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The final chapter of our exploration of Patagonia was a visit to Bahia Lapataia (Lapataia Bay). Here you’ll find the southern most point of the Pan-American Highway, the longest highway on earth. At a parking lot beside the road’s end, you’ll find this sign marking this important landmark. It’s only about a 45 minute drive from Ushuaia, but is the farthest south you can drive in the Western Hemisphere.
We drove to the area, parked, and hiked a little through a swampy forest of beech and evergreens. Fortunately there were boardwalk trails through the wettest areas, so our feet didn’t get soaked. The weather was wet and cold and windy — not exactly terrific hiking weather, but typical of the area. The …
One of the better known attractions in Ushuaia is a journey on a short (5 mi – 8 km) but scenic stretch of railway known as ‘Tren del Fin del Mundo,’ or the ‘Train of the End of the World.’ As Ushuaia is the southern most city in the world and this the southernmost railway on earth, the name is not as hyperbolic as it might originally seem.
The first tracks were constructed in the late 19th century to transport supplies to the penitentiary being built in Ushuaia. These tracks were made of wood and used for ox-pulled carts, but by the early twentieth century they had been upgraded to iron rails that conveyed a steam …
Recoleta is an upscale residential neighborhood in Buenos Aires, where my wife and I stayed during our visit to that city. The area has interesting historic architecture and is where you’ll find the Recoleta Cemetery and the Nuestra Señora del Pilar Church. Some of the most expensive real estate in Argentina is in Recoleta.
This post is a compilation of some of the sights we encountered during our wanderings around this part of the city. One of these features Pizzurno Palace, also known as the Sarmiento Palace (home to the Ministry of Education).
Recoleta is a place families live and play, with some nice parks and green spaces. There’s some interesting public art and …
The Maritime and Prison Museum was originally constructed in the late 19th century as a prison (by prisoners). It consists of 5 two-story wings built onto a central hub. The prison became the most southerly situated jail in the world and was where Buenos Aires sent prisoners it didn’t want to house locally — sort of like the English sending prisoners to Australia.
The prison had 380 cells which housed up to 800 inmates ranging from political prisoners to murderers. In some ways the prison was reformative, prisoners receiving a basic education and pay for work performed (which they could take with them when — or if — they ever left). The prison ran various shops that served the needs of …
In a park along Ushuaia’s waterfront is a small market featuring small “mom and pop” gift shops, like this one. Most sell junk like crappy t-shirts and hats, but this one caught our eye.
This gentleman is an artist. He takes coins from around the world, meticulously cuts out the artwork within them to make lovely pendents featuring animals, flowers, buildings, heroes, etc. — a large assortment of beautiful items. I’d only in decades of traveling seen one other display of its type, and that many years ago.
My wife is extremely fond of horses and purchased several horse pendants for herself and as gifts. The artist was appreciative and pleased to know his handiwork was traveling to California and Washington state.
Ushuaia, even during its summer, is a cool, wet and windy city. My wife and I spent several days here and wandered many of its streets and attractions. During our exploration we came across this rather cute chocolate and coffee/tea shop, and thought a jolt of warm caffeine and sugar was just what we needed.
We were pleasantly surprised by what we found inside. A large and beautifully presented selection of sweet treats as nice as any I can recall seeing. Huge slabs of chocolate and fudge dominated, with bon-bons and a large variety of gift items. We settled for a huge slab of delicious cake (to share) and nice cups of cappuccino. We took along a few slices of chocolate …
While visiting Buenos Aires, my wife and I wanted to see the MALBA, a museum of modern Latin-American art that came highly recommended. It was a rainy day and when our taxi dropped us off at the steps of the MALBA we were disappointed to find it closed for the day. So it goes — should have called ahead before coming.
Not wanting to waste the morning, we decided to walk around the upscale Palermo Chico neighborhood in which the museum is situated. It’s a safe neighborhood — not all areas of Buenos Aires are recommended for tourists — and we had no firm plans about where to go. We just wanted to explore a little.
A few blocks south on Ave …
My final post for this adventure into the Patagonian fjords of Chile focuses on the very wonderful food we were served aboard the Australis. We received three meals a day in the ship’s dining room mostly (as I recall) buffet style, including hearty breakfasts with a large choice of items, a tasty lunch, but no question the highlight of our culinary day was dinner. We had four dinners aboard the Australis and I found each of them photogenic enough to be “documented”. I never planned on making a blog of what I ate, so I didn’t photograph everything — just those items that looked wonderful (and were!)
Besides the very tasty meals, the service of our crew throughout the ship was …