Hughes Bay
Not often visited.
Rating: * *

Why Visit?

An obscure little island with stunning rocky scenery that will give you a true feeling for the remoteness of Antarctica and the toughness of Antarctic wildlife. Often surrounded by brash ice and icebergs, this exposed little island is worth a visit even when you can’t land.

Where is it?

Alcock Island is a small island, less than a kilometre across, that lies in the middle of Hughes Bay.


Extremely rugged and exposed for the peninsula region, very steep and rocky. Only one exposed, narrow climb is commonly used, but often landing is not possible due to rough seas. Zodiac cruising around the island can also be quite challenging due to swell, surf, ice and wind.

Geography & History

The coastline is largely made up of towering cliffs that only chinstrap penguins appear able to scale but one narrow cleft leads up from a challenging landing beach when it isn’t blocked by icebergs. A scramble across the ice and rocks takes the adventurous to the island’s 319 foot summit that offers a sweeping panorama of the glacier-lined Davis Coast. Known by whalers as Penguin Island, the name was changed to avoid confusion with the other island of the same name. Sir John Alcock was one of the team that completed the first non-stop trans-Atlantic flight from Newfoundland to Ireland in 1919.


Chinstrap penguins nest on the island and it is very worthwhile to watch as they scramble up the steep slopes; Crabeater, Weddell seals, Humpback and Minke whales are common in the local waters.

Human activities

While whalers were busy in Huges Bay in the 19th century, the island is too small to have attracted much attention.

Photos, Voting and more coming soon!

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