Everywhere in Chile and Argentina, you'll come across squares and streets bearing the names of two great figures, still famous in both countries:
Bernardo O'Higgins Riquelme (Aug 20th 1778 - Oct 24th 1842) was a Chilean officer. He is considered as one of the founders of Chile as a Nation. As such he has ranked as one of the fundamental military figures linked with Independance. He became the first "Supreme commander" of Independent Chile from 1817 to 1823, when he willingly resigned, to avoid a civil war. He went into exile in Peru, where he resided until he died, in 1842. His original name O'Higgins in Gaelic vernacular language, had been changed into "O'Higgins" because the English had proved unable to pronounce it correctly.
José de San Martín was born on February 25th 1778 in Yapeyu, on the bank of Uruguay River, in the current province of Corrientes, which was part of the Rio de la Plata Vice Kingdom... In 1786, he went to Spain with his parents, and joined the Madrid Seminary. In 1797, he was promoted second lieutenant in return for his military actions against the French troops in the Pyrenees. In 1808, Napoleon's army invaded Spain, and King Ferdinand VII was taken prisoner. The Spanish people rebelled against the Emperor and his brother Joseph, who had just beem proclaimed king of Spain. In return for his bravery against the French troops, San Martín was promoted captain of the Bourbon Regiment. His heroic conduct kept prevailing in the battle of Baylen, in July 19th 1808, where the French troops were defeated by the Spanish Army. San Martin made the acquaintance OT Lord Macduff, a Scottish aristocrat, who introduced him to the secret lodges weaving plots in favour of South America independence. On January 1812, San Martín sailed for Buenos Aires.
There he was appointed Head Commander of the Andes Army, and on January 12th, 1817, heading towards Chile; he initiated the crossing of the Andes from Mendoza. On February 14th, he was appointed "Supreme Commander" of Chile by the "Cabilde de Santiago" (lord mayor council). But he refused, fully aware that such a charge would prevent him from taking part in Peru liberation. So, two days later, the same Cabilde de Santiago appointed Bernardo O'Higging to the same charge...
On March of the same year, he returned to Buenos Aires to ask for Directory's aid, to be able to carry on his expedition to free Peru. He got some theoretical promise of help from the government in Buenos Aires. But the chaos caused by the civil war with the surrounding provinces utterly hampered such promises to be fulfilled. Thus Chile alone met the whole expense of the adventure, and appointed San Martin as General Captain of the Chilean Army.
When he returned to Buenos Aires, he was accused to have become a plotter. On Feb 10th 1824, he sailed to Le Havre, in France. He was 45, and he was simultaneously Head General of Peru, General Captain of Chilean Republic, and Gerenal of the Rio de la Plata United Provinces.
After a brief stay in London, he settled in Brussels, and a few months later in Paris. During his years of exile, San Martin had been keeping in touch with a few friends in Buenos Aires. When he happened to know about the war Argentina was wedging against Brasil, he proposed to come back and take part. But never was he called back by anyone.
In 1828, he made an attempt to disembark to Buenos Aires, but to no avail. He stayed for three months in Montevideo. In 1831, he settled in France, in a rural estate near Paris. Three years later, he moved to a house in Evry, in the Grand Bourg subburb, where he resided until the year 1848. In March of the same year, he moved to Boulogne-sur-Mer, where he died in 1850...
Patagonia in all seasons menu. For example, according to the climate, from Bariloche, in Patagonia Argentina, it is possible to go to Puerto Montt, in Chile, crossing successively three lakes by boat, as did the Jesuits and the first German settlers. I offer a tour that leads to the Pacific Ocean. It is quite long, but the beauty of the sites - forests, volcanoes and crystalline lakes - is such that it is worth to be carried. The Argentine side, cross the west arm of Nahuel Huapi and Lake Puerto Alegre and, the chilen side, Lake Todos los Santos. Moving from one lake to another by bus. This tour is feasible in all seasons, but in winter, it takes two days to reach Puerto Montt, stopping for one night at Peulla. We returned to Bariloche by air or by the same way, after a night in Puerto Montt. Borispatagonia is also responsible for visas to go to Chile and to book hotels. In Patagonia, winter and summer are tourist seasons. In summer, besides explore the surrounding, many activities are available: climbing, torrent fishing, sailing, horseback riding, hiking, rides, visits to Aciendas... In winter, the main activity is, of course, skiing, especially in July and August on the side of the Andes, but not only: snowshoe hikes, thematic tours, many walks to admire the beauty of Patagonia Argentina and Chile in this season, due a unique light, the warmth of the people of Patagonia... Just to talk about, I get goose bumps!