Day 1 |
Feb 25, 2009

Ushuaia, Argentina

By Chris Edwards

Weather: Sunny, windy in the afternoon

Air Temperature: 15°C

Our flight from Buenos Aires arrived on time. After loading the coaches, we departed with our guides for the drive to Tierra del Fuego National Park, which lies a few kilometres west of the rapidly expanding city of Ushuaia. Entrance formalities to the park were minimal, and our arrival at Baia Ensenada on the shores of the Beagle Channel was met with warm sunshine, although perhaps not quite as warm as Buenos Aires!

A brief walk along the shoreline in the Sub-Antarctic Nothofagus (Southern Beech) forest revealed the beauty of this splendid habitat, and several species of birds that included kelp geese and blue-eyed cormorants.

Next, we descended to the Patagonia Mia restaurant for a pleasant lunch before re-boarding the coaches for the trip back into Ushuaia. Upon arrival, some time was made available to explore the town and its bustling main thoroughfare of San Martin before passing through security at the quayside prior to our voyage home.

By this time, the winds in the Beagle Channel had increased. However, after passport formalities were completed, tickets were quickly processed and guests were shown to their staterooms, we had an opportunity to explore the Prince Albert II.

During the late-afternoon, an important safety briefing was provided on board the vessel by the Safety Officer, and an introduction to the Expedition Staff was hosted by the Expedition Leader, Ignacio Rojas.

As the long day, which had started for most guests at 4 a.m. in Buenos Aires, gently drew to a close with a sumptuous dinner, the ship departed for Puerto Williams across the Beagle Channel in Chile to collect our Chilean pilots for the expedition northward.