Antarctic Sites – Cierva Cove
Cierva Cove is a stunning cove that lays 6 nautical miles southeast of Cape Sterneck in Hughes Bay, along the west coast of Graham Land, Antarctica. It is named after Juan de la Cierva, a Spanish pilot, engineer, and inventor.
Cierva Cove is located in a protected Antarctic area, so we do not make landings on the peninsula here, but we can enjoy Cierva Cove regardless via Zodiac cruise and viewing from our ship.
We often cruise by Base Primavera, an Argentinian research station located in Cierva Cove. This station was established in 1977, after being expanded from an earlier naval refuge built there in 1954. Located on the southwestern shore, the station operates only during the austral summer and we are not permitted to visit. Alongside the bright orange buildings of the station, you might spot green grasses, moss, and lichen – a rare sight in Antarctica.
The scenery there is stunningly beautiful, with fantastic icebergs, ice formations, and snowy landscapes. A glacial face at the north end regularly calves ice, and seals frequently haul out on ice floes. Pressing through brash ice, we cruise through the region observing the breathtaking sights.
The waters in Cierva Cove are rich with krill, bringing an abundance of wildlife including penguins, seals, and whales. The calving ice stirs up the water oxygenating it and making it rich with nutrients
Highlights of a cruise through Cierva Cove:
- Zodiac Cruise amongst the giant icebergs
- Enjoy the array of colors – bright white snow, deep blue ice, and green between the rocks on shore
- Wave hello to the researchers and scientists working at Base Primavera
- Look for calving ice and listen for the big splash as it crashes into the ocean
- Wildlife spotting for whales, seals and penguins