stella australis patagonia fjords cruise

Fjords of Tierra del Fuego

  • Overview
    Our Patagonia cruise tours follow the fjords of the southern edge of Tierra del Fuego highlights the stunning, natural beauty of Patagonia and several of its most important historical sites. Whether you are sailing aboard M/V Stella Australis, this four-day journey includes visits to wildlife rich Ainsworth Bay, massive Pia Glacier and Glacier Alley, as well as mystical Wulaia Bay and the legendary Cape Horn.
    Duration: 5 days
    Passengers: 210 passengers
    Embarkation Point: Punta Arenas, Chile
    Disembarkation Point: Ushuaia, Argentina
    Physical rating: Soft Adventure
    Fly/Cruise: Cruise only
    Single Supplement: 1.5x twin rate or share options
  • Itinerary
    • Day 1 - Punta Arenas; Embarkation day

      Check in at 1385 O’Higgins Street (Arturo Prat Port) in Punta Arenas between 13:00 and 17:00 (1-5 PM) on the day of your cruise departure. Board the M/V Stella Australis (6 PM). After a welcoming toast and introduction of captain and 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.

    • Day 2 - 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 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. 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. 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 our Ainsworth Bay tour behind, we sail west along the sound to the Tucker Islets. After lunch, we 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, 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.

    • Day 3 - Pia Glacier - Glacier Alley

      Overnight we sail around the western end of Tierra del Fuego via the very narrow Gabrial Channel, Magdalena Channel and Cockburn Channel. After rounding the remote Brecknock Peninsula, Stella Australis tacks eastward and enters the Beagle Channel again. By morning we are entering Pia Fjord and boarding the Zodiacs for a Pia Glacier tour. After disembarking we 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.

      No one knows for certain how the hulking mass of snow and ice got its feminine moniker, but one theory says it was named for Princess Maria Pia of Savoy (1847-1911), daughter of the Italian king.

      Back onboard the ship, we 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. Most of them named after European countries -- Holland, Italy, Germany, Spain and France.

    • Day 4 - Wulaia Bay - Cape Horn

      During the early morning we 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. After a visit to the Australis-sponsored museum in the old radio station -- which is especially strong on the Yámana people and European missionaries in the area -- 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 be strolling through an enchanted Magellan forest of lengas, coigües, 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 we cruise across Nassau Bay into the remote archipelago that includes Cape Horn National Park. Weather and sea conditions permitting, we shall go ashore on the windswept island that harbors legendary Cape Horn (Cabo de Hornos). Discovered in 1616 by a Dutch maritime expedition -- and named after the town of Hoorn in West Friesland -- Cape Horn is a sheer 425-meter (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. 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.

    • Day 5 - Ushuaia; Disembarkation day

      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 according to date of departure.

    Please consider that our voyages are expeditionary in nature. This means, that there are no concrete itineraries, your Captain and Expedition Leader will utilise their vast experience to chart the best course for your expedition depending on the climatic and environmental conditions. Mentioned highlights and wildlife cannot be guaranteed.

  • Adventure Activities

    Experience Patagonia at close range

    Experience Patagonia at close range. Explore the narrow fjords and shallow bays of Fuegian Archipelago discover secluded waterfalls, tidewater glaciers, pristine beaches and rocky shorelines, hike through primeval sub-Polar forest, thousands of penguins, elephant and leopard seals, Andean condors and Caracara falcons.

  • Inclusions
    Inclusions / Exclusions

    Included in your Expedition

    Not included in your Expedition

    - Port taxes (US$60-70*pp)
  • Map
    Patagonia   both ways
  • Gallery
  • Vessel

    Stella Australis

    The Stella Australis offers a relaxed luxury experience while providing breathtaking views of Patagonia's impressive coastline, fjords and glaciers. For the best in Chile travel the Stella Australis will allow you to reach all of Patagonia’s fabulous venues, attractions, and expeditions. Indulge in first-class Chile travel onboard the Stella Australis. You will have plenty of opportunities to relax onboard this spacious cruise ship in Patagonia, with a beautiful atmosphere, and fine dining. Comfortable cabins provide you with incredible ocean views and lavish decor. Wine and dine, mix and mingle, and enjoy our fabulous entertainment on your Patagonia vacation. For amazing customer service, excitement, beautiful scenery, and exceptional cuisine the Stella and Ventus Australis will not disappoint you.

    Features & Facilities
    Key Facts
    Luxury star rating: 4
    Guests #: 210
    Crew #: 62
    Ice Class: N/A
    Speed: 13
    Technical Specs
    Year built: 2010
    Length: 89m
    Width: 14
    Draft: 3
    Tonnage: 4500
    Registry: Chile
    Elec Outlets: 2 Round Prongs
Check Voyage Dates, Pricing and Availability
All available dates
Ready to book your expedition?

We understand that the trip of a lifetime takes planning, so we make the financial commitments easy to manage.

  • Confirm your booking today with just USD$ 1,000 per passenger.
  • Pay your 25% deposit 5 day later.
  • Final payment due 120 days prior to departure.
stella australis cabin b category

Cabin B

23 Oct 2019 - 27 Oct 2019
Located on Magallanes Deck 2 near reception and closest to the bow of the ship, Category B cabins are 16.5m2.
USD$ 1,960pp
USD$ 1,960pp
Patagonia fjords cruise from ushuaia

Cabin A

23 Oct 2019 - 27 Oct 2019
Located on Magallanes Deck 2 near reception, Category A cabins are 16.5m2 in size.
USD$ 2,620pp
USD$ 2,620pp
Patagonia fjords cruise cabin

Cabin AA

23 Oct 2019 - 27 Oct 2019
Located on Tierra del Fuego Deck 3 near the Yamana Lounge, Category AA cabins are 16.5m2 in size.
USD$ 2,731pp
USD$ 2,731pp
Patagonia fjords cruise cabin

Cabin AAA

23 Oct 2019 - 27 Oct 2019
Located on Cabo de Hornos Deck 4 near the Sky Lounge and Bridge, Category AAA cabins are 16.5m2 in size.
USD$ 2,814pp
USD$ 2,814pp
stella australis cabin aa superior category

Cabin AAS

23 Oct 2019 - 27 Oct 2019
Located on Tierra del Fuego Deck 3 near the Yamana Lounge, Category AA Superior cabins are more spacious at 20.5m2 in size.
USD$ 3,333pp
USD$ 3,333pp
stella australis cabin aaa superior category

Cabin AAAS

23 Oct 2019 - 27 Oct 2019
Located on Cabo de Hornos Deck 4 near the Sky Lounge and Bridge, and with easy access to the Darwin Lounge.
USD$ 3,531pp
USD$ 3,531pp