Getting There - Aneel's Travelogue

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To Ushuaia Ushuaia, Argentina, Wednesday, 02 March 2005 10:15pm

Tierra del Fuego is jaw-droppingly beautiful. The flight over was amazing. I try to avoid taking pictures out of airline windows, because the results always seem disappointing, but I couldn't resist.

Ushuaia is a cool little city — very picturesque in a dusty-roads-and-little-houses-in-a-gorgeous-setting kind of way. The downtown tourist area is a little much, but it's not too far a walk before you get to a more peaceful part of town.

I almost stayed in a youth hostel (it was pretty nice, and in a beautiful area), but I came to my senses. There's no way I'm up to being social enough to deal with dorming with a room full of strangers.

Instead, I'm staying at a nice little guest house. The only room they had was a matrimonial (a room for two people with only one bed, as opposed to a doble, which has two twin-sized beds), which seems a little wasted on just me, but it has a great view of the channel and a 20ft ceiling... on one side. The roof is steeply pitched, so it's only about 8ft on the other.

I spent most of the day wandering around. I've got some blisters that indicate that I didn't really finish breaking in these boots before I left, but I did get to see a lot of the city.

My favorite place so far is the Parque Paseo del Centenario, a hillside park near the causeway that leads to the airport. It has great views of the Channel and some beautiful trees and flowers.

I've scheduled a trip out on the Channel on a sailboat tomorrow. I asked a few places about visiting Cape Horn, but all of the voyages out there take 6-10days and the ones that aren't hideously expensive are looking for crew, not passengers. I imagine I could pick up sailing, but the notoriously difficult trip around the Cape doesn't sound like the right way to start. And I don't have 6-10days here anyway. Ah, well. Another time.

I had a very tasty dinner of lamb (Tierra del Fuego is famous for its sheep, after all) at a place on the main drag (Bodegon Fueguino, San Martin 859 (02901) 431972) and tried the first local microbrew I've encountered in Latin America. It's called Beagle and hails from Ushuaia itself. I had the "Negro", which is a pretty good porter.

I found a few new flavors of Tang, so I'm trying those instead of sodas. The Naranja-Pomelo-Limon has the same odd tartness as the Pomelo soda, so perhaps that is the distinctive flavor of Pomelos.