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Isla de los Estados

A remote wild island full of wildlife and adventures

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Antarctica Sailing Expedition

Sail to the White Contienent

Isla de Los Estados & Peninsula Mitre

A remote Southern Ocean island still pristine
Isla de los Estados and Peninsula Mitre and two of the most mysterious hard to get to wilderness areas in Argentina.
Isla de los Estados is both a nature reserve and the setting for Jules Verne’s novel “Lighthouse at the End of the World”. The title is apt, as it’s a remote island that sits at the Eastern entrance to the Beagle Channel. It is a photographer’s paradise. The island has served as a prison, remote navy base, and wildlife nature preserve. Until very recently it’s been closed to all except scientists.

Peninsula Mitre is the far eastern tip of Tierra del Fuego, kept wild due to its remote and wild nature. Few venture into this remote terrain. We explore old estancias and places of key historical significance in the settling of Tierra Del Fuego
Why is Isla de los Estados so amazing – it is the only place in Argentina with fjords. Steep walls tumble into the sea. To visit the island is a privilege. A small colony of King penguins calls it home and seabirds are at home here. While sailing you might see dolphins, orcas, or seals. Visit a replica of Jules’ Verne’s famous light house. See the remains of the ill-fated prison. Hike untouched terrain for an unforgettable experience.

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King Penguin Colony

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Stunning Fjords

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Numerous ways to explore

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Abundant Wildlife

Isla de los Estados - with Ocean Tramp

Day 1 – Depart Ushuaia

Join the vessel in Ushuaia – the city at the end of the world! We get to know the boat, stow our gear and finish final provisions and head out into the Beagle Channel. We will pass the famous and photogenic light house outside of Ushuaia harbor and then continue East. If the weather is good we will continue all day and night towards Isla de los Estados. Otherwise, we may spend the night in the Cove of Buen Suceso, where there is a remote coastguard station of 5 persons. They are usually open to a visit.

Days 2-3 – Puerto Hoppner

Once we arrive at the island, our first stop will be the mysterious and well protected cove of Puerto Hoppner. There is an inner and outer bay and to reach the inner bay we must pass through a narrow entrance only 7 meters wide!
Once inside we will anchor and spend the night. We will explore by kayak and zodiac.

Day – 4 Puerto Parry

On this day we will explore a magical fjord. It is also the home to an active navy outpost. Here there is an excellent hike that will give us incredible views of the fjord and out into the southern Ocean.
We will also explore a nearby waterfall.

Day 5 – Puerto Cook

Today we sail to Puerto Cook. During the sail we will pass Bahía Colnet, where there is a growing colony of King Penguins, each year there are a few more eggs and a few more penguins.

Once we arrive in Puerto Cook we will embark on an exciting hike – we will cross the island to the southern Shores of Isla de los Estados. While ashore we will also visit a cemetery circa 1900 and the remains of a refuge.

Day 6 – The Lighthouse at the End of the World!

Today we will make our way to the lighthouse at the end of the world, officially called, the San Juan del Salvamento lighthouse. We will anchor in a safe cove, then board the zodiac to a safe landing area. From there we walk to the lighthouse.

Once there we can imagine we are in the pages of Jules Verne’s novel (or hope not – it was filled with wild prisoners). We are able to enter the lighthouse, which was reconstructed about 20 years ago to honor its place in history.

Before leaving we will all sign the log book before heading back to Ocean Tramp. Along there way we will see nesting birds, but we will make sure we keep a safe distance from them.

Tonight we enjoy a celebratory dinner back on Ocean Tramp to commemorate our travel to this lighthouse!

Days 7-8 Start the Journey Home

We start our journey back to the Beagle Channel. We’ve also built in one day for weather, as you never know at the end of the world what will come!

Day 9 – Harberton

As we sail into the Beagle Channel we will likely stop for a night at Harberton, the first Estancia (Ranch) in Tierra del Fuego. Here we will take a tour of the Estanica grounds, have a meal in the cafe and explore the Museum. The museum is famous for its collection of bones from mammals and birds of the Southern Ocean. At the museum we will get to see the process of cleaning the bones and meet some of the scientists who work there.

If the weather is good, the boat will also pass close to Isla Martillo, better known as penguin island, where we will see many Magellanic penguins, a few gentoo penguins, and if we are lucky a king penguin.

Day 10 – Ushuaia

We finally arrive back in Ushuaia after our exciting journey.

We highly recommend adding a day or two in Ushuaia at the end or your journey in order to explore town and visit the national park. We can assist with organizing.

I can not begin to say how much I enjoyed my time on Ocean Tramp! Your confidence and competence made for such a wonderful adventure. Thank you for getting around a spectacular part of the world in such comfort.
– World Wide Traveller Lorraine

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FAQ's, Dates, and More

Why have I never heard of this place?

This is exactly why you should come on this trip. It has had only a handful of visitors over the last hundred years. It was at first a prison, then a reserve only for scientists.
A New York times article from nearly 20 years ago sums up the mystic: Isla de los Estados Journal; Dream Fulfilled at End of the World

I’m not a sailor – is that ok?

YES! Please join us. Anyone with a sense of adventure and a desire to explore pristine wilderness will find our trips enjoyable. We teach you everything you need to know. Sailors and non-sailors alike both have incredible experiences.

I’m a photographer – is this trip for me?

This is a great trip for photographers, especially those looking to get the perfect shot. Our size offers us incredible flexibility. We can help you get some great shots and we can take advantage of the weather and the light!

How will I know what to bring?

Don’t worry – we will send you a list of gear you will need. If you have winter clothes, most of it you will already have. A must have are some Arctic Muck boots – insulated rubber boots. They are amazing.

What are the cabins like?

Our cabins are some of the most comfortable available for sailboats. We have private double cabins, and even one with a private bathroom. Each cabin has a door that can be closed, they are fitted with warm and cozy duvets and storage space for your things. A luxury suite it is not, however each cabin gives you a place to call your own for the duration of the journey.

How will we explore?

Ocean Tramp will act like a base camp. Some days we will travel other days we will stay put. Once we are anchored we will launch the zodiac to explore. Sometimes we will cruise around the in the zodiac exploring the area, other times we will use the zodiac to bring us to shore. Sometime on shore we will be able to freely move around, explore and hike, other times we may be limited due to the wildlife and limiting our impact on them. We also bring kayaks and can use them to explore at eye level.

What sort of food do we eat?

On-board you will eat hearty well made delicious home cooked food. Lunch is often warm and hearty soups and stews, while dinners can be a variety of meals. Meals range from a Sunday roast to Saturday night Captain Pizza night, to goulash to pad thai to butter chicken. So far everyone has left a bit heavier than when they arrived. We also always have snacks available during the day and water ready for coffee or tea. If you do have any special snacks or teas that you can’t live without, we recommend bringing some with you.

Will I get seasick?

Everyone is a little different, but we highly recommend bringing some seasickness pills with you. There is only one section of the trip that is highly exposed – from the Eastern Entrance until you get to Isla de los Estados – about half a day. The rest of the trip we will be fairly sheltered.

Is it dangerous to travel in a Yacht?

Our operation is very safe. Safety is a core element of our business. Every decision we make is based on a risk analysis. Crossing the LeMairne Channel to Isla de los Estados could indeed be dangerous. Sailing could be dangerous. Then again crossing the street could also be dangerous – cars whiz by at 60 miles an hour. However just like you taking precautions when crossing the street, we take extreme cautions when sailing. We continuously watch the weather, we are a surveyed vessel, which means we MUST comply with all safety regulations. We have strict requirements for lifejacket use.
That being said, this is not a cruise. Each person onboard must also use good judgement. If you follow what the Captain says you will be in good hands.

What is included?

Once you are onboard everything is included – port fees, meals, wine with meals. We also provide your basic safety equipment including life jackets.
What is not included – flights, airport transfers, and REQUIRED evacuation insurance. Accommodation before and after the trip is not included. (we’re sorry, but you can not stay onboard the night before your trip starts)

Do I need to fill out a medical form?

Yes. The places we go are quite remote and while what we do is safe, it does require some physical activity. Once you sign up for a trip we will require you to give us a medical form that is signed by a doctor.

Will there be internet onboard?

One of the wonderful aspects of this trip is it allows you to unplug and get away from emails, phone calls, etc. We do have a connection to the internet via our satellite phone. We use this for weather updates, email to update our position, emergencies, and facebook and blog updates. We encourage everyone to tell their friends and families to subscribe to our blog and like us on facebook. Then they can get updates while you are here with us. Our guests and their families have appreciated these “news” updates in the past.

Is alcohol allowed onboard?

Alcohol consumption is that the discretion of the captain. If we are underway sailing then we do not drink, as it is not in the interest of safety for crew and guests. If we are comfortably in a cove for the night then indeed, we all enjoy a nice glass of Argentine wine with our meal.

Inebriation will not be tolerated onboard and the Captain has the right to cancel a trip should guests not adhere to this policy.

12 Oct – 21 Oct 2017
07 Nov – 16 Nov 2017
23 Nov – 2 Dec 2017
13 Mar – 22 Mar 2018

Contact us for additional trips or custom trip

The trip will start and end in Ushuaia, Argentina
$3900 USD

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