A Travellerspoint blog

Patagonia Penguins

The penguins of Isla Magdalena, Patagonia

45 °F
View A Rough Outline of our Trip on daveliz's travel map.


Dave´s tux was at the dry cleaners, so we had to compromise. We put on our best black and white for a visit with the Magellanic Penguins on Magdalena Island, just north of Puntas Arenas, Chile, in the Strait of Magellan, which is named after explorer Ferdinand Magellan who discovered the area as an easy shipping connection between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. It was about a two hour boat ride in the Strait, a body of water Dave has dreamed of visiting since reading Joshua Slocum's "Sailing Alone around the World."

These penguins are commonly referred to as ¨Jackass Penguins¨. The non-flying birds arrive to the Island around September, nest in October by burrowing themselves in dirt holes, and begin to have baby penguins in November and December.

These penguins have loud voices and apparently find their mating partner by a similar cry. They´ll stay on the island until April and then head north up either the Atlantic or Pacific coasts.

It is an amazing site with nearly 120,000 black and white furry friends with duck feet welcoming you. They look like big pigeons, yet are much smaller than I was anticipating.

We´re heading back to Santiago for a few days to visit with friends and then are off to New Zealand and Australia. Feel free to email us suggestions or people you might know there if you haven´t done so already! Please pass along the inquiry to your friends and family as well.

Adios for now,
- Elizabeth

Posted by daveliz 04:03 Archived in Chile

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Dave and Elizabeth - All of your posts so far have made me want to be there with you, especially since I normally read them from the "comfort" of my cubicle. However, none as much as this one. The penguins let you get so close to them! I hope you're having the time of your life. - Sarah

by sycurtis

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