- I was here: approximately 3 hours during the morning of the fourth day of the cruise, on December 28, 2007.
- My score: 4/5.
We leave the South Shetland Islands behind to continue in the southwest direction and approach the Antarctic Peninsula, although our first landing was on another island, discovered by a Belgian expedition between 1897 and 1899, the tiny Cuverville Island, just a short km², and with two types of attractions.
The island, of volcanic origin but not at all active, is encased between two land languages on Danko Coast. The views to the east and west allow us to enjoy the nearby mountains and to the north there are usually drifting icebergs.
SPECIAL LANDSCAPE SECTION: THE ICEBERGS
Cuverville Island is located at the entrance of the small Errera Channel, and the drift of icebergs is frequent, leaving some backwaters north of the island. Contemplating icebergs is something worthwhile each and every time. When one has never seen them, one imagines them as little more than giant drifting ice cubes, but soon we will realize that each one has a capricious, unique and unrepeatable form, and that many are those who acquire the fascinating glacial ice blue color, compacted for tens or hundreds of years, instead of the usual white tones. We had the opportunity to make our first zodiac ride around glaciers on this island, marveling at its shapes and the indescribable blue color of ice.
AND FAUNA: THE GENTOO PENGUIN
But the reason for stopping precisely here is the presence of an important summer colony (more than 6,500 couples) of Gentoo, also colloquially called Juanito penguin. This one and Port Lockroy are two of the places where we can better appreciate these birds. They are distinguished from the chinstrap penguins that we find on Half Moon Island because they have pink peak and pink inside of the wings, as well as black head with white spots on the eyebrows that join at the top of the head. The largest adults reach 90 cm tall and weigh 8 kg, and are the fastest penguins in the water, reaching speeds around 35 km / h and being able to jump in the purest dolphin style.
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