Whales in the Surroundings of Punta Arenas

Just like on a large sea stage, whales offer their water ballet and visitors enjoy such rhythmic dance from a very close distance.

While at the City of Punta Arenas, travelers may access Francisco Coloane Sea park only through the sea. It is essential to go on a guided tour if they want to see the humpback whales dwelling in this area.

Feeling completely well-disposed to having an intense day, we left from Pier Prat in the early morning, when it was still dark. Once we were navigating, we wondered about the encounter with those giants that swim and move their huge heads and tails as they make strange sounds typical of their species. We also wished to check that it is possible to approach them without any danger.

Long before we reached our destination, we were enwrapped by dawn and its changing hues. Finally, the day broke and everything came back to normal. We got past some historical points like Fort Bulnes and Cruz de los Mares (The Cross of the Seas) at Cape Froward, about which the boat guide gave us faithful information.

  • Tail and dives

    Tail and dives

  • They seemed entertained at all

    They seemed entertained at all

  • Curious and playful Loose

    Curious and playful Loose

  • Humpback whales

    Humpback whales

  • Groups of orcas

    Groups of orcas

  • Francisco Coloane Marine Park

    Francisco Coloane Marine Park

  • Energy hard to show most of his body

    Energy hard to show most of his body

When we arrived in the park, the humpback whales we had longed to see finally came into sight. First, they were shy and then they started to jump and hit the sea surface with their strong tails hit the sea surface. They seemed to amuse themselves in front of all those astonished workers. Some of them disappeared under the waters and came back to the surface with all their strength until they succeeded in showing almost their entire bodies, weighing several tons, and then fell heavily down making waves and splashing water around. We had overcome our initial fear, as we noticed they were curious animals. They liked to move and play and their intentions towards us were good.

We got to know their nomadic spirit. They swim across thousands of kilometers from the tropical seas close to the Equator in the company of their partner and calves towards this zone of cold waters. The main reason for this is the quantity and quality of the food rich in krill and plankton found in these latitudes and the quietness of not having predators. Neither man nor other sea species go after them at this location.

Park Francisco Coloane is a reservation that also provides shelter to sea lions and elephant seals, as well as a great deal of birds such as Magellanic penguins, skuas, cormorants, petrels and albatross.

At around noon, we stopped watching the sea for a while to have lunch. It was served by the crew. We agreed with our fellow passengers that, in spite of the low temperature and the typically windy conditions, the deck was a good spot to see the show from a close distance and to take excellent photographs.

As a farewell, the whales offered a concert of high frequency sounds, part of their own playful behavior and way of communication. Each blow was accompanied by water vapor emerging from their nostrils. They are identified by their callosities. These marks are unique as each specimen’s is different from the rest.

As the watercraft slowly started its way back to port, the circles of foam the whales left on the water were printed on our memory. Either alone or in the company of others, the whales showed off their swimming skills despite their voluminous bodies.

We retraced our steps along the same route we had taken in the morning. In the twilight, we could make out the native woods, the glaciers and a thousand hues perfectly combined by the sky, the water and the land.

ITINERARY:

03:30 am Presentation at Solo Expediciones office, Jose Nogueira 1255 - Punta Arenas

05:30 am Zarpe, from Punta Arbol pier and start navigation through the legendary Strait of Magellan, observing the majesty of the sunrise by Tierra del Fuego, Fuerte Bulnes first settlement of the region.

07:30 am-0830 am Pass by Cabo Froward, the southernmost point of the American continent, where the cross of the seas stands out.

10:00 am-13: 00 pm Sailing through the "Francisco Coloane" Marine Park, spotting humpback whales, Magellanic penguins, cormorants, skuas, petrels, albatrosses, sea lions, elephant seals and, on occasion, killer whale groups. Also it is contemplated the visit to glaciers of Tierra del Fuego, the southernmost ice field in America.

17:00 pm-19: 00 pm Return to Punta Arenas. End of Services.

Service Includes:

Transfer to the boarding pier located 50 km south of Punta Arenas
English Guide
Breakfast and lunch
Whiskey or Chilean Pisco with millenary ice

Weather conditions:
In case the weather conditions do not allow us to sail we have the option to reschedule for the next date, please take this factor into account when booking.

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Read complete Outing... Mónica Pons / Gentileza Solo Expediciones

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Location

Contact

Solo Expediciones
José Nogueira 1255 (6200000) Punta Arenas, XII Región, Chile
Tel: +56 61-2710219 Cel: +56 77598712

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Useful Data

Recommendations: It is advisable to wear informal clothes, waterproof warm clothes, hiking shoes, hat, gloves and sun screen.

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