Patagonia – The Road Less Travelled

by Louella Mcdonalid

I used to be invited to south of Chile by the Patagonian Tourism Authorities of Chile and Argentina, where I had the prospect to visit again the beautiful cities of Punta Arenas, Puerto Natales and the ever awe-inspiring Torres del Paine Nationwide Park.

I flew with Qantas Airways and LAN Airlines through Auckland and Santiago to Punta Arenas. It was such an amazing feeling to visit again the quaint town of Punta Arenas; One of the southernmost towns of Chile.

Established in 1848, initially as a tiny penal colony which grew in measurement and significance as a result of maritime trade traffic earlier than the Panama Canal was built. Afterward, the gold rush and sheep farming boom at the finish of the 1800’s gave loads of riches to the households controlling the sheep farms. The elegant French fashion buildings and houses around the principle square are testimony of the wealth these families had. Considered one of these effective houses is nowadays the Hotel Jose Nogueira.

A few days later, we boarded the Stella Australis Cruise for the most unforgettable journey by way of probably the most distant and pristine fjords of the Southern Chilean Patagonia. I had an exquisite cabin with floor to ceiling panoramic windows. With a capacity of 210 passengers, three decks, beautiful ambiance and positive dining.

Cruising via those distant Patagonian fjords and the view of the 5 glaciers coming down from the Sarmiento Mountains will keep imprinted in my memory for the rest of my life. The sense of remoteness inside these channels with dense forests, snowcapped mountains, no human settlements wherever and the pure air was just what I needed to recover from the stress of my hectic life within the city.

We disembarked in the beautiful town of Puerto Natales and Antarctic explorer’s voyage continued by bus to the Rio Serrano space, some of the scenic elements of Torres del Paine National Park, the place we had a scrumptious BBQ lunch. I, then continued to Cascada Eco-Camp where I stayed in one of the Suite Domes. A luxurious Eco-Camp inspired by the dwellings of the extinct Kaweskar nomadic seafarers who devised domed huts to resist the winds which can attain 160 Kms per hour.

I used to be lucky to have very sunny days with clear skies, crisp contemporary air with some leftover snow from the winter. My view of the towers was just awesome. The ornament and services of the domes with its green expertise, the guided treks and waking up in the course of the Patagonian wilderness was another one of many many highlights this remote a part of the world has.

Patagonia is no doubt one of the most distinctive places I have ever visited in my life… This place retains drawing me to go back there and for me it is perhaps that stark and marked combination of uncooked, pristine pure magnificence and the kindness of its people who welcome you with a easy however individualable hospitality that makes you need to go back there again, and again…