Blogs from Falkland Islands, South America

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South America » Falkland Islands December 29th 2013

Hello everybody... So, I got on a ship, the Sea Spirit! I have a contract with an expedition company to go on several Antarctic voyages... I will talk more about my roll in later blogs but first I'll introduce my first taste of the South Atlantic... The MV Sea Spirit cruised out of the Port of Ushuaia, through the Beagle Channel and into the open waters of the South Atlantic Ocean followed by an entourage of seabirds. Cape Petrels and Great Shearwaters circled above the wake of the ship, snatching up fish scraps and other tasty food while the mountains of Tierra Del Fuego were consumed by the ocean. It was amazing to watch the continent of South America disappear... Early the next morning as we slowly chugged across the big blue sea, we were treated ... read more
Long finned Pilot Whales
Whale pod
Pilots

South America » Falkland Islands » West Falkland February 1st 2013

It turns out that the Falkland Islands are not shaped like a fork. I discovered this as they appeared out of the fairly grey sea that we had been sailing on for a couple of days since leaving Ushuaia, but managed to counteract my disappointment with the knowledge that they would be awesome. We were there for almost two days in total, with two landings on the first day and one on the second. The first day we landed in the morning to see a Rockhopper (penguin) and Albatross colony that were located on the back of the island. A very brief walk led up to them and it was our first wildlife on the trip. It didn’t disappoint, even now looking back at the myriad of wildlife we have seen across the whole trip. Birds ... read more
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South America » Falkland Islands » East Falkland December 30th 2012

Actually we are in Stanley this morning, but one of our granddaughters, Allyson, is positive we are in Paradise Falls, South America, so there you are. We spent the last 24 hours steaming northeast of South Georgia and South Sandwich Island in “Whale Wars” country. Dropped the hook at 0730 and began the 2.5 mile tender ride into Stanley about 0830. This is an adventure because the Star Princess draws about 30’ of draft in a bay that is about 15 feet deep, so we are anchored outside in Port William Bay, and exposed to the elements a little more than usual, which provides for an interesting 30-minute ride in the small tenders. Conditions today are sloppy wet, thick mists, and gale-force winds. High chop in the bay and the visibility is about 1/3 of a ... read more
Falkland sign
1982 War Memorial-001
1982 war memorial

South America » Falkland Islands » East Falkland December 28th 2012

What an interesting day! The seas are quite calm when we get up about 7 am, and by 9 the ship has reached the Falkland Islands. The ship is too big for the inner harbour so we are tendered to shore in life boats. We are in Port Stanley by 10:30. The Falklands (Islas Malvinas to Argentinians) are a remote group of two main islands and many hundreds of smaller ones in the South Atlantic some 900 k off the Argentine coast. The entire is population is 2500, and 2000 people live in the capital and only town, Port Stanley. There is a road linking Port Stanley to the military airport but no other roads. Residents use 4x4s and boats to get to all other parts of the islands. The primary industry is sheep farming, primarily ... read more
Gentoo penguin posing, Falklands

South America » Falkland Islands » East Falkland February 14th 2012

After rounding the Horn and thereby becoming “Masters of the Seven Seas,” we made our first stop in Argentina at Ushuaia which is also the Capital of the Malvinas. Ushuaia is the southern-most city in the world and its name means the End of the World. The town started out as a prison colony and has grown into a thriving business center with fish processing and computer assembly plants ringing the Beagle Channel. The Malvinas include the disputed Falklands Islands. Argentina still hopes to “free” the Falklands from what they consider the British Imperialists. Right now there are protests and port blockages by Argentinians because of increased tensions between the two countries. Fortunately the Mariner does not fly a Union Jack. One thing we have found in traveling around the very Catholic countries of South America ... read more
PENGUINS EVERYWHERE!
LAGO ESCONDIDO
PARILLADA

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South America » Falkland Islands » West Falkland January 19th 2012

Thursday 19th January 2012 Yes I know its Thursday because the mat in the lift says so. It’s also a sea day, which means we do not see anything but sea! We are on our way to Puerto Madryn on the Argentinian coast. Each cabinet has TV and the best channel is the one that shows the Captain’s view ahead plus the navigational details plus maps. We are now 47 degrees south so have come a long way from Antarctica. The sea is relatively calm and has been for the past 2 days, which meant that yesterday we were able to dock at Port Stanley in The Falklands. It was a glorious sunny day – it seems that the Falklands have had an unusually good summer. Brian had a visit with the medics to the hospital ... read more

South America » Falkland Islands » East Falkland January 19th 2012

THE FALKLAND ISLANDS I had a 6:00am wake up to a beautiful sunny day. We are tendering to Port Stanley and the harbor can be very rough for the half hour trip, but not today. I dressed warmly as the weather can turn in a minute but for now it is beautiful. We are assigned to our 4 x 4 and met Robin, our driver and guide. She is a very young grandmother who works in the supermarket. She just lost 9 stone on a diet of chocolate, disco and vodka. It worked for her. The first few miles were on tarmac. We passed a military contingent on a land mine clearing mission. Mines from the war are often found and well-paid volunteers from Zimbabwe, anxious to earn hard currency in a country where inflation is ... read more


Fri 4th Feb Port Stanley, Falkland Islands Sparrow Cove penguin experience Like many other people i think, until Maggie’s involvement in defending these islands from the Argentinean invasion, I had never heard of Port Stanley. Murdo of course knew about this region due to his fathers tales of his whaling trips to Antarctica. So for different reasons we both were looking forward to our stay today. A tender boat took us over to the island to commence our excursion to see a colony of gentoo penguins. Having stepped onto the island, we felt like we were back home !!! The similarity of the terrain to the Scottish highlands was uncanny with it's small farms nestling amongst wild backdrops of rocks, heather and peaty ground. As we walked our feet sprang in a comfy familiar way. It ... read more
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South America » Falkland Islands February 4th 2011

Due to weather conditions, we went to the main island of the Falklands yesterday and won't be visiting the west island at all. I had been looking forward to that because it supposedly had lots of penguins roaming around that you could just walk amongst. Oh, well. Now we will be in Ushuaia a day earlier and rounding Cape Horn before a big storm arrives. Did you realize there were fewer than 2000 people living in the Falklands when the war happened? (in 1982) About the same number of soldiers were killed. Seems an idiotic waste of lives and money. There are still minefields all over the place, but they are fenced off with skull and crossbones signs. Port Stanley, on the main island, reminded me a lot of Nisswa. Teeming with gift shops, but with ... read more
Our Bus
Watson Farm
Which way the wind blows

South America » Falkland Islands January 28th 2010

What can we say about the Falklands? The pictures are the real highlight. We flew in from Punta Arenas in Chile on Dec 19th and were picked up at Mount Pleasant airport (a military airport where you aren’t allowed to take photos) by Ken who drove us to Darwin house where we spent our first night. This was our first experience with Falkland island roads, which are mostly gravel and very dusty. The landscape was absolutely windswept with no trees in sight except around the settlements. As you can see from the photos, there are gorse, Diddly dee, tussock grass and sheep as far as the eye can see! After meeting the people who were also doing a week-long tour and our hostess Sheena, we had a quick cup of tea and set out to explore ... read more
Typical Darwin countryside
What a beautiful seascape; wait, what's that sign?
Remnants of the "conflict"




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