Fjords of Tierra del Fuego Cruise
|Purpose:||Cruise, Wildlife, Ecotourism, Culture, History|
|No. of days:||5 days - 4 nights|
|First & Last Cities:||Punta Arenas, Ushuaia|
|Other cities:||Ainsworth Bay, Tuckers Islets, Pia Glacier, Glacier Alley, Wulaia Bay, Cape Horn|
Day 1 - Sat: Punta Arenas
Check in between 1 and 5 PM on the day of your departure. Board the M/V Stella Australis (6 PM). After a welcoming cocktail reception hosted by the captain and his crew, the ship departs for one of the remotest corners of planet Earth. During the night we cross the Strait of Magellan and enter the labyrinth of channels that define the southern extreme of Patagonian. The twinkling lights of Punta Arenas gradually fade into the distance as we enter the Whiteside Canal between Darwin Island and Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego. [D]
Day 2 - Sun: Ainsworth Bay, Tuckers Islets
By dawn the ship is sailing up Admiralty Sound (Seno Almirantazgo), a spectacular offshoot of the Strait of Magellan that stretches nearly halfway across Tierra del Fuego. The snowcapped peaks of the Karukinka Natural Park stretch along the north side of the sound, while the south shore is defined by the deep fjords and broad bays at Alberto de Agostini National Park, the third largest protected area in Chile. We go ashore at Ainsworth Bay, which harbors copious bird life and a colony of southern elephant seals which can sometimes be spotted from the Zodiacs. There are two guided excursions are available: one is a hike along the edge of a stream that leads to a waterfall tucked deep inside a pristine sub-polar forest; the other is more strenuous; hike along the crest of a glacial moraine. Both afford views of Marinelli Glacier and the Darwin Mountains. Leaving Ainsworth Bay behind, you sail west along the sound to the Tucker Islets. After lunch, board the Zodiacs again for a close-up view of the Magellan penguins that inhabit the tiny islands. More than 4,000 penguins use Tucker as a place to nest, give birth and nurture their chicks. Many other bird species also frequent the area including king cormorants, Chilean skuas, dolphin gulls, eagles and even the occasional Andean condor. In September and April -- when the penguins live elsewhere -- this excursion is replaced by a short walk to a glacier at nearby stunning Brookes Bay. [B/L/D]
Day 3 - Mon: Pia Glacier, Glacier Alley
Overnight you will sail around the western end of Tierra del Fuego via narrow channels, and after rounding the remote Brecknock peninsula, the ship enters the Beagle Channel again. By morning arrive at the Pia Fjord and board the zodiacs for a shore excursion to Pia Glacier. After disembarking, take a short hike to gain a panoramic view of the spectacular glacier, which extends from the mountaintops down to the sea, or a longer and vigorous walk up a lateral moraine of the old Pia Glacier. Back onboard the ship, continue east along the Beagle Channel through an area called Glacier Alley. This passage features a number of impressive tidewater glaciers flowing down from the Darwin Mountains and Darwin Ice Sheet on the north shore. [B/L/D]
Day 4 – Tue: Wulaia Bay, Cape Horn
During the early morning you will navigate the narrow Murray Channel between Navarino and Hoste islands and drop anchor at historic Wulaia Bay. Originally the site of one of the region’s largest Yámana aboriginal settlements, the bay was described by Charles Darwin and sketched by Captain Fitzroy in the 1830s during their voyages on HMS Beagle. This area is also renowned for its mesmerizing beauty and dramatic geography. After a visit to the Australis-sponsored museum in the old radio station you will have a choice of three hikes that ascend the heavily wooded mountain behind the bay. On all of these you stroll through an enchanted Magellanic forest of lengas, coigües, canelos and ferns to reach panoramic viewpoints overlooking the bay. In the afternoon we cruise across Nassau Bay into the remote archipelago that includes Cape Horn National Park. Weather and sea conditions permitting, you disembark on the windswept island that harbors legendary Cape Horn (Cabo de Hornos). Discovered in 1616 by a Dutch maritime expedition Cape Horn is a sheer 1,394-foot high rocky promontory overlooking the turbulent waters of the Drake Passage. For many years it was the only navigation route between the Pacific and Atlantic and was often referred to as the "End of the Earth." The park was declared a World Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 2005. [B/L/D]
Day 5 - Wed: Cape Horn, Ushuaia
The following morning, we sail into Argentine waters and dock in Ushuaia, the world's southernmost city. Arrival at 08:30 a.m. and 9:30 am and disembark. [B]
[B]= Breakfast | [D] = Dinner | [B/L/D] = Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Your Cruise includes:
- 4 nights’ accommodation on M/V Stella Australis
- Sea transportation
- All meals
- Open bar when on duty including:
- Onboard Services:
- Daily excursions on zodiac boats with expert guides
- Shore excursions listed in this program
- Lectures and audiovisual talks about the flora and fauna, geography, glaciology, ethnography, and history of the Patagonia region
- On board entertainment
- Onboard assistance in English and Spanish
Not included in tour
Cruise does not include:
- International or domestic air tickets
- Transfers to or from the piers
- Services not listed in the itinerary
- Optional tours and transportation
- Any extras, and personal expenses.
- Tips for guides and ship crew
- Port tax, migration fee: US$60. Subject to change by the port authorities of each country
- Satellite phone calls (must be prepaid)
- Items purchased at onboard store such as sporting clothes, souvenirs, gifts, personal use items, etc.
Hotels in your Tour
M/V Stella Artois
The Stella Australis is an awe-inspiring adventure cruise ship. The ship, which was constructed in 2010, consists of 100 total cabins and can hold up to 210 passengers. The ship offers tourists a relaxed stay, while providing breathtaking sights from the decks.
She was built in Chile under the updated SOLAS 2001 and MARPOL 73/78 standards for worldwide ocean navigation certified by the ABS (American Bureau of Shipping) and is classified as a “Passenger Vessel”.
The ship offers three lounges for meetings equipped with modern audiovisual equipment, a dining room, an exercise room and a spacious open deck area allowing the observation of the marvelous southern scenery at all times. Each cabin has picture windows, independent climate control, a private bathroom and satellite phone.
Launching season: 2009-2010
First Departure: December, 2010
Length: 292 ft.
Beam: 47.8 ft.
Passenger Capacity: 210
The cabins feature low beds, a safety box, picture windows, a private bathroom, an independently controlled heater, adapter and a satellite phone. Air conditioning and heating facilities are available in all the cabins. There are fire stations, emergency generators, smoke detectors in all cabins, corridors and lounge areas.
Total Cabins: 100
Cabin size: 177 sq. ft.
Ship info and Deck Plans
Rates are per person, based on 2 passengers sharing a cabin and may change without notice
Rates are valid from September 2020 through April 2021 and do not apply for Christmas and New Year’s departures. Other blackout dates may apply. All departures are subject to confirmation at the time of booking
Tour Code: CL06PUQ20SA
Deposit, Payment & Cancellation
- Deposit of $US300 per passenger is required to guarantee a provisional reservation.
- Final payment must be received no later than 65 days before the cruise departure
- Any and all cancellations require written notice to Holidays With Downtown
The following deadlines and penalties apply:
|Days before departure||Penalty|
|Up to 120||No Penalty|
|From 119 and 60||$300 (Deposit)|
|From 59 and 50||25% of total cost|
|From 49 and 40||50% of total cost|
|From 39 and 30||75% of total cost|
|From 29 and 0||100% of total cost|
Promotion: Green – Low Season: Blue – High Season: Red
Grey dates are operated by M/V Ventus Australis