HOME  |  AUSTRALIA 2003  |  ACROSS AMERICA  |  IMPRESSIONS OF CHINA  |  VIETNAM  |  AFRICA  |  AROUND THE WORLD 2009  |  SOUTH AMERICA 2009  |  LEGENDARY CULTURES 2011
  |  TURKEY AND GREECE  |  CIRCLE THE ARCTIC

SOUTH AMERICA 12/09

Buenos Aires | Iguaza |  Mendosa | To Bariloche | Bariloche Day 1 | Bariloche Day 2 | To Ushuaia | Ushuaia
Voyage on the Beagle Day 1 | Voyage on the Beagle Day 2 | Santiago de Chile Day 1 | Santiago de Chile Day 2
Santiago to Quito | Galapagos Day 1 | Galapagos Day 2 | Galapagos Day 3
Return to Quito Day 1 | Return to Quito Day 2
(click any image to enlarge)

PREV  |  NEXT

8 December 2009 A day in Ushuaia

Ushuaia is the southern-most city in the Americas Hemisphere, and probably in the world (we don't count research stations in the Antarctic as cities). It's on an island and is the jumping off place for all the tour boats that go to the Antarctic. Years ago, on a trip around the world, I stopped in Anchorage, Alaska for a brief stay. Ushuaia reminds me of Anchorage. The part of Ushuaia we drove through on the way to the hotel has no paved roads and is dotted with homes that are rustic and in need of repair (or at least a coat of paint). Every perspective suggests a raw frontier town. Housing is out of reach for most of the people who live here and so they purchase a piece of land and build a home on it themselves. The climate is so extreme that it beats down man-made structures and so homes look neglected in a hurry. Our hotel, which has a rustic look and feel but was constructed fairly recently, is right on the Beagle Channel. Our room looks across the Channel to the mountains on the other side of the Channel. Some of the mountain peaks we can see are in Argentina while others are in Chile.

Because Ushuaia is on an island, food, as with everything else, has to be trucked in and so it is relatively expensive to live here. On the other hand, the island has natural gas wells and energy is cheap. Wages are relatively high in the area to attract permanent residents but it is very difficult for the average person to purchase a house (a standard two bedroom house would cost about $70,000 U.S., which the locals consider expensive). Talking about the food, breakfast at the hotel is, as everywhere else, a buffet. However, there are no French pastries - they have cookies for breakfast instead!

We drove to the National Park (there is not a lot of things to do here if you're not a hiker or skier). The national forest is a forest, much like any in the Mountain States of America. The most interesting part was a trip to the very end of the Pan American Highway. The Highway goes through the National Park as an all dirt road and ends at a wooden boardwalk that leads to a lake. Now that we've been to the southern end of the Pan America Highway, we'll certainly have to plan a trip to the Highway's most northerly termination point!

PREV  |  NEXT
     
Buenos Aires | Iguaza |  Mendosa | To Bariloche | Bariloche Day 1 | Bariloche Day 2 | To Ushuaia | Ushuaia
Voyage on the Beagle Day 1 | Voyage on the Beagle Day 2 | Santiago de Chile Day 1 | Santiago de Chile Day 2
Santiago to Quito | Galapagos Day 1 | Galapagos Day 2 | Galapagos Day 3
Return to Quito Day 1 | Return to Quito Day 2


HOME  |  AUSTRALIA 2003  |  ACROSS AMERICA  |  IMPRESSIONS OF CHINA  |  VIETNAM  |  AFRICA  |  AROUND THE WORLD 2009  |  SOUTH AMERICA 2009  |  LEGENDARY CULTURES 2011
  |  TURKEY AND GREECE  |  CIRCLE THE ARCTIC