Video: Where to see penguins in the wild on World Penguin Day

Perhaps it’s the way they waddle on two feet, or maybe it’s just their generally comic behaviour. Whatever the reason, penguins are eternally endearing – and seeing them in their natural habitat is a top 10 wildlife experience.

In honour of today’s World Penguin Day (April 25), we’ve selected the best places to encounter the 17 different penguin species around the globe.

Where: Antarctica

Adélie Penguin (Thinkstock/PA)

A true Mecca for penguin fans, this is where you’ll find the largest populations. Adelies, gentoos, macaronis and chinstraps can all be seen on cruises to the seventh continent, although you’ll need to travel to Snow Hill and beyond to stand any chance of glimpsing an emperor. For king penguins, book a cruise that includes stops in South Georgia or the Falkland Islands, where you can also find rockhoppers.

Where: Patagonia

Magellanic penguins (Thinkstock/PA)

If a polar cruise is beyond your budget, opt for a trip to the bottom tip of South America; you’ll find ice fields, glaciers and Magellanic penguins. Chile’s most important colony live on Isla Magdalena, easily reached from Punta Arenas. In Argentina, head to the rookery at Punta Tombo.

Where: South Africa

Boulders Beach (Thinkstock/PA)

Think penguins only like cold places? Wrong – they’re partial to a bit of beach action, too. On Boulders Beach, a 50-minute drive from Cape Town, African penguins huddle below a wooden walkway, where visitors can watch without creating disturbance.

Where: Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Galapagos penguin (Thinkstock/PA)

Basking in even more sunshine, the diminutive Galapagos penguin is the northernmost dweller of the bird species, living mainly around the islands of Isabela and Fernandina. In certain areas, it’s even possible to even swim with them – if you can manage to keep up.

Where: Australia and New Zealand

Little penguin (Thinkstock/PA)

As its name suggests, the little penguin is also the world’s smallest. Measuring 33cm tall and weighing just 1kg, they breed along the southern coastlines of Australia and New Zealand. One of the best places to view the blue and white creatures is on Phillip Island, Victoria, where they can be seen returning at sunset as part of a Penguin Parade. Tickets to the parade cost AUS$26.20 for adults. Book here.

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