Los Pingüinos Natural Monument Chile, Punta Arenas

Los Pingüinos Natural Monument

Los Pingüinos Natural Monument is located 35 km (22 mi) northeast of Punta Arenas, Chile. Magdalena Island and the Marta Island, situated in the middle of the Strait of Magellan, is the main part of this natural monument. The largest penguin colonies of south Chile are on this island, including an estimated 60,000 breeding pairs of the Magellanic penguin.

The islands are currently uninhabited by humans, but are a popular tourist destination. Each summer, thousands of tourists travel to the monument to see the penguins and other wildlife. At 85 hectares, Magdalena Island is the larger of the two islands, and receives most of the tourist traffic, while Marta is made up of only 12 hectares of surface area, and is not often included in tours. CONAF (National Forest Corporation of Chile) manages the monument in an attempt to sustain both the tourism and the Magellanic penguins, for which the island has become a critical habitat.