Friday, September 12, 2008

Punta Arenas Chile

After a connection in Santiago, Chile, we have arrived in Punta Arenas, Chile, the southernmost city in the world. We will be here long enough to collect our extreme cold weather gear and then will sail past the tip of South America to Antarctica.

Punta Arenas is a grand place with beautiful Spanish architecture and exploration history dripping from the street lights. Ernest Shackleton reached Punta Arenas and 1916 and it was from here that he launched his successful rescue attempts to Elephant Island.

There is an impressive monument in the central square and, according to legend, rubbing the toe of the one of the figures on the base of the statue is said to bring calm seas in the Drake Passage - the open water beyond Cape Horn that is legendary for huge seas and wind. I'm pretty sure everyone in the group has given the toe a good rub.

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