Travelers can find close encounters of the penguin kind on a visit to Otway Sound and Penguin Reserve in Punta Arenas, where wooden walkways wind through the animal’s natural habitat. Travelers warn cold winds blow most any time of year. And while visitors have to stay in designated areas, penguins and other wildlife roam close and roam freely, making it a truly unique outdoor experience.
Roughly 5,000 warm weather penguins make their way to the shores of the Otway Sound each September and begin laying eggs in October. By November, travelers can find plenty of fluffy gray chicks wandering the sound, which makes it one of the best times of year to visit.
The Penguin Reserve is located about an hour drive from the airport and 40 miles northwest of Punta Arenas. It takes about three hours to navigate the gravel road between Punta Arenas and Puerto Natales. Travelers planning to spend extra time at the penguin reserve may want to pack their own food, since nearby café options are limited and expensive.