Falkland Islands Tour
It’s with much excitement that I share my upcoming collaboration with the Falkland Islands Tourist Board and Blogilicious. I’m heading to the Falkland Islands next February, and I’m inviting you to join me on a small-group adventure to this spectacular destination.
The Falkland Islands are home to over a million penguins and miles of untamed, rugged landscape. It’s said to offer the same kind of wildlife experiences as Antarctica, but it is a lot more accessible and affordable. Regardless, the Falklands are one of the most remote and untouched places in the world and only the lucky few get to experience its beauty.
That’s why this trip is NOT FOR EVERYONE. It’s only suitable for adventurous travelers who have experience traveling in remote places where you might not find mod cons like cell signal or WiFi. Travelers who are independent, open-minded and able to respect the environment and wildlife are welcomed.
There are only seven spaces on this trip. To register, please fill up this form. Once it is is approved, you will be directed to a registration form where you can secure your place with a deposit of 30% of the trip fee.
Where Are the Falkland Islands?
Surrounded by the South Atlantic, the Falkland Islands archipelago lies 350km (280miles) to the east of the South American continent. It consists of two large islands, East and West Falkland, and more than 750 small islands and islets.
Alternately settled and claimed by France, Spain, Britain and Argentina, the Falklands (known as the Islas Malvinas in Argentina) have been an overseas territory of the UK since 1833, a status the Argentines have fought and still contest.
The Falklands a popular addition to many Antarctic voyages, but they’re well worth seeing on their own for their spectacular penguin, seal and albatross populations.
What Will We See on this Falkland Islands Tour?
On this 8-day trip, we’ll be experiencing the best of the Falkland Islands: looking for adorable rockhopper and Magellanic penguins on Pebble Island, watching gigantic elephant seals laze on the beaches of Sea Lion Island, scouting out orcas that pass through the Falklands every year, and learning about their turbulent history in the capital Stanley.
The trip will take us through some of the most rugged landscapes in one of the most remote and unvisited parts of the world. We’ll also be doing lots of hiking along the dramatic coastlines, up and down mountains and around dune systems, and having lots of freedom to explore on our own.
This trip costs US$4,050 for 8 days includes everything: all accommodation, internal flights, transport, meals, and local guides. The accommodation will be in lodges. There is usually just one lodge per island, but most lodges have great locations, from which we can observe wildlife. Note that we will be sharing two to a room.
Why Join this Falkland Islands Tour?
Firstly, independent travel is possible on the Falkland Islands, but very difficult as there are limited lodging and spaces on internal flights. They get fully booked way in advance, especially during peak season (December – February). All visitors to the Falkland Islands are required to have accommodation booked for the duration of their stay, and a paid return ticket.
Many people visit as a day trip while on a cruise, but that’s a shame as there is SO much to see in the Falkland Islands. You can base yourself in Stanley, but you will be missing out a lot if you don’t head out to the offshore islands. Vehicles are essential if you want to go anywhere else as the islands are a lot larger than what people assume from a map.
Yes it IS expensive to travel the Falkland Islands as it’s a very remote archipelago. But once you’re here, you’ll see that the Falklands is worth the price tag. The Falklands offer the same kind of wildlife experiences you would find in Antarctica, but they are more accessible and affordable. An Antarctic expedition will set you back upwards of $10,000 and you won’t even get to hike/explore the land as much as you would on the Falklands.
Keep in mind that this isn’t a typical tour — but more of an organised arrangement for a group, with some guided walks and orientation talks, and lots of freedom to explore on your own.
What WildJunket Tours Are About:
WildJunket Tours cover territories where few people go to, and explore corners that are not just off the tourist radar, but also culturally rich and historically intriguing.
My trips are all culturally immersive and experiential, allowing us to experience local culture from ground level. We’ll go local, eat at local eateries and stay at locally owned guesthouses and hotels. We always have an experienced, local guide to answer any question you may have about the destination.
These trips are fun, exciting adventures that don’t feel like tours. We will travel in small groups (anything from 3 to 9) and the arrangement is informal. We have a rough itinerary but it’s not fixed. There’s plenty of freedom for travelers and it’s all about exploring and learning on these trips. Think of us as a bunch of independent travelers having an adventure together.
Most importantly, we will explore under the surface of a destination and get a feel for it beyond the headlines.
Why Travel with Me
I have over 15 years of experience traveling to some of the wildest and craziest parts of the world. For those who don’t know me, I’m an adventure travel blogger and professional travel writer, with a special knack for off-the-beaten-path travel and unusual destinations.
I’ve been to 130 countries on all 7 continents, and have gone on some crazy adventures including expedition cruising to Antarctica,traversing the Silk Road overland, bungee jumping in New Zealand, traveling undercover in North Korea, and gorilla tracking in Central Africa.
Another bonus for traveling with me is that I’ll be sharing all I know about building a career in travel. If you’re interested in learning about travel blogging or writing, feel free to fire away and ask me for advice in person! I’m always happy to share my experience and personal tips with you along the way.
There are only seven spaces on this tour, so sign up fast!
Falkland Islands Tour Itinerary
Day 1: Saturday 16 February 2019
Arrive in Mount Pleasant and transfer to Pebble Island by a 30-minute domestic flight for 2 nights’ full board at Pebble Lodge. On the first day, we’ll go on a day tour to spot wildlife and learn some history from your driver/guide, Riki Evans.
Located in the north-west of the Falklands’ group, Pebble is home to a huge variety of birdlife, great hiking opportunities and fascinating war history. Many thousands of Gentoo, Rockhopper and Magellanic penguins breed each summer along with raucous congregations of Southern sea lions.
The Island stretches 30km (19 miles) from east to west, but is only about 7km (4½miles) at its widest point. The settlement and airstrip are located on a narrow isthmus close to spectacular Elephant Beach, the longest sand beach in the Falklands at 6·4km (4miles) – Pebble Island’s alternative airstrip. Dune systems and rocky shores with low cliffs, are backed by gently undulating heathland, with large ponds.
Day 2: Sunday 17 February 2019
Spend the day hiking and exploring further afield of Pebble Island on your own.
The eastern end of the island is heathland with low cliffs and a large number of ponds. These are home to waterfowl and wading-birds including one of the largest concentrations of black-necked swans and occasional sightings of red shoveler and cinnamon teal. Black-crowned night-herons, imperial cormorants, rockhopper, gentoo and Magellanic penguins inhabit the coast. Peregrine falcons have been recorded. The Falkland fritillary butterfly occurs the heathlands whilst sea lions are found on Cape Tamar.
The western end is hilly, with three main peaks. First Mountain is the highest at 277 metres (909 feet), Middle Peak is 214 metres (704 feet) and Marble Mountain 237 metres (779 feet). This small chain makes an excellent walking route, in one or both directions depending on your level of fitness and how much you want to take in.
The largest colony of around 5,200 pairs of rockhopper penguins is located to the north of Marble Mountain, where a few macaroni penguins can also be found. Rockhopper and macaroni penguins sometimes interbreed, so Pebble is a good place to look for hybrid offspring. The second largest rockhopper colony of 3,250 pairs is at Tamar Point, at the east end of the island.
Day 3: Monday 18 February 2019
Transfer to the airstrip for our internal FIGAS (Falkland Islands Government Air Service) flight to Sea Lion Island. Check into the Sea Lion Lodge for three nights on a full board basis. We’ll first go on an orientation tour with our driver/guide Micky Reeves.
Sea Lion Island is the most southerly inhabited island and one of the smallest in the Falklands archipelago. It is a prime destination due to the sheer abundance of wild life found in such a small area and is a designated Nature Reserve.
As its name suggests, Sea Lion Island is home to magnificent sea lions. Generally seen at the foot of the cliffs or swimming offshore, these beautiful creatures can occasionally catch visitors unaware in the sheltered coves on the east of the island but pose no threat if treated with respect and care.
Sea Lion Island has the largest colony of the world’s largest pinniped, the elephant seal, with almost 2000 individuals at the height of the breeding season. These huge animals bask lazily on the beach, idly flipping sand, making grunting noises and occasionally opening an eye. Periodically the peace is shattered as males rear up for a fight!
Day 4: Tuesday 19 February 2019
We’ll spend the day exploring more of Sea Lion Island.
Sea Lion Lodge, where we’re staying, is the only accommodation on the island and is perfectly situated for wildlife observation with the elephant seals close by. Closer still are Magellanic penguins whose gentle braying sounds will lull you to sleep.
On the south coast is the HMS Sheffield memorial. Rockhopper penguins and imperial cormorants live side-by-side and striated caracaras enjoy the same area. Gentoo penguins live on Sea Lion Island all year round and they have the large colonies here.
Day 5: Wednesday 20 February 2019
Another day to explore Sea Lion Island.
47 different species of breeding birds make their home on Sea Lion Island, including the endangered Striated Caracara, Antarctic Skuas, Southern Giant Petrels, and a host of passerines being rat free allows ground nesting birds to breed.
Killer whales are annual visitors seen here from October to February. Because of the deeply shelving coastline, this is one of the best places in the Falklands to see them. They hunt penguins and seals at the edge of kelp beds just offshore. They do not harm people. They can travel at up to 55kmh (35mph). It is one of the most wide-ranging mammals on earth.
Day 6: Thursday 21 February 2019
Transfer to the airstrip for internal flight to Stanley where we will be met and transferred for 2 nights’ Full Board at Malvina Hotel. Visit the newly located museum is just opposite the hotel.
Stretched along the sheltered harbour, the colourful buildings of Stanley are a great place to dig deeper into Falkland Islands’ history and culture. The tiny capital city is the size of a village, but has the amenities you would expect of a large town and lots to discover. There are interesting buildings to explore and some surprising photographic opportunities.
Christ Church Cathedral is a must-see whatever your beliefs. The world’s most southerly Anglican Cathedral has beautiful stained glass windows, flags, banners and artefacts that tell stories of island life. Alongside is the Whalebone Arch, a magnificent construction from the jawbones of blue whales. Pioneers made their homes in the kit cottages of Drury Street and Pioneer Row.
Stroll along the seafront and you will pass Victory Green with the mizzen mast from the sailing ship, the SS Great Britain. A reminder of times past, Stanley has an interesting maritime history to uncover and you can learn more about this and other aspects of social and natural history in the Dockyard Museum, another definite stop for any visitor. Memorials also feature along the seafront, the Battle of the Falklands, World War II, the 1982 conflict and a special monument for the Royal Marines.
Day 7: Friday 22 February 2019
A full day trip to Volunteer Point with driver/guide on a 4×4. It’s a 2.5-hour drive from our lodge. Passing Johnson’s Harbour, we will arrive at the Volunteer Beach. From there, we’ll be free to hike and explore on our own. A packed lunch will be provided by the hotel. Volunteer Point is a NO smoking area.
Named after the ship, the Volunteer, Volunteer Point is a privately owned Nature Reserve and an important bird area. The largest breeding group of king penguins in the islands is found here, with around 1200 pairs of penguins on this peninsula alone. A cacophony of sounds greets visitors on arrival, from the king, Gentoo and Magellanic colonies. Learn about the behavior and physiology of varied species of penguin from our expert guide.
Day 8: Saturday 23 February 2019
Transfer to Mount Pleasant International Airport by shuttle bus for our return LATAM airlines flight. Our transfer time will be advised the night prior to our departure.
Please note a departure tax of £25 per person is payable to Immigration at Mount Pleasant prior to boarding. Cash only – sterling, Euro or US$ is accepted.
How do I sign up for this tour?
What is your cancellation policy?
- Cancel more than 60 days before trip start date: 75% refund on balance.
- Cancel between 30 and 60 days before trip start date: 35% refund on balance.
- Cancel less than 30 days before trip start date: no refund available.
Are flights to the destination included in your tours?
Where shall I fly into and out of?
The tour will start and end in Mount Pleasant. There are limited flights to Mount Pleasant. Here are the two routes:
LATAM operates a once weekly service from Punta Arenas, Chile, to Mount Pleasant Airport. They fly every Saturday and these flights are the cheapest way to get to the Falkland Islands. Search for flights from Punta Arenas here.
The RAF (Royal Air Force) operates a direct service from RAF Brize Norton in the UK to Mount Pleasant Airport twice weekly. This service can be subject to delays due to poor weather, especially during the southern hemisphere winter. For further information and how to book this service visit the Falkland Islands website. The return flights from Brize Norton cost around £2225.
Do you provide airport transfer at the destination?
Can I have my own room?
We prefer that those traveling with us bond with fellow travellers and that’s why we assign and rotate roommates. We can offer single supplement accommodation for a surcharge if it’s available, on a case to case basis.
In case you’re travelling with a friend or a partner, you can stay in a room together throughout the trip. If you’re joining solo, you will be given a roommate of the same gender during the trip.
What should I pack for the Falkland Islands?
You’ll need to pack layers of clothing to prepare for the changing weather conditions. A waterproof jacket and strong walking boots are essential if you plan on walking outside Stanley. Sunscreen is essential, it is very easy to burn. If you take regular prescription medicine, ensure you have enough for your stay and contingencies.
Spot at least 5 species of penguins
Rich birdlife for bird lovers
Whale spotting opportunities
Wildlife watching right from the lodges
Remote wilderness landscape
Insight into the turbulent history
Dates: 16 – 23 Feb 2019
Duration: 8 Days, 7 Nights
Start: Mount Pleasant
Finish: Mount Pleasant
Group Size: 7 people
Group Leader: Nellie
Price of Falkland Islands tour: US$4050
Deposit: 30% of trip fee (non-refundable)
Balance due 8th Dec 2018
Payment: Paypal or bank transfer
- All domestic flights
- All accommodation
- All meals
- Airport transfers
- Ground transportation
- Services of a guide/scout
- International flights
- Visa fee
- Travel insurance
- Alcoholic drinks
- Departure tax of £25 per person
- Personal expenses
How to Sign Up
- Once approved, you will be directed to a booking form
Pay the 30% deposit to secure your spot
Balance is due on 8th Dec
I’ve had the pleasure of traveling with Nellie three times and it has always been a blast! When we met traveling in Africa, her passion and love for travel were infectious. I joined her first WildJunket tour, to Tibet, and it was a great experience.
I have been traveling with Nellie for 10 years. She was my first tour guide. She has showed me the best tapa bars in Spain, train travel in Morocco, elephant sanctuary in Bali, Singapore high rises.
What an amazing trip with Nellie on her first WildJunket tour! Tibet is a gorgeous land, filled with rich history and vibrant culture. It was unbelievable!
Nellie is a great travel partner! Her resourcefulness, spontaneous spirit, love for food and especially for travel and exploring made the whole trip super fun.