Sunday, October 17, 2010

25th September 2010 - 18th October 2010 - Buenos Aires & Patagonia

El fin del mundo

It’s the end of our trip… sigh… so what better place to go than Patagonia also known as “el fin del mundo” or “the end of the world”. However before I delve into what has to be one of the most stunning places on this planet I want to talk about our time in Buenos Aires also known as “the land of steak!” (our own name).

As mentioned before Buenos Aires is known for it’s steak and it is definitely a worthy reputation. You haven’t eaten steak until you’ve eaten steak in this city! There is more to Buenos Aires besides steak, there is also history and great museums although we didn’t really experience much of that in our time here as we pretty much just ate steak… and shopped… and avoided copious amounts of dog shit. In writing this we have just returned from the boutiques with another 2 pairs of shoes for Sheena and a pair of jeans of me, that’s to go on top of the 2 other pairs of shoes Sheena bought the other day and the jeans, and the leather jacked I was forced to purchase for myself. This is very much a good shopping city.. I can’t believe I’m blogging about shopping…

Cafes and bars of Buenos Aires

I really like the passion of this city, which probably stems from the mass immigration of Italians a long time ago. The people here are almost more European rather than Sth American. They have a love for football like no other and their obsession for tango and opera is conveyed every where you go. Most of all I like the artistic vibe which flourishes in the artesian markets and really creative street art that is scattered throughout regions like San Telmo and La Boca.

La Boca houses - stay in the tourist zone or be mugged!

Cool street art in San Telmo, Buenos Aires

Patagonia on the other hand is all about natural beauty. From the moment we landed in Ushuaia (the most southern city of Argentina) we knew that this was going to be a very special place. The best way to imagine Patagonia is to take the glaciers and snow capped peaks of the Himalayas and plonk them down at sea level on the coast next to placid lakes and bright green forests inhabited by pumas, birds and many other types of wildlife. It truly is amazing and no photograph I have taken will ever give justice to this place.

Ushuaia is a working port

Sheena’s great of idea of going husky riding was fantastic. It was just so much fun and the dogs were really cute of course. I loved the fact that in the moments leading up to setting off, all the dogs get so excited and start barking and jumping around in anticipation as they are so eager to get running!

Beautiful Husky

Huskys eager to go!

We left Ushuaia on a 3 night cruise that went down to Cape Horn and then back up through the Magellan Strait stopping at glaciers, bays, and islands along the way. It was a great experience (worth all the money) and we met some cool Germans along the way whom we met up with again in Buenos Aires (Germans are everywhere!!!).

Our ship down in Wulaia Bay

Riding zodiacs to glaciers

Riding in the zodiacs through ice

Our ship

Magellanic Penguins

After the cruise we headed for Torres del Paine national park, which for me was the most spectacular place of all Patagonia. You kind of feel like you’re in Lord of the Rings or something when you’re trekking around with towers looming over the top of you and next to turquoise lakes and fluorescent green forests. We spent 3 days trekking and even got caught up in a massive blizzard getting soaked to the bone and frozen. The weather becomes ferocious when it wants to, one minute it’s bright sunshine and the next you’re having trouble standing on your own two feet!


We ended Patagonia with a visit to the massive Perito Moreno glacier which was amazing before heading back up to Buenos Aires where we have been for the remainder of our time.

Perito Moreno Glacier

So now it’s time to go home and it feels weird. We’re kind of looking forward to some stability but I don’t think that will last long. The thought of reality is not as appealing as gallivanting around the globe but such is life. We do very much however look forward to seeing all our friends and family as we do miss them a lot! Plus Sheenas credit card is tired and needs a break.

I hope those of you who have read this have found it interesting… It’s been a long and tiring journey and I couldn’t have done it without my special companion J so I’d like to say a big thank you to my Ipod! (Sheena wasn’t too bad for the odd conversation either).

Time for one last steak!

See you soon!

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