Petermann Island

Located just south of the Lemaire Channel, Petermann Island is a stony and partially glaciated landmass known for its Adélie penguins

Petermann Island

Region: Antarctica

Destinations: Antarctic Peninsula

The Birds, Whales, and Seals of Petermann Island

For many visitors, Petermann Island is the only place they will see Adélie penguins. The island hosts one of the northernmost Adélie penguin colonies, as well as one of the southernmost Gentoo penguin colonies. Blue-eyed shags also breed on Petermann Island, and around the landing bay leopard seals and humpback whales may be seen. Vibrant green and red algae, known as cryoplankton, colors the snow in bursting clouds, especially when the snow is melting in summer.

A gentoo penguin with two chicks on Petermann Island

Petermann Island’s Size (and Curiously Named Bay)

Petermann Island stretches 1.8 by 1.2 km (1.1 by .7 miles), rising to a height of about 250 meters (820 feet). In 1909 the French explorer Jean-Martin Charcot wintered his ship, Pourquoi Pas, in a small bay on the southeast side of the island. He discovered the location on the Catholic feast day celebrating Christ’s circumcision. Because of this, Charcot and his crew named the spot Port Circumcision.

Hut on Petermann Island

The Ghosts of Petermann Island

How the island got its name is a little more humdrum: A crew member on the Dallmann expedition of 1873 – 1874 named it after German geographer August Petermann. In our visits to Petermann Island, we usually land in the sheltered Circumcision Bay. There the old mooring points of the ship still survive, ghosts of the past that transport us to another time.

Plancius at Petermann Island

Love this article? Share your appreciation:

Related cruises

Ross Sea | Incl. helicopters
Up to 5500 USD discount

Ross Sea | Incl. helicopters

Enderby Island - Campbell Island - Ross Sea - Peter I Island - Antarctic Peninsula & Polar Circle | The most spectacular Antarctic journey ever!

OTL28-20. Sail to the southern parts of the Antarctic Peninsula, Peter I Island, the Bellingshausen and Amundsen Seas into the Ross Sea. Visiting the Ross Ice-shelf, Dry Valleys, McMurdo Station, Campbell Island, Enderby Island and the historic huts of Scott and Shackleton.

m/v Ortelius

m/v Ortelius

Cruise date:

16 Feb - 18 Mar, 2020

Price:

27500 USD 22000 USD 5500 USD discount

Antarctic Explorer's Voyage
Up to 1900 USD discount

Antarctic Explorer's Voyage

Antarctic Pioneering Voyage

PLA29-20. During this voyage, we will attempt landings that have rarely if ever been offered by Oceanwide Expeditions – or any other Antarctic cruise operator. Flexibility is key during these thrilling expeditions. Since information about most of the landing sites is limited or unknown, this target itinerary...

m/v Plancius

m/v Plancius

Cruise date:

6 Feb - 16 Feb, 2020

Price:

7950 USD

Antarctica - Discovery and learning voyage

The 'Classic Antarctic' route

HDS30-20. The 'Classic Antarctic' route. This cruise delivers you to wondrous landscapes found in one of the harshest environments on Earth. The great star-actors of Antarctica are the penguins and in total seven species could appear before your very own eyes. Including video workshops with George Kennedy.

m/v Hondius

m/v Hondius

Cruise date:

15 Feb - 24 Feb, 2020

Price:

7200 USD

Antarctica - Polar Circle

Crossing the Polar Circle

PLA30-20. This Polar Circle and Antarctic Peninsula cruise passes through waters travelled by Humpback, Minke and Fin whales. Anchoring in various spots around the region, the expedition offers the chance to hike, kayak, and dive in the iceberg-heavy waters.

m/v Plancius

m/v Plancius

Cruise date:

16 Feb - 27 Feb, 2020

Price:

on request

Falkland Islands - South Georgia - Elephant Island - Antarctica - Polar Circle
Up to 1800 USD discount

Falkland Islands - South Georgia - Elephant Island - Antarctica - Polar Circle

Meet at least six penguin species

HDS31-20. This Falkland Islands, South Georgia, and Antarctic Peninsula cruise is an animal-lover’s dream come true. The expedition explores one of the last untamed areas on Earth – a land of ruggedly beautiful landscapes and amazingly varied wildlife. Including photo workshops with Massimo Bassano and video...

m/v Hondius

m/v Hondius

Cruise date:

24 Feb - 17 Mar, 2020

Price:

15350 USD