West Point Island
West Point Island is situated off the north-west tip of West Falkland. It was initially named Albatross Island due to the thousands of nesting black-browed albatross. The island is separated from the mainland by a channel with the enchanting name of the “Woolly Gut”. Privately owned by Roddy Napier, West Point has been in the hands of his family since 1879.
West Point Island has spectacular scenery and impressive wildlife. The “Devil’s Nose” is a rocky promontory with dramatic sandstone cliffs, where rocky ledges and areas of tussac grass are home to black-browed albatross and rockhopper penguins. While away your time watching the antics of both birds as the albatross soar gracefully overhead and rockhoppers squabble with neighbours or simply enjoy basking in the sun. Look carefully, you may spot something special in the crowd, such as a macaroni penguin. Whales, fur seals and sea lions are frequently observed in the waters below.
The “Devil’s Nose” is a relatively easy 2 kilometre walk from the settlement, across open, rolling countryside with wonderful scenery. If time permits, keen hikers can enjoy the walk and view from Cliff Mountain. At 381 metres (1,211 feet) this is not only the Island’s highest point but also the highest cliffs in the Falklands.
An attractive settlement is nestled into a sheltered harbour with a lovely white sand beach close by. Dolphins often visit the bay, particularly when a boat arrives. Magellanic penguins have made their burrows in the harbour area and various other birds can be seen including striated caracaras and turkey vultures. Fantastically sheltered flower and vegetable gardens are situated near the farm buildings.
Access to West Point Island is available on a day trip by boat from Carcass Island and the destination also features on many cruise itineraries. A highlight for the latter is the delicious smoko offered in the farmhouse, which dates back to 1880.