Navimag cruise

Puerto Eden Travel Blog

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Navimag ´navigating´ some narrow channels

We arrived in Puerto Natales from El Calafate the night before the cruise and checked in nice and early at the Navimag office. The lovely people had taken the opportunity to upgrade us to a 4 bed room, as opposed to the 20 bed dorm we had booked. Turns out there was only 90 people on the cruise and the boat sleeps 200. We didn´t board the boat till 9pm and burning 11 hours in Natales is not an easy task, especially on Easter Friday. However we found a nice little restaurant to have lunch, where AC consumed half a cow in his hamburger. Once we finally found a bar (a restaurant we decided just to drink beer in) we stayed there and had beers for the next 5 hours or so. At this restaurant we ran into Adrian whom we met in Torres del Paine and another guy Nick, who had the thickest norther English accent we´d ever heard.

sunrise from the upper deck on our first morning

Navimag is the company that runs cruises from Puerto Natales to Puerto Montt and vice versa through the Chilean archipeligo (up the west coast of chile). The vessel that Navimag is running for the cruise is the ´Puerto Eden´. Navimag claims the boat to be a cruise vessel, however is more like a cargo ship that hauls live animals up the coast, the boast also doubles as a cruise vessel for passengers. However the accomodation was very nice, and we had food and booze, what more do you need?

The cruise is four nights (including the first night which we board at 9pm) and we quickly realised that a lot of it would be spent in the dinning/drinking room, as it was about 10 degrees outside and blowing about 60knots pretty consistently.

AC and our aus buddy Adrian catching some rays on a nice morning
But thats why its called Patagonia. The first morning we rose to a call over the loud speaker at 7:30am, which we weren´t too happy about, but watching the sunrise and the boat navigate through a channel only 80m wide was pretty impressive. The scenery is magnificent the whole way along the cruise and it turned out the first morning was the one to snap up photos as the visability only got worse the further north we went. The first night/afternoon was spent drinking the 6 peso vodka we snapped up in El Calafate, was not the best vintage we´ve had, but 6 pesos is 6 pesos!

There was a heap of food to eat at every meal and Adrian taught us some Navy talk for going for seconds - ´rounding the buoy (pronounced booiie)´. Lots of rounding the buoy happening most nights. Think AC will be using Navy lingo for the rest of the trip, he´s pretty happy with that!

The second day was the best in terms of things to see.

sheep - baaah cows - moo horses - neeiiggh
We stopped first thing in the morning at Puerto Eden (yep, same name as the boat, seems all boats here are called Puerto Eden), which is a little town on the coast north of Puerto Natales. Puerto Eden is effectively cut off from society with the only contact with the outside world being via Navimag which stops there for an hour twice a week to drop off and pick up tradables, as well as to dump a heap of gringos on their doorstep for an hour to porn off souvenirs. Puerto is the home to remaining Kawesqar people, of which there are only 10 in existance, all in Puerto Eden. All the Kawesqar are related and so there is no hope for expansion of their people (i could make some Tasmanian jokes here, but i won´t).
water skiing weather!
It was easter sunday on the morning we arrived and there was not a person let alone a Kawesqar in sight. Nice to get off the boat though.

On the sunday we also passed a shipwrecked vessel known as the Cotopaxi, which is famous because the Greek capitan tried to sink his boat there and collect the insurance morney for the sugar he had previously sold off in Argentina. Anyway he got done and sent to jail and the boat still remains there as a lighthouse. Looks like a ghost ship, pretty cool.

The sunday night was also the night we entered the Gulf de Penas (lots of immature jokes made about this place) and the Pacfic Ocean. This was a approx 12hours of relatively rough weather and it showed at dinner time, when only about 10% of the passengers fronted up for dinner. Sarah and i both felt a bit average and decided to have an early night after dinner, no rounding the buoy for us that night.We both did manage to avoid having a big yawn though, which was good.

We made it to Puerto Montt on the Tuesday morning after a ´big disco´on board on Monday night. However when its cold and windy outside, hangovers never seem to hurt as much.


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Navimag ´navigating´ some narrow…
Navimag ´navigating´ some narro…
sunrise from the upper deck on our…
sunrise from the upper deck on ou…
AC and our aus buddy Adrian catchi…
AC and our aus buddy Adrian catch…
sheep - baaah
cows - moo
horses …
sheep - baaah cows - moo horses…
water skiing weather!
water skiing weather!
ahoy mateys - mountain ahead
ahoy mateys - mountain ahead
lovely snow capped mountain
lovely snow capped mountain
AC playing captain, Adrian at the …
AC playing captain, Adrian at the…
the captain´s control panel
the captain´s control panel
its a beautiful cargo ship
its a beautiful cargo ship
a particuarly safe walk around pue…
a particuarly safe walk around pu…
bad weather ahead captain.
bad weather ahead captain.
Cotopaxi a pirate ship come lighth…
Cotopaxi a pirate ship come light…
The team on Navimag
The team on Navimag
Puerto Eden
photo by: scacos2006