- 4 hours (Approx.)
- Mobile ticket
Experience your own ‘March of the Penguins’ on Magdalena Island during a morning tour by boat from Punta Arenas. After cruising across the Strait of Magellan, land on this protected nature reserve and marvel at the thousands of Magellanic penguins milling about on the pebbly terrain that serves as their breeding grounds. Follow your guide along a cordoned-off path leading up to a lighthouse, where you'll learn about the island’s ecosystem. Weather permitting, cruise by Isla Marta to observe sea lions and elephant seals.
- All entrance fees included
- Close encounter with wildlife
- Free snacks included
- Get up-close to native wildlife
- Boat tour
- Professional guide
- Transfer from the meeting point to the pier
- Transport by air-conditioned minivan
- Entry/Admission - Solo Expediciones
- Entry/Admission - Monumento Natural Los Pinguinos
- Food and drinks, unless specified
- Airport pickup and drop-off
- Hotel pickup and drop-off
Meeting point at local office
6:30 AM at the meeting point located in Jose Nogueira #1255, Punta Arenas. For passengers arriving by cruises, you can book this service and we will schedule your trip to a special departure time at 10:30 AM. Remember to let us know that you're coming on a cruise for modifiying your presentation time in Jose Nogueira #1255, Punta Arenas.
Concludes in Punta Arenas at the main office of the local provider, located in Jose Nogueira #1255, Punta Arenas
Dress warmly and get ready to join this tour which will start at a meeting point in Punta Arenas and then travel with the rest of the group to the pier.
Climb aboard a large powerboat and head north for about 40 minutes on the Strait of Magellan. If you’re lucky, you may glimpse panda dolphins leaping out of the choppy grey waters.
Arrive at the small and rocky Magdalena Island, also called Los Pinguinos Natural Monument, a protected nature reserve and park since 1982, and a breeding site for Magellanic penguins. Even before the boat docks, you’ll see thousands of penguins crowding the shores and hear their squawking. During the summer, approximately 120,000 penguins occupy the island.
Disembark and spend about an hour here with your guide, keeping to the designated trail roped off for visitors. These curious birds, about 2 feet (61 cm) tall, will cross your path and may approach you, but you'll be instructed not to touch or feed them.
On either side of the trail, see hundreds of burrows in the ground, about a foot (30 cm) in diameter, each populated by a pair of penguins. Watch penguins pop in and out of the holes, where eggs are laid, and others excavate new burrows by flinging aside heaps of dirt with their webbed feet. Your guide may point out cormorants and Andean seagulls on the island as well.
Reach the highest point on the island and enter a lighthouse, which houses exhibits explaining the penguins’ habitat and breeding cycles, the history of the strait and the rich ecosystems of nearby islands.
Then warm up with coffee and snack on biscuits (provided) before leaving the island. On your way back, if the weather permits, your captain may pass by Isla Marta, where you can snap shots of sea lions and elephant seals lounging on the rocky outcrop.
After a marvelous morning with penguins, your tour will end in Punta Arenas at the same meeting point in the morning.
- Confirmation will be received at time of booking
- It is recommended that you wear comfortable, warm clothes and trekking shoes or boots
- Please bring a jacket or sweater, a scarf, hat, sunglasses and water
- Important: Passport name, number, expiry and country is required at time of booking for all participants
- Seasonal product operating October to March
- IMPORTANT INFORMATION: On peak season (Christmas, Holidays, Cruise dates, November to March) the departure time of your tour may vary depending on availability, there are three possible departure times, which are 6:30/10:00/15:00hrs, the regular one is 6:30am BUT we will be letting you know if we have to reschedule your departure time due availability.
- Not wheelchair accessible
- Infants must sit on laps
- Most travelers can participate
- This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
If you cancel at least 3 day(s) in advance of the scheduled departure, there is no cancellation fee.
If you cancel within 2 day(s) of the scheduled departure, there is a 100 percent cancellation fee.
OK let's be fair. The Island, people and tour guide was a 4 star. BUT! Be prepared for a slow long tour that lasted well over hours and should have been no more than 3 hours. A waste of several precious hours that would have been better spent. First, they drove the boat at 10 khr to save fuel rather than get us there early to spend more time with Penguins. Second, it Took more than an hour to get off the boat. They had to ferry us back to pier. Third, they drove back at. 5 khr with people sitting on top of the boat looking for whales??? Needless to say no whales. Forth, passengers were late for return flights as the tour said it would be four hours not 5 1/2. Look into another tour maybe they will be better. At $160 is was at best a 2 star tour.
Great experience, tour guides were professional and friendly, on time, would recommend to anyone.
Really well organised tour. Crew were great. The penguins were amazing - able to be really close. Would have liked a bit more info on the penguins- do they stay as couples throughout season? How many eggs laid etc. Had a hot drink back on board which was very welcome but was unannounced so did not know reason why there was queue to get back on.
This is a must do, bucket list type of experience if you are in the area. The trip on the boat to and from the island was exciting and the penguins were very fascinating. The tour company was excellent and they took very good care of us in a rather taxing weather area. We highly recommend.
Tour was great. Highly recommend. I would not book through Viator, it's much lower at any of tour places there. Much lower for the same tour.
Came to Punta Arenas to do this and was not disappointed. Bus ride to boat takes about 45 minutes or so. Then boat ride to the island.
Spend about an hour walking around the small island to the top and back to boat among these adorable creatures!!!!!!!!
There are so many of them and they run right in front of you!!! The baby chicks were too darn cute. Seeing the penguins in their own environment-digging, kissing, nurturing, scawking, sleeping, running, swimming---you will take a zillion pictures!
Hot chocolate and/coffee provided once back on boat!
Found the tour organisation a little chaotic in terms of knowing which busses to board, where we were going and how to get back. Departure peer is about 30 mins drive from Punta Arenas, crossing conditions can vary from everyone sitting on the boat's roof to everyone being confined indoors, and temperatures can be down to zero. Visit to the penguin island didn't feel long enough, even though walking the loop of the island and light house need only take 15 minutes, we could have done with more than an hour, especially towards the end when the penguins started getting friendly and coming to meet us. The boat then sales slowly around a fur seal island but doesn't stop there before returning to the peer. This activity starts early but is finished by midday, it is however the best thing you're likely to do in Punta Arenas, though it might lead to sea sickness as there's more than an hour of sailing and it can get choppy.
Very nice trip, only place where you get so close to the penguins. Crew was nice, coffee and cookies were offered. We also were taken to Isla Martha to see the sea lions.
The tour was very good. We had chosen the hotel pick up, the driver was on time and we were comfortably transferred to the agency. After checking in, they transferred us to the pier and the trip started. It lasts for roughly 3hours, we visited the Magdalena island penguins colony and due to the good weather conditions we travelled to the Martha island and saw some sea lions, more penguins and seals. The tour guide was very well informed and answered all our questions. Pretty good information about the penguins year round life and habitat. Very much satisfied!
Overall this was a great trip. Would only be better if there was more time on the island. We had an hour.
We were picked up at our hotel at 6:20 AM, driven 5 blocks to the office. We did some paperwork, then boarded busses at 7AM for a 30 minute drive to the dock. The boat must have left the doc around 8AM. The water was calm so the ride was fine. The boat was comfortable, seemed safe, and the crew was amiable. We had one hour on the island. We went another half hour to Santa Marta Island to see the sea lions, but did not get off the boat for that. Santa Marta Island is about a half hour going away from the dock, so the ride back was about an hour. We were on land around 11AM, and in our hotel at 12:10.
Penguins were everywhere on Magdalena Island. Several people had huge cameras, but they were not necessary since the penguins were often within 10 feet or less of us. You need to stay on the trail, but the penguins cross the trail all the time. If you get too close, they will peck your shoes. Be sure to spend some time watching the penguins as they enter and exit the water - they look pretty silly. We also saw baby sea gulls that were cute.
The sea lions were far away so the views of them on Santa Marta Island were quite distant and not as impressive.
Overall a 5 star rating for the fantastic views of the penguins. A fun and memorable morning.
Ok this is a bit unfair. We were hugely disappointed to learn on the morning of the trip that it was being cancelled because of wind. And they weren't lieing, the wind was incredible. The guide we had gave us an option - money back or visit condors. He was excellent, managing the obvious disappointment in the group. Personally I thought the condors were great though I would still rather have seen the penguins. The question then is, if the same happens to you, is t worth seeing the condors - well I suppose it depends how much you paid for the tour....
The tour itself was great. It seemed a little touristy but once you got to the island you could see why its so popular. The reason it didnt get 4 stars is because the trip was supposed to include a shuttle back to our hotel and once we got back from the island there was no shuttle. They just left us to find a ride back. Luckily our hotel was only about 15 minutes walk but if it was included it should have been delivered.
booking through the internet was a breeze with instant confirmation
local pickup was right on time
group size was just right
enthusiastic cruise staff and guide
Penguins were great to see. Worth it.
However, the organisation was chaotic. The minibuses used to transport you to the tour starting point were VERY poor quality and would not be allowed on the road in western countries heavily rusted sills, cracks across driver's view of road, broken seat belts etc.
On our return journey we got into a bus to be taken back to the town but ended up getting shouted at by an irate driver about something in Spanish, then unceremoniously dumped somewhere in the town without a clue about what just happened. None of the drivers spoke English so we have no idea about what happened or why, other than the driver as very angry at us. Luckily for us we knew our way around the town at that point its tiny so you cant get lost and were able to walk the 20 minutes back to our hotel but it left a VERY sour taste on an otherwise great experience.
very interesting, the guides were very well prepared. The ship was more than ok
Seeing the penguins was FABULOUS. You really do get up close and there are THOUSANDS of them. I highly recommend this trip, even if you don't do well on boats. I get sea sick really easy...and I know it, but I wanted to see these penguins. I got sea sick AND saw these beautiful creatures. Well worth it!
There is no hotel pick-up at all. The company is terrible. They got everything wrong.
The tour is great. We have never seen so many pigeons in our whole life. The guide is professional and very funny.
The tour itself was very nice and well organiced.
BUT: The price was off the chart. We paid more then double. And its not too overcrowded and therefore Im very dissapointed about that. Ive the feeling you got punished by booking in advance. Thats why I cant really recommand it... sorry!