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scubacruiserx2

Cruising to Antarctica and South America with many photos

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We just returned from a 22 day cruise and 9 nights pre and post cruise visit to South America . 

 

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The cruise was on the HAL Zaandam from San Antonio , Chile to Buenos Aires Argentina .

 

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We took over 10,000 photos on this trip so it will take a while to cull , download , edit and upload to Photo Bucket before writing , so please be patient . It will be mostly in chronological order and will use some photos from our previous cruises to South America .

 

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So , bags packed and ready to go ?

 

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Boarding passes ?

 

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OK , lets go .

 

 

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Our flight was on time on a 330 Airbus

 

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And after dipping our Starboard wing over Miami we were on our way .

 

 

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The view from the seat

 

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Breakfast is served and the Carb loading has started .

 

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There is a 2 hour difference between Miami and Buenos Aires

 

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We were seated in the last row of Condor Class and we noticed that a curtain of silence was pulled next to us . This was used by the flight crew . We also noticed that after take off all of the window shades were pulled down with most of the people going to sleep after breakfast .

 

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Looks like an interesting itinerary, looking forward at looking at some more of your pictures.

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16 minutes ago, Krazy Kruizers said:

Great start.

 

Looking forward to the rest.

 

Thank you , it was a great trip .

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13 minutes ago, ski ww said:

Looks like an interesting itinerary, looking forward at looking at some more of your pictures.

 

Yes it was , and we did take a lot of photos !

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6 minutes ago, cat shepard said:

Very interesting itinerary. Thank you for sharing.

 

You're welcome , we did love the itinerary and added 9 days pre and post cruise . :classic_smile: :classic_biggrin:

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It seemed like the motto for this flight was " Sleep till you're hungry , eat until you're sleepy " . But in between we found TV like this Globe Trekker on Route 40 pictured .

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And a video clip :

 

 

We hoped to be flying to El Calafate on the following day and driving on Route 40 to El Chalten and this show was a good preview . It was then time for lunch and maybe a nap .

 

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We couldn't sleep in the day and were walking around a little when we noticed that the flight crew was sharing some Mate which they offered to us .

 

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And before we knew it , we were closing in on Buenos Aries .

 

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We had a good flight to Buenos Aires and were ready to be admitted into Argentina . Upon entering we were photographed and had to use a thumbprint . We also had to have our bags X-rayed . We had hoped to exchange some dollars for pesos or use the ATM for pesos for dinner and a taxi. Well,things did not go as planned - Taxi ride, check-in and go out to dinner.  Our pre-booked taxi was nowhere to be found and we waited an hour before getting another taxi. In the meantime we tried to use the ATM - it was Sunday and the ATMs do not really work on Sunday.  We did find the National Bank and exchanged USD for AR Pesos.  We had the Airport Information try to reach our taxi company Taxi Premium, no answer, so we got  a taxi willing to take someone. We agreed on a price and then in the car told us that we also had to pay for tolls. Because of the hour wait we are now stuck in a massive traffic jam. A local soccer team had just won. Lucky us. Bumper to bumper, honking horns, yelling waving flags  and probably 8 lanes across. It took over an hour to get downtown - our driver even drove on the shoulder.

Once near our hotel, we see roads blocked off - yup, they were not letting cars into our hotel area because of the celebration of the win. Driver says our pesos are no good and wanted US dollars. Ok fine ( later we found out this is a scam. Carry a small amount in a pocket, do not show wallet with money and if they say it is not good, you say that is all you have or will they take credit card? etc. Usually they will take your pesos and definitely USD, but know the exchange).  Our driver tried to get close to the hotel and we have to schlep uphill with our luggage 3 blocks. Finally, we made  it to the Amerian Park Hotel Buenos Aires, checked-in and had half an hour before the restaurant stops serving food - after 22.00 it continues as a bar.

 

The Amerian Hotel

 

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We had hoped to eat here but it was closed when we arrived at the hotel across the street .

 

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The room with a view

 

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Eggs for breakfast ?

 

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Next : The flight to El Calafate 

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After breakfast we took a walk before boarding the plane .

 

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Bags checked and ready to go .

 

 

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An 11:30  3 hour flight further south

 

 

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A ham and cheese again and Mate tea bag , a pattern was developing

 

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Beautiful lakes ,

 

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snow capped mountains and Lenticular clouds . This is why we came here .

 

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Before boarding our flight a new wrinkle had been added . Instead of walking down a ramp into the plane you walked down 2 flights of stairs to board a bus for a ride to the plane . You boarded the plane by a ramp and the free for all for luggage space began . It seem like everybody wanted to put their bags in the front of the plane , but not where they sit . 

 

Coming in for a landing

 

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Finding our luggage was easy but once again , we had to pass it through an X-Ray machine . At our rent a car place we were told that our car had been wrecked by the wind flipping it into a tree . We were also cautioned to park facing into the wind to avoid having the doors ripped off . Welcome to Patagonia !

 

The crosswind was about 50 mph from the left ( West ) . Shots from the car with my pocket camera

 

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Guanaco alert

 

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Horses 

 

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Sheep

 

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And our hotel room 

 

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More later we're looking forward to pulling out our good cameras !

 

 

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Some shots from our Canons

 

The turn to Route 40

 

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A Rhea beside the road

 

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The clouds shadow on the hills

 

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4 hours ago, scubacruiserx2 said:

 

We had a good flight to Buenos Aires and were ready to be admitted into Argentina . Upon entering we were photographed and had to use a thumbprint . We also had to have our bags X-rayed . We had hoped to exchange some dollars for pesos or use the ATM for pesos for dinner and a taxi. Well,things did not go as planned - Taxi ride, check-in and go out to dinner.  Our pre-booked taxi was nowhere to be found and we waited an hour before getting another taxi. In the meantime we tried to use the ATM - it was Sunday and the ATMs do not really work on Sunday.  We did find the National Bank and exchanged USD for AR Pesos.  We had the Airport Information try to reach our taxi company Taxi Premium, no answer, so we got  a taxi willing to take someone. We agreed on a price and then in the car told us that we also had to pay for tolls. Because of the hour wait we are now stuck in a massive traffic jam. A local soccer team had just won. Lucky us. Bumper to bumper, honking horns, yelling waving flags  and probably 8 lanes across. It took over an hour to get downtown - our driver even drove on the shoulder.

Once near our hotel, we see roads blocked off - yup, they were not letting cars into our hotel area because of the celebration of the win. Driver says our pesos are no good and wanted US dollars. Ok fine ( later we found out this is a scam. Carry a small amount in a pocket, do not show wallet with money and if they say it is not good, you say that is all you have or will they take credit card? etc. Usually they will take your pesos and definitely USD, but know the exchange).  Our driver tried to get close to the hotel and we have to schlep uphill with our luggage 3 blocks. Finally, we made  it to the Amerian Park Hotel Buenos Aires, checked-in and had half an hour before the restaurant stops serving food - after 22.00 it continues as a bar.

When we have flown in Buenos Aires we have just used the kiosk in the terminal for transportation into the city.  Once you clear immigration and go through the doors you walk straight ahead with the ATM machines on the left and you will find a kiosk in an open area to the left.  You just walk up, pay the representative in US dollars via credit card. They will assign a taxi driver that will then walk you to his taxi and drive you to your destination.  Has worked smoothly every time we have used them.

 

Our favorite hotel is the Hilton  in the Puerto Madero area of Buenos Aires(recently redeveloped old port area, with lots of dining options)  Very safe, nice to walk around at night watching the locals rollerblading.

Edited by RDC1

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11 hours ago, RDC1 said:

When we have flown in Buenos Aires we have just used the kiosk in the terminal for transportation into the city.  Once you clear immigration and go through the doors you walk straight ahead with the ATM machines on the left and you will find a kiosk in an open area to the left.  You just walk up, pay the representative in US dollars via credit card. They will assign a taxi driver that will then walk you to his taxi and drive you to your destination.  Has worked smoothly every time we have used them.

 

Our favorite hotel is the Hilton  in the Puerto Madero area of Buenos Aires(recently redeveloped old port area, with lots of dining options)  Very safe, nice to walk around at night watching the locals rollerblading.

 

Good words to the wise .We originally booked EZE Taxi at the Kiosk , but read on CC that Premium Taxi was better and cheaper . They weren't . HAL booked a couple nights for us in the Sheraton across from the English Tower post cruise . We used a guide on our first day off of the cruise ship and she warned us not to walk around at night . The first night we went to take some photos at the English garden and a young man approached us about our camera , We thought that he wanted to take our photo , but he was warning

us about our camera possibly being stolen .

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53 minutes ago, Krazy Kruizers said:

Yes -- you do have to be careful everywhere any more.  Sad -- but that is the way life is.

 

We did receive another warning , this time from the Captain

 

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20 minutes ago, puppycanducruise said:

Wow, this is great.

Thanks for taking us along.

Wonderful pictures and info, looking forward to more!

 

You're welcome , we're glad that you can make it . :classic_smile: :classic_biggrin:

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We really preferred the open road driving and scenery to the cities

 

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More horses

 

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An Estancia and our first sighting of Mt. Fitz Roy in the center

 

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A shrine at the top of a hill

 

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Getting closer

 

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