Tierra Del Fuego is an archipelago in the southernmost tip of South America, formed by the main island an several small islands. It is separated from the continent by the Strait of Magellan and Cape Horn at the end. That is also the name of the park, because when the ships sailed they saw spots of light from the fire made by the Yámanas, the local residents in the 19thcentury.
It is 12 km from Ushuaia and passes by LAPATAIA BAY, where there is the famous sign with the distance to Alaska and Buenos Aires. There are camping sites, but they did not seem pleasant due to the humidity. The higher temperature in the summer is 10°. You can handle the cold, but it gets complicated with the humidity.
The park has six trails; we did one and went canoeing in the bay. At lunch we had a picnic with fruit, cheese, Argentinean wine and chocolate. The only problem was the sequence of tours – first canoeing, then wine followed by trekking! I have never felt so sleepy on a trail. Only the animals along the way helped me stay awake, like birds, hares and the grey fox, which was pretty cool: it came out of the trees, stopped and stared at us, quietly and yawning. After we took lots of pictures, we all went our own way.
The boat ride was very beautiful, the weather helped (if it were windy it may have been canceled), the lagoon looked like a mirror reflecting the mountains. Some got canoes for two and I was on the boat for 4. We got stuck on a very shallow area, really hard to move; we had to push with the oars. It would be easy if one of us got out of the boat and pushed, but no one wanted to wet their feet in the freezing cold water. We were wearing a special water-repellent outfit; when it was over and I got undressed and my body was soaking wet from the exercise.
Canadian beavers and European hares were introduced in the park for economical reasons, to provide the local residents with fur and food, but this was harmful to the ecosystem. The beavers are now hunted because they do not have predators and ruin the local vegetation. They are engineers; they build perfect dams to store water but destroy the trees. And the hares devoured the local hares, which were quite bigger.
Across the parking lot is the post office from the end of the world. Get your passport stamped.
POST OFFICE it is the most beautiful stamp and costs $6.
Take ADRESSES from people you want to send a postcard with the stamp of the end of the world; there are different postcards for sale. Bring some postcards with you and use only the service to save money.
Translated by Lúcia Maciel
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