St Augustin

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page.
Who lives sees much, who travels sees more.



Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A -Z Challenge - P is for Patagonia

Where is PATAGONIA you ask? It's in Chile. It's fascinated me ever since I read a novel (and I can't remember its name, but I remember its story) where the characters were flying over Patagonia. The descriptions were so vivid and intriguing it immediately came to mind when I had to decide on a P.



In PATAGONIA, the Southernmost part of Chile, the geography and nature emerge from the most extreme and spectacular forms that it is possible to imagine, adorned with breathtaking landscapes: a pristine concert of native forests, pampas, islands, fjords, channels, fast flowing rivers, lakes and lagoons, hot springs, majestic millenary ice fields and snowdrifts.


The Chilean Patagonia lies between the 41.5 º and 56 º latitude south. It is one of the most extensive areas of the country and yet the least populated: 1.3 inhabitants per square mile. The natural surroundings are practically virginal.

There are two sub-regions; the northern Aysen Region and to its south, the Magallanes Region. Aysen is home to Laguna San Rafael National Park and the Austral Road (Carretera Austral). The Carretera Austral has become one of the most important attractions in Patagonia because it allows you to enter into a territory that still is open to discoveries: Northern Patagonia with its large extensions of cold forests, national parks, glaciers, gigantic ice fields, lagoons, fiords, rivers, and lakes. It is an ideal territory for adventure tourism, fishing, trekking, hiking, kayaking, rafting, and observing flora and fauna in its most natural state.




The history of the southernmost point of the continent has always been linked to seamen and adventurers, frontiersmen and mythical native inhabitants such as the Patagones or “Patagonian Giants”. The Portuguese seaman Hernando de Magallanes (Ferdinand Magellan) arrived at the area in 1520 and baptized it with the name Tierra del Fuego (Land of Fire), after observing the bonfires the Onas or Selknam natives kept burning in their canoes to navigate by night and keep themselves warm. This is an area of vast indomitable landscapes, islands and channels that maintain their legendary characteristics of old.




So pack your Gore-tex, sub-zero-degree sleeping bag and head to chilly Patagonia. You'll see glacial peaks, active volcanoes, icy tundra. The Chilean side is Patagonia's lesser-visited: places such as Tierra del Fuego and the Torres del Paine promise adventure - imagine downing a Pisco Sour (grape-brandy cocktail) shaken with glacier ice. Something to dream of...This isa great blog site dedicated to the region should you be inspired to go or to read more...


Put yourself in the picture...


13 comments:

Duncan D. Horne said...

Didn't Charles Darwin explore around this Patagonia area?

Duncan In Kuantan

Grandpa said...

Denise, this is one place I never dreamed of visiting. But those forest and rivers and natural surrounding are tempting.

Grandpa
Life on The Farm

L'Aussie said...

What a place, hey!

Clarissa Draper said...

What a beautiful place. I would love to go to Chili someday.

Monti said...

Those mountain scenes are breathtaking. Since I'm not much of a winter person, I prefer more tropical climates. Thanks for sharing a part of the world I've never thought of visiting.

Nice to meet you on A to Z.

Monti
NotesAlongTheWay

Dawn Embers said...

Patagonia is indeed a fascinating place. Just the name itself conjures my fascination and it makes me want to know more. Thanks for providing some information on the location.

Laura Eno said...

Another place I long to go!

N. R. Williams said...

Those pictures are amazing. Land of the giants. Looking at one of those mtn. ranges, I can visualize those giants now.
Nancy
N. R. Williams, The Treasures of Carmelidrium.

Talei said...

Oh I would love to travel to South America, Chile, Brazil...so many fab places waiting. Thanks for sharing Patagonia with us! ;-)

Michael Di Gesu said...

Breathtaking! Never considered visiting that far south.

JL Dodge said...

beathtaking pictures !
Great info too...
JL&B

L'Aussie said...

Breathtaking yes it is.

Deniz Bevan said...

Loving your tour Denise. I'd like to visit Patagonia, for the silly reason that I've heard there're a lot of Welsh folk there.