Firstly – it was as its name denotes – brief. Which was a relief. I was predicting name tags, there truths one lie, human knots..the teachers out there will know what I mean.
The only ice breaker I want to experience is the one I am travelling in!!!!
We did get to meet / see some of our travelling companions. Texas, Chicago, Holland, England…a mix of nationalities.
We also realised that the first two days of our 15 day tour are not on the boat. There was today – in the hotel (albeit sensational!), then tomorrow is getting on the boat logistics which seem to go from 3.00 – 5.00 pm.
We received luggage tags and our cabin number. And were reminded of the three essential things to have one us as we embark: passport, flight details and carry on luggage.
Wow..too may experiences for one person to absorb!!! I feel like I have already had my adventure holiday yet technically it hasn’t started yet!
We arrived at the beautiful spa resort and immediately had a walk around. The lake / entrance to Beagle Channel is so divine. All around it are snow capped mountains which must take your breath away when covered with snow in Winter. The pebbled shore of the lake is great. I am not sure but it seems as if a lot of the stones are slate?
There is a lot of building development going on which appears to be high end holiday houses / chalets. Although oozing with wealth the whole area is very beautiful and the architectural styles of stone, wood and glass seem appropriate.
I capped off this very pleasant morning with a delightful club sandwich and espresso thinking I could get used to this Argentinian Aspen lifestyle!
Of course we had booked in a much needed massage after the long hauls and delays aplenty. A swim / float in the pool, a jacuzzi whirl, followed by a lie / sleep in the heated relaxation room ( all overlooking the lake); lead nicely into a massage.
What flight delays?
After having woken up with the sun at 5.30, my 8.45 wake up came with a stuffy headache. Along with being surprised at the warm weather, we were also surprised at the hot stuffy room. Luckily we could open the windows – but I still woke up feeling very stuffy headed ( and almost ill).
We had a homestyle buffet breakfast of home – cooked bread and cornflakes. The lounge / dining room is very quaint with large windows and a high wooded ceiling all to continue the chalet theme. I imagine it would be very cosy when all is covered in snow. I would love to see the whole town covered in snow.
Reminder: Take photos next time we are there
Maria called a taxi for us and we took us without drama to the beautiful spa resort of Los Cauquenes. This is where Peregrine has booked us in for our first night.
This is the view from the lobby reading area.
After checking in we walked around a bit of the lake.
Surprise: The sun was very warm so we had some time lazing in the sun. There were sunbathers on the deck outside the pool.
The lake is truly beautiful, protected, calm and very relaxing. We saw some horses and followed a horse trail for a while. Other than that though – only a few groups of larger sea birds.
( having trouble loading pic so will post this and edit later…)
After delays and then nearly missing all connections – we finally arrived in Ushuaia. A beautifully designed chalet inspired airport greeted us with its wood and glass.
This homely theme continued to the airport lobby where we were cheerfully helped in finding a medium priced B&B to stay in for the night. With a leap of faith we caught taxi to La Casa de Terra.
The taxi took us up winding roads laden with little chalet inspired houses which appeared to have been crafted out of whatever they could find. Our cute little accommodation didn’t disappoint us. So much so that we have re-booked with Maria for our night when we return from Antarctica. We had a clean room, towels, soap, wifi and free access to a kitchen if we wanted to cook. Ha! No chance of that!
We went into town for dinner. After wandering around the same winding roads we ended up at a little trattoria for dinner. I had a yummy King Crab with Rice meal. A pleasant walk back, shower and a deep sleep.
Surprises: no touts at the airport, warm weather, little car / people/ dogs noise at night
Dissapointments: forgot to take photos
Have seen many and spent long hours in queues.
Auckland had the very endearing note next to not yet boarding flights which read ” relax” .
Mayhem at Santiago which involved many queues and visits to various airline offices which of course resulted in nothing! We missed all of our connecting flights and a long queue revealed to us that LAN does not communicate with Aerolineas Argentinas. So we had to overnight at the holiday inn. We missed our connections on two flights. It is lucky that we had planned to arrive in Ushuaia a day early as we almost needed that extra day to get there. As it turns out we will make it in time.
We now need to find some accommodation for one night in Ushuaia before we meet the Peregrine tour. I am expecting that there will be many touts at the airport so I feel that we need to be a little informed before we meet with the storm.
But are now almost there.
Got here in one piece. Waiting at transfer table to get the connecting flight. The flight board said”relax” for our flight. Obviously not boarding yet. Nice. Tried to watch the movie “gravity” but it was so bad that I chose sleep instead.
First delay!!!! 9 hours….now I’m travelling!!!!
We have got a hotel till midnight in Auckland. 👏
The adventure has really begun.
All packed. Hugs and tears have been shed. Farewell iceberg cake has been eaten. There’s no turning back now! Let the adventure begin!