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Cruise to Cape Horn

Cruise in luxury to the "End of the Earth"
Day 1: Punta Arenas, Chile
Board your ship this evening and enjoy a welcome cocktail reception with the captain and crew before you sail away southward into a realm of icy grandeur at the bottom of the world.

Day 2: Ainsworth Bay and Tucker Islet
At dawn, we continue navigating through Almirantazgo Sound, arriving at Ainsworth Bay inside Alberto De Agostini National Park. From a distance we view the 120-foot-high Marinelli Glacier, winding down from the icy backbone of the Darwin Cordillera to the tidewater. In retreat since the 1950s, the glacier offers us a chance to see how life re-emerges after the retreat of the ice. We’ll also take a walk to discover a beaver dam in the subpolar Magellanic forest. On the beach, we hope to see elephant seals, though the precise location of the colony is unpredictable. Later, we sail to Tucker Islet, a small island that’s home to a colony of Magellanic penguins and a large flock of cormorants. After lunch, we board Zodiac rafts for close-up views of the seabirds as we circumnavigate the island.

Day 3: Pia Glacier and Glacier Alley
We navigate along the main part of the Beagle Channel to reach Pia Fjord. It’s obvious we are approaching a large tidewater glacier, as the water becomes choked with icebergs the farther up the channel we sail. As we reach Pia Glacier, we step ashore on the bedrock nearby, revealed by the glacier’s retreat. A short hike takes us to a lookout with a spectacular view of the entire glacier tongue, stretching from the mountaintops all the way to the water’s edge. We stand in silence, listening to the glacier moan and crack as it slowly makes its way downward to the sea. Pia Glacier is very active, calving tons of ice into the fjord each day, and we’re sure to witness an amazing display. Reboarding our ship, we continue sailing along the northwest arm of Beagle Channel through Glacier Alley. For two hours, we cruise past glacier after glacier cascading down from the Darwin Range, awed by so much blue ice, frigid water and magnificent mountain scenery.

Day 4: Cape Horn and Wulaia Bay
A legendary destination for mariners for centuries, Cape Horn is our destination today. We sail through Murray Channel and Nassau Bay to reach Cape Horn National Park, where we will disembark (weather permitting). The mythical cape, a sheer, 1,394-foot-high rocky promontory, was discovered by a Danish sailing expedition in 1616. For many years it was an important navigation route between the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, and it is aptly known as the End of the Earth. The park surrounding the cape was declared a World Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in June 2005. In the afternoon, we go ashore at historic Wulaia Bay, once the site of one of the region’s largest Yamana aboriginal settlements. Charles Darwin landed here on January 23rd, 1833, during the voyage of the HMS Beagle. The area is also renowned for the beauty of its flora, which we discover on a walk through a Magellanic forest of lengas, coihues, canelos, ferns, and other native vegetation, en route to a lookout point over Cape Horn.

Day 5: Ushuaia, Argentina / Disembark
We arrive at Ushuaia on Tierra del Fuego this morning, Argentina’s southernmost city. After breakfast, we disembark the ship at approximately 8:00 am, where our extension concludes.

Physical Rating: Easy to Moderate / Flexible

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