Falkland Islands Tours

Head east for nearly 500 kilometres from South America’s southern Patagonian coast and you will reach the remote, isolated and ruggedly beautiful archipelago of the Falkland Islands. Falkland Islands Antarctica cruises allow you to explore these sparsely inhabited islands, with their rough windswept terrain, coastal wetlands, beautiful white sand beaches and dramatic rock faces set against stunning skies. Comprising more than 750 islands in the South Atlantic Ocean, the Falkland Islands are a haven for wildlife - home to large colonies of elephant seals and fur seals, vast populations of black-browed albatrosses and other abundant birdlife including five species of breeding penguin.
 
Surrounded by decades of controversy, the Falkland Islands (or Islas Malvinas as they are known in Argentina) have been settled and claimed by France, Spain, Britain and Argentina. Travel to the Falkland Islands will give you an insight into the area’s fascinating history and reveal some of the haunting relics and memorials of war. The colourful seaside town and capital, Port Stanley, boasts many reminders of its British heritage including a selection of traditional English-style pubs, old red phone boxes and numerous Land Rovers - in fact some say that the people here are more British than the British themselves!
 
Set sail on a Falkland Islands Antarctica cruise and discover this unique part on the world, one of the rare places on Earth where nature and man live in harmony.  
 

"It was so awesome making landings and getting up close to the icebergs, whales, penguins and seals...I would definitely recommend this trip to anyone who is considering a trip to Antarctica" - Carly

Read Reviews (Avg 4.9 ★)
 
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Featured Falkland Islands Trips & Deals

Book by 31 Jul

 Now is the time to tick Antarctica off your bucket list, for a limited period we are offering a number of fantastic specials on Antarctica cruises for the 2017/18 season. Don't miss out!

EARLY BIRD DEPARTS: 21 OCT 2018  TRIPLE FROM US$8,996*

Travel with us on this 19-day cruise to South Georgia, the Falkland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula aboard the luxury Sea Spirit.

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Cruise to Antarctica, South Georgia and the Falkland Islands on this Exclusive Chimu Adventures departure aboard the luxury Sea Spirit. 

Falkland Islands Tours

Articles On Falkland Islands

How to See Antarctica’s Seal Species

Posted on Sat, 10 Sep 2016

There are five Antarctica True Seal Species. True seals differ from fur seals (or eared seals) mostly because of the different way they swim. Fur seals swim with their fore flippers and use their rear flippers to steer. True Seals on the other hand steer with their fore flippers and swim with their rear flippers. As a result fur seals have much …

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Why the Falkland Islands are so Controversial

Posted on Tue, 08 Mar 2016

At first sight, the Falkland Islands – known as Islas Malvinas in Argentina – shouldn’t belong to Great Britain. Only 480kms away from the former, but almost 13,000km from the latter, this wildlife and wilderness haven is, without a doubt, the most controversial foreign territory to fly under the British flag.

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Falkland Islands Reviews

All Chimu Adventures' clients are given the opportunity to review their trip once they return home. These reviews are administered by a third party and as such are unfiltered by Chimu Adventures.

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing trip for a first time overseas traveller The whole trip from start to finish was well organised. Every transfer was on time and the staff on the MV Ushuaia were all skilled and willing to assist in any way possible to ensure our trip was the best it could be. The food that came out of the small galley was well prepared and fresh. Vegetarians were also well looked after. There was only one choice for each meal, but this is to be expected with limited supplies able to be carried on board. I'm still trying to find the right words to explain Antarctica itself. It embodies the true meaning of "awesome" as we were truly in awe of the pristine beauty & wildness.
Date published: 2015-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A trip out of this world 10 days trip to Antarctic Peninsular. A bit shaky across the Drake Passage, as was expected, otherwise a beautiful sailing between the islands and icebergs. Lots of landings to see the native inhabitants with hundreds of Penguins, also Wales, Seals, Birds and Orcas. The staff on board were terrific and so helpful. The food was enough with a good breakfast and two 3 coarse meals (lunch and dinner) with fruit and afternoon snacks available. The cooking was a bit plain at times but still eatable. All in all, a terrific trip, quiet unforgettable.
Date published: 2015-02-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Voyage of a lifetime This journey was exceptional. All that was arranged just fell into place. Hotel accommodation went smoothly and location perfect. The voyage itself was exceptional from the friendliness and professionalism of the crew to the ships accommodation and facilities, the expedition itinerary could not be faulted. I would highly recommend the MS Expedition and will sail with them again.Also I will not hesitate to use Chimu Adventure for future travel
Date published: 2015-03-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fab kayaking This was not my choice of holiday, but it has been on my husband's shortlist since he was a boy. He had a great time. It was pretty much as I expected and planned for, but the kayaking was fabulous. I might have gone stir crazy without the opportunity to get away from the crowd and to be almost alone in tne splendour. The trip cost a lot of money, but it was extremely well planned and run, and not expensive. Please not that gender is a social construct and not a biological fact.
Date published: 2015-02-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Simply Incredible Antarctica Antarctica has been on my bucket list for decades, and I decided early last year that it was time for me to to take the plunge and go on this incredible journey. Having recently lost my wife to cancer, I was thrilled to see this trip with Chimu Adventures raising money for Breast Cancer care. After looking at several companies and many different ships, I called up Chimu and received incredible service from the word go. Nothing was too much effort and the whole process was made very easy. I undertook a 4 week trip with Chimu Adventures including a side visit to Peru and Argentina. Everything was faultless. Antarctica was the crowning glory - simply majestic. I cannot put into words the impact it had on me. Thank you Chimu for a wonderful voyage superbly hosted by Greg Carter. I'll be back when I save some more pennies!
Date published: 2016-07-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Once in a Lifetime Best adventure ever! The staff were incredible, so helpful and knowledgeable, they went beyond expectations to make our cruise one in a million. Polar Pioneer was the perfect size for what was needed to cruise into the Antarctic Circle. We even did the Polar Plunge and have the T-shirt and certificate to prove it. The BBQ out on deck with Mulled Wine was great fun. Food was plentiful and tasty.
Date published: 2016-03-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fabulous trip from start to finish! I sailed with GAdventures on the MS Expedition from Montevideo to the Falklands, then to South Georgia and on to the Antarctic Peninsula. It was a wonderful trip. I had high expectations, and they were not just met, but exceeded in every regard. The expedition team were experts in their fields, and their enthusiasm was evident throughout our amazing journey.
Date published: 2015-01-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Greatest vacation so far We lost one day becouse one of ships engine was broken, so embark was delayed fo 24h, but we get refund, one night at hotel and some trips during those 24h. otherwise tour was excellent. CEO changed intinerary plan so we headed to polar circle first to be sure we can go through in time. if something didnt match itinerary, it was only becouse of weather or danger. Crew and CEO was group of fantastic people and thansk to them, this trip was double so awsome :)
Date published: 2015-02-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best trip ever! The expedition crew did everything they could to organise landings In a variety of settings and were able to adapt their plans due to any changes in weather. The expedition crew were very knowledgable and all the ships staff were fantastic. We crossed the Antarctic circle and went the furthest south the ship had been thanks to the great skills of the captain. I loved this trip! Penguins, seals, orca whales, wildlife in abundance!!
Date published: 2016-03-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from More than I could have hoped Everything about the trip was fantastic. I have no complaints whatsoever. I would recommend the Sea Adventurer as a perfect ship for adventure/expedition travel because of the two public decks surrounding the ship.
Date published: 2015-12-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely Awesome! We had a wonderful expedition to Antarctica - but have to add that the weather was perfect which made the entire trip ideal. The Drake Passage crossing (both ways) was without incident (noted as the Drake Lake). Landed nine times on the Antarctic continent, which is about the most one could expect. The MS Expedition staff (headed by John) were exceptional and the ship's crew superb. Without a doubt, a trip of a lifetime!!
Date published: 2015-02-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Antarctica The entire trip was wonderful. It was a joy to see all the different penguins, sea birds, and seals, as well as experience the walking on the ice and snow. The icebergs were spectacular, both in shape and colour.
Date published: 2014-12-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Classic South Georgia and Antarctica Brilliant holiday. Budget hotels in Buenos Aires and Ushuaia booked by Chimu were excellent. Weather not all that good but the crew of the Ushuaia were really good and did all they could so that we could have the best in landings that were possible. All travel arranged by ourselves went well and the transfers arranged by Chimu were equally good and drivers were good too! The ship is quite basic so do not expect a cruise ship!
Date published: 2015-11-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing adventure to the White Continent This was an incredible 11 day 'Images of Antarctica' adventure. Despite the Drake Passage taking it's toll on many, this trip is incredibly worthwhile, if you have the money! The weather was good about half of the time that we were in Antarctica, if it had been miserable weather the whole time it would have been disappointing (not the cruise's fault of course!), but as it was, we got to see the very best (beautiful blue skies, bright white snow and humpback whales) and maybe not quite the worst (-45 degrees with wind chill factor!). Overall I think this enhanced the experience, as we got to see Antarctica for what it really is, completely wild. All of the staff on board were wonderful, funny and warm. I enjoyed the lectures, which gave a greater insight into what we were seeing on land.
Date published: 2016-07-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow ! Antarctica was everything we dreamed of and more. We took part in an expedition on the MV Ushuaia, and found the ship perfect for our needs. Plenty of space onboard to see wildlife from the decks, and a very informative guide in Augustin. We hope to go back and explore South Georgia in a few years time. We hear the wildlife is even more spectacular (if possible) there!. Thanks again, and hope this review is of use!
Date published: 2014-08-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Antarctica with G Adventures G Adventures run ship MS Expedition. All run very smoothly, excellent attention to detail. Flexible destinations regarding weather conditions. Very good attention to environmental issues. Food too rich, could have had less stodgy desserts and meat was always very rare (ie raw); even vegetables were cooked in a stodgy sauce. However always fresh salad and fruit available.
Date published: 2015-02-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beyond words The most amazing trip from beginning to end. Chimu did a great job of helping me plan my trip & were available with advice & information. The ship (Akademik Ioffe) was fantastic,the One Ocean expedition team were so helpful & knowledgable as well as fun, the ships crew did a fantastic job, & even the weather was perfect!! Everything went smoothly, & the wildlife & scenery was astonishing, so beautiful.
Date published: 2015-12-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Trip of a Life Time From departure to arriving back home everything Chimu Adventures organised for us ran like clockwork. The Antarctic was fantastic. So quiet! The ship, crew and meals can not be faulted and we managed two landing per day whilst in the area.
Date published: 2016-04-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome Antarctica The trip to Antarctica on board the Sea Explorer was an unique experience I will never forget! The overnight stays in Buenos Aires incl. the transfers to/from the airport as well as the events to attend a Tango Show and to visit the Fireland National park were very well organised by Agnes Schneider of Chimu Adventures!
Date published: 2015-12-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful trip All went according to plan and was very well organised by the staff and crew on the ship.
Date published: 2015-03-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from epic antarctica This was the best group tour I have EVER been on. From contact with Staff at Chimu at time of booking to leaving the ship in Ushuaia at the end of our Journey. I travelled on the MV Ushuaia and ALL the Staff and Crew went 'above and beyond' in making sure everyone had the best time possible. Their commitment to customer service is immeasurable and the Expedition Leaders knowledge, insight and love of Antarctica supported their passion for this wondrous land. This is a journey that will stay with me forever! Thank You, Chimu
Date published: 2017-05-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Once in a lifetime experience Extremely we'll run cruise, perfect number of passengers and crew
Date published: 2014-09-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Tour!!! The whole trip was well organized an led us to stunning places! We were able to come really close with the wildlife and learnd a lot about our destinations history, fauna and environment. The days were packed with landings, different activities and lectures, so we were always busy!
Date published: 2015-12-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Pinktartica Journey Trip of a lifetime is only scratching the surface of what I felt after taking this trip. I was on a 12day trip on the Sea Adventurer that was specially chartered by Chimu for a charity foundation, McGrath Foundation. So not only was it going on a dream trip it was also supporting a great cause. Everything about the trip was amazing, we were lucky enough to have brilliant weather and get to see about everything we possibly could in our 12 day trip. Even when there was a minor issue of communication that originally had me off the list of one of the activities I'd signed up for it was fixed right away and I did not miss out on anything. The expedition crew were all very friendly and knowledgeable and could help answer any questions you had on Antarctica. The crew of the ship were also very friendly and very professional and made the trip easy as could be. The only complaint I can have was it was such a great trip that now it seems hard to be excited about going anywhere else, all I want to do is go on this trip again.
Date published: 2015-12-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Overwhelmed, emotional and speechless I had 8 flights, along with picks ups, hotels, drop offs, a ship to get to - on time and tours. Every single step of the way went flawlessly, thanks to Chimu and in particular Simon who has infinite patience. I am normally an independent traveller, so found it hard to relinquish control and let Chimu sort everything out. Thanks for indulging my many queries. Perfection!
Date published: 2016-04-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It was an amazing trip, enjoyed everything. The itinery went smoothly we were picked up dropped off at all the correct times. All chimu staff we met were very good polite and very helpful.
Date published: 2016-04-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Antarctica expidition The prior planning through Chimu was made very easy with more than enough information supplied and regularily updated to make the process as stress free as possible. Vaule for money with the trip down to Antarctica was brilliant.
Date published: 2014-09-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What a Trip! Every part of the trip on the MS Expedition with G Adventures was run in a most professional manner. The ship was excellent including the size of the cabin; the food was superb and the expedition team were all knowledgeable, friendly and helpful. The on shore visits were well organised and I couldn't have asked for more.
Date published: 2016-02-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very Enjoyable We had a great trip. Very impressed with all the staff and crew on the Ushuaia. They worked hard to make us feel safe and welcome and I enjoyed the lectures. There is only one disappointment and that is that I am unable to access files on the DVD. Can only see the photos and not the itinerary,, maps etc.
Date published: 2016-04-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Antarctica - Seeing is Believing ! Smaller ship cruising - MV Ushuaia was the way to go, crew was excellent. Organisation and Itinerary was very well done , Other Expeditioners were good to mix with and enjoy the Fantastic Scenery with ! Only thing left to say -- If you havent been there - Go there . Out of this world !
Date published: 2016-06-16
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Country Information

WHEN TO GO TO THE FALKLAND ISLANDS

The best time to take a Falkland Islands Antarctica cruise is during the Austral summer, between October and April. November to February are the optimum months within this timeframe, as this is the warmest time of the year and also when wildlife activity is at its peak. Although temperatures range between 5 and 10°C, conditions are often windy due to the location of the Falklands in the latitudes of the south westerly “Roaring Forties” winds.

Later in the season in March and April, the magellanic penguins congregate on the beaches, preparing for their long journeys overseas.

October and November are the best months to see elephant seal pups.

For a taste of local culture, important events on the calendar include the May Ball and Liberation Day (June 14th). 

WEATHER IN THE FALKLAND ISLANDS

The Falkland Islands experience a cool temperate climate, regulated by the surrounding oceans and the winds. Temperatures fluctuate within a narrow range, from a minimum of -5°C (July) to a maximum of 24°C (January). Average monthly temperatures range from around 9°C in summer (January & February) to around 2°C in winter (June & July). The mean annual temperature is around 5.6°C.

Rainfall is comparatively low and constant throughout the year with the western side of the archipelago, shielded by the Andes, being drier than the eastern side. Port Stanley receives over 600 millimetres of rain annually whereas Westpoint receives just over 400 millimetres.

The islands are hit by westerly winds with gales frequent during the winter months.

WILDLIFE IN THE FALKLAND ISLANDS

 The Falkland Islands offer a fascinating and abundant range of wildlife. The South Atlantic waters are rich in marine life, supporting a variety of species that breed on the Falkland Islands archipelago including over 30 species of breeding birds that depend on the ocean for food.

Birds: Over 220 species of bird have been recorded on the Islands, with more than 60 species being known to breed here. The Falkland Islands are home to 80% of the world’s breeding population of black-browed albatross. Several rare and threatened species of petrel nest on offshore islands. Upland geese and ruddy-headed or Brent geese are found around fresh water ponds, along with silver teals, Chiloe or southern widgeons and white-tufted grebes. Other birds found on the Falklands include the striated caracara, the endemic Cobb’s wren and the Falklands flightless steamer duck. Five species of penguin breed on the Falkland Islands - rockhopper, magellanic, gentoo, king and macaroni. The Islands are the most important world site for the endangered rockhopper penguin.

Marine mammals: 14 species of marine mammals have been recorded in Falkland waters. The elephant seal, sea lion and fur seal all breed on the Islands, the largest elephant seal breeding site being found on Sea Lion Island with over 2,000 individuals. On rare occasions leopard seals and Ross seals are seen on the shorelines but porpoises and dolphins such as Peale's and Commerson's dolphins are often spotted. Orcas, sei and sperm whales are the most abundant whales to be sighted in the Falklands.

Land Mammals: There are no native land mammals found on the Falkland Islands, but introduced species include reindeer, hares, rabbits, Patagonian foxes, brown rats and cats.

TOURISM AND SUSTAINABILITY IN THE FALKLAND ISLANDS

Tourism is an important source of revenue to the Falkland Islands and sustainable development and preservation of the environment and the abundant flora and fauna are key to maintaining and increasing tourism. Wildlife tourism in particular is growing, and steps are being taken to protect the wildlife of the islands.

The key legislation aimed at protecting the wildlife and flora of the Falkland Islands is the Conservation of Wildlife and Nature Ordinance 1999. All birds are protected except the upland goose, domestic goose and mallard duck. Nineteen plants are protected and of the fish species, the zebra trout is protected. The black-browed albatross, southern giant petrel and white-chinned petrel are threatened species and have additional protection under the international Agreement for the Conservation of Albatross and Petrels (ACAP).

Sea Lion Island and Bertha’s Beach, East Falkland are protected under the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands. This is the only global environmental treaty that deals with a particular ecosystem.

GEOGRAPHY OF THE FALKLAND ISLANDS

The Falkland Islands are situated in the South Atlantic Ocean, 483 kilometres from the South American mainland and 1,365 kilometres north of the Antarctic Circle, midway between Argentina and South Africa. They are an archipelago consisting of two main islands (East and West Falkland) and over 750 smaller islands. The islands cover an area of approximately 12,000 square kilometres, with East and West Falkland accounting for over 90% of the land area.

East and West Falkland are separated by the Falkland Sound. This channel has an average width of 20 kilometres. The main islands are generally hilly, with low-lying undulating terrain in the south of East Falkland. The highest point is Mount Usborne on East Island at 705 metres. West Falkland’s highest point is Mount Adam at 700 metres. The distance from Stanley, on the extreme east, to New Island, on the extreme west, is 238 kilometres.

HISTORY OF THE FALKLAND ISLANDS
  •   Exploration and colonisation of the Falkland Islands began in the 18th century

  • France established a colony on the islands in 1764 at Port St. Louis on East Falkland

  • The islands were claimed for Britain by the British captain, John Byron in 1765, with a permanent settlement being established at Port Egmont the following year

  • In 1770 the Spanish forced the British to leave Port Egmont, sparking the Falkland Crisis, but the colony was soon re-established, becoming an important port-of-call for British ships sailing around Cape Horn

  • British forces withdrew in 1776 leaving Spain to rule the Falkland Islands from Buenos Aires until 1811

  • 1833 saw the British returning to the Falklands and Charles Darwin visiting the Islands

  • Charles Darwin revisited the Falklands in 1834 with the settlements of Darwin and Fitzroy taking their names from this visit

  • The construction of Port Stanley began in 1843 after the area was surveyed by James Ross of the Antarctic Expedition

  • Government House opened in 1847 becoming the Governor’s Residence in 1859

  • Christ Church Cathedral was completed in 1903, receiving its famous whale-bone arch in 1933 to commemorate the centenary of continuous British administration

  • President Juan Peron of Argentina attempted to buy the Falkland Islands in 1953

  • Argentina invaded the Falkland Islands on 2 April 1982 and took control briefly before being forced to surrender on 14 June 1982


 

FOOD AND DRINK IN THE FALKLAND ISLANDS

 Food on board cruise and expedition ships is of a very high standard - plentiful, tasty and nutritious. Breakfasts and lunches tend to be buffet style, with dinners generally served to your table and featuring 3 and sometimes 4 courses. The range of food is diverse with professional chefs preparing a wide selection of excellent dishes.

Beverages such as tea, coffee and hot chocolate are included whereas soft drinks and alcohol must be paid for. Most ships have very well stocked bars and a good selection of wines.

The cuisine of the Falkland Islands is influenced mainly by that of Britain. Seafood is plentiful and includes sea trout, mussels, oysters, snow crabs and scallops. The traditional British meal of fish and chips is very popular. Lamb and beef also feature heavily, the Falkland Islands being known for the organic meat produced on the islands.

FURTHER READING
  • Falkland Adventure by Andrew Coe

  • 74 Days: An Islander's Diary of the Falklands Occupation by John Smith

  • Going Back by Simon Weston

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to be fit to go to the Falkland Islands ?

A high level of fitness is not necessary for Falkland Islands Antarctica Cruises, but you need to be in good health as although there is generally a doctor on board the ships, you are a long way from any other medical assistance. The majority of activities are focused around shore excursions and zodiac cruising and so you need to be agile and able-bodied enough to climb into and out of the inflatable zodiacs from both the ship and the shore. On shore landings you may need to negotiate uneven and slippery ground. Shore excursions generally involve some walking.

Is it safe to travel to the Falkland Islands?

All of our tours are 100% tried and tested to ensure that when you travel with us, you are doing so in a controlled and safe environment with trained experts. We consistently monitor weather conditions and will always provide you with the best possible adventure without risk of injury to you or the vessel. While some landings and activities may need to be rescheduled or cancelled due to weather, every effort is made to have a contingency plan should such conditions become a reality during your expedition. Chimu have been the experts in Falkland Islands and Antarctic travel for well over 10 years and use our vast experience and knowledge when picking the vessels we sell to provide you with an adventure that is unforgettable for all the right reasons.

Do I need a visa to travel to the Falkland Islands?

Cruise ship passengers do not need a visa to visit the Falkland Islands and participate in shore excursions. If you are flying into Port Stanley to board a Falkland Islands Antarctica Cruise, or if you are planning to spend additional time in the Falkland Islands before or after your cruise, you may need a visa. Visas are not required by citizens of Australia, New Zealand, UK, Ireland, European Union, Canada, USA and South Africa. Citizens of other countries are advised to contact their nearest British Embassy or Consulate to check visa requirements for the Falkland Islands.

If your Falkland Islands Antarctica cruise is departing from an Argentinian port such as Ushuaia, no pre-arranged visa is required to enter Argentina by citizens of the UK, Australia, Ireland, European Union, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa and the USA. Other nationalities should check with their closest Argentinean embassy or consulate.

Australian, Canadian and USA citizens must pay a "reciprocity fee" to enter Argentina. This is not a visa, but a fee based on the fees that Argentinean citizens pay for visas to these countries. The fee must be paid online and in advance for arrival at all airports. 

How long will it take to reach Falkland Islands?

Falkland Islands Antarctica cruises that set sail from Ushuaia generally arrive and start exploring the Falkland Islands on Day 3. From South Georgia or Elephant Island there are usually 2 days at sea before reaching the Falkland Islands. Some tours fly from Punta Arenas in Chile to Port Stanley and embark on the ship in Port Stanley.    

How long will I spend in the Falkland Islands ?

Most Falkland Islands Antarctica cruises typically spend 2 days exploring the Falkland Islands on their way to or from South Georgia and/or the Antarctic Peninsula.