We invite you to join Naturalist Journeys on this NEW! and exciting Chilean Fjords cruise. The vast Patagonian ice-sheet that straddles the Andes mountains in South America is the third largest ice-mass on the planet, after Antarctica and the Greenland icecap. It is a remnant of the Earth’s most recent ice age and dominates the landscape, ecology, and geology of Patagonia. Immense glacial systems cut through towering mountains as they move inexorably towards the sea. Take a look at any map of the region and this action becomes immediately apparent, in the maze of fjords and islands that make up one of the planet’s last great remaining wilderness regions. Ancient boreal forests also tell a story of an evolving planet and the supercontinent of Gondwanaland. They are home to several species of flora only found in South America, New Zealand, and Australia’s most southerly state, Tasmania.
This Patagonia nature cruise begins in Ushuaia. We make our way north through a vast network of deep fjords and channels, occasionally venturing out to the Pacific Ocean as we navigate towards Valparaiso—Chile’s historic deep-sea port. We explore our surroundings by Zodiac, approaching huge glaciers and observing resident and migratory wildlife and birdlife. On shore, we enjoy hikes of varying durations to outstanding viewpoints, in the company of expert guides. Additionally, we visit small coastal communities that showcase the unique way of life of the hardy local inhabitants—telling a story of both indigenous and European settlement. It is hard to think of a more remote, pristine location and we discover it all in the comfort of one of the world’s most capable expedition ships, the RCGS Resolute.
- Learn about the environment, glacial systems, history and ecology from experts
- Visit historic sites and local communities, and experience rural Chilean culture
- Experience some of the most remote and pristine wilderness areas on Earth
- Observe resident and migrating wildlife on shore, in Zodiacs, and from the ship
- Witness massive glaciers and perhaps watch as they calve into the water
- See marine mammals and seabirds from deck (see an entire species list here)
Photo credits: Banners: Black-faced Ibis by Greg Smith; Asia Fjord and Bernal Glacier by Zodiac by Greg Smith; Resolute by Greg Smith