Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Chile: Navimag Ferry

We boarded the Evangelista (see Navimag Ferry and our route through the Patagonian Fjords). where we met up with our roommate from Hosteria ¡├ęcole! and our roommate from Hospedaje Rocco. Traveling internationally can prove to be a very small world indeed. After a celebratory Austral Negro (really good dark beer made in Punta Arenas, Chile) on the sunny upper deck we headed to check out our bunks (pictured below).
The C berths are definitely worth the ~500$ passage fare to sail from Puerto Montt to Puerto Natalas. In the C berths you will find all the backpackers and pretty much everyone under the age of 40. It took us almost the entire trip to figure out these green signs. We think they meant "gather at the lifeboats" pictured to the right. I spent a lot of time journaling and looking at the beautiful mountains and islas from the large windows of the cafeteria or bar area (occasionally from the deck if it was not raining too hard). The second afternoon and evening was spent trying to gauge when to take the Dramamine because we were entering the golfa de pena. In all I ended up taking 1 kids bonine and 2 real-sleep-inducing Dramamines. Regardless I was up from 2-6am because of the rocking boat. At least I did not feel sick myself and that our bunks were not near the bathrooms where plenty of other people were feeling the affects of the rolling open ocean. I spent the rest of the trip drinking wine, playing bananagrams, and reading my only book: One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. I highly recommend this ferry trip with the following tips:

1. bring tea and hot cocoa - hot water is always available

2. bring your own wine + wine cork + cup (wine/beer are expensive when purchased on the boat)

3. save your money and just buy a C berth (A and B berths are not much better) 4. arrive when they tell you to for checking in - this helps you get a berth that is on the starboard or port sides (not in the back with the noisy generators) and not near the bathrooms.

5. bring plenty of Dramamine!

{recap: I traveled to Chile during the month of February. I was distracted these past few months and am only now getting to post about my experience in South America. Click here to see all my posts about this fantastic Ph.D. Trip}

photo credit: Cayenne and LMD 02.10.09

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