25 Feb 2017
We spent a day in Punta Del Este, Uruguay, which is called the Saint Tropez of South America. It is resplendent with fancy yachts, shops and people.
We opted for a boat ride to Sea Wolves Island because over 200,000 sea lions live here. We can always see yachts at home.
Back at the pier, two of them were just hanging around.
The next day Allyn went bike riding in Montevideo and I walked around.
20 Feb 2017
Lucky for me, the weather didn’t permit our ship to stop at Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands. Instead, the captain decided to make an unscheduled stop at Puerto Madryn, Argentina where Southern Right Whales, the world's largest mammal, migrate to breed from May to December. So what’s a girl to do in February?
My Barry found a company, Patagonian Divers, that would pick me up and drive me about an hour to Península Valdés, a Patagonian nature reserve that was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999. A cruise friend joined me for the adventure.
Driving inside the protected area, I saw magnificent indigenous species such as the rhea (a relative of the African ostrich) and the guanaco (related to the llama).
And that was just to whet my appetite on the WAY to the main adventure which was SNORKELING with sea lions!!!! We arrived at their shop, suited up and headed to the boat. After twenty minutes of sailing, we dove into the water in search of our marine friends. Then the magic began!
Being that close with nature is heaven on earth to me. The sea lions swam around me as I tried to follow closely. Pure bliss.
If that weren’t enough, sailing back, we happened upon some young Magellanic penguins. I will remember this magical day forever.
18 Feb 2017
Ushuaia is the southernmost city of the world; nickname bottom of the world. Just being here is pretty interesting. There is much to do here and a trip around Beagle Channel is one of the best.
The world famouse Les Esclaires Lighthouse is featured on many postcards and travel brochures about these parts.
We saw no beagles. It is named after HMS Beagle, Charles Darwin’s boat used for his research here almost 200 years ago. There were certainly plenty of penguins and sea lions though.
I took my one selfie of the year from our balcony wearing my once a year sweater which is almost always too warm.
15 Feb 2017
It was just 1964 when nautical directions changed to "port” and “starboard” from “left” and ”right”.
That is when the Santa Leonara, on her maiden voyage, was wrecked.
The pilot and the captain were speaking and the captain signed off saying “Alright pilot.”
The helmsman thought that was an order and applied full right (starboard) rudder. Oops.
No lives were lost. The passengers were rescued the next day.
Since then all directions on the ship are given as ‘starboard’ (right) and ‘port’ (left).
12 Feb 2017
Always looking for a thrill, Allyn dragged me to The Petrohue River for a white water rafting trip.
I must admit the scenery was terrific and the experience certainly exhilarating. After 10 kilometers and many class 3 rapids, I was thoroughly drenched, but happy I went along.