Discover Antarctica, Patagonia and the Chilean Fjords - Southbound

Valparaiso - Antarctica - Punta Arenas

This expedition takes you to the most intriguing spots along the South American coast and on to Antarctica. Visit one of the most scenic national parks in the world, see the rich wildlife of Patagonia, the Chilean fjords and Cape Horn before the highlight of the journey, Antarctica. Enjoy spending time ashore, kayaking, hiking and close encounters with penguins, birds and seals.

  • Experience Patagonia and Antarctica in one expedition
  • Visit Torres del Paine National Park
  • Sail into the Chilean fjords and see Cape Horn
  • Enjoy kayaking, hiking and close wildlife encounters in Antarctica

Overview

Discover the natural beauty of Patagonia

Starting in colourful Valparaiso, we sail along the Chilean coastline of snow-tipped volcanoes, beautiful lakes, raging rivers and lush vegetation. This vast, rugged and beautiful landscape never fails to amaze.

Chilean fjords and Cape Horn

We journey into one of the most scenic national parks in the world and into the fjords of Chile. This remote area seems almost untouched by humans. Steep valleys and powerful mountains make a striking contrast to a lush coastline rich in wildlife. Cape Horn is a mystical place where two oceans meet. If conditions permit, we may go ashore here.

 The white wonder that is Antarctica

 Next, we cross the treacherous Drake Passage to Antarctica and the mighty frozen vistas of the south. In Antarctica, we will attempt to make landings at several places, including historic sites like the ring-shaped Deception Island, a major harbour for whaling ships until 1905. Or Cuverville Island, home to one of the largest known colonies of Chinstrap penguins, and the British station Port Lockroy from World War II; and Wilhelmina Bay, often called “Whale-mina Bay”, because of the large numbers of humpback whales spotted here. Brown Bluff is recognisable by the 750 metre high cliffs that dominate the landscape.  Penguins, seals, whales and large flocks of sea birds give life to this surrealistic and beautiful landscape. We will bring you on shore to experience some of the most unique wildlife while setting foot on the Antarctic continent. You might also get a chance to kayak in the icy waters. And while on board our comfortable ship, enjoy expert talks about Antarctica’s rich history, so that you can get even more out of what you will experience along the way. On our return journey, we cross the Drake Passage again, before this expedition ends in Punta Arenas. 

Price includes: 

  • Hurtigruten expedition in cabin grade of your choice on a full board basis
  • Transfer from ship to airport in Punta Arenas
  • Economy-class flight from Punta Arenas to Santiago de Chile
  • Wind- and water-resistant jacket
  • Landings with small boats and activities on board and ashore
  • Professional English-speaking expedition team that gives lectures and accompanies landings and activities
  • Complimentary tea and coffee
  • Complimentary use of Muck Boot® rubber boots

Not included: 

  • International flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Luggage handling
  • Optional excursions and gratuities
Itinerary

Voyage Itinerary

This is an expedition where the elements rule, and the weather, wind and ice conditions will determine our final schedule. Safety is paramount and the captain will decide the sailing itinerary during the voyage. Therefore, this itinerary is just an indication of what you can experience, and why every expedition with Hurtigruten is unique.

October 23, 2018

Departure port Valparaíso, Chile
Day 1
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The `Jewel of the Pacific´


Location : Valparaíso, Chile

This expedition starts in the wonderful, colorful and poetic city of Valparaíso. One of the best ways of seeing this scenic town is through its funiculars. These constructions, which are scattered around the entire natural amphitheater surrounding the city, allow sweeping views of the bay, and highlight the multi hued houses, creating a rainbow of color and light. Stroll Valparaiso´s narrow streets, climb its endless staircases and discover something new at every turn: a beautiful building, a remarkable art gallery or some little gastronomic `find’. Don’t forget to explore the port and fishing piers, where you’ll get a real feel for Chile’s quirky seafaring side. Buy or sample freshly caught seafood at the market and enjoy the fishermen’s banter. We also recommend a visit to the UNESCO-listed Historic Quarter before embarking on MS Fram

Day 2-3
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Sailing South


Location : At Sea

As we make our way along the Pacific coast of Chile the expedition team will start the lecture program to prepare you for the experiences ahead. Enjoy priming your knowledge about the history and wildlife of the area. There will also be various workshops and presentations. Make sure to spend some time on deck to enjoy the fresh sea air and look out for wildlife. Familiarize yourself with our expedition vessel and take advantage of all the facilities on board.

Day 4
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Cosmopolitan Castro


Location : Castro

Located on Isla Grande de Chiloé, Castro is set among windswept hills and green vegetation. The city is known for its colorful `palafitos´, wooden houses mounted on stilts along the water's edge. Come ashore and enjoy the local Chilote character and curious energy, mixed with a dash of modern development. The Iglesia San Francisco is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The church is a visual delight: bright yellow and orange with a lavender trim. The varnished-wood interior is stunning. On a sunny day it is illuminated by the rows of stained-glass windows. Other sights include Plazuela del Tren a small plaza right by the waterfront with an odd collection of old trains. A stroll in the Cementerio Parroquial is actually pleasant. Some of the tombs here are quite grand and ornately decorated. Feria Campesina Yumbel is a bustling fruits and vegetables market. There are also household goods and fish stalls here. In the shop Feria Artesanal Lillo, located just south of the port, you can buy excellent hand-knitted woolen goods and handicrafts. Most of the restaurants and cafes in Castro are concentrated along the Calle Blanco, running from the southern end of the plaza down to the waterfront, this is where you can get a taste of the renowned meat, potato and seafood stew. Join the excursion to the Chiloé National Park and go trekking in this evergreen forest. The area is largely unexplored by man and harboring flora and fauna unique to the archipelago, as well as wide deserted beaches and long stretches of rugged coastline, home to dozens of seabird species, penguins, and sea lions.

Day 5
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Waters of Patagonia


Location : At Sea

The expedition continues south through the fabled waters of Patagonia and onwards to one of the world’s most remote, undisturbed and beautiful places: the southern province of Ultima Esperanza, meaning Last Hope. We are sailing through iconic Andean seascapes and you have plenty of time to gaze out on the glassy expanse of nature uninterrupted.

Day 6
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A Small and Isolated Village at the End of the Fjord


Location : Puerto Edén

After an unforgettable cruise through the Patagonian waters, the unique village of Puerto Edén will enchant you. It is a tiny village in Bernardo O’Higgins National Park. Puerto Edén is known for its geographical isolation, situated at the end of a deep fjord and surrounded by mountains. Its population of 250 people includes the 15 remaining members of the Kawéskar people. Puerto Edén is a great place to experience the traditional indigenous culture of Patagonian tribes. The villagers sell fish, mussels and shellfish products, which are taken to markets by a weekly transport boat. For souvenirs, buy traditional Kawéskar crafts such as wicker baskets and boats made from sea lion skins and tree bark. Enjoy a stroll among the laneways, and maybe you will spot one of the many Magellan hummingbirds that you find here when you join the expedition team for hiking or kayaking.

Day 7-8
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Torres del Paine National Park


Location : Puerto Nataloes

Puerto Natales is the gateway to the world-renowned Torres del Paine National Park, one of the most attractive national parks in the world. Its main attraction, the `towers´ themselves, is the impressive rock formation, both colossal and unique, called `Torres del Paine´ (Towers of Paine). The towers are made up of the Torre Central (9,186 feet high), Torre Sur (9,350 feet) and Torre Norte (7,375 feet). The park encompasses azure lakes, trails that meander through emerald forests, roaring rivers you'll cross on rickety bridges and one big, radiant blue glacier. Variety spans from the vast openness of the steppe to rugged mountain terrain topped by looming peaks. This diversity of environments here has led to a very rich fauna and flora. While we are here you might see llamas, pumas, chilla foxes and skunks in addition to more than 100 species of birds like the Andean condor and black-chested buzzard eagle. Enjoy hiking in these amazing surroundings.

Day 9
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A Paradise for Nature Enthusiasts


Location : Chilean Fjords

The Chilean fjords will excite nature enthusiasts with thier channels, fjords and mountains plunging into the icy water. This wild and remote area seems almost untouched by humans. The ice has scoured its way between the mountains, creating the isolated islands and hidden bays that form the unique fjord landscape of Chile. The snow-capped mountains and steep valleys make a striking contrast to an otherwise very green area that is rich in wildlife.

Day 10-11
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Cape Horn and the Drake Passage


Location : At Sea

In the morning we will be sailing through the Beagle Channel, named after the ship that carried Charles Darwin on his voyage of discovery – HMS Beagle. We continue into open waters, and if conditions allow we will make an attempt to land on Cape horn – the southernmost tip of South America. Going ashore can be very difficult because of the sometimes-extreme weather in this area. This is the southernmost point of Chile and South America and lies almost 56 degrees south, marking the boundary between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and the northern end of the Drake Passage. The region is of great significance on account of its location, history, discoveries and trade routes. If we anchor off Cape Horn, you will be able to go ashore to explore this deserted and yet romantic piece of land at the end of the world. Then we continue over the Drake Passage, where two oceans meet, on our way to Antarctica. On the way through the straits you can learn a great deal about Antarctica’s fantastic animals and history. This sea passage was notorious among the early polar explorers and is a unique voyage which only a few have the chance to experience. The Drake Passage connects the southern Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Here the warm water from the north meets the cold, less salty water from the south. This makes the ocean particularly rich in nutrients and is the basis of the unique marine life here.

Day 12-16
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The White Wonder that is Antarctica


Location : Antarctica

This unending, white wilderness of a continent is full of overwhelming impressions on an impressive scale. Weather, wind and ice conditions will of course have a great influence on our program and schedule and your experienced Expedition team will select possible landing sites that will provide you with the best experiences available. With long hours of daylight that we have in Antarctica this time of the year it is easy to make the most of your days. While in Antarctica, we will attempt to land on sites both on the South Shetland Islands and on the Antarctic Peninsula. Flexibility allows us to take advantage of the unexpected and wildlife will be at the forefront of our mind. We will bring you on shore for close up exploration. We might call at the Gentoo penguin rookeries on Cuverville Island and Neko Harbour. We hope to sail through the incomparable Lemaire Channel and take on the challenging hike on Petermann Island to get rewarded with panoramic views. Another fun destination if weather permits is Port Lockroy, an old British base with a museum. Sailing through the Antarctic Sound offers spectacular views of tabular icebergs and glacial landscapes, and Brown Bluff has a distinct rock formation. Our sturdy tender boats will enable us to go ashore almost anywhere and explore bays and channels. The expedition team will explain what you see and ensure we do as little as possible to disturb the local wildlife. Enjoy experiencing Antarctica with all your senses. Kayaking in untouched waters with icebergs floating by, guided hikes up snowy pathways to spectacular viewing points, listening to the sounds of glaciers calving or penguins squabbling, spending the night on deck or in a tent on this remote and untouched continent, or perhaps for the most daring, taking the polar plunge swim. Every day will be different, carefully crafted by our Expedition team to educate you and create lasting memories.

Day 17-18
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Crossing the Drake Passage


Location : At Sea

After four unforgettable days in Antarctica, MS Fram takes us safely back across the famous Drake Passage. The voyage from the Antarctic Peninsula to the southern tip of Argentina is roughly 950 km (600 mi) or 40 hours sailing time in good weather. During the voyage north, we will continue our lecture series and recap our experiences of Antarctica.

Day 19
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The End of the Expedition


Location : Ushuaia/Buenos Aires

Sadly, every expedition must come to an end. When we reach the southernmost town in the world, Ushuaia, it is time to say goodbye. Your journey home continues with your flight to Buenos Aires, where you have a chance to extend your stay in and enjoy our optional post extension programs.

November 10, 2018

Location Ushuaia/Buenos Aires
Your Ship Experiences Extend your Voyage

Getting you there

Please contact us if you wish to add on return flights and airport transfers to Valparaiso and Santiago de Chile.