Any mention of the Falklands in the UK conjures up images of war and controversy, but these beautiful islands should also paint a picture of a superb natural habitat which has a thriving population of around 3,000 people.
The Falklands War was a modern reminder that land disputes are not just something from the past and, in fact, the discussions between the UK and Argentina over sovereignty of this archipelago still continue today. Britain currently lays claim to the land and the overwhelming majority of citizens support this fact, but they are keen to be seen as more than just a token of squabble between two nations. The islands are now self-governed, with the UK only having control over defence and foreign affairs.
Although there are over seven hundred and fifty islands in total, the main islands of East and West Falkland are where the majority of the inhabitants live. Along with tourism, their leading industries are fishing and sheep farming, whilst their currency is the Falklands pound.
Some animals that can be found on these islands will not be seen anywhere else in the word and so it is a good chance to spot some rare bird and fish species. Along with these there are vast numbers of breeding penguins and albatrosses, which help make the coastline a hub of natural activity. Animals such as pigs, reindeer and horses have also been introduced onto the islands, but it is sheep that can be found most abundantly.
Many people will be aware of the Falklands but few will have set foot there before. This interesting stop-off during your expedition to Antarctica will provide valuable insight and allow you to meet some of the friendly and welcoming people who live on these infamous islands.