sea lion, atlantic patagonia tour - terra argentina

Driving along the Coast: Atlantic Patagonia, refuge of marine wildlife

Itinerary idea for a trip to Argentina in 12 days.

This 12-day itinerary takes you from multifaceted Buenos Aires to Atlantic Patagonia. Discover the Valdes Peninsula, a sanctuary for marine fauna and the Southern Right Whales. Drive further south into wild Patagonia until the secluded, small fishing village of Bahia Bustamante, where silence is only interrupted by gusts of wind and the waves breaking on the shore. A perfect experience for nature lovers, off the beaten tracks.

Length of stay: 12 days

Kind: Sustainable Travels

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Countries visited: Argentina

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Day 1 : International Aiport Ezeiza

Meet your driver at Ezeiza International Airport – transfer to Buenos Aires in a private vehicle. Transfer with an English-speaking guide. Visit Buenos Aires (half day, walking tour).

Today, discover the political and historical centre of the capital . Start with the 9 de Julio Avenue , the widest in the world, dominated by the Obelisk , a symbol of Buenos Aires. You will pass the Colon Theatre , one of the jewels of the Argentine architecture, before arriving on the Capital main square, P laza de Mayo.

Your visit then takes you to San Telmo : this historical neighbourhood is a dynamic mix of tourists and locals: picturesque alleyways, old typical cafés, antique shops … This lively barrio is animated day and night – a famous flea market takes place every sunday around Dorrego square.

End your visit with the picturesque neighborhood of La Boca , with its small alley of El Caminito : painters, tango dancers and singers meet between the ancient colourful wooden houses.

Return to your hotel after the visit.

Excursion carried out with an English-speaking guide. Night at the Casa Calma Hotel en Superior room (STD).

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Day 2 : City Tour Buenos Aires

Walking City Tour Buenos Aires (half day).

Guided tour of the Recoleta neighbourhood, characterized by many colonial houses, often old houses of historical figures, currently inhabited by powerful Argentine families. Enter the luxurious Pacifico Shopping Center , characterized by its French architecture of 1889 with vaulted ceilings. This stunning place is a locals’ favourite.

Visit the Recoleta Cemetery , where many celebrities, writers and politicians rest. The best known and most revered even today is the tomb of Evita Peron , the legendary wife of President Peron .

Continue your visit by the Palermo neighbourhood, with a stroll in the park Tres de Febrero , inaugurated in 1875, representing the largest green area of the city.

Return to your hotel. Night at the Casa Calma Hotel en Superior room (STD).

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Day 3 : Buenos Aires

Transfer from your hotel to Buenos Aires Domestic Airport in a private vehicle. Domestic flight Buenos Aires* – Trelew.

*National o international airport depending on time schedule and availability. Car rental – Vehicle of category 4×2 such as Renault Duster, Ecosport or similar

Free mileage included. Suggested itinerary:

Road to Puerto Piramides and installation at your hotel. Night at the Del Nomade hotel in standard room.

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Day 4 : Peninsula Valdes reserve

Suggested itinerary:

Drive to the Valdés peninsula, refuge of a diverse wildlife, on land and in the waters.

You discover the Bird Island in the Ameghino isthmus and Puerto Piramides, a seaside resort located on the cliffs of the peninsula.

Suggested excursion (June to mid-December)

From Puerto Piramides, take a boat to get closer to the whales. The slow and curious gigantic mammals playfully let you observe their skin covered with calluses. They sometimes dive under the boats emitting a particular sound and jump out for an unforgettable experience. If the weather is fair, dolphins might also follow your boat.

Suggested excursion (from mid-December to May)

As whales have migrated into the southern seas, take a boat to reach Punta Piramides loberia, a refuge for sea lions. You can observe the activity of these colonies depending on the time of year: formation of harems, reproduction, births etc. You then reach Cormoran Island, home to many breeding colonies, and head to a cave full of fossils.

If the weather is fair, dolphins might also follow your boat. Night at the Del Nomade hotel in standard room.

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Day 5 : Puerto Pirámides

Suggested itinerary:

This morning, explore Caleta Valdés and Punta Norte. Visit Estancia San Lorenzo and its penguin colony (around 30,000 animals). You can admire them very closely by following a small path to the coast.

Drive along the Ruta 3 to the northern tip of the peninsula (Punta Norte, 78 km of track in good condition) where many marine animals rest on the endless beaches (sea lions, seals, sea elephants, etc.). Night at the Del Nomade hotel in standard room.

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Day 6 : Puerto Pirámides

Suggested itinerary:

Free day in Puerto Piramides.

– Tour through the typical landscapes.

– Trek in the nature: Puerto Pirámides displays 70m-high cliffs which are natural watchtowers allowing to observe the marine fauna in all discretion.

In the middle of the afternoon, drive to Trelew. Night at La Casona del Rio in standard room.

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Day 7 : Trelew

Suggested itinerary:

Leave Trelew for the small village of Bahia Bustamante. You will drive across the steppe of Patagonia: straight line, flat landscape, no one on the horizon, and the ever-present winds! You will feel the power of Patagonia as you barely begin to enter it.

Leave Road 3 to take a track that leads to the sea and to the village of Bahia Bustamante. Bahia Bustamante is a pure seaweed fishing village. True sanctuary of wild life, some biologists, families, adventurers, and artists from different corners of the world have settled in this private (and secret) paradise.

Full board and night in a standard Casa de Mar (Seaside Bungalow)

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Day 8 : Bahia Bustamante

Book one included activity directly on site depending on weather conditions:

– navigation in Caleta Malaspina

– visit to the Gravina Peninsula

– walk on the penguin island

– visit to the petrified forest

Full board and night in a standard Casa de Mar

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Day 9 : Bahia Bustamante

Listen to the surprising story of this remote place by the Patagonia Coast: Lorenzo Soriano started harvesting seaweed in the 1950s. Followed by more than 400 workers, he founded a village whose streets are named after different species of seaweed.

The silence here is only broken by gusts of wind, the song of hundreds of species of birds and the waves breakingthe waves on the shore.

Participate to another activity (subject to weather conditions):

– historical tour of the village

– visit of Cabo Aristizabal

– trek in a canyon.

Full board and night in a standard Casa de Mar

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Day 10 : Bahia Bustamante

In Bahia Bustamante, the luxury lies in the sheer immensity of the nature that surrounds you. The purpose of the experience is to connect with wildlife, history and the authenticity of this unique place and its inhabitants.

An activity included on site depending on weather conditions and your wishes (see previous days)

Full board and night in standard Casa de Mar

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Day 11 : Bahia Bustamante - Buenos Aires

Suggested itinerary:

You leave Bahia Bustamante to go a little further south following the Atlantic Ocean. Facing the ocean, on the other side of the road, the steppe and its natural inhabitants: guanacos, eagles, armadillos, maras… Take your time to try and spot as many as you can, wildlife is very dynamic in the region.

You arrive at Comodoro Rivadavia and go to the airport to take your flight. Last day at Bahia Bustamante, you hit the road in the morning and leave this little haven of peace. Drop off your vehicle at the airport. Domestic flight Comodoro Rivadavia – Buenos Aires* .

*National o international airport depending on time schedule and availability. Transfer from Buenos Aires domestic airport to your hotel in a private vehicle. Night at the milonga, ballroom for tango aficionados.

Step in the intimate atmosphere of the milonga to observe the tango etiquette at ease while sipping champagne: men cross eyes with seated women to invite them. A small nod means yes, and dancers then meet directly on the floor. The atmosphere is warm and lively at the tables, between visitors and regulars.

Note : the exact time and place of the milonga may vary depending on the day (El Beso, La Catedral, El Canning…) – some start at 7pm, others at 11pm, and a few continue till dawn, ending with hot coffee and fresh croissants! Transfer to the milonga Evening accompanied with an English speaking guide. Night at the Casa Calma Hotel en Superior room (STD).

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Day 12 : Buenos Aires

Transfer from the hotel to Ezeiza International Airport in a private vehicle.

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