Stella Australis Patagonia Expedition Cruise - Fjords of Tierra del Fuego - Punta Arenas to Ushuaia


Stella Australis Patagonia Expedition Cruise - Fjords of Tierra del Fuego - Punta Arenas to Ushuaia



10 months ago


5 Days


September - April


USD 1,565.00 per person


Dec 31, 2019
Stella Australis Patagonia Expedition Cruise - Fjords of Tierra del Fuego - Punta Arenas to Ushuaia
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The Fjords of Tierra del Fuego Cruise aboard the 210-guest Stella or Ventus Australis is a 5-day, 4-night small ship adventure from Punta Arenas, Chile, to Ushuaia, Argentina. Discover the beauty of Glacier Alley that flows down from the Darwin Mountains, witness close encounters with Magellan penguins in Tucker Islet and elephant seals in Ainsworth Bay, hike through enchanted Magellan forest for a breathtaking view of Wulaia Bay and explore Cape Horn, known as the "End of the Earth."

The 5-day Fjords of Tierra del Fuego cruise can be combined with the 5-day Patagonian Explorer cruise to create a round trip 9-day/8-night itinerary.


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Rates vary by season and cabin starting at $1565 per person. Please see website for full details on rates.


Day 1: Punta Arenas
Punta Arenas, Patagonia, Chile
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Check in at Punta Arenas (Chile) between 1pm and 5pm, and board at 6pm. After a welcome toast and introduction of captain and crew, the ship departs for the most remote corners of the earth. During the night, cross the Strait of Magellan and enter the labyrinth of channels that define the southern extreme of Patagonia. The twinkling lights of Punta Arenas gradually fade into the distance as you enter the Whiteside Canal between Darwin Island and Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego.

ACCOMMODATIONS: Stella Australis or Ventus Australis

MEALS: dinner

Day 2: Ainsworth Bay - Tuckers Islets
Ainsworth Bay, Patagonia, Chile
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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 Karukinka Natural Park stretch along the north side of the sound, while the south shore is defined by the deep fjords and broad bays of Alberto de Agostini National Park. 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. Two guided excursions are available: one is along the edge of a stream, peat bog and beaver habitat to a waterfall-and-moss-covered rock face tucked deep inside a pristine sub-polar forest; the other is a more strenuous hike along the crest of a glacial moraine. Both afford views of Marinelli Glacier and the Darwin Mountains.

Leaving Ainsworth Bay behind, 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 Tuckers as a place to nest, give birth and nurture their chicks. Many other bird species also frequent the area including king cormorants, oystercatchers, Chilean skuas, kelp geese, 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.

ACCOMMODATIONS: Stella Australis or Ventus Australis

MEALS: breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 3: Pia Glacier - Glacier Alley
Pia Glacier, Patagonia, Chile
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Navigate the western end of Tierra del Fuego overnight via the very narrow Gabrial Channel, Magdalena Channel and Cockburn Channel. After rounding the remote Brecknock Peninsula, your vessel tacks eastward and enters the Beagle Channel again. By morning you are entering Pia Fjord and boarding the zodiacs for a shore excursion to Pia Glacier. 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 much more difficult walk up a lateral moraine of the old Pia Glacier. Return to the ship and continue east along the Beagle Channel through an area called Glacier Alley. Living up to its name, the passage features a number of impressive tidewater glaciers flowing down from the Darwin Mountains and Darwin Ice Sheet on the north shore.

ACCOMMODATIONS: Stella Australis or Ventus Australis

MEALS: breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 4: Cape Horn - Wulaia Bay
Cape Horn National Park, Patagonia, Chile
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During the early morning, navigate the narrow Murray Channel between Navarino and Hoste islands and drop anchor at historic Wulaia Bay, one of the few places in the archipelago where the human history is just as compelling as the natural environment. 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 the HMS Beagle. This area is also renowned for its mesmerizing beauty and dramatic geography. Visit the Australis-sponsored museum in the old radio station, which is especially strong on the Yámana people and European missionaries in the area. Then passengers have a choice of three hikes (of increasing degrees of difficulty) that ascend the heavily wooden mountain behind the bay. On all of these you will stroll through an enchanted Magellan forest of lengas, coigues, canelos, ferns, and other endemic fauna to reach a panoramic viewpoint overlooking the bay. Before leaving Wulaia Bay, drop something into the wooden mail barrel inside the museum – letters or postcards meant to be hand delivered by future travelers – an ancient mariner tradition revived by Australis.

In the afternoon cruise across Nassau Bay into the remote archipelago that includes Cape Horn National Park. Weather and sea conditions permitting, go ashore on the windswept island that harbors legendary Cape Horn. Discovered in 1616 by a Dutch maritime expedition, Cape Horn is a sheer, 1,394-foot (425-meter) high rocky promontory, and in the past it was the only entrance to the Pacific Ocean. This place is known as the “End of the Earth,” and it’s the last territory before Antarctica. The park was declared a World Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in June 2005. The Chilean navy maintains a permanent lighthouse on the island, staffed by a lightkeeper and his family, as well as the tiny Stella Maris Chapel and modern Cape Horn Monument.

ACCOMMODATIONS: Stella Australis or Ventus Australis

MEALS: breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 5: Ushuaia
Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina
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Sail into Argentine waters and dock in Ushuaia, the world's southernmost city. Australis is scheduled to arrive at 8:30 or 9:30am, depending on the date of departure, enabling an early start to visiting the city and national parks, or continuing your trip through Patagonia.


MEALS: breakfast


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  • Accommodation, sea transportation, all meals, open bar when on duty (without additional costs for wines, beverages and liquors), shore excursions and onboard entertainment.


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Alternative Itinerary: In addition to the 5-day route listed above (departing every Saturday), there is a 4-day cruise itinerary that sails north from Ushuaia to Punta Arenas (departing every Wednesday).

4-Day Itinerary...

Day 1 - WED - Ushuaia

Day 2 - THU - Cape Horn - Wulaia Bay

Day 3 - FRI - Aguila Glacier

Day 4 - SAT - Magdalena Island - Punta Arenas

Itinerary Notes: Use the itinerary as a guide only. Itineraries may be altered due to weather, wildlife, National Park regulation or at the captain's discretion. The ability to be flexible makes this type of small ship cruising unique.

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Related Categories
Adventure Cruises
Ainsworth Bay Adventure Cruises
Argentina Adventure Cruises
Cape Horn National Park Adventure Cruises
Chile Adventure Cruises
Patagonia Adventure Cruises
Pia Glacier Adventure Cruises
Punta Arenas Adventure Cruises
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Ainsworth Bay Ecotourism
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Cape Horn National Park Ecotourism
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Patagonia Ecotourism
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Ainsworth Bay Wildlife Viewing Tours
Argentina Wildlife Viewing Tours
Cape Horn National Park Wildlife Viewing Tours
Chile Wildlife Viewing Tours
Patagonia Wildlife Viewing Tours
Pia Glacier Wildlife Viewing Tours
Punta Arenas Wildlife Viewing Tours
Tierra del Fuego Wildlife Viewing Tours

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