A Travellerspoint blog

A hidden gem in Patagonia

Puerto Madryn, Argentina

View Around the World! - Part 1 on Where2FromHere's travel map.

Today we visited Puerto Madryn, a city in northern Patagonia, Argentina, located on the coast. The city has beautiful sandy beaches and a promenade lined with restaurants that overlook Golfo Nuevo bay. This bay is where southern right whales breed from May to December. These large, rotund whales found in the Southern Hemisphere are on the endangered list. We sought other area wildlife today - sea lions, dolphins, and birds.There's a huge difference between high tide (14. 34 ft.) and low tide (3.87 ft.) in the bay. So they have an interesting means of launching the zodiac that we were to take for today's exploration. Here's some photos of what they use to push the boat out in the morning. By the time we returned in the afternoon the tractor was forced to go into the water to retrieve us and bring us to shore.


As we cruised with winds up to 30 knots (35 mph), we held onto our hats and viewed the coastline of the city of Puerto Madryn. On a previous visit we had kayaked here, so I was glad to be in a sturdier vessel this time. Along the way to the seal colony, we sailed past the wreck of the ship Dolphin which was rediscovered in 2022 off Patagonia, Argentina, and it is believed to be the long-lost 1850s Rhode Island whaler.


Apparently the locals love the shoreline as a favorite spot to vacation. I know my brother Jack will be interested in the variey of accomodations that lined the shore for quite a distance. I wonder how they get down there from the cliffs above.


Speaking of cliffs, we were captivated by the Imperial Cormorants nesting along the coastal habitat, which is characterized by sheer, rocky walls. These are fish-eating birds and are known to dive to depths of 260 feet below the ocean surface.


We also saw the beautiful black petrel, also known as the Southern Giant Petrel, soaring above the ocean. This special bird is known for its large size and can be identified by its black plumage and striking wing span of from 59 to 82 inches.


We were unable to go to far from shore due to the high winds so unfortunately we didn't see any of the dolphins, even though we searched high and low for these creatures. Jeff's either trying to find a dolphin or wondering just where in the world we are now!


However, we spotted several sea lion colonies, including a large male basking in the sun. Among the many females, we also saw several small black-colored babies that were born within the last week or so. Two young ones were playing along the shore, and another large male, was seen strutting near a colony of males. The herd's barking, honking, and roaring added to the experience of viewing them from a distance in our zodiac.


Upon our return we were protected momentarily from the wind by our ship at the dock. From the photo you can see the location of our home for the upcoming several months while we continue to explore the world.


Later on in the day we ventured into the town of Puerto Madryn. There we found the beef they are well-known for drying above a charcoal fire and this metal sculture of a diver.


When we returned to the ship, we heard an annoucement from our Captain. He has decided to reverse the Antarctic part of our itinerary due to the weather conditions in the Drake Passage. This body of water separating Cape Horn, South America from Antarctica can be some of the most hazardous ocean water on the planet, with strong currents, fierce winds, and heavy swells. At the time when Serenade of the Seas was scheduled to be leaving Port Stanley and crossing the Passage, winds are forecast to reach approximately 35-37 miles per hour along the planned route. The captain tells us this would make the voyage "Extremely Uncomfortable." So now, the ship will remain in a calmer region. This itinerary change will allow Serenade of the Seas to take a more sheltered route skirting around the worst weather for a more comfortable voyage. We will be at sea for a few days, arriving in the continent of Antartica on January 12th. As is currently planned, we will now visit the Falkland Islands after Antartica rather than beforehand. Our thanks to the captain for keeping this experience as a safe and sensational one!

Posted by Where2FromHere 14:40 Archived in Argentina

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by Jack Schwerman

Just a note to my readers... 1st of all, thank you for reading & sharing my blog with others; and if you'd like to leave a comment on any post just scroll to the bottom, enter it in the comment box and click on "Add the comment". "See you in Antarctica!"

by Where2FromHere

I really liked this place, brings back memories

by Ils1976

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