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JColquhoun

Penguin Ship Excursion Recommendation- Celebrity Eclipse

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Hello there,

Can someone please recommend a Ship excursion to see the Penguins up close. Will be on the Celebrity Eclipse. 

 

Many thanks

 

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Excellent point by joybook.  Most ships to Antarctica don't have "excursions" per se.  You get off every day wherever the ship is and go to shore or cruise about in zodiacs to see the wildlife and nature

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Unless I'm wrong, Celebrity only does "cruise by" in Antarctica, no landings. The best chance to see penguins up close would be if there is a stop in the Falklands (Stanley), and an excursion from there.

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On our previous South American cruise we did Magdalena Island Penguin Colony from Punta Arenas (Chile) which was just great but you do not seem to be going there. We also did an excursion to Bluff Cove in Stanley (Falklands). It was also good but I understand excursions to Volunteer Point from Stanley are better still. The main tour guide (Non cruise ship tours) here seems to be Patrick Watts and you have to email him to get a booking. We are already booked with him for January 2020. I have heard that It seems tours to Volunteer Point are starting to be limited in number by locals so it may be wise to book early.

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Nyree, who runs Estancia Excursions, also fills 4X4's for trips to Volunteer Point.  It amounts to a big cottage industry as P. Watts and Estancia both employ local folks who own 4X4's and want to supplement their income.  VP is an absolutely wonderful experience.  We saw 3 different types of Penguins there.  The gentoo chicks were newly hatched...so cute!

Payment is not taken until you are on the private tour.  That way, if the ship cannot stop at the port there is no issue with refunds.  GBP payment is preferred but USD will be accepted, tho at a healthy penalty to do the exchange.  There are no ATM's on the island.

This tour is usually available thru the ship but will cost about $150. more than booking privately.  

Edited by thinfool

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When we were in Ushuaia last time we booked a tour to Martillo Island and Estancia Harberton. We booked directly with the supplier (Pira tours) as they only allow 80 people per day in groups of 20 onto the island to walk among the penguins as it's a designated nature reserve. It was a fabulous experience. While we were there a catamaran from Ushuaia came past but they could not land and could only watch from the water. 

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We went to Volunteer Point with Estancia. It was fabulous. We also went to Magdalena Island which was not nearly as fascinating. Our ship did not confirm that they were going to Stanley until about 5 days prior to sailing. That's also when they made the Volunteer Point excursions available for booking. I believe they were about twice the price of the Estancia price. All vehicles were Land Rovers and went and left at the same time. The ship's shore excursion sold out in 2 days. There were hoards of people trying to get something with Nyree at the dock. 

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On 10/27/2018 at 8:02 AM, Aussieflyer said:

When we were in Ushuaia last time we booked a tour to Martillo Island and Estancia Harberton. We booked directly with the supplier (Pira tours) as they only allow 80 people per day in groups of 20 onto the island to walk among the penguins as it's a designated nature reserve. It was a fabulous experience. While we were there a catamaran from Ushuaia came past but they could not land and could only watch from the water. 

 

We too are on Celebrity Eclipse to Antarctica on 20th January. We have booked a private trip to see the Gentoo penguins and the Magellan penguins in the Falklands, we are going to Ushuaia so would you advise us to to do the penguin trip there too ? Are they a different type of Penguin ? Also can anyone here please recommend a hotel in Buenos Aires for a pre cruise stay . Not too sure of the best district to stay. We are all in our 60’s and 70’s and usually do a hop on hop off tour wherever we go . Thanks in advance

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17 hours ago, Carolbee said:

Also can anyone here please recommend a hotel in Buenos Aires for a pre cruise stay . Not too sure of the best district to stay. We are all in our 60’s and 70’s and usually do a hop on hop off tour wherever we go . Thanks in advance

 

Suggest researching the TripAdvisor website for Buenos Aires information on the city and hotels. We have stayed in the Recoleta district and found it close to many attractions and restaurants.

 

Please see links below to TripAdvisor Recoleta Hotel info and to the Buenos Aires Travel Forum.

 

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotels-g312741-Buenos_Aires_Capital_Federal_District-Hotels.html

 

https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g312741-i979-Buenos_Aires_Capital_Federal_District.html

 

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