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Antarctic Peninsula

Tierra del Fuego, Antarctica and South Atlantic Islands

With canals, icebergs, islands and full white peaks, this Antarctic string -the closest to Tierra del Fuego- is home to sea birds, seals, penguins and whales.  

Cruise ships to Antarctica leave from the port of Ushuaia, where flights arrive from Buenos Aires and other cities of the country. The tourist season in Antarctica is from November to March (end of southern spring and summer).

What to see
Le Maire Channel

It is 11 kilometres long and spans between Booth Island and the Antarctic Peninsula. Although sometimes floes block the access, the natural sights and scenes boast an astounding beauty.


Paradise Bay and Neko Harbour

People usually say that Paradise Bay (where the Argentine base Almirante Brown is located) is one of the most beautiful places in Antarctica, surrounded by mountains, glaciers, giant floes and where ships stop to watch penguins and cormorants. Not too far away is Neko Harbour, offering unforgettable scenes and the chance to visit another penguin colony. 


Port Lockroy

Located on Goudier Island, its main attraction is the Antarctic Museum at Bransfield House, a part of a base built by the British during the Second World War. It opened in 1996 and is managed by the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust; among some of the items exhibited, you can find wooden skis, a clandestine radio transmitter dating back to 1944 and a gramophone. It has its own souvenir and gift shop.

It also harbours an important gentoo penguin population and the popular post office, known as the Penguins’ Post Office.


Danco Island

A small island over 1.5 km long, at the Antarctic Peninsula Errera Channel, home to gentoo penguins and the place chosen by some cruise ships to land and trek usually on the snow with rackets, towards viewpoints with extraordinary sights.


Charlotte Bay and Cuverville Island 

Charlotte Bay offers a view of floating icebergs while Cuverville Island, 250 metres high, has one of the largest gentoo penguin colonies on ice. Pay attention to the flora: Antarctic grass and Antarctic pearlwort.
Mincke whales are usually found in the area, which is ideal to sail on zodiacs.


Petermann, Pleneau and Argentine Islands

Petermann is located in the south of Booth Island and many cruise passengers find it attractive since it is the only chance they have to see the small Adelie penguins. There are also gentoo penguins and blue-eyed cormorants. Humpback whales and leopard seals can be seen in the bay where they usually disembark. Pleneau Island offers a rocky landscape covered by snow and ice, rocky beaches, gentoo penguins, blue-eyed cormorants, Weddell seals and elephant seals. You can hike up to points where you can see Booth Island and the southern entrance of the Lemaire Channel. 

Argentine Islands are another set of islands filled with huge floes anchored by the low depths, with beautiful landscapes.

How to get there and move around

Ushuaia (the capital city of Tierra del Fuego) is the closest city to the White Continent. The vast majority of cruise companies that go to Antarctica depart from its port. The days before or after the expedition are a good opportunity to get to know the city and the island of Tierra del Fuego.

Where to stay

Before and after cruises, in Ushuaia.


Most of the itineraries last between 10 and 12 days (classic Antarctica) and allow you to get to know the South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula, but there are also other circuits, longer and with more stops, such as Antarctica via the Malvinas and South Georgia Islands, the Antarctic Polar Circle Crossing and the Weddell Sea Circuit.


Cruise ships have different designs. The smaller or specialized ships carry zodiacs on board that allow disembarking during the journey, while on the larger ships you stay on the cruise for the entire trip. There are different levels of service offered on board. In addition, some companies offer non-conventional extra activities such as kayaking, diving, trekking, camping, helicopter flights or snorkelling. 

More information

Find other must-sees of the Route of Antarctica