Stanley, formerly known as Port Stanley, is the capital of the Falkland Islands. This city was founded in 1843, and today is home to more than 2,115 people.
Prior to the construction of the Panama Canal, Stanley was a major repair stop for boats travelling through the Straits of Magellan. The rough waters and intense storms found at the tip of the continent forced many ships to Stanley Harbour, and the ship repair industry helped to drive the island economy. Later, support for the Antarctic sealing and whaling boats became a major industry. Today, the vast majority of the town's residents are employed by the government, with tourism also being a major source of employment; on days when two or more large cruise ships discharge their passengers by tender, the tourists may outnumber the local residents.
Arrivals to Stanley either come by boat or from the airport. Most large cruise ships will discharge their passengers by tenders (the lifeboats) near the centre of town and allow passengers time to roam the city and possibly take trips by vehicle to nearby wildlife sites. When arriving by air, passengers will come in from Mount Pleasant airport, which is located 56 km from town. Taxis and a shuttle bus can drop passengers off anywhere within the town. The smaller airport located just outside of town is used for domestic flights, although it is possible to land on an international flight at Mount Pleasant airport and then take a domestic flight to Stanley.
Stanley is a small town, so walking is probably the best option for seeing the sights.
There are two taxi services operating within Stanley that service the town and the surrounding area.
- Bonners Taxis, Tel: 51126
- Town Taxis, Tel: 52900
- The Falkland Islands Museum. Extensive information about the 1982 conflict, as well as history of the Falklands and some exhibits on Falkland Islands flora & fauna.
- Christ Church Cathedral. This cathedral is the southernmost cathedral in the world. The much-photographed arch in front of the cathedral is made from the jawbones of two blue whales.
- Gypsy Cove. A fifteen minute drive from town that can be easily arranged by taxi, Gypsy Cove is often the first place that visitors to the Falklands will encounter penguins.
The majority of shops in central Stanley cater to the huge number of cruise ship passengers that pass through the town in the summer.
- FIC West Store, Ross Rd. Open seven days a week and offering food, toiletries, phone cards, and other essentials.
- Capstan Gift Shop, Ross Rd. Located across from the West Store, offers all manner of Falkland Islands gifts.
- Philatelic Bureau, Ross Rd. Falkland Islands stamps and first-day covers are known throughout the world and can be purchased directly from the Philatelic Bureau.
- Malvina House Hotel, 3 Ross Rd (across the street from Government Jetty). Dinner reservations may be required, especially during weekends.
- Woodbine Cafe, 29 Fitzroy Rd, ☎ 21002. Fish & chip shop, also offering pizzas, burgers, chicken, empanadas, and a selection of beers.
- Shorty's Diner, West Hillside, ☎ . 1000-2030 weekdays; 1000-2000 weekends. Chargrilled burgers, steaks, curries, local fish and chips, local organic produce, homemade desserts.
- Globe Tavern, Crozier Pl, ☎ 22703. Located one block up the hill from the public jetty, offering beers as well as pub food such as fish and chips. Ask to meet all the lovely ladies that often pop in, and also go for the Karaoke on a Sunday night which is always good fun.
- Victory Bar, 1A Philomel Hill, ☎ 21199. Beer as well as hot food.
Compared with nearby South America lodging in Stanley can be quite expensive. If you are on a strict budget inquire about pitching a tent; if allowed by the land owner the costs are often considerably less than paying for a room.
- Kay McCallum's B&B, 14 Drury St, ☎ , e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Clean and cozy, and Kay is very helpful with travel information and arrangements. As of November 2004 costs were £18 per night for a bed and breakfast. Camping was available for £5 per tent, with an additional charge of £2.50 for breakfast and use of the bathroom.
- Miller's Guest House, 46 St. John St, ☎ 22950, e-mail: email@example.com. A large guest house offering single, double and family rooms.
- Malvina House Hotel, 3 Ross Rd (across the street from Government Jetty), ☎ +500 21355 / 21356, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Top-end accommodation including sauna room. Accepts credit cards. Rates vary by season and room type with prices from £37 to £128.00.
During to lingering tensions from the 1982 war with Argentina, Spanish-speakers should avoid using Spanish names for places (for example "Puerto Argentino" or "Islas Malvinas"), as doing so will undoubtedly be offensive to those who lived through that event.
- Kidney Cove. Home to a small colony of Gentoo and King penguins, as well as several Magellanic penguins.
- Volunteer Point. A white sand beach that is home to King, Gentoo and Magellanic penguins.