SOUTH AMERICA: A GREAT TRAVEL ADVENTURE by Marsha Theis

Posted by: Kathy Harmon on 10/5/2010

In response to the travel blog from southern Europe and the Sahara the Deters gave us last week,  I have received e-mails from other friends about their favorite travel destinations.  Marsha and I have known each other since we were 13.  She is a dear friend and a real travel buff.  Marsha and her husband, Paul, are fearless adventurers and, I suspect, enjoy the planning beforehand and the reminiscing upon their return as much as the trip itself.  Here she tells us about a walking, sailing, touring combination they put together for a trip through South America. 

 

My husband and I love to travel.  It is expensive and time is precious so we plan carefully.  We order travel company brochures, browse the travel section at the library and surf the web.  We travel as frequently as our schedules allow.  One of my favorite excursions was to Argentina and Chile. We wanted to go to Buenos Aires, see the Patagonian landscape, and travel by small boat around Cape Horn.  We decided to spend some time in Buenos Aires on our own and spent time with a tour group


We loved South America.  Buenos Aires is extremely European in its architecture with lovely buildings and wide streets.  The city is divided into distinctive areas.  One is San Telmo with a huge flea market and antique sale every Sunday.  We spent an entire day watching couples doing the tango, mimes, men on stilts, and browsed hundreds of small booths filled with crafts, antiques and eating great food cooked in tiny stalls.

Then we were off to Patagonia which is the southern part of Argentina and Chile.  The landscape is breathtaking.  We saw the Perito Merino glacier, which is so huge that it holds one third of the world’s fresh water supply!  We hiked through the Torres del Paine mountain area in Chile.  The climate in this area of Chile is notoriously variable and the views of the mountains change continually.  Sometimes they are draped in clouds, sometimes bathed in sun or you might find yourself suddenly bracing against huge gusts of wind.    

In Chile we boarded a small ship that accommodates 120 passengers which sailed us around Cape Horn.  The water around Cape Horn is the roughest in the world with hundreds of ships having gone down in last few hundred years.  I can only imagine what it was like to be the first seamen to successfully navigate around the cape.  We found it thrilling. The ship stopped at Tucker Island where we were greeted by penguins, sea elephants, dolphins, South American flamingos, condors and an amazing collections of unusual birds.  In the photo below our ship is on the left.  It is one of the tiny specs a few hundred feet from the shoreline.   With only 120 passengers our little ship was able to sail much closer to the gkacier and gave us some unbelievable photo opportunities. 

We found South America to be quite inexpensive.  We had a wonderful hotel room in central Buenos Aires that came with a buffet breakfast for $112.00 (US dollars) per night.  Restaurant food was reasonable.  A person could eat a full meal for $10.00 to $15.00 (US dollars).  Wine enthusiasts know that Argentina and Chile have developed some very good wines.  Local wines are excellent and reasonably priced between five and six dollars a bottle.  South America was everything we had hoped it would be – amazing scenery, intriguing wild life and great food.  For your next adventure we highly recommend it!

Marsha Theis

Owner/Creator 

“Marsha Very Wearable Art”

A clothing line that is both whimsical and beautiful

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