- Sail through the remote fjords of southern Patagonia, only accessible by boat, searching for penguins, condors, whales and the illusive elephant seal.
- Follow in the footsteps of Charles Darwin and disembark at the historical site where he stepped off the HMS Beagle.
- Gaze at isolated glaciers and silently observe penguin colonies as they nest and nurture their chicks from offshore zodiacs.
This cruise is ideal for those who endeavour to be surrounded by stunning natural beauty and wish to visit the remote wilderness of southern Patagonia in the company of on-board expert guides. Navigate through fjords and channels in the shadow of soaring mountains and creaking glaciers, exploring native subpolar forests on foot and searching for signs of resident wildlife.
This cruise sails to remote regions that are only accessible by boat on an exclusive route. As there are no towns or roads for miles around, a voyage to these Patagonian fjords is a positively isolating experience that allows for almost complete detachment from the rest of the world.
Little critters and great creatures alike gravitate to the splendid coastline and navigable fjords that accompany this vast and secluded region. Entire colonies of native Magellanic penguins toddle on the shore while elephant seals, dolphins and multiple species of whales frolic in the iridescent ocean.
Pre and post cruise
From your starting point in the valley city of Santiago, travel past the snow-capped Andes to a classic Chilean winery. Chile is one of the largest wine-producing countries in the world, and the grapes grown in the Maipo Valley are favourably influenced by the surrounding mountains. In particular, the considerable fluctuation in temperatures that is brought about by the chilly night and balmy days produces a characteristically refined and bold Cabernet Sauvignon.
Following the leisurely cruise through the fjords of southern Patagonia, experience the liveliness and grandeur of Buenos Aires. Wander the lively streets, lined with magnificent Neoclassical architecture, pausing only to observe live tango shows, listen to live jazz or sample hot empanadas and sweet alfajores.
Not only is this region solely accessible by boat, but furthermore the Stella Australis is the only cruise vessel that navigates through these fjords. Occasionally a small sailboat may punctuate the panoramic landscape, but the only other traces of humanity are brought here on the Stella Australis.
Disengaging with civilisation is a condition of carriage as the ship is deliberately and proudly constructed without Wi-Fi capabilities. As such, a voyage on the Stella Australis feels truly cut off from the rest of the world.
Observe the unfolding ocean views through large picture windows from the warmth of indoors, or hop up in cold-weather clothing and board a zodiac boat to venture out in to the untamed wilderness. Those interested in learning about the fascinating human history of the indigenous Yámana aboriginal settlements will appreciate the little Stella Australis-sponsored museum located in in the old radio station at historic Wulaia Bay.
Experience nature at its purest, observing idle glaciers in almost complete isolation. The on-board guides, many native to Chilean Patagonia, are fond of momentarily powering down their radio equipment and encouraging a moment of complete silence while observing these huge masses of dense ice.
What is given back?
Preservation of environment takes precedence here, and the Stella Australis works closely with the Chilean government and independent environmental bodies to safeguard the area. As this boat is the only regular traverser of these Patagonian fjords, its crew have been trained by CEQUA to collect samples, record iceberg formations and examine the flora and fauna of the place. This data is then delivered to scientists in Punta Arenas on a weekly basis to aid with their important research programmes.
The Stella Australis is mindful never to abandon waste in these pristine oceans, and so they are committed to recycling at their own plant in Ushuaia. You won’t find plastic water bottles on board, as instead guests are encouraged to fill provided flasks with hot and cold water from the dispensers that line the decks.
From marine scientists to anthropologists, mountaineers to photographers and engineers to sailors, the guides that accompany a voyage on the Stella Australis are a diverse group of passionate and knowledgeable experts on Patagonia and the wildlife of the region.
For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.