Ushuaia is the southernmost city in the world. Located in the southern shores of Tierra del Fuego Island, the city is the gate to visit different and amazing attractions: the Tierra del Fuego National Park, Beagle Channel Navigations, trekking activities, the incredible Train of the End of the World, and amazing cruises to Cape Horn or Antarctica. And also, wonderful adventure activities to enjoy penguins! Yes, there is a penguin colony that can be visited after navigating in canoes... It´s the activity called Canoeing to Gable Island and Penguin Colony.
Gable Island has all the attractions that tourists look for in Tierra del Fuego: a wild character, the presence of a fauna rich in varieties, and an ideal topography for walkers make this destination one of the most sought after in the world. We add two activities that no one else can offer on the same excursion: paddle canoe on the Beagle Channel and navigate to Martillo Island and run into a huge penguin colony. I know, I know, you want to book this activity right now, but let me explain a little more about it.
This is a very active excursion, it is the most comprehensive full-day tour of Tierra del Fuego. Starting in Ushuaia, we will leave by bus to the East on National Route No. 3 and then on the "J" route. Once on the Lasifashaj River, preparations will begin to paddle in inflatable canoes along the river and the Beagle Channel. We will remember the original peoples of the south of the world who lived with the Canal, furrowing its calm waters and making canoes their way of life: nomadism. To get on the canoes we will offer you rubber boots, cover pants and life jackets so that you can paddle down the river until you reach the sea: the Beagle Channel itself. There we will have a clear panoramic view of the Chilean side: the Navarino island and, further away, the Picton and Lennox islands. Along the itinerary, at sea, we will see Fuegian wildlife, variety of seabirds and it is also possible that we spot sea lions.
Those who do not want to make the canoe journey, have the option of not doing that section and then come back to join the group at the end of the row to continue the journey together.
Once the rowing is finished, we will arrive at the Harberton Estancia hull, of enormous historical importance for the region since it was the first land of Tierra del Fuego (founded in 1886) where settlers of British origin lived together with the original peoples. There are 20,000 hectares of mountains, forests, lakes, and islands. From there we will take a motorboat in the direction of Yécapasela Island (its native name, but that in the current cartography appears under the name of Martillo Island), on the way we will see endless small islands that accompany us along the way. Upon reaching the island and from the boat, we can see a large colony of penguins at their breeding site. The island has 3,000 pairs of Magellanic penguins, Papuan penguin couples, and more than 100 pairs of rocky cormorants that nest on the cliffs to the south. Depending on the time of the year and the climatic conditions, it is possible to see the different species.
Sailing in the motorboat then continues to the main attraction of the day: the huge and wonderful Isla Gable, where an exquisite hot lunch awaits us, with good Patagonian wine, soft drinks and mineral water. After a coffee, we go around the surroundings in an entertaining interpretive walk to get to know the natural environment better, through huge beaver dams and Magellanic forests full of lengas and ñires. Along the way, we will be able to appreciate vestiges of the Yámanas families that lived with the Anglican missionaries. Then we will border the sea coast until we reach the boat that will take us back to Puerto Harberton and take the bus to Ushuaia.
8:00 - Departure from Ushuaia
08:45 - Through glacial valleys, and the forest along roads 3 and J
10:15 - Arrival to the Lashifashaj river, paddling technique and safety briefing & canoe prompting.
12:00 - End of the canoeing activity.
12:15 - Navigation towards Martillo Island. Penguin watching from the boat.
12:30 - Arrival to Gable Island, disembarking and lunch.
13:45 - Hike around the Island.
15:00 - Sailing back to Harberton Ranch on a motor boat.
16:15 - Arrival to Harberton Ranch and ride back to Ushuaia.
17:00 - Stop by the flag trees.
17:30 - Arrival to Ushuaia.
Approximate times. The timing and the order of the tour activities might change if necessary. Book the Gable Island Excursion from Ushuaia
Photos: Thanks to CanalFun