Explorations of Tierra del Fuego Province in Argentina
Tierra del Fuego is the southernmost province of the large, long and narrow country of Argentina. Although the province has some territory in Antarctica, every main area of habitation is within a big island partly shared by Chile. To my surprise, I found out you cannot stay in Argentina while driving to Tierra del Fuego without going through part of Chile.
The flight from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia was over three hours long. We started our trip by staying a few nights here. After coming from a grand city like Buenos Aires, it’s tempting to call this place a town, but it’s not and here’s why. Ushuaia has all the main amenities, including its own mall, restaurants that are open late, and a population count of nearly 100,000. Yes, it’s barely a city to some. They have branded themselves as the official “Fin del Mundo,” or “End of the World” translated into English. It is referred to as the southernmost city on earth. Some have made the argument that Chile has them beaten with Puerto Williams. I disagree. Puerto Williams is a town of less than 3,000 people, the size of a big campground. I think, for now, Ushuaia can keep its title until Puerto Williams matures into something more. Sorry Chile.
I don’t know if Ushuaia has their own soccer team, but I did learn they have some distorted version of hockey. The name of their “hockey” didn’t stick well enough to remember. It’s basically golf, less some rules and bigger balls. So it’s not hockey.
While in Tierra del Fuego, I didn’t eat any seafood, although there is plenty here. I had empanadas, asado, pizza, lamb, and the most amazing pasta I’ve ever tried. I met a guy, basically Italian, who works in a pasta house called “Madonna!” in Río Grande. For one of our dinners, we had three different kinds of pasta. One interesting but delicious flavour was pumpkin with mozzarella. However, the salmon type was my favourite. After three or four rounds of pasta, bread, and drinks, I was full and happy.
Río Grande was beautiful in its own way. It’s without mountains, next to the Atlantic Ocean, and extremely windy. Tolhuin is small, has a gas station, and a spot to get hot water for mate. Ushuaia is cold, surrounded by mountains, and sits on the shore of the Beagle Channel. I’m glad I had the blessing of going with a friend who’s been here several times before. If I can visit again, I’d like to chat with the famous penguinos!