The southernmost extreme of the Americas, this windswept archipelago is as alluring as it is moody – by turns beautiful, ancient and strange. Travelers who first came for the ends-of-the-earth novelty discover a destination that’s far more complex than a mere source of bragging rights. Intrigue remains in a past storied with shipwrecks, native peoples and failed missions. In Tierra del Fuego, nature is writ bold and reckless, from the scoured plains, rusted peat bogs and mossy lenga forests to the snowy ranges above the Beagle Channel.
While distant and isolated, Tierra del Fuego is by no means cut off from the mainland, though the Argentine half is far more developed. Ports buzz with commerce and oil refineries prosper, while adventure seekers descend in droves to fly fish, hike and begin Antarctic cruises. Shared with Chile, this archipelago features one large island, Isla Grande, Chile’s Isla Navarino and many smaller uninhabited isles.