Saturday, April 17, 2010

Velas Sudamerica

(Click to enlarge any photo)

This is definitely one of the most gorgeous sights and light displays I have seen in Valparaiso, as if the New Years fireworks and rolling mountainsides speckled with lights weren't enough to marvel at.

A few mornings ago at work I caught a glimpse of the Esmeralda on its way to the port. It looked quite beautiful, though it wasn't the first time I had seen the Esmeralda in the bay. The Esmeralda, along with about a dozen other sailing ships from around the world, arrived as part of a regatta going along the coast. The public was welcome to come see the boats up close.

(Above: Argentina's Libertad)

Some of you may remember that a friend of mine in the Chilean Navy spent half a year traveling on the Esmeralda. When he arrived in the Spring, for some mysterious and unfair reason, I was denied access to the pier (and only me, I didn't see one other person get turned away) when I went to welcome him upon his return to Chile. I never even got to see the boat from up close because there was a big structure blocking my view from the entrance to the pier.
This time, if one has enough patience to wait through a never-ending line, it was possible go up on the ship. And this time, that included me!!! The ship is gorgeous!

(I had the most ridiculous time trying to take pictures. Some didn't turn out the first time mostly because of lighting but there wasn't much time for a second chance. There were numerous times people would look at me trying to take a picture of something like a peephole, and they would stick their heads in front of the camera to see what I was looking at. My camera makes a loud click noise so I would take the picture anyway as a "hint, hint")

It was possible to climb on many of the ships, however it was late and there were so many people that I didn't want to go on all of them. I did take pictures from the front and sides though. Here are some of my favorites:

(Mexico's Cuauhtemoc was definitely one of the most elegant)

(Colombia's Gloria)

(Venezuela's Simon Bolivar)

(Portugal's Sagres)

(Uruguay's Miranda. +Shooting star, or just a smudge on the lens? haha)

(Looks like a pirate ship from the movies, right?)

If you are in Valparaiso today, go check it out! Today is the last day and the line, though huge, was totally worth it.


  1. They are beautiful. Great shots!

  2. Annje stole my comment! I would love to have seen that in person.

  3. Wow! I wish I could have made it on one of the ships. I'm going to try to make it to the despedida this morning.

  4. I'm sad that I missed this. It looks like it was amazing!

  5. Now there is a sight worth seeing! Beautiful photos-thanks

  6. We saw it! We didn't get as close at you did, but we admired it from a distance on Saturday night.

  7. Awesome pictures. I went to a party on the Libertad when I was down there. It was pretty dirty at the time, but looked pretty from the outside. :) Wish I could have seen the Esmeralda up close!