Isla de los Estados

Isla de los Estados (German States Island) is an uninhabited island in the far south-east of Argentina ( Tierra del Fuego ). It is located 30 km east of the main island of Tierra del Fuego and one administrative area of the city and district ( departamento ) Ushuaia the Argentine province of Tierra del Fuego.


The island has an area of ​​about 530 sq km, it is 63 km long and up to 15 km wide. It is separated on the west by the Le Maire Strait (Spanish Estrecho de Le Maire ) from the main island of Tierra del Fuego. The easternmost point of the island forms the Cape San Juan. The lesser known westernmost point is Punta Cuchillo. The South Point Cabo San Bartolomé López Peninsula at the same time is also very far to the west of the island. The nearby ( five kilometers east ) located 350 islets Pies rich yet slightly further south. Northernmost point is Cabo Colnett. Further north, however, the Isla Año Nuevo and the Isla Observatorio and other minor islands. Almost all of the terrain of the island is mountainous and is home to several glacial valleys and lakes.


But of maritime historians is assumed that already Francisco de Hoces 1526 Isla de los Estados mattered confirmed is only the discovery by the Antwerp Jacob Le Maire in 1616. According to him, the Le Maire Strait, a strait named. It separates the island of Tierra del Fuego. The island's name comes from the Dutch Staten Eylandt after the Staten Generaal, the parliament of the former Republic of the Seven United Netherlands. As the way to America's southern tip, the only sea route from the Pacific to the Atlantic, or was reversed, several ships chose the shorter route through the Le Maire Strait despite critical for sailors cross currents, the other further east around the island states.

In 1978 a small military base named Comandante Luis Piedra Buena was built at the Puerto Parry. The Puerto Parry is a close and long fjord, the San Antonio intersects from the north around the Bahía in the island and the 600 meter high rock walls is lined. The four to five soldiers of the base are the only population of the island.

In 1991 the island was declared a nature reserve.


Regular settlements there are none, only a scientific station and a military base. Tourist activities are rare and expensive due to heavy access.


The island is Handlungsort of the adventure novel The Lighthouse at the End of the World by Jules Verne.