PORT STANLEY, FALKLAND ISLANDS
The Falkland Islands were visited by Charles Darwin in the 19th Century and, like the Galapagos, were found to contain examples of flora and fauna not seen elsewhere. These discoveries prompted thoughts in Darwin, which ultimately found shape in his iconoclastic work, ‘Origin of Species.’ Some of these discoveries, like the Warrah, the once common Falkland Islands fox, have now disappeared, but others remain. These include birds such as the Cobbs wren, plants such as the colourful Felton’s flower, Falkland’s false plantain and an inhabitant of the unique geological stone runs, the fascinating snake plant. Common here in the islands, yet approaching extinction throughout the rest of the world, are species such as the striated caracara and the ruddy-headed goose, tame enough to make for some superb photo opportunities. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Overnight Holland America MS Zaandam
Included Shore Excursion – Bluff Cove Lagoon Penguin Safari – approx. 3 hours
Don't miss this exciting excursion as we set off over paved roads for a short drive before switching to Land Rover 4x4 for an off road adventure to a privately owned wildlife haven.
On arrival at the Bluff Cove Penguin Rookery, rangers will brief us on the area and what you can expect. Stroll through the penguin colony, which features a scenic lagoon and a white, sandy beach that is occasionally patrolled by sea lions. Along the beach you can see over 1,000 pairs of nesting Gentoo Penguins, Magellanic and Jackass penguins and a small breeding colony of King Penguins. Upland geese, ruddy-headed geese, Magellanic oystercatchers, Falkland’s flightless steamer ducks and other birds make their homes close by. Diddle-dee (a local plant) grows in abundance and is favoured by the locals and made into jam for the "cream teas" served at the beachside Sea Cabbage Café. During your visit, pop in for a cup of tea, coffee or hot chocolate or some home baked treats including scones and the Diddle-dee jam. Enjoy the warmth of the Peat Stove while listening to live music.
The Bluff Cove museum depicts life in the Falklands and tells the story of the farm, the sugar wreck, the 1982 war between Britain and Argentina, and the fabulous lagoon wildlife. Watch live demonstrations of spinning and felting with local wool used to make the Bluff Cove Tweed. Enjoy free time to take photographs, stroll along the beach, look around the museum and enjoy treats in the cafe.
We return to the minibus by Land Rover 4x4 and head back to Stanley.