Roald Amundsen. The state of the art vessel features new and environmentally sustainable hybrid technology that will reduce fuel consumption and show the world that hybrid propulsion on large ships is possible. MS Roald Amundsen is the first of two hybrid ships Hurtigruten will add to its fleet over the next few years, cutting emissions by sailing with electrical propulsion. Hybrid technology, combined with the advanced construction of the hull and effective use of electricity on board will reduce fuel consumption and CO2-emissions on the ships by 20 percent. The build of these two ships represents the largest single investment in the history of Hurtigruten. The future of shipping will be silent and emission free. MS Roald Amundsen will lead the way towards an even more sustainable way of travelling. Sailing on electrical power is not only a great benefit for the environment, but it will also enhance the impact of experiencing nature for the guests. The ship will be specially constructed for voyages in polar waters and serve as a comfortable basecamp at sea – bringing adventurers from all over the world to the most spectacular destinations in the most sustainable way.
we work hard to earn passionate reviews from our clients.
Now that I am back from my odyssey voyage, I thought I would let you know that after all that planning it really did exceed my expectations – we managed landings everywhere even on Tristan da Cuhna and had great bird sightings. The guides all knew what they were talking about too and made sure I got some great photos – still sorting them all out! Thanks for everything and see you at Birdfair!Dave Martin
I want to thank you for all you did to make my recent Falklands trip run so smoothly and comfortably. Thank you for all your help over the diet too.Dr Lorna Mairs
Just a quick note to express my sincere thanks to you and all your staff for making this an epic adventure of immense proportions. Everything went smoothly, pickups, hotels and most of all the expedition itself. Truly a mind blowing experience unlike any I have ever taken.Mr J Borg, Malta
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