National Geographic Orion is back with more exciting destinations and the Falklands is one of them. Set sail to this unique destination with Lindblad Expeditions to see the region’s natural wildlife, learn about the area’s history and meet the local populations.
Set departure dates in October 2016
Day 1: Arrival
Upon arrival, you will be met and transferred from Santiago airport to your hotel, Ritz Carlton Santiago Hotel, which is situated in the heart of El Golfo, one of Santiago’s most exclusive neighbourhoods and is among the finest hotels in Chile’s cosmopolitan capital. This luxury hotel combines old-world splendour with modern comforts and offers breathtaking views of the Andes Mountains.
You will have the remainder of the day at leisure to relax before explore the surroundings, such as Plaza de Armas, the main square, and the nearby Presidential Palace.
Stay: Ritz-Carlton Santiago
Day 2: Fly to Ushuaia, embark National Geographic Orion
Today you will fly by private charter flight from Santiago to Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world, to embark National Geographic Orion. The morning’s charter flight offers impressive views of the stunningly rugged terrain of Patagonia as you venture further south. You will enjoy lunch during a catamaran cruise of the scenic Beagle Channel before embarking ship.
Day 3: Visit Staten Island
Today you will visit the extraordinary Staten Island, one of the newest nature reserves in the southern hemisphere. National Geographic Orion and Explorer are the only expedition ships ever allowed to visit this area.
You will have a chance to experience colonies of seabirds and marine mammals rarely seen, and a chance to be one of the few expeditioners to set foot on and explore this remarkable island.
Day 4: Explore Steeple Jason Island
Today you will start your adventure in Falkland Islands. Each Falkland Island has a variation on the theme of topographical beauty with white-sand beaches, vaulting cliffs, windswept moors and the sunlit yellows and sage greens of waving tussock grass. The Falklands boast thousands of irresistible gentoo, rockhopper and Magellanic penguins, as well as wallows of elephant seals, and relaxed South American sea lions and fur seals hauled out on the rocks.
The first island to visit will be the most remote, windswept and arguably most important wildlife conservation sites in all of the Falklands, Steeple Jason, where you will see the largest colony of black-browed albatross in the world. It is also home to gregarious and rarest species of raptor in the world, the striated caracara, locally known as Johnny Rooks.
Day 5: From Carcass to Saunders Island
Your morning landing on Carcass Island provides the opportunity for a hike to view Magellanic penguins nesting among the tussock grass, a myriad bird life, local flora, and sweeping views of the harbor. You will stop for a lavish Falkland Islands tea with our longtime friends the McGill family, owners of the island.
You will continue your adventure in the afternoon to Saunders Island where you will see a white sandy beach, only rivaled by the Caribbean. This island is home to gentoo and Magellanic penguins and you will be on the lookout for Conmerson’s dolphins surfing in the waves.
Day 6: Stanley Island Tour
As the largest and most populated city in the islands, Stanley Island provides myriad options for exploration. You will enjoy a guided tour of the area to experience local “English” life; a visit to the family-owned and operated Long Island Farm with demonstrations of peat harvesting and sheep shearing along with a local tea service; a hike to Mount William, the historic site of a large battle during the Falklands War; or a short walk from the pier to the Stanley Growers Hydroponics Gardens that produces all the fresh produce for the small community of 2,500.
Day 7: From George to Barren Island
Rarely visited by outsiders, you will have the unique opportunity to visit George and Barren Islands. The morning focus will be Zodiac rides and hikes to encounter sea lions, elephant seals, and Magellanic penguins. In the afternoon, you will see the local settlement to experience sheep-shearing and a typical English tea.
Day 8: A Day in Fox Bay
Today you will enjoy a full day in Fox Bay and learn about the culture here. You will visit a local ranch for a superb barbecue and mix with locals to learn about their ways of life.
Day 9: New Island Nature Reserve
Today you will visit New Island Nature Reserve, this large island is a prime spot for excellent nature watching. You will see Settlement Harbour, a mixed colony of rockhopper penguins, black-browed albatross, and king shags. You will also visit the newly established historical museum.
Day 10: At Sea
As you sail back to Ushuaia, an albatross or two may join the escort of seabirds. You will have a time to share photos with the on-board National Geographic photographer and the remainder of the day at leisure to relax.
Day 11: Departure
After breakfast, you will disembark Ushuaia in the morning, where you will have time to explore the city before flying off to Buenos Aires and catching your return flight home.
|Day 1:||Arrival||Ritz-Carlton Santiago|
|Day 2:||Fly to Ushuaia, embark National Geographic Orion||National Geographic Orion|
|Day 3:||Visit Staten Island||National Geographic Orion|
|Day 4:||Explore Steeple Jason Island||National Geographic Orion|
|Day 5:||From Carcass to Saunders Island||National Geographic Orion|
|Day 6:||Stanley Island Tour||National Geographic Orion|
|Day 7:||From George to Barren Island||National Geographic Orion|
|Day 8:||A Day in Fox Bay||National Geographic Orion|
|Day 9:||New Island Nature Reserve||National Geographic Orion|
|Day 10:||At Sea||National Geographic Orion|
- Accommodation with daily breakfast
- 24 hour emergency contact
- Activities mentioned in the itinerary
- English speaking tour guide
- International and domestic airfare
- Personal expenses
- Visa fees and/or visa authorization
- Tips and gratuities
- Other expenses not mentioned on the itinerary
- Travel insurance (please note that travel insurance is mandatory for all Lightfoot Travel holidays)
From USD 12,250 per person based on two guests travelling
Notes on our prices
- This price guide provides you with a broad indication of how much to budget for your holiday.
- Prices are generally based on two people travelling together (unless stated otherwise) on a shared room basis.
- Prices can fluctuate depending on season, standard of accommodation, excursions selected (private versus shared) etc.
- This basic structure works very nicely, but don’t forget that Lightfoot Travel can provide a range of experiences and we tailor-make each itinerary based on your travel requirements. Get in touch to start planning your perfect trip with your own travel consultant.