Overview

The fjords and islands of the far south of Chile are as about as remote as you can get. Punta Arenas, easily the largest and most important town and focal point of the region, where most visitors arrive to explore the Patagonian wilderness, is only accessible from northern Chile by air. Only one, solitary road leads out of it to Puerto Natales, three hours’ drive away and the jumping off point for visits to Torres del Paine National Park and onward into Argentinian Patagonia.

With its pre-Panama Canal history of affluence based on shipping and sheep production, English-influenced Punta Arenas is interesting enough, but you’ll be keen to heads off into the surrounding wilderness of savagely sculpted fjords and glaciers, at the point where the ice-spiked Andes finally crumble into the sea. There are forest reserves protecting ancient, wind-tortured trees, rivers alive with salmon, and the vestiges of human struggle including forts and churches. Darwin said of Puerto Hambre, (Fort Famine) “looking due southward –-the distant channels between the mountains appeared from their gloominess to lead beyond the confines of this world” .

The tip of South America is festooned with islands, small and large and many are virtually uninhabited.  The largest, Tierra del Fuego, is divided politically between Chile and Argentina. On the less-populated Chilean side there are huge sheep farms on the plains but also virtually inaccessible ranges of snow-stifled mountains, shadowy fjords,  hidden lakes plugged by glaciers and fringed by dense evergreen forest. Abundant wildlife, including penguin colonies, sea lions, and even condors live alongside shy guanacos.

South of the Beagle Channel the wild beauty of Navarino island  hosts the continent’s most southerly settlement, Puerto Williams, and hundreds of archaeological sites pertaining to the original Yamaná Indians.  Beyond lies Cape Horn, lashed by storms and savage seas, and the most southerly  landmark before Antarctica.

For the modern day visitor the dangers and challenges lie in the past and you can enjoy these enchanting landscapes on an expedition cruise.

Read More

THE UK’S NO. 1 SPECIALIST IN TRAVEL TO LATIN AMERICA

What our clients say Contact Us

Holidays Islands and fjords of southern Patagonia

From expertly designed Private Journeys to trail-blazing Group Tours, browse our range of carefully crafted holidays.

ARG_TierraDelFuego_Stella_Australis_supplier(1)

Private Journeys

Chile / Argentina

Patagonia cruise: Tierra del Fuego and Cape Horn

13 days from £5,150pp

(based on two people sharing & excluding flights)

Things to do

We proudly offer the widest range of activities, excursions and one-of-a-kind experiences across all our destinations, tried and tested personally by our travel experts.

Accommodation

Browse our unrivalled portfolio of accommodation . Every option has been carefully chosen by our team of travel experts, so you can rest assured that you’ll relax in utter comfort.

Where to go when - our guide to Islands and fjords of southern Patagonia

Gro

The weather in Islands and fjords of southern Patagonia is wide and varied

Southernmost Patagonia is a wilderness of jagged fjords and towering glaciers, where the frostbitten Andes finally slope into the sea. Weather conditions here are the most extreme in the region and are prone to rapid fluctuations. Summer runs from December - February, with cool temperatures and strong, persistent winds (December - February). These months offer long days with the clearest skies and good visibility, though rain and snowfall are always a possibility. The shoulder seasons of March - April and October - November are chilly but pleasant, with fewer visitors meaning you’re likely to glimpse more wildlife. From June - September the land is carpeted in glistening snow, which reduces access to hiking trails but opens up the possibility of skiing. The shadowy fjords and turquoise lakes of this impossibly remote land are best explored on an expedition cruise.

View our Islands and fjords of southern Patagonia weather guide

Papagaio

Your edit for Latin American inspiration

Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.

View Extraordinary Inspiration
Bartolome, Galápagos

Meet our team

Real Latin american experts

  • Sallly
    Sally Dodge - Travel Expert

    A former Journey Latin America tour leader, Sally spent 7 years working, travelling and living throughout Latin America before returning to the UK to help people arrange their own adventures to this wonderful destination.

  • Alex Walker
    Alex Walker - Travel Expert

    A globetrotter since her childhood, Alex spent a year studying abroad in Guadalajara and has returned to Latin America countless times since then.

  • Maggie in LATAM
    Maggie Wilson - Travel Expert

    Maggie visited Latin America on her first backpacking trip when she was 19. Since then, she has taken every opportunity to travel, and has managed to explore a lot of the region in subsequent trips.

  • Ben
    Ben Line - Travel Expert

    Ben fell in love with Latin America on a six month backpacking trip from Colombia to Mexico in 1995. Since then he has explored most of South America, including living in Peru for a year. He is now Head of Sales.

  • Hannah
    Hannah Donaldson - Travel Expert

    Having spent part of her childhood in Colombia and worked in Brazil and Costa Rica, Hannah's ties to Latin America run deep. Hannah is a much valued Travel Expert in our Tailor-made Holidays and Group Tours sales team.

  • Juliet
    Juliet Ellwood - Travel Expert

    After graduating with a degree in Anthropology and History and having been fascinated by Latin America since childhood by the book featuring photos of Nazca, Juliet first visited the region in 2003. Since then, Juliet has visited the majority of countries in Latin America but has particularly extensive experience with Peru, a country she loves for many reasons but not least, its incredible archaeological richness and delicious food!

0 1 2 3 4 5