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Published: February 3rd 2011
On our way to Ushuaia!
Tierra del Fuego, Argentina
An early morning start got me to the airport for my flight south to Ushuaia. Three and a half hours later, I arrived in a somewhat cooler Ushuaia which was refreshing after the BA heat! I knew in the heart of hearts that this is the closest I will ever get to Antarctica as the cruise prices are beyond my reach!
I spent three days in Ushuaia and stayed in a great hostel, Los Cormoranes, up in the Ushuaia hills and had great views of The Beagle channel. I met some great travellers including those who were doing an Oasis Overland Tour across South America and some were staying in the same dorm as me. This included Mary and Julie from the UK who were doing a round a world trip as well as the Oasis´s ´Coast to Coast´Tour which included Brazil, Argentina and Chile as part of their travels. I also met Romina, from Buenos Aires, who was on holiday and I was able to practice my limited Spanish with her. However, I have to say there were some people that were a bit too clichy, rude and loud for my liking and this was an issue on my
Obligatory Photo Stop! Ushuaia, Argentina
last night but changing to a nicer dorm for that night made this a bit more tolerable.
I mainly took it easy in Ushuaia and wandered round the town and enjoying the wonderful hot chocolates in their cafes but I made sure that I visited a couple of museums and did a cruise around the Beagle Channel. The Beagle Channel Cruise
The highlight, no doubt, was doing a scenic cruise along the Beagle Channel. I thoroughly enjoyed taking the journey and seeing some of the islands. I joined a small boat tour where there was only eight of us plus the guide and the boat driver. I chose to do a small boat tour because I find big catamarans too crowded and impersonal for my liking and I would imagine that I would struggle to move about and get some decent shots. This meant paying more but I know I would get value for money. The trip was for four hours. We first visited Isla de Los Lobos (Known as Sea Lions Island) where we saw loads of sea lions including the male who were fighting for territory! and loads of birds; next, we reached Faro Les
Faro Les Eclaireurs
On the Beagle Channel cruise, Ushuaia, Argentina
Eclaireurs where we saw the famous lighthouse, built in 1919, that is featured as a main icon for Ushuaia; and afterwards, we reached Isla de Los Pajores where we saw loads of cormorants. Our final island where we got off the boat was the Islas de Archipielago Bridges and learnt about the Yamanas and their culture plus the vegetation including the Yamana´s shell middens. In all it was a wonderful cruise although the channel was a bit choppy at times but I took my sea sickness tablet before trip and I was fine. I met other travellers from Brazil, France and Austria and we had more attention and an opportunity to practice our Spanish to the guide and boat driver! Museo Yamana
I spent an hour or so visiting this museum. The museum gives an interesting insight into the Yamana culture. The Yamana Indians originally inhabited this region before the European invasion and sadly dwindled since then. There, I think, is only one person of pure Yamana origin left and she lives in Chile. I enjoyed learning more about their culture and how they lived their everyday life and connecting to nature along the Beagle Channel. Museo
View from the hostel, Ushuaia, Argentina
El Fin del Mundo
The museum is housed in two buildings, the old government house and a 1912 bank building. The museum has some interesting exhibitions about Ushuaia´s history including the first governor of Tierra del Fuego, Felix Mariano Paz; the Monte Cervantes shipwreck where everyone on board survived except for the captain, Teodoro Dreyer when the ship sunk near Les Eclaireurs Lighthouse in 1930; Thomas Bridges who built his first Christian Missionary in 1884 and worked with the Yamanas and compiled a dictionary in their language; and also an insight in the Yamana and Selkham Indians culture. I found the museum fascinating and now can appreciate the history of Ushuaia and its region. Inside the government house, you can see the old congress office and a replica of a walking room and a grocery store.
Ushuaia is very expensive and I ended up spending a lot more than planned! Despite the prices and the noisy hostel, I thoroughly enjoyed my stay and the surrounding scenery of the Beagle Channel and the mountains is stunning! We were lucky with the weather apart from the occasional wind. Another dream of being at the end of the world has finally
Got a stamp to prove that I was at the end of the world! Ushuaia, Argentina
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