Valdes Peninsula Wildlife, Argentina
Things to See on the Valdes Peninsula
This is Argentina’s primay wildlife destination and a UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site. Valdes is famous for one thing only, wildlife. Otherwise this barren lump of land punching into the South Atlantic from central east Argentina is devoid of scenic interest – no great hikes, no soaring snowy peaks, no crystal lakes, just an arid landmass that is a pain to get to but home to various interesting and occasionally endangered animals, such as the Patagonian Mara.
Near Puerto Madryn the penguin colony at Punto Tombo is massive, probably bigger than anywhere outside the antarctic. It’s an easy taxi ride from Trelew.
Other animals generally seen at Valdes and Punto Tombo are rhea (small ostriches), guanacos (small llamas), armadillos. Southern Right Whales can be seen from Valdes in season but also from El Doradillo beach near Puerto Madryn.
The Ecocentro in Puerto Madryn is a fair museum that only opens in the afternoons and then a bit erratically. It has good views, interesting information about local marine life and cool interactive pools that are fun for children but unless you’re really interested in marine biology or you’re traveling with kids it’s not the most exciting excursion.
Punta Loma, 20 minutes south of Puerto Madryn, also offers a terrific viewpoint for wildlife watching at low tide, especially sea lions.
Gaiman town is a cute little Welsh settlement nearby that offers tourists very expensive Welsh teas.
A Patagonian armadillo.