El Calafate and Ushuaia are two incredibly beautiful cities in the South of Argentina.
Getting there tends to be expensive for reasons of distance, so we always recommend combining both cities, taking advantage of the efficient flight connections offered by Aerolíneas Argentinas and LAN.
For a first visit, we believe that 3 nights in El Calafate and 4 nights in Ushuaia will allow for knowing the renowned places of each city and will leave you wanting for a next stay.
Talk about this city brings us directly to talk about glaciers, and here the Perito Moreno Glacier is one of the most famous.
We can access to this glacier after travelling 85 km by route 11, but we suggest hiring any of the tours offered by the travel agencies in the city.
We recommend doing minitrekking. A van will transport us from our hotel to the port “Bajo de las sombras”, where we will get on board to cross one arm of the Argentino Lake, appreciating the south wall of the glacier.
Once ashore, we will walk few meters until where the ice begins. Using crampons will allow us to walk across the glacier. Hundreds of images will be recorded in our retinas: peaks, riverbeds, drains, caves and cliffs, everything painted in colors from pure white to the most wonderful turquoise.
Once completed the walk, guides will surprise you with a surprise J
It does not matter your age for this activity; it only requires a minimum physical condition to climb an easy slope which, following guide’s advices, does not imply any risk.
On the way back, the same van will take us to the traditional footbridges which allow us to see the Moreno Glacier in its entirety.
For another day we recommend hiring the lacustrine excursion that will take us to visit several glaciers (Moreno, Uppsala, Spegazzini, Oneill, Mayo and Ameghino) along an unforgettable day aboard a catamaran that will set sail from the Bandera Port.
Without a doubt, its Majesty the Uppsala Glacier (the largest in terms of area) makes off with all the praises.
Throughout the third day, we can go out for a walk around the city, visit the Nimez Lake, know the Walichu Cave or make a horseback ride around the Roca Lake.
As “must-see” places we can name:
The Maritime Museum (in the Ex Presidio): beautiful places to know the history of the prison where some of the most famous prisoners of the country were housed (such as Enano Orejudo) or to learn stories of the southernmost city in the world.
Sailing the Beagle Channel: we do not recommend the catamaran tour; we insist on sailing in a small boat because it will allow to experience a good approach of the surrounding natural environment –getting really close to Sea Lions Island, Les Eclaireurs lighthouse and Birds Island– and it will allow us to land at some island (for example, Bridges Island), getting the best postcard of the city from the other side of the channel.
Martial Glacier ascent: we can access to the top through the chair lift; we will enjoy stunning panoramic views, with the city and the Beagle Channel as a framework.
Visiting Escondido and Fagnano Lakes and Tolhuin: the recommendation is to rent a car to be able to go over the national route 3 to Tolhuin (the third largest city of Tierra del Fuego). Throughout the road, there are these two beautiful lakes, one of the must-do activities when touring Ushuaia. Once in Tolhuin, we will know a small town strongly marked by migration roots. You must taste delicious products from La Unión bakery.
The Train of the End of the World: we suggest hiring only one way tickets. Along its road, we will see extremely beautiful and unprecedented landscapes, with peat bogs, forests, rivers, waterfalls, mountains… A true paradise!! Once we get off the train, we will walk around same sectors of the Black Lagoon until arrive at Lapataia Bay, the last point of national route 3 and a great final touch for our tour. Being there we will make reality the phrase “listen to the silence”. A van will return us to our hotel for a well-deserved rest.
If we talk about accommodation, these are two cities where the offer is varied and wonderful, but as always, we will recommend the ones which combine good rest with exceptional services.
In El Calafate, our choice is Posada Los Álamos Hotel, located just two blocks from the main street and with excellent services.
In Ushuaia, we chose Los Cauquenes Resort & Spa, because it amazed us with their service and warmth but especially with its incredible views of the Beagle Channel.
Two different cities, two complementary natural wonders but with many similarities, because they amaze us with its landscapes and fascinating experiences.
Travelling enriches our soul