Over 2,300 kilometers away from Buenos Aires, at the southern end of Argentina, just where the snow of the Martial Mountains meets the waters of the Beagle Channel, awaits the city of Ushuaia. The so-called “City at the End of the World” is not only worth visiting for its extreme southern location but also for the beautiful and strikingly solitary landscapes that surround it.
There are many things to do in Ushuaia, like boat rides, fishing, and skiing on countless slopes. But one of the best ways to really get to know the southernmost city of the world is taking a looong walk around its surroundings. And while it’s true that there are amazing places to visit throughout Tierra del Fuego province, you actually don’t have to go far from the city to enjoy the silence and pureness of the scenery that characterizes the best Ushuaia hiking spots…
Although it isn’t as famous as El Calafate’s Perito Moreno Glacier, the Martial Glacier is quite a sight to see. This is one of our favorite Ushuaia hiking spots because it offers an immense view of the Beagle Channel and the surrounding area (not to mention the glacier!). Seven kilometers northwest of the city, you can take the chair lift of the ski slope and arrive to a path that leaves you at the foot of this ice wonder that rises 1.000 meters above sea level. Enjoy the trip as you take in the beautiful scenery!
Lakes & Lagoons Galore!
Ushuaia and the surrounding Tierra del Fuego province are the perfect place to find pristine bodies of water. In addition to the Martial Galcier, the area is full of huge lakes and beautiful lagoons like Esmeralda, Tempanos and Encantada. The striking scenery offered by these lakes and lagoons makes them excellent picks for Ushuaia hiking spots.
Lago Escondido, just 60 kilometers north of the city, is perhaps one of the most spectacular lakes. It is located at the foot of Paso Garibaldi, the only paved route that crosses the Fuegian Andes. It is said that the panoramic view of the mountains that you have from the summit absolutely takes your breath away. Once you recover from the view, you can had down the hill and arrive to the edge of the lake, whose smooth surface is almost mirror-like.
We also recommend traveling 40 kilometers further to visit the enormous Lago Fagnano. This is the biggest lake in Tierra del Fuego province, boasting an impressive 100 kilometers in length.
Tierra del Fuego National Park
Finally, the best-known Ushuaia hiking spots can be found in the Tierra del Fuego National Park, located 12 kilometers west of the city. The trails are generally easy to moderate in difficulty, making them accessible to most travelers. It is worth noting that although visitors can only access a small part of it, this park protects 630 square kilometers of pristine forests, rivers, bays, glacial lakes, cliffs and endless landscapes.
There are numerous and varied paths (Palestra, Costera, Pampa Alta, Hito XXIV…) that can take you to discover the many corners of the park that are accessible to hikers (and even campers). You can enjoy the astonishing view of the Ensenada and Lapataia bays, the calmness of the Pipo river, and, if you’re lucky, you might spot some of the 20 species of mammals–like foxes, beavers or guanacos–and 90 species of birds that live in the area.
Written by Irene Valiente