Established in 1848, Punta Arenas is the capital of the Magallan Province in southern Chilean Patagonia. It is believed that the town was named 'Sandy Point' by a British sea captain called John Byron who sailed to Patagonia and claimed to have seen giants inhabiting the land and the name was later changed to the Spanish Punta Arenas.
Many travellers visiting Torres del Paine National Park or flying to Antarctica first fly to Punta Arenas airport; Carlos Ibáñez del Campo International (PUQ), which lies some 13 miles north of Punta Arenas and serves Chilean Patagonia. The main airlines operating here are Lan Chile and Sky Airline, which offer regular flights to Santiago and Puerto Montt. Once at Punta Arenas, travellers then take the 3-hour bus journey directly to Puerto Natales, the gateway to Torres del Paine. Puerto Natales is known for its beautiful fjord, the Seno Ultima Esperanza which is perfect for kayaking.
Map of Punta Arenas
Trips that visit Punta Arenas
Flexibility is the key to success in Antarctica. All voyage routes take advantage of the ever-changing opportunities provided by nature, crafting a unique and extraordinary experience each time.
Fly & Cruise the Antarctic Peninsula
For maximum time in Antarctica with flights both ways, this trip really stands out. An extended fly & cruise voyage spending eight full days actually in Antarctica onboard a small, state-of-the-art expedition ship. Optional kayaking & polar…
- 12 Days
Antarctic Peninsula Explorer
Explore the White Continent onboard one of the newest additions to the Polar fleet, a state-of-the-art expedition vessel combining adventure with comfort. Limited to only 126 passengers, there’s also a wide range of optional adventure activities on this classic Antarctic…
- 11-12 Days
Fly & Cruise Polar Circle
This impressive Polar Circle voyage combines all the comfort and expediency of flying in both directions with extended time in Antarctica (7 full days). Choice of two outstanding ships, both very well-appointed, offering optional adventure activities.…
- 11 Days
South Georgia & The Falklands In-Depth
Uniquely focused on just South Georgia and The Falkland Islands, without Antarctica, spend 9 full days exploring these bountiful Sub-Antarctic Islands, brimming with both wildlife and history. Limited to spring and late summer month departures only, when both wildlife and…
- 19 Days