Antarctica Update, Day 1 Ushuaia

It's going to be a very busy couple of weeks as we sail to Antarctica, but we are going to try to give you micro updates each day to let you know how things are going.

We arrived in Ushuaia on a beautiful sunny afternoon at 6:30 pm. The sun goes down late here and as we left our hotel room for dinner, we were surprised to see that it was already 8:30 pm!  The sun was still shining bright over the town.

view of ushuaia

View from our Hotel Room Window

The weather isn't as cold as we imagined it to be. We were cozy and warm with our new Roots hoodies and stayed warm as we watched the ships come in on Beagle harbour. We even caught a helicopter flying overhead.

For Roots Clothing and Gear of your own, check out their online shopping.

It was already getting late so we ate at the first place we founds, a very touristy restaurant on the waterfront. It was filled with cruisers from all over the world. We watched ships come in from Antarctica and were excited to think that in 2 short days, we'd be on one of them

Prices aren't cheap in Ushuaia. 

Ushuaia is an isolated city at the bottom of South America and we assume that a lot of produce has to be shipped in. We are staying at a basic hotel but the cost is $115 per night. We hear that hostels start at about $60 but since we had some leftover Expedia coupons we decided to splurge on a nicer place. We have hot water, wifi internet and breakfast is included at the Hosteria Bella Vista. It's really only worth about $40 to look at it, but here in Ushuaia, we're paying $115.

It is 4 km from downtown so we have to take a taxi or grab a bus.

  • The bus is frequent and close to our place though and it only costs about 50cents. (2.75 pesos)
  • A taxi cost us 22.50 Pesos (about $5.50) – Note: Taxi's are metered so you don't have to worry about negotiating.

Dinner was expensive and comparable to Canadian prices. We were famished and impatient so we went to the first restaurant that we saw as we walked along the boardwalk of Beagle Channel. It was filled with tourists and probably overpriced, but it was a treat to look out over the water for the first night of our Antarctica adventure. We thought that the prices were inflated because we went to probably the most touristy restaurant in town, but as we looked at the menus of other places we saw that they all charge about the same amounts.

Dave had a steak with potatoes and mushroom gravy for 90 pesos ($20) and I had a chicken dinner for 55 pesos ($12) Wine is around 70 pesos per bottle.($15)

ushuaia_argentina_tierra_de_fuega

The Sun Still setting at 10:00 pm

We topped off the night at an Irish Pub (where we drank Argentinian wine instead of beer) and to our surprise travel blogger extraordinaire came walking in. We knew he was in Antarctica but we didn't expect him for another day. He had a smooth Drake Passage crossing on the way back so arrived in Ushuaia a day early. Seeing the excitement in his eyes as we looked at his photos from Antarctica made us even more excited to get on the boat. It's a photographers playground and we can't wait to share the experience with everyone.

So that's what we've got for our so far. Food, drink and transportation and a night cap with a fellow traveling spirit, swapping stories and gaining excitement for the year ahead. Stay tuned for more micro updates from Antarctica!

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