March 6 – Arriving in Buenos Aires

YYC to Toronto via Santiago (Chile) for a quick stop I was now only hours from Argentina. As I flew over the Andes, I couldn’t stop thinking how very different they are to our own Rockies. Dry, baron and a rainbow of earthy colours.

On arrival into Buenos Aires I decided to start my adventure with a trip down memory lane.  We all have memories of being young and vibrant backpackers once upon a time.  This experience grows us and makes us into the people we are today. So I decided to spend my first night in the hostel I once loved so many years ago.  It was a humbling start to my adventure and had not changed one little bit….Apart from the fact their was no longer a computer room or line up to send an email Haha

All freshened up now and  it was time to find Luis’s home. A wonderful steakhouse experience in the home of a local Argentine. Always on the hunt for a unique experience to share…this is not your average steak experience. While it’s no secret what Argentine beef is worth around the world, visitors to Buenos Aires don’t always get the chance to experience an Argentine asado and its many rituals and traditions. Here at ‘Steaks by Luis’, they not only focus on high quality cuts grilled to perfection but also the entire experience. You participate in a typical Argentine asado and feel like you’re at Luis’ home. All while sitting around a big family table, and joining Luis alongside the grill or just kicking back, relaxing and enjoying the 5 course meal and wine  pairing event.

March 5 – Reflection

This is where the journey truly begins 😊  I was dropped off at YYC airport with time to spare.  I found a cozy little spot to watch the planes fly in with a beautiful mountain backdrop. Here is where I reflect and fathom where in the world I was actually headed…… 14 years ago I almost jumped on a ship to Antarctica, now the dream is really coming alive, the emotions are high and feelings of excitement all over my body!

Antarctica

After 3 days crossing the Drake passage, we made it to the seventh continent. I was about to start a new adventure in the majestic Antarctic.

Kayaking in the bay was very exciting; being there, immersed in the silence, just you and Mother Nature all around. We watched as seals swam by and penguins jumped out of the water to appease their curiosity. Leopard seals and albatross were everywhere.

Large chunks of ice made the paddling difficult and the abundant wildlife viewing slowed our kayaking team. Then we spotted humpbacks! Being alone in the kayak with this gentle monster close by gave me a boost of adrenaline and made the whole kayaking experience even more exciting and well worth taking the kayaks out.

One morning I woke up believing that a strong wind was blowing outside. I opened the window but it wasn’t the wind. There were hundreds of Humpbacks surrounding our boat. As far as you could see there were whales and flukes.

I will never forget that day, it was snowing with poor visibility and after kayaking all day we were ready to return to the ship. Suddenly, two humpbacks approached us and started putting on a show. They both flipped upside down, showing their bellies. In a matter of seconds, one of them was under our zodiac. We heard the sound of the animal pushing us from underneath… boom boom boom. The whale was content with its belly rub and continued on its merry way.

It was the most exciting, wildest and closest encounter I have ever had. If you like whales spending a week in March in the Antarctica will not disappoint!!

Thanks to One Ocean Expeditions and Civilized Adventures for this experience of a lifetime!!