This popular excursion from Stanley boasts the largest king penguin colony in the Falklands, where the photogenic kings are at the northern limit of their range. King penguins were reported here in the early 18th century, but by the late 1800s they had been virtually wiped out in the exploitation of the Falklands’ wildlife.
The Falklands’ oldest settlement, Port Louis dates from the French foundation of the colony by Louis de Bougainville in 1764. One of its oldest buildings is the ivy-covered 19th-century farmhouse, still occupied by farm employees. Scattered nearby are ruins of the French governor’s house and fortress and Louis Vernet’s settlement.
After the Falklands War, British military personnel were housed in and around Stanley until RAF Mt Pleasant was completed in 1986. At its post-1982 peak, the base staff numbered more than 2000 and even today there are about 1200, making it the second- biggest population center in the islands. Some visitors arrive and depart via the Mt Pleasant International Airport.