The Best Places to Watch Penguins

An Antarctic cruise is a dream-vacation for penguin fans. Antarctica is the only place where you’ll find the famous Emperor Penguin. But you don’t have to travel quite that far to see penguins in the wild – many penguin species live in places much easier, and less expensive, for people to visit. Here are some examples for the travel-minded bird watcher:

South America

  • The Galapagos Islands are home to the Galapagos penguin. This bird lives closer to the Equator than any other penguin. They are found on the islands of Isabela, Fernandina, and Bartolome.

  • Chile and Peru both have penguins living at offshore islands. Try southern Peru’s coast for the Peruvian Penguin, or the Chilean waters around Puntas Arenas for the Magellenic Penguin.

  • The Falkland Islands, east of Argentina, are home to the world’s largest colonies of Rockhopper Penguins, living alongside Gentoo, King and Macaroni Penguins.

Southern Africa

  • The coasts of South Africa and Namibia are the only home of the Jackass Penguin. Visitors may also glimpse a Rockhopper and King Penguin here.

Australia/New Zealand:

  • Visit Stewart Island, New Zealand, for colonies of Fjordland and Little Blue Penguins.

  • The entire Southern Coast of Australia gets regular visits from several penguin species, including the crested Rockhopper Penguin.

  • Philip Island, in Victoria, Australia, is famous for its spectacular Little Blue Penguin show. Over a thousand wild penguins return to shore each evening, to the delight of visiting penguin watchers.

A visit to any of these exotic bird watching destinations will prove to be a memorable experience for any bird enthusiasts that love penguins whether they be found in the Northern or Southern Hemisphere! Editor’s note: Our two favorite places to watch penguins are in South Africa and in the Galapagos Islands off the Coast of Ecuador.