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#993 Antarctica

What could be more amazing than an entire massive continent with volcanoes, mountains, minerals, ice, animals and sheer bulk that belongs to no single person, but to everyone in the world held in trust for future generations to enjoy and savor? There are no permanent residents, and 1959's Antarctic Treaty was truly a revolutionary concept of world powers actually sharing and protecting the environment! Military action and mining is prohibited -- what bliss!

With amazing superlatives like coldest, driest, windiest, and highest average elevation, and first confirmed sighting only as recent as 1820, it's isolation, cold temperatures, and inaccessibility will continue to preserve it and to challenge explorers in the future.

In recent decades it has become more possible for the average person to visit in private icebreaker boat tours leaving from Argentina and Chile, although, of course, significant savings are required!

Spectacular!

Oh, did I mention the amazing animals? Seals, penguins, whales, algae, birds, etc, etc!

Sorry, no pictures -- it's on my to do list, and I've booked a cruise for December 2012, so will update this when I do!

UPDATE: Here are some Antarctica posts: Deception Island (#892), Lemaire Channel (#882)

Information source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antarctica

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