Buenos Aires

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SAM_3861Courtesy of our host we spent a leisurely week in Buenos Aires. The weather was a delightful contrast to at times sunny but unpredictably changeable and prone to wind and rain Ushuaia :-) One of the places we enjoyed most was Caminito, a charming, mainly pedestrian area comprising just a few streets full of crumbling colourful houses located near the famous Boca Juniors team stadium. One of the greatest football players of all time, also know for the ‘Hand of God’, used to play here when he was younger.

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Unfortunately for Mateusz, on this occasion Diego Maradona was unavailable to give an autograph :-(

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SAM_3831Cementerio de la Recoleta, seen from the bird’s eye view. To be exact from the third floor shopping mall’s view. Evita Peron’s grave may not be the most impressive one but certainly one of the easiest to find. You just need to follow other tourists. On the next photo you can see nine lanes wide Avenida 9 de Julio, which according to porteños (people living in Buenos Aires) is the widest street in the world. Not everyone agrees with that title but no doubt it takes many pedestrian crossings to get to the other side of the avenue.

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Double rainbow is not a guaranteed sight in Buenos Aires. For us it was included in the price of the walking tour.

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You’ll never find it if you don’t know where to look for it. A house built on the roof of another house.

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SAM_3917The Congressional Palace, one of the most beautiful buildings in Buenos Aires, closed for many years during the dictatorship. To the right, almost 70 metres high Obelisco de Buenos Aires, iconic monument built at incredible speed in a month’s time in 1936. People gather here to celebrate victories of national football team, take parts in concerts, organise parades or political demonstrations.

At the end of the world in Ushuaia

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It took us four months of travelling through Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile and Argentina to reach Ushuaia, a place that boasts the titles of ‘the end of the world’ and ‘the southernmost city in the world’. Arriving there was kind of a milestone in our journey. From that point we headed north and felt like slowly going back home.

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It was January when we visited Ushuaia which means summer in this part of the world and beautiful weather during the day.

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Although sunshine does not last forever here and the weather can truly change in an instant.

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Another photo taken in this iconic touristic spot that all travellers coming to Ushuaia have to visit. It’s only a few hours difference between the shots but this time we had to endure wind, rain and clouds.

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Perito Moreno Glacier

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Few days after Christmas we hired a car to see one of the most spectacular sights in South America.

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It may seem small from the distance but this giant glacier has the area of more than 250 square kilometres.

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To fully appreciate this Patagonian monster we took a boat cruise that took us really close to the glacier.

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Some of these enormous chunks of ice are over 70 metres high.

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Another way to see Perito Moreno is to walk on the decking that allows you to admire the glacier from a different angle.

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And if you ask Mateusz, it was very cold that day :-)

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Although Ania thought differently, proudly showing off her baby bump :-)

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The last final glimpse of this natural wonder…

 

El Chalten

SAM_3285 SAM_3286We arrived in El Chalten completely exhausted after our first near 23 hours bus ride from Esquel which cost us $400! Not easy to travel on the budget in Argentina! At least Mount Fitz Roy, the very reason we travelled to this place, was kind to us showing its summit shortly after we got there.

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SAM_3288 As it was December, which means summer in this part of the world, we could enjoy daylight and beautiful sunset long after 10pm.   SAM_3295 SAM_3304And that’s how we started Christmas Eve last year. First with a trek to this scenic waterfall and then, courtesy of a German family who responded to our shy hitchhiking attempts, a drive to this gorgeous uninhabited place that we literally had only for ourselves.   SAM_3309

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And that’s how we ended Christmas Eve! With a bit of raw porridge, cocoa powder and a traditional Argentinian Christmas cake in a half-deserted hospital in El Calafate after long two hours journey in an ambulance. But I guess you know this part from our previous post.

Cerro Campanario and Bariloche

SAM_3227This is one the many amazing views you will get from Cerro Campanario near Bariloche.

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It has been rated by National Geographic as one of the best panoramic views in the world and it’s hard not to agree.

SAM_3223To get there you can either take a chairlift which costs $50 for a family of three…

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or hike up the hill for free! It only takes half an hour. We decided to do it on the budget :-)

Bariloche itself can as well reward you with great views…

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this photo of city center and Lago Nahuel Huapi was taken from our room.

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We rarely recommend hostels but this time we’ll make an exception as this is the only place with guaranteed 10th floor images on your camera!

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It’s called Hostel 1004 and you’ll be glad you stayed there!

 

San Martin de Los Andes

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SAM_3174Failing miserably to climb an active volcano in Chile, this time we decided to take it much easier :-) We started with Mirador Bandurrias located a short walk from San Martin de Los Andes. It is only 800 metres high and awards you with a beautiful view of Lago Lacar. No crampons or other equipment required and no snow on the way to the top :-)

SAM_3198Encouraged by the success, the following day we decided to tackle another summit. This time 1778 metres high Cerro Colorado. It took us good few hours and the higher we got the more clothes we had to put on but when we made it to the top we knew it was worth it! And we also found out why they call it Red Mountain!

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At the foot of Aconcagua

Located at 2,740 metres, Puente del Inca near Mendoza is the name of the village, hot springs and a natural wonder that you can see behind us. Because of its proximity it is also a starting point to all these brave, courageous and fit people who plan to conquer Aconcagua, the highest peak on Western and Southern Hemisphere.

Well, on this occasion we were not that adventurous. Although allegedly technically easy to climb, almost 7km of altitude was a challenge definitely not for us. It was even hard to get a glimpse of the summit, shrouded in thick clouds for the entire afternoon. To make it worse, our egg mayo sandwiches came under a massive ant attack :-)

Luckily, when we came back the following morning we got rewarded by the cloudless sky and beautiful, majestic view of the mountain.

Bodega Catena Zapata

Yay, we’re going to taste some wines today :-)

And this is the place where it starts…

When the grapes are ripe…(not these, of course)

They are placed in these massive stainless-steel tanks…

While the best stuff ends up in French oak barrels…

Catena Zapata, the ultimate vino argentino!

So many bottles to choose from…

How about this one? Can I drink it now? :-)

At last! Now we can try it!

Is it the wine or can we really see the Andes behind the clouds? :-)

And all of it because of Pablo! We hope that very soon he’ll be in charge of this place!

Wonderful News

Dear Friends! We would like to share great news with you! Yes, you guessed it right! We’ll be having a baby! We started our journey as a family of three and it will be four of us when we come back to London next year!

Please do keep your fingers crossed and pray for our baby! It looked very serious on Christmas Eve, which we spent in the hospital. Luckily, after few days of rest in El Calafate, today’s examination reassured us that our precious gift is safe and sound. Our little one has 12 weeks and one day and measures 56.1 mm. It will be born in Bolivia, a month before our return to England.

Radosna Nowina

Kochani! Chcielibysmy sie z Wami podzielic bardzo radosna nowina! Zaczelismy podrozowanie w trojke, a wrocimy w czworke! Tak! To prawda! Spodziewamy sie nowego dzieciatka w naszej rodzinie! Dziecie poczelo sie w Peru! W szczegoly nie bedziemy sie wdawac – przeciez wiecie jak to sie robi :-)

Trzymajcie kciuki i modlcie sie za nas aby nasze malenstwo zdrowo sie rozwijalo. Sprawa wygladala bardzo powaznie w Wigilie Bozego Narodzenia, ktora musielismy spedzic w szpitalu! Na szczescie po kilku dniach przymusowego odpoczynku w El Calafate, dzisiejsze badanie kontrolne potwierdzilo, ze wszystko z naszym malenstwem jest w porzadku! Dzidzius ma 12 tygodni i jeden dzien oraz mierzy 56.1  mm. Urodzi sie w Boliwii na miesiac przed naszym powrotem do Londynu.