Thursday, 25 December 2014

Santa in Stanley

[An occasional look at life in the Falkland Islands, which are about the same distance from the Equator as London is........]

Christmas Day.  Dawn is around 4.30.  Up early to Skype the rellies.
Gypsy Cove, with penguins
 Put the reindeer in the oven and head to Surf Bay, to have a dip in the South Atlantic with some friends....
"Come on in, the water's lovely!"
 Quite a mild day today, around 15C, and a gentle breeze.  Two years ago it was snowing on Christmas Day!
Luckily, the crowds stay away today
A few days ago, saw a couple of medium-sized cruise ships berth at FIPASS (Falklands Interim Port and Storage System). Interim, in that it was designed to last 5 years, but has been there 25!
Le Boreal and Fram at FIPASS
 The Fram had about 200 passengers and Le Boreal about 500.  I was guiding a group from the Fram around the coast to Gypsy Cove to see penguins, shipwrecks, Steamer ducks, Upland Geese, Blackish Oystercatchers and so on. Lots of chicks, goslings and ducklings to be seen, and several endemic Falkland flowers as well
Fram squeezing through the Narrows
 I also had the great pleasure of bumping into a guide, Rob Caskie,  from Le Boreal, whom we had last seen at Rorke's Drift in South Africa 8 years ago!  We later had a chat over a coffee.  He, too, is keeping a blog of his adventures.
Le Boreal
 Rob's a historian and superb story-teller, and is now telling the tales of Antarctic explorers to cruise passengers heading there.  Back in South Africa, his stories of the Anglo-Zulu wars are captivating. He tours the UK in May, if you want to hear him.  >>>>

No job for reindeer...
Meanwhile, back in Stanley, an urgent request was received from a couple of German cruise ships in the harbour.  They had failed to collect the promised Christmas trees from a neighbouring country, and it wouldn't be Christmas for the mainly German passengers without one.  Could the Falklands help??
Santa delivers!
Despite the almost-total lack of trees on the islands, a local market garden came up with the trees and made a special delivery them by zodiac!

Hope you have a Peaceful Christmas and a Happy New Year.



  1. Great post about Santa delivering trees!

  2. Thanks for link; lovely to catch up on your adventures again. Was the tree imported? Would have loved a dip yesterday but too hot even to drive to beach!

  3. No, Mags, the tree was grown locally, under very sheltered conditions. xx