Ushuaia, the extreme southern port in the Argentine Tierra del Fuego province is preparing for the inauguration of its extended port and logistics facilities sometime in the coming weeks but is also requesting more funds from the central government given the growing demand for berthing and the fact that cruise vessels are being built ever so larger.
The Tierra del Fuego Tourism Institute is expecting a significant cruise season this summer 2022/23, with the first vessel arriving September 29, the Ventus Australis. Officials are anticipating 500 cruise calls, which means Ushuaia will be hosting some 170,000 passengers, three times the number of the previous season, 2021/22.
Tierra del Fuego Ports' Authority has announced that climate permitting, this coming 2022/2023 cruise season Ushuaia is expecting some 540 vessel calls, making it probably a record season both in the number of passengers and vessels. At the height of the season, eighteen vessels will be visiting the Argentine extreme south city.
Covid 19 emergency in Ushuaia delays the departure of Quark Expeditions state of the art cruise vessel Ultramarine to Antarctica. According to reports from the capital of Tierra del Fuego, abiding by sanitary protocols, the 173 crew members of the vessel were on board PCR tested, with four of them turning out positive.
French cruise company Ponant, specializing in Antarctic expeditions has two of its vessels in the port of Ushuaia, extreme south of Argentina. L'Austral and Le Boreal twin vessels are 142 meters long with a capacity of 246 passengers and 140 crew.
Argentine Minister of Tourism Matias Lammens and Tierra del Fuego governor Gustavo Melella officially opened the 2021/22 cruise season this Monday, in Ushuaia, with the arrival of “National Geographic Endurance”, which tomorrow leaves for Antarctica.
The port of Ushuaia in Tierra del Fuego province confirmed that this cruise season 2021/22, a total of 37 vessels will make 243 calls between November and March next year. The National Geographic Endurance will inaugurate the season when it arrives next November 7 with 126 passengers.
The recent decision by Silverseas Cruises to move its operations to neighboring Punta Arenas and Puerto Williams in Chile, has shaken Tierra del Fuego and Ushuaia officials who are complaining that the Argentine government, despite promises, has yet to deliver the sanitary protocol for vessels and crew, calling in Ushuaia, plus announcing when borders will be opened.
The last cruise of “Greg Mortimer” when it left Ushuaia on March 15th was an invitation to disaster, and now “we are asking for a humanitarian corridor to take us, as they did with passengers, to our home countries”, said Mauricio Usme, chief medical officer on board the Aurora Expeditions vessel.
Ushuaia, extreme south of Argentina and the hub which handles most Antarctica bound cruises are expecting an exceptional 2019/20 season with some 431 calls, up from the 392 of the previous season, according to provincial port authorities.