From September through April, Cruceros Australis runs four-day luxury cruises from Ushuaia to Punta Arenas (five days Punta Arenas to Ushuaia; see Things to See and Do in Punta Arenas) aboard one of three ships: the M/V Mare Autralis, M/V Via Australis, and, glossy-new for 2010, the M/V Stella Australis, the biggest of the fleet. All three ships offer gourmet food, an open bar, plush rooms, and a wealth of other amenities. The 120 or so passengers aboard (210 on the Stella) are carried comfortably through the frozen beauty of Southern Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego: around Cape Horn, the infamous nautical widowmaker of the pre-Panama Canal world and a stop for Charles Darwin on his 1833 voyage aboard the HMS Beagle, through the Strait of Magellan and the Beagle Channel, past glaciers, fjords and islets, to Magellenic forest and penguin colonies. At many of these places, zodiacs ferry passengers ashore for hikes and explorations. Prices start at $1,050 low season (Sept, Oct, March, April) and $1,330 high season (Nov. - March). Check website for discounts and special offers. In Ushuaia, book through Turismo Comapa (San MartÃn 245. Tel: 2901-430727, URL: www.comapa.com).
Pacheco de Melo 1833 Floor 6 â C1126AAA, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Relative price: High End
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