Punta Arenas  is close to two breeding colonies of the burrowing Magellanic penguin, Spheniscus magellanicus. The Otway Sound colony , about 45 minutes from the city, is interesting enough, but the larger colony on Isla Magdalena , in the Strait of Magellan, is two hours away by ferry or slightly less by bus and rigid inflatable.
Also known to English speakers as the jackass penguin because its call resembles that of a braying burro, the Magellanic is present from October to April. It is most numerous in January and February, when the chicks hatch in the sandy burrows that the birds have dug beneath the coastal turf.
After the chicks have hatched, the parents alternate fishing trips for food that they later regurgitate to their young (combined with the scent of bird droppings, this makes any visit to a penguin colony an olfactory as well as a visual and auditory experience).
While the birds appear tame, they are wild animals, and their sharp beaks can draw blood — maintain a respectful distance for photography. Though both colonies have fenced walking routes to restrain tourists, the birds themselves frequently cross these routes.
Besides the countless seabirds and dolphins en route, the Magdalena trip has the added bonus of a historic lighthouse that now serves as a visitors center on an island that’s one big warren of penguin burrows. While neither trip is strenuous, any walk in Patagonia’s roaring winds can be a workout.