Crossing Chile

The time had come to cross an entire country yet again! OK, well perhaps not… in this case we did have to cross a part of Chile though – even though WE DIDN’T WANT TO… as unfortunately due to various wars, treaties, etc etc the boundary lines between Chile and Argentina are not very convenient or sensible.. yeah, but where is I suppose.. anyway, what this means is that the part of Argentina with Ushuaia in it, is not connected to the rest of Argentina, meaning that to go from Rio Gallegos, Argentina to Ushuaia, Argentina you must go through Chile. As Ushuaia is on Tierra del Fuego, then you also get a ferry thrown in for good measure (the ferry is in Chilean territory)

This map shows the part of Tierra del Fuego that belongs to Argentina

Our bus was scheduled at 9am, and meant to arrive at 8pm. What time do you think it arrived?! πŸ™‚ Place your bets now…..

Anyway, the process is basically:

Drive for an hour
Custom post to exit Argentina
Custom post to enter Chile
Drive for a couple more hours
Take the ferry – around 20/30 minutes wait and 30 minute crossing
Drive another couple of hours
Custom post to exit Chile
Custom post to enter Argentina
Drive for around 2 hours to Rio Grande
Wait for 90 minutes in Rio Grande because the new bus driver is late coming to work….
Arrive in Ushuaia at 9.30pm…..

I think that theΒ Wait for 90 minutes in Rio Grande because the new bus driver is late coming to work….Β is not part of the normal journey – that bit was just for us πŸ™‚

Anyway, it’s quite long, but not too bad really – the Argentinians seem to ignore you when you leave this way, so you actually don’t get stamped out of Argentina, but you do get stamped in again when you cross back over – meaning that that there is a lonely entry stamp in your passport without a matching exit stamp – HOW UNTIDY πŸ™

The other downside is that you can’t carry cheese sandwiches for lunch on the bus, as all meat, dairy etc. etc.cannot be taken into Chile (like in Australia), so after an hour on the bus when you enter Chile you can only have biscuits and other allowed foodstuffs.

It was raining a lot on our journey, but you can still see that we have arrived in Chile!
No fruit, veg, meat or dairy allowed in.
Our bus – looks better on the outside than on the inside… πŸ™‚
The car ferry across the Straits of Magellan.

The ferry is good, as you can get out and stretch your legs, and also we saw dolphins and penguins in the water πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

CC is always happy when she has a carton of juice and can see penguins in the water.
Approaching the other side of the Straits of Magellan.
Successfully arrived on Tierra de Fuego island.
Now we are leaving Chile… it was a fun 4 hours, see you again next month…
Once you leave Chile they kindly provide a shop so you can buy again all the stuff they took off you… (or hot dogs and snacks…)
After several km of ‘no-mans-land’, we now arrive in Argentina again.
The police welcome you to Argentina.

Apart from the big delay in Rio Grande, all was fairly smooth considering there were 2 border crossings and a ferry – GOOD ONE. πŸ™‚

We were ready for Ushuaia! But even in the middle of summer, the weather of Ushuaia was not really ready for us…. πŸ™

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