Punta Arenas, Chile

March 14, 2020 – Punta Arenas – last day of liberty

2020 South America cruise

The captain comes on the PA system this morning at 8AM to tell us our cruise will be ending when we arrive in Santiago. Holland America has decided to suspend operations worldwide for 30 days. Needless to say, all the passengers are upset, depressed, and rather anxious about what comes next.

I go on my excursion this morning, which is a standard city tour, including: the Plaza de Armas Muñoz Gamero which includes a statue of Magellan, Cerro de la Cruz viewpoint of the city and the Strait of Magellan, and Maggiorino Borgatello museum. Our last stop is Museo Nao Victoria, which has life-size replicas of three historic ships: HMS Beagle (Darwin’s ship), Nao Victoria (Magellan’s ship), and Goleta Ancud (a Chilean exploration and colonization vessel).

The captain makes another report this afternoon at 4pm, telling us that Argentina has closed their ports to cruise ships, so our scheduled stop in Ushuaia tomorrow won’t be happening. He outlined an enhanced scenic cruising schedule to fill in the time before our next port-of-call, Puerto Mont on the west coast of Chile. I adjourn to the Explorations Lounge, to consider all this ominous news today.

Free wi-fi and worldwide telephone calling is now available to all passengers so they can keep in touch with their families and friends, make any needed arrangements, and keep up on the world news.

I go to the main dining room and have a lovely prime rib dinner, and after go to see Planet Earth II in concert, a BBC Earth movie. I enjoy this well-done documentary, but the sound is far too loud.

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