A PENGUIN ADVENTURE!
by, 03-12-2008 at 07:03 PM (69193 Views)
Our 14 day Norwegian Dream cruise from Santiago, Chile around Cape Horn and ending in Buenos Aires, Argentina was our penguin adventure! We saw three kinds of penguins, Gentoo, Magellanic or Jackass, and a single King penguin baby! The two most amazing encounters were in the Falkland Islands at Sparrow Cove and in the Punto Tombo reserve in Argentina.
In the Falklands twelve of us boarded two range rovers and for a half hour bounced and lunged over steep and rough terrain, no roads here! We were on a huge private property where the Gentoo penguin colony nested. The Gentoos were absolutely darling and so curious. We had brought a Trader Joes colorful bag which we set down and the little penguins waddled right over and pecked at it wondering what it was! That magical feeling of being among God's fearless creatures that we thought we had lost in the Galapagos islands was here! There we also saw a lone King penguin baby. His parents apparently were at sea fishing. This was no little baby, however, being about 3 feet tall!
The second encounter was in Argentina at the penguin colony in Punto Tombo. This is the largest colony on mainland South America with a million penguins! They were everywhere and again without fear! Like in Galapagos you had to be careful where you walked to not step on them. After a lengthy walk to the end of the reserve was a spectacular sight, a beautiful long crescent beach crowded with hundreds of black and white Megellanic penguins, like penguin tourists at Waikiki! They were swimming, surfing, laying out, grooming their partners and walking to and fro but mostly just hanging out with their friends and family! What a scene! There was a second picturesque area, an exquisite little bay also a playground for the penguins. It was a noisy scene as well as they aren't called jackass penguins for nothing! They call to each other by putting their heads back and vigorously hee hawing just like a donkey! They were very curious as well, not for the Trader Joes bag as had the Gentoos but rather for my husband Jeff's camera! One came right up to Jeff and looked side to side at Jeff's camera and then came closer and closer. Jeff got a clip of it, with his penguin head getting larger and larger almost touching the lens! Alas, the last encounter was all too short as we were with the ship's group. We would have loved to stay much longer. Someday soon we hope to bring our children and grandchildren to this truly amazing place and hope you dear readercan join us!