The world's top cruise lines offer a number of options for exploring southern Chile by boat. Whether the focus of the tour is adventure or luxury, you'll have a chance to relax and take in everything around you.
The classic cruise route in southern Chile departs Puerto Montt and leads to the San Rafael Glacier and its 70 meter-high walls and the lagoon of the same name. The Northern Patagonia voyage takes five to six days during which you'll enjoy incredible scenery capped by a glass of whiskey served over thousand-year-old ice cubes. Some cruise lines also travel to and from Castro, Chiloé.
Fishing and fine dining enthusiasts can depart Puerto Montt on a ship that navigates the canals southward without a fixed destination. Passengers can disembark via modern zodiac boats and helicopters to visit the best fishing spots and enjoy an exquisite traditional lunch on the glaciers' shores.
Four-day cruises leave Puerto Montt for Puerto Natales, traveling along the southernmost fjords and canals in the world. The journey will take you to Puerto Edén and past the Pio Xi Glacier, the largest in South America, as well as Bernardo O'Higgins National Park.
Another fascinating route runs from Punta Arenas to Ushuaia, Argentina. There are excellent expedition cruises that eschew parties and focus on adventure. As you travel through Southern Patagonia, you'll come across canals, glaciers, penguins and dolphins. You can also go trekking and, if time allows, sail to Cape Horn, which marks the end of the continent.
Those who wish to visit Antarctica can chose from 10 to 31 day cruises that follow a number of different routes. Most depart Ushuaia, Argentina. From Punta Arenas, you can take an aerotour to Rey Jorge Island, which is part of the South Shetland Islands, and continue on to the white continent from there.
|Central Coast||Puerto Varas and Puerto Montt|
|Northern Patagonia||Southern Patagonia|