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Ushuaia Travel Guide

Off the beaten path

Cerro Martial

You can get to the base of this Mountain by taxi or walking (although it is easier to go up by taxi and go back walking). Once there you can take the chairlift (check before going as the service is cancelled very often) to save 45 mins walking. From the end of the chairlift it’s about 1 hour walking up hill.

Although the glacier is very small the trip worth well because of the amazing views you get from top.

On the way back you can make a stop on the tea house at the bottom of the chairlift to taste one of their delicious scones or cakes!

Sightseeing by bike

Just two blocks from Main Square you can rent bicycles for good price. The road from downtown to the National Park has amazing views and it is not so hard. You can also go by route 3, on the way to Fagnano Lake or just cycle around port. (9 de Julio 128- Jumping rent a bike- ar$60 full day aprox.)

Take a stroll along the coast when you visit UshuaiaMascaras Yámanas

Piedrabuena 51 Tel (02901) 435386

The Yámana, original inhabitants of the area, used to use decorated masks for their ceremonies. There is a lady in town who has been investigating for years the meanings of the paintings and shapes of these masks. If you visit her house not very far from town you can take some information, see the copies that she makes and buy one if you are interested.

Nighttime Sightseeing

If it is not windy (it has to be really quiet!), during the night you can go to the Costanera (parallel street to the Beagle Channel) and walk down on the way to Aero club Ushuaia. It is a dirty road and usually there is people jogging. The best views are arriving to the other side or the road, with Ushuaia in front of you and the reflection of buildings and the mountains on the water.

Visit Ushuaia & Explore the Beagle ChannelNew flavors from the City at the End of the World!

In Ushuaia there are sea products that don’t arrive to other places in the country: king crab, shrimps, salmon and trout of the best quality. You can’t miss them! We love to say that out king crab is the best one of the World, as it grows in the mix of the two oceans. It is usually offered in menus with any kind of sauces, but we recommend trying it “natural” (usually on the starters menu). If you accompany it with a good side order it will be enough for a main course.

María Lola Resto

Gobernador Deloqui 1048 – Tel (02901) 421-185. We would go back a thousand of times just to eat here again… the fish, salads, the beef. Everything is very well elaborated and presented. The dessert Copa Maria Lola (recommended to share) is a paradise for the senses! Medium price, good service and great views. 

Tante Sara

San Martín 175- (02901) 433710. Excellent location in the center of the city; this casual restaurant serves food all day long, from breakfast to dinner. Fast service, good milanesas (breaded and fried beef) hamburgers, cakes and coffee

Kaupe

Roca 470 – Tel. (02901) 422704. The quality couldn’t be better in a very intimate ambient. Although it is more expensive than the rest it deserves every coin. (Tasting the entire menu costs around ar$300 – includes a small version of everything offered plus wine!) .

Ramos Generales

Maipú 749- Tel (02901) 424317. This cozy place is perfect for a hot chocolate after a boat trip day. Fresh bakery products, some creative tapas and a good wine selection make it one of the favorite, also for locals. Vintage design, almost bizarre, everyone likes it!

Placeres Patagónicos

Gdor Deloqui 289 – (02901) 433798. Another local’s favorite. This restaurant, also a pub, has excellent “Tapas” (Picadas for argentinos). They have smoked meats (including deer), real beer and home made bread and cheese. Although sometimes they turn on the TV, the place is ideal to go with friends, save some money and have a relax evening.

Dublin Pub

9 de Julio 150, entre San Martin y Deloqui. (02901) 430744. It sounds so bad to go to an Irish pub in Argentina! But it is the most popular pub in town and the only one that keeps open during the entire year. Do not forget to  drink Beagle beer, which is locally produced. Highly recommended! 

El Bodegón Fueguino

San Martin 859. Tel. (02901) 431972. Picadas (Argentinean Tapas), lamb and sea food, in a warm ambient and very near from town. Good value.

Kuar

Perito Moreno 2232. Tel. (02901) 437 396. Very hard to get a better view from a pub, Kuar has a restaurant menu, but also cocktails and tapas. It is out of downtown but you can get a taxi here for not more than 20 ar$. Intimate ambient and good music. A little pricey.

 

Visit Ushuaia and dine in its excellent restaurants

Important

Please, note although we update information every year, during high season some new restaurants open and some others close, so please, always check before going for a meal with the reception of your hotel.

Visit this amazing overlook of Lago Escondido, UshuaiaDirections

Ushuaia is a fairly small town, and it is very easy to get around. The city’s airport is 4 km outside of the downtown area, and once you’ve gotten to the city, you can generally get around on foot, as all of the attractions are easily accessible and fairly close together. The two main streets are Avenida Maipu and Avenida San Martin. To get to the Tierra del Fuego National Park, you can take one of the local buses.

 

Calendar

Ushuaia is a destination that offers both winter and summer activities, so no matter what time of year you visit, you’ll find something to do. The best season for skiing is generally from June to October (depending on the weather and snowfall each year), and the best time for trekking and hiking is from December to early March. Keep in mind that January is generally the busiest tourist time.  Most cruises departing from Ushuaia operate between late October and early April.

 

What to do if you get sick?

Find abandoned ships in the port of Ushuaia, ArgentinaPublic Hospital

Hospital Regional Ushuaia, Gobernador Ernesto M. Campos
Address: 12 de Octubre entre Maipu y Fitz Roy
Phone: (2901) 441000

Private Medical Care

Clinica San Jorge
Address: Onachaga 184
Phone: (2901) 422635 / 423994 / 435704

 

Useful telephone numbers

Calling internationally: International Dial-Up: 00 + Country Code + Area Code + Number.

Calling to Ushuaia from abroad: Argentina’s Country Code is +54 and Ushuaia’s Area Code is 2901. So, to reach the number 455-5555 in Ushuaia when calling from abroad, dial: 00-54-2901-455-5555.

Emergency Numbers:

Police: 101
Firefighters: 100
Medical Aid: 107

 

Helpful

If you are arriving by airplane, try to choose a Windows sit. The landing takes over ten minutes, as it’s not an easy one. You will be flying over the Andes and the Beagle Channel. Have your camera ready! You might be able to see the Faro Les Ecleurs, Bridges islands, Monte Olivia, and Cerro Martial.

If you like passport stamps, you should carry your passport everywhere! They stamp it for free in the Post Office in downtown, in the traditional Beagle Channel Boat Trip, in the Fin del Mundo Museum and paying ar$10 in the National Park! Every stamp is different!

 

Know what to pack & what to wear when you visit Ushuaia

Clothing

Given that the weather can change quickly in Ushuaia, it is a good idea to pack layers. Whether you’re going to Tierra del Fuego National Park or just walking around downtown, you’ll want to be prepared for strong winds and sudden changes in temperature. Pack comfortable walking shoes, a windbreaker and/or raincoat, and light layers all year round. In the winter, you’ll want some additional layers to stay warm.

 

National Park Entrance Fees in Ushuaia

 – Tierra del Fuego National Park USD 25 (Only payable in the equivalent in local currency, in cash).

 – Ushuaia International Airport USD 4 (Only payable in the equivalent in local currency, in cash).

 – Port tax USD 5.

 

The wind in Ushuaia makes the trees grow sideways

Weather

Regardless of what time of year you plan on visiting Ushuaia, prepare for unpredictable weather and lots of wind. There can be drastic changes in temperature from one day to the next, or even on the same day. January is usually the warmest month of the year, with an average temperature of 10°C / 50°F, and there is sunlight for about 17 hours of the day. The coldest time of year is late July, when the average temperature is 1°C / 34°F, and daylight lasts for about 7 hours. Snowfall is likely between June and October.

 

Animals

Tierra del Fuego National Park is a beautiful forested area along the coast, and it is home to a number of animal species. There a number of non-native species, brought to the area by settlers, including beavers, rabbits, and muskrats. However, you can still find some incredible native species that you won’t find almost anywhere else, including Magallanic woodpeckers, austral parakeets and Fuegian red foxes. Outside of the park, you can also take an excursion across the Beagle Channel to visit the penguin colony on Isla Martillo.  

 

Visit Tierra del Fuego Park when you Travel to Ushuaia

What not to forget

The most important thing to bring is clothing that is appropriate for the time of year and activities you will be doing. Keep in mind that most activities in Ushuaia are outdoors, so in winter you’ll want to be warm, and in summer you should bring sunscreen. There is winter gear for sale in Ushuaia, but you should try to come prepared for the weather as best you can.

 

Shopping

Most of the shops in Ushuaia are located along San Martin street. Regional goods include knitwear and various handicrafts, and chocolates, liquors, and berries. If you take the End of the World Train, you can pick up souvenirs in the museum when your ride is done. You can also take advantage of Ushuaia’s duty free port to purchase imported products at good prices.

 

Excursions

From riding on the End of the World Train to crossing the Beagle Channel to see Magellanic penguins, there are plenty of things to do in Ushuaia. Check out our suggestions for Ushuaia trips below, and visit the excursions section of this guide for more ideas. 

Buenos Aires, Calafate, Chalten & Ushuaia 12 Days Visit Ushuaia and Cruise Southern Patagonia Hiking in Patagonia
Patagonia Trekking & El Calafate Tours with Say Hueque Your Patagonia adventure begins with an Ushuaia cruise Torres del Paine National Park Excursions and Tours

 

Eating

Ushuaia is a coastal city, and it is known for its delicious sea food. Don’t forget to try some while you’re there! For advice on specific restaurants to try, check out the Eating & Drinking section of this guide.

 

Photo Tips

Come prepared for the elements! If you plan on using a tripod, be careful that it doesn’t blow over in the wind. You will undoubtedly end up exposing your camera to the elements, but make sure you have some kind of bag to store it in when you’re not using it.

When you’re taking pictures of icebergs and mountains, including a boat or a person in the shot can help give a sense of the impressive scale.

Weather is unpredictable and changes quickly. Be ready for a great shot at any time because it might not last for long!

 

See natural beauty in Tierra del Fuego National Park

Environmental Tips

 – One of the things that makes Ushuaia such a beautiful destination are its natural attractions – the Martial Glacier, the Beagle Channel, Tierra del Fuego National Park – so let’s make sure to take care of the natural environment

 – Remember not to throw cigarette butts on the ground during hikes or from a vehicle for they are source of possible fires and produce visual pollution.

 – Although fruits and vegetables are organic garbage, they are not native to the region. So, if you are having a picnic or snack while hiking, be sure to take your leftover food and trash with you and dispose of it properly in town.

 – The park receives many visitors every year. If everyone would take a rock or the leave of a tree in some years we wouldn’t have any more forest. Take just pictures from the park!

 – Walk on the marked trails. If you walk off trail, the plants on the side will be damaged and eventually die.

Our favorite tours and things to do in Ushuaia

Buenos Aires & Southern Patagonia 5-Day Patagonia Cruise Ushuaia: City at the End of the World
Discover the Cosmopolita Buenos Aires in Argentina Tours Travel to Ushuaia, the city at the end of the world Take a Patagonia Tour to Ushuaia, the end of the world

 

Walk in a Penguin Rookery & Estancia Harberton

Travel to the historical Estancia Harberton enjoying the beautiful Fuegian landscape that unfolds as you venture out of the city of Ushuaia. Upon reaching the Estancia, embark on a short navigation along the Beagle Channel to the Martillo Island penguin colony. Here you will have the unique opportunity to disembark on the island and walk along it’s trails experiencing these quirky and curious animals up close.

 

Travel to Ushuaia and take the End of the World Train

Tierra del Fuego National Park & the End of the World Train

Journey to the End of the World on a full day-excursion through the National Park. Experience the unique and impressive landscapes of Tierra del Fuego by vehicle and also on foot, hiking on easy to moderate trails through the dense green forest with the insight and support of an expert guide.

You will also take a ride through the park on the famous End of the World Train. Established to carry prisoners to labor camps, the train is an interesting historical addition to a tour of the Tierra del Fuego National Park. Experience the same journey that prisoners were forced to do decades ago while taking in the landscape at the end of the world.

 

Beagle Channel Cruise

Experience the natural wonders of the famous Beagle Channel. Embark on a boat excursion to reach the iconic ‘Les Eclaireurs’ lighthouse, having great views of the Ushuaia Bay and passing by different islands with several colonies of extraordinary birds and marine fauna.

 

Enjoy some winter activities when you travel to Ushuaia

White Adventure (Winter Excursion)

Enjoy a dog sled journey over the great snowy valley of Tierra Mayor Ski Resort. After crossing the valley, enter the magnificent forest following an old woodcutter’s trail surrounded by the thick Lenga forest. The trail will lead to ‘Woodcutter’s Shelter’ where the Huskies will be replaced by snowshoes to start the adventure towards Alvear icefalls and a breathtaking panoramic point overlooking the Tierra Mayor Valley. Recover energy with hot chocolate and homemade cake and strap on the snowshoes to return to Tierra Mayor Valley to take the vehicle back to Ushuaia.

Travel to Ushuaia, a city far south of Buenos AiresBasic Information

Distance from Bs As

3110 km.

Is the water drinkable?

Yes

Are there banks, ATMs?

Yes! There are several in town. 

Internet?

Yes. Although it is more expensive than in the rest of the country.

Phones?

Several phone call centers.

 

Money

Argentina’s unit of currency is the peso, which has a history of devaluating (sometimes gradually and sometimes very quickly) against the US dollar. Notes come in denominations of 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 and 500 pesos. One peso equals 100 centavos; coins come in denominations of 5, 10, 25, 50 centavos, and also in denominations of 1 and 2 pesos. The $ sign in front of a price is usually used to signify pesos, so this should be the case unless otherwise marked.

Don’t be dismayed if you receive dirty and hopelessly tattered banknotes; they will still be accepted everywhere. Some banks refuse worn or defaced US dollars, however, so make sure you arrive in Buenos Aires with pristine bills. Casa Piano (a well known Cambio) will probably change your older or written-on bills, but they will discount a 3% of the value.

Sadly fake currency has become more common. So look for a clear watermark or running thread on the largest bills, and be especially careful when receiving change in dark nightclubs or taxis. If you hesitate ask to change it for another note.

Due to local restrictions for buying US dollars for locals, if you change money on arrival to Argentina, you have to keep the receipt. In case you want to change your left over pesos on the way back to your country, you will have to show the first receipt.

Travel to Ushuaia: the City at the End of the WorldBanks

There are a number of banks throughout downtown Ushuaia.  Banks might have longer lines and more limited opening hours but may have more security regarding fake notes than other places.

There are many Cajeros Automáticos (ATMs) in the town, but they dispense just Argentinean currency. There might be a limit amount per transaction, depending on the bank, but you can always do many transactions in the same ATM. Beware of per-transaction fees. To avoid having a fistful of large-denomination bills, withdraw odd amounts like 290 pesos. Withdraw your cash before the weekend rush – it isn’t uncommon for ATMs to run out on Sundays. You can find ATMs in several of the banks on Avenida Maipú and Avinda San Martín.

In general, shops also offer exchange possibilities but normally the rates are not convenient.

Credit Cards

Ushuaia is a major touristic city, and credit cards are generally accepted. However, it’s always a good idea to double check before you make a purchase or sit down to eat.

Traveler’s Checks

Traveler’s checks are very impractical in Argentina in general. In Ushuaia it is difficult to change them and definitively impossible to change them at a good rate.

Tipping

 

Tipping is not compulsory but it is greatly appreciated throughout South America, especially in the service industry.  If you are satisfied with the services provided by your Destination Host, tour guides and drivers, then we recommend rewarding their hard work by tipping. In general, we suggest a tip of around US$20 – 25 a day for guides and US$ 5 -10 for drivers.

When tipping Hotel & Restaurant Staff, tips are generally 10% of the total bill. If you stay a couple of days in the same hotel, a tip of $3 – 5/day for the maid service is recommended. For porters, US$2-3/time/room is appropriate.   

Visit Ushuaia, a port city in southern Argentina

Dangers & Annoyances

Ushuaia is generally a safe city. Stay bundled up, and be wary of strong winds and sudden temperature drops, especially if you are out hiking.  

Exploring the beautiful Tierra del Fuego National Park

 

Lonely Planet

A busy port and adventure hub, Ushuaia is a sliver of steep streets and jumbled buildings below the snowcapped Martial Range. Here the Andes meet the southern ocean in a sharp skid, making way for the city before reaching a sea of lapping currents. Read more

 

Rough Guides

USHUAIA, the provincial capital and tourism hub for the whole of Tierra del Fuego, lies in the far south of Isla Grande. Dramatically situated between the mountains – among them Cerro Martial and Monte Olivia – and the sea, the city tumbles, rather chaotically, down the hillside to the encircling arm of land that protects its bay from the southwesterly winds and occasional thrashing storms of the icy Beagle Channel. Read more

 

Fodor’s

As you stand on the banks of the Canal Beagle (Beagle Channel) near Ushuaia, the spirit of the farthest corner of the world takes hold. What stands out is the light: at sundown the landscape is cast in a subdued, sensual tone; everything feels closer, softer, and more human in dimension despite the vastness of the setting. The snowcapped mountains reflect the setting sun back onto a stream rolling into the channel, as nearby peaks echo their image—on a windless day—in the still waters. Read more

 

Footprint

The most southerly town in the world, Ushuaia’s setting is spectacular. Its brightly coloured houses look like toys against the dramatic backdrop of vast jagged mountains. Opposite are the forbidding peaks of Isla de Navarino, and between flows the serene green Beagle Channel. Sailing those waters you can just imagine how it was for Darwin, arriving here in 1832, and for those early settlers, the Bridges in 1871. Though the town has expanded in recent years, sprawling untidily along the coast, Ushuaia still retains the feel of a pioneer town, isolated and expectant. Read more

Visit the southernmost city in the world, UshuaiaGeneral Information

Why is called Ushuaia?

In the language of the original inhabitants, the Yamana, the word meant “protected Bay.”

Economy

Once a penal colony, Ushuaia today has a bustling tourist economy—even the historic prison is now a tourist attraction. Ushuaia’s slogan is the City at the End of the World (la Ciudad del Fin del Mundo) and it capitalizes on its status as the world’s southernmost city to attract tourists from around the globe. The city also serves as the first stop for a number of cruises to Antarctica. Tourism aside, other prominent economic activities include manufacturing, fishing, and fossil fuel extraction.

Elevation

Sea Level

Population

An estimated 70,000 people

History

The region around Ushuaia was inhabitated by the Yamana and other indigenous groups for thousands of years before European arrival. The first Europeans to settle in the area were British clergymen who arrived in the late 1870s. Ushuaia was officially incorporated into the Republic of Argentina in 1884, and it soon became a penal colony, in order to establish a permanent Argentine settlement. The prison was infamous for its forced labor practices and was closed in the 1940s. By this time, the indigenous groups of the area were entirely wiped out by diseases brought by the settlers.

Ushuaia was once a penal colony and is now a tourist destination

Today, Ushuaia is a popular tourist destination, with its main claim to fame being its status as the southernmost city in the world. Visitors can learn more about the region’s past through a number of museums, and other major attractions include the Tierra del Fuego National Park, the Beagle Channel, the Martial Glacier, and cruises departing for other Patagonia destinations and Antarctica. 

Visit Ushuaia, the City at the End of the World

 

Sailing to the End of the World in Patagonia

By Seth Margolis, The New York Times

Ushuaia, which claims that it is the southernmost city in the world, makes a good jumping-off point for exploring southern Patagonia. Last March, my wife, Carole, and I flew there from Buenos Aires, a three-hour flight. In Buenos Aires we wore T-shirts and shorts and drank a lot of cold water; in Ushuaia, even at the end of the region’s summer season, we shivered in polar fleece and gloves and couldn’t get enough café con leche — good preparation for the cruise itself. Read more

 

Argentina’s Ushuaia rides eco-tourism wave

By Patrick J. McDonnell, Los Angeles Times

Ushuaia, Argentina — This is a place where “The End of the World” sells. The theme is celebrated in T-shirts, bumper stickers, coffee mugs and posters. You can’t get away from it…

Ushuaia, situated along the picturesque Beagle Channel in Tierra del Fuego, amid a backdrop of jagged, snow-capped mountains, proclaims itself the world’s southernmost city. Read more

 

The Exceptional Traveler: Underrated Ushuaia, Argentina—Southernmost Town in the World.

By Bonnie Kassel, Huffington Post

At the tip of South America where the last sliver of Argentina meets the sea, lies the town of Ushuaia. Once small and rustic known primarily to backpackers visiting Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego, Ushuaia has evolved. Smack at the entrance to the Drake Passage, it’s become the jumping-off point for more cruises to the Falklands (or Malvinas depending upon where you’re from), South Georgia, and Antarctica than anywhere else in the world. The majority of passengers fly in directly from Buenos Aires and spend one night at most before boarding their ship. But I recently had the opportunity to spend several days in Ushuaia and in less than twenty-four hours realized that it’s being short-changed. Ushuaia has a distinct charm and level of sophistication that surprised me. Read more

 

Ushuaia: The End of the World

By Christopher Michel, Outside Magazine

Ushuaia is often referred to as “El Fin Del Mundo,” The End of the World. Located at 54 degrees south, this port on the famed Beagle Channel is the jumping off point for Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. Surrounded by Magellanic subpolar forests at the base of the haunting Martial range, Ushuaia is windy, cold, and desolate—it’s also magnificent and intriguing. The struggle against the elements can be seen everywhere, from the corrugated metal buildings to the abandoned wrecks lining the shores. Read more

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