Museo del Fin del Mundo
Its block-style exterior handsomely restored, Ushuaia’s evolving historical museum contains exhibits on the Yámana, Selk’nam, and other Fuegian Indians as well as on early European voyages.
There remain permanent exhibits on the presidio, the Fique family’s early general store, Banco de la Nación’s original branch (which occupied the building for more than 60 years), and natural history, including run-of-the-mill taxidermy. Its celebrity artifact is a rare copy of Thomas Bridges’s Yámana–English dictionary.
An open-air sector re-creates a Yámana encampment and dwellings alongside machinery used in early agriculture and forestry projects. The Museo del Fin del Mundo (Avenida Maipú 175, tel. 02901/42-1863, www.tierradelfuego.org.ar/museo, US$5 adults, US$2 students and retired people, free for children age 14 and under) also contains a bookstore–souvenir shop and a specialized library on southernmost Argentina, the surrounding oceans, and Antarctica. The exceptional website places much of this material online.
Hours are 9 a.m.–8 p.m. daily October–April, with guided tours at 11 a.m. and 2, 4, and 6 p.m.; the rest of the year, hours are noon–7 p.m. Monday–Saturday.
Admission to the museum includes access to the former Poder Legislativo (Provincial Legislature, Maipú 465). Both branches offer free guided tours several times daily.
© Wayne Bernhardson from Moon Argentina, 3rd edition