In collaboration with National Geographic Expeditions.
Winding channels, snow-covered mountains, majestic glaciers and narrow passages: welcome to the magic of the Chilean fjords. PONANT is inviting you aboard L’Austral for an 14-day expedition cruise to the heart of South America’s extraordinary landscapes.
Departing from Talcahuano, you will discover Quemchi, an authentic village located on the lush island of Chiloé.
After sailing in the Pulluche Channel, your next call will be the remote village of Tortel, suspended above the water, and its typical wooden footbridges which take the place of streets.
You will then enter the Patagonian channel known as the English Passage, before getting closer to including El Brujo, and Pie XI Glacier glaciers.
You will enjoy an unforgettable experience of sailing along the Strait of Magellan, then you will glimpse the gigantic Agostini and Garibaldi before rounding Cape Horn, surrounded by the stunning scenery provided by Tierra del Fuego National Park.
On Navarino Island, you will make a final call at Puerto Williams, a pleasant fishing port considered by the Chileans to be the world’s southernmost city, and finally you will sail to Argentina and Ushuaia, the final destination on your trip.
Subject to ice and weather conditions. The expedition highlights and itineraries described above illustrate possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed.
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*Price is per person, double occupancy, is based on availability, and subject to change at any time. The category of cabin to which this price applies may no longer be available.
For your serenity, PONANT selects flights and organises transfers between the airport and the port (and vice-versa). This package is included in your cruise fare.
Embarkation day - Santiago/Talcahuano
Flight Santiago/Concepcion selected by PONANT.
Approximate flight duration: 1 h 10
We suggest you to be at the check-in counter 2 hours before departure.
We highly recommend you arrive in Santiago the day before this flight.
Meet & greet at the airport by our local English-speaking representative.
Transfer to the pier for embarkation.
- Cruise aboard your ship -
Disembarkation Day – Ushuaia/Buenos Aires
Meet and greet at the port (English-speaking assistance).
Transfer to the airport in time for check-in of the flight Ushuaia/Buenos Aires selected by PONANT in economy class.
Approximate flight duration: 3 h 30
This programme includes:
This programme does not include:
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Important trip details
Passport valid for at least six (6) months beyond the completion of your trip. Passport must contain at least two completely clear, blank, unused visa pages for each visa required, not including any amendment pages. Visa pages with stains or ink from other pages in the passport are not usable. Guests who deviate from the scheduled embarkation or disembarkation port should research the foreign entry requirements for the port country. Due to government regulations, regrettably, Ponant will have to deny boarding to any guest who fails to obtain the appropriate travel documentation for this trip.
The information below is current but subject to change at any time without advance notice from government authorities. Please consult your respective government agencies for visa and health information.
Warning about the use of drones: the use of drones aboard PONANT ships, whether they are sailing at sea, at a port of call or anchored, is strictly forbidden. The use of drones on land in the Arctic and Antarctic regions is also strictly forbidden by international polar regulations. In other regions, it may be possible to use drones on land if permission has been obtained from the relevant authorities of each country and each region travelled through, as well as a pilot’s licence that should be obtained from your home country. Passengers are responsible for obtaining these permits; they should be able to present them at all times. Passengers who do not obtain these authorisations expose themselves to the risk of legal proceedings.
Chile: Australian citizens entering/exiting Chile must apply for an e-visa on https://tramites.minrel.gov.cl/ select "visa application". The e-visa will be issued for a stay of up to 90 days upon payment.
The evolving COVID-19 health formalities are available in real time by clicking here.
Given the particularly changing international sanitary context, this itinerary as well as the land programmes and shore excursions may have to evolve according to port authorisations and governmental regulations in force at the time of your trip.
Therefore, for even greater peace of mind, we strongly recommend that you book your land programmes before and after your cruise with PONANT.
Health formalities related to COVID-19 will be confirmed to you before your departure.
In this exceptional context, your safety remains our first priority. The effectiveness of our procedures, our cutting-edge medical equipment and the smaller scale of our ships means we can offer maximum safety so that you can relax and enjoy your cruise. The revised passenger circuit and our enhanced hygiene measures can be found on this page: https://au.ponant.com/sail-with-confidence.
Expedition programmes include activities such as Zodiac® outings and landings (sometimes with "wet landing"), moderate walks to more active hikes, all accompanied by your expedition team of naturalist guides.
Ports of call, visited sites, outings and landings will depend on weather conditions, position of ice, winds and the state of the sea. These can force a change of plans at any time. The Captain and the Expedition Leader may at any time cancel or stop any activity, or even modify the itinerary. The final itinerary will be confirmed by the Captain, who will take into account the touristic quality of the sites and above all, the safety of the passengers. His decision will be based on advice from experts and authorities.
Travelling to polar/isolated regions is an exhilarating experience in remote areas: please remember that you are far from modern hospitals with full medical facilities, thus evacuation is extremely expensive. Without adequate medical coverage, all expenses will have to be immediately paid with your personal funds. We urge you to subscribe to full coverage insurance, choose your insurance company very carefully, be extremely vigilant and ensure your insurance is fully comprehensive, especially if you are insured by your credit card. PONANT offers an insurance contract with extensive guarantees, please contact us for more information.
Do not hesitate to visit the online PONANT store which offers a selection of equipment and accessories adapted to our destinations, at the following address: https://boutique.ponant.com
Benefits of the PONANT store:
Ideal clothes for life on board:
During the days spent on board, you are advised to wear comfortable clothes or casual outfits. The entire ship is air-conditioned, so a light sweater, a light jacket or a shawl may be necessary. When moving about in the public areas of the ship and the decks, light but comfortable shoes are recommended.
In the evening, you are advised to wear smart-casual attire, especially when dining in our restaurants where wearing shorts and tee-shirts is not allowed.
Depending on the itinerary and the program of your cruise, an Officer’s Evening with a white dress code may be organized. Therefore, we encourage you to bring a stylish white outfit for the occasion (otherwise black and white).
During the cruise, two gala evenings will be organised on board. Thus, we recommend that you bring one or two formal outfits.
A small shop is available on board offering a wide range of outfits, jewellery, leather goods and many accessories.
A laundry service (washing/ironing) is available on board, but unfortunately there are no dry cleaning services. For safety reasons, your cabin is not equipped with an iron.
INSULATED BASE LAYER:
WATERPROOF OUTER LAYER:
OUTFITS ON BOARD:
23 October 2022 Talcahuano
Embarkation 23/10/2022 from 16h00 to 17h00
Departure 23/10/2022 at 18h00
Talcahuano, Chile’s largest fishing port, neighbours the overflowing energy of Concepción, where music resonates on every street corner. Renowned for its cultural and artistic life, it is nicknamed “the gateway to the south”. With its 215,000 inhabitants, Concepción is a relatively prosperous city in Chile and the country’s largest town south of Santiago. Very beautiful little traditional fishing villages scattered along the coast add to the charm of this part of the Chilean coastline.
24 October 2022 At sea
During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.
25 October 2022 Quemchi, Chiloe Island
In southern Chile, in the Lake District, discover the small fishing port of Quemchi on the east coast of Chiloé Island. With its authentic charm, its pretty wooden houses, its narrow streets lined with small shops, and its fish market, this faraway village is sure to win you over. Be sure to visit the museum dedicated to Francisco Coloane, the famous Chilean author and adventurer born on this southern land. Not far from there, the small island called Isla Aucar, accessible via a wooden footbridge, will be a chance to observe a wide variety of birds and discover a magnificent botanical garden, home to many of the region’s endemic plants.
26 October 2022 Sailing in the Pulluche Canal
Near the Peñón de Lobos (‘wolf rock’), in Chile, the Pulluche Canal is located northwest of Monte Prieto and the island of Sin Nombre, literally “the island without a name”. This maritime channel in the Aysén du Général Carlos Ibañez del Campo Region, in the south of the country, is 1,400 km south of the capital. You will sail through a very singular landscape made up of islands, canals and fjords. Recognised as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 1979, the San Rafael Lake brims with rainforests and abundant wildlife: sea birds (Black-browed Albatrosses, cormorants…) and marine mammals (pinnipeds).
27 October 2022 Tortel
A picturesque, colourful fishing village, Tortel boasts a splendid location in the heart of southern Patagonia, halfway between Puerto Montt and Cape Horn. From the little streets made up of small walkways, you’ll love the grand panorama of rounded mountains, dense forest, the clear waters of the Pacific. If you walk out onto one the many wooden pontoons, you can admire the views as you stand suspended a few metres above the water. The village is scattered with sculptures made by local artists, an excellent introduction to this friendly community
28 October 2022 English Passage
Between green hills rising from the water and snow-capped peaks, the English Passage is one of the main Patagonian channels. Situated off the south-western coast of Chile, at the end of the Messier Channel, this narrow waterway with a width of just 180 metres offers a unique sailing experience due to its exceptional dimensions and its magnificent natural setting.
28 October 2022 Pie XI Glacier
The Brüggen Glacier, a coastal glacier in southern Chile also known as Pio XI, is astonishing for its almost surreal dimensions. With a surface area exceeding 1,200 km2, it is the largest of the glaciers making up the Southern Patagonian Ice Field. This gigantic ice field is the third largest ice mass in the world. Straddling the southern Andes Mountains, its breathtaking natural setting inspires sheer wonder and awe.
29 October 2022 El Brujo Glacier
At the heart of Bernardo O’Higgings National Park, the largest protected area in Chile, discover El Brujo Glacier. Located at the end of the Asia Fjord, this huge wall of ice sculpted by the wind is fascinating and impressive. This magical, natural and grandiose décor that changes as the light plays upon it will be an unforgettable sight.
29 October 2022 Skua Glacier (sailing)
In the heart of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field, where the National Parks of Bernardo O’Higgins, Torres del Paine and Las Glaciares meet, discover the Skua Glacier, also known as the Amalia Glacier. Nested on the Andes, this three-kilometre-wide tidewater glacier will offer you sumptuous landscapes in infinite shades of blue: a magical show during which the impressive cracking of the ice can be heard at times.
30 October 2022 Estero las Montanas
Also called Fjord of the Mountains or Channel of the Mountains, the Estero Las Montañas fjord offers enchanting landscapes. Situated in large part in the Alacalufes National Reserve, this former glacial valley now flooded with water seems to stretch on for ever inland. Surrounded by tall mountains with lush slopes and edged with numerous glaciers tinged in various shades of blue, it will be a highlight of your cruise.
31 October 2022 Sailing in the Strait of Magellan
This mythical strait situated in the south of Chile and separating South America from Tierra del Fuego, awakens our imagination, stirring up a longing for adventure. For the first time, follow in the footsteps of the famous Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan, known for having organised the first circumnavigation of the globe in the 16th century. Aboard your ship, cruise along the 600 km separating the Atlantic Ocean from the Pacific and, before arriving in Ushuaia, discover the sea route which was long nicknamed “Strait of All Saints” because Magellan’s ships first entered it on All Saints’ Day. A fascinating adventure.
1 November 2022 Agostini Glacier
In the Tierra del Fuego archipelago, the Agostini Glacier sits at the back of the eponymous fjord, framed by the Cordillera Darwin. Named after the Italian missionary and explorer Alberto Maria De Agostini, this imposing blue-tinged glacier offers a stunning view over the fjord.
2 November 2022 Garibaldi Glacier
Cruise along the narrow arm of Garibaldi Fjord and marvel at its stunning landscapes: thick green vegetation adorns steep mountains, rivalling the beauty of surrounding ice and snow. Further on, Garibaldi Glacier unveils itself: a towering ice titan looming at the end of the fjord that shares its name. Don't be surprised if sea lions and numerous birds accompany you on your enchanting journey into the heart of one of Chile's most beautiful glaciers.
3 November 2022 Sailing around Cape Horn
It’s at the meeting point between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans that you enter Chilean Patagonia where you head for the Tierra del Fuego archipelago and its famous Cape Horn. From the top of its impressive 425-metre high cliff, South America’s southernmost tip has, for many centuries, seen merchant ships from the world over passing by. Because of its legendary storms and rough seas, getting round this cape has gone down in history as a challenge for all seafarers.
4 November 2022 Puerto Williams
Located on Navarino Island a few kilometres from the Argentinian border, the city of Puerto Williams is, according to Chileans, the southernmost city in the world. It is first and foremost, a charming fishing port whose calm and isolation will delight you. You can stroll around a few little streets and admire the dark silhouette of the Patagonian Andes, surmounted by eternally white peaks. The Martin Gusinde museum of anthropology gives an aperçu of the living conditions of the ancient indigenous people, the Yámanas, while the surrounding areas propose hiking paths across wild, unspoiled nature.
5 November 2022 Ushuaia
Arrival 5/11/2022 early morning
Disembarkation 5/11/2022 at 07h30
Capital of Argentina's Tierra del Fuego province, Ushuaia is considered the gateway to the White Continent and the South Pole. Nicknamed “El fin del mundo” by the Argentinian people, this city at the end of the world nestles in the shelter of mountains surrounded by fertile plains that the wildlife seem to have chosen as the ultimate sanctuary. With its exceptional site, where the Andes plunge straight into the sea, Ushuaia is one of the most fascinating places on earth, its very name evocative of journeys to the unlikely and the inaccessible…
Realise your dream of adventure in the polar regions ! From your ship’s deck, aboard a Zodiac® inflatable or from land, discover the icy vastness and the fauna of Antarctica (humpback whales, seals, penguins and more) or the Arctic's fjords, glaciers and icebergs in shifting colours, not to mention the polar bears, the variety of wildlife and the special moments shared with the locals. Our team of naturalist guides share their knowledge with you during varied lectures about the fauna, the flora, the history of great explorations, geology and climatology. Thanks to its conscientiousness and to the responsible approach that is its hallmark, PONANT has been a leader and expert in cruises to these destinations for more than 20 years.