Tours and Activities:
Visiting Nao Victoria at Punta ArenasPablo Etchevers - Gentileza Museo Nao Victoria Gentileza Juan Mattassi - Museo Nao Victoria
An exact replica of Magellan's expedition ship perfectly recreates the time in which Nao Victoria set sail to conquer the world and found the union of the two oceans. Today, a museum commemorates that ordeal.
Ferdinand Magellan was born in the proximity of Oporto, Portugal, in 1480. This fact had a remarkable influence on his studies of geography and the art of navigation, which would later on lead him to wish to sail and discover the world.
His obsession to see the unknown and find the passage between the Atlantic and the Pacific led him to a terrible experience for any human being, having to face daily storms and endless winds. But this also led him to an incredible site, especially for the world of those days.
In Search of the Passage between the Seas
On March 22, 1518, a document was signed in Valladolid which set forth that Magellan should be appointed 'captain general of the fleet and governor of all the lands discovered'.
The Spanish Crown covered for all the expenses of the expedition and in August, 1519, the crew set sail at Sevilla in search of a passage that would join the Atlantic and the Pacific.
Two hundred and fifty-six men and five naos (vessels) accompanied Magellan in this ordeal that after a three-year exploration voyage returned to Spain with only 18 men. These heroes were fortunate to measure the waist of the world, an unthinkable deed for those days of constant discovery and conquest.
The Nao Victoria had succeeded in 'going around the world' and telling old Europe what lay on the other side of the endless sea and where the two large seas met.
The Nao, An Icon in Punta Arenas
Just 7.5 kilometers away from Punta Arenas (at an area known as Tres Puentes Wetland) there lies Nao Victoria. On the shores of the Strait of Magellan -Route Y-565- this life-size replica responds to the original plans of the vessel commanded by Ferdinand Magellan.
Nao Victoria is an interactive and dynamic museum that rescues the discovery of the Strait of Magellan and enables visitors to be part of this perfect drill of a sixteenth-century sailing experience.
Equipped like the original, the operations room remains just like the captain left it and, in addition to furniture and navigation elements, life-size figures of the various characters may be appreciated doing their daily tasks inside the ship. They are dressed with the typical costumes and hold personal items.
An unquestionable icon of this southern Chilean city, this museum is a must visit during any stay at Punta Arenas. The unmistakable figure of Nao Victoria, an exact replica of a sixteenth-century ship, features more than 25 meters of length, 7 meters of width, 3 decks, 3 masts, 5 sails and about 28 meters in height. It certainly draws the attention of visitors to this destination.
A perfect tourist attraction that invites visitors on a journey back in time and to feel part of the adventure of discovering a new world where the seas are braves and unveil this still strange site called Patagonia.