Patagonia National Park
Patagonia is a geographical region of more than one million km2. It is located in the extreme south of South America, shared by Argentina and Chile. In both countries there is a Patagonia National Park.
The Argentine park has 90,811 hectares, was created in 2014 in the jurisdiction of the Santa Cruz province and covers a wide sector of the Lake Buenos Aires plateau inserted in the Patagonian steppe.
This park protects water reserves, the biodiversity of the high plateaus and vast plains, hundreds of lagoons and valuable archaeological heritage.
This area is characterized by its high endemism, highlighting species such as the viola auricolor, the macá tobiano, a bird in danger of extinction discovered in 1974 and several types of little-studied lizards.
In the Patagonia National Park (Argentina) there is the only non-mountain glacier in South America. Its main archaeological reserve is the cave paintings of the Cueva de las Manos.
Route of the 7 Lakes
It is a stretch of about 107 km in the sector of National Route 40 that connects the town of San Martín de los Andes with Villa La Angostura in the Argentine province of Neuquén.
It is a tour of great scenic beauty through the seven bodies of water that give it its name, the snowy mountains and the extensive forests characteristic of the Patagonian Andes. The seven lakes are Lácar, Machónico, Falkner, Villarino, Escondido, Correntoso and Espejo.
Lake Nahuel Huapi is also on the route, so there really are eight. Taking secondary roads you can visit other lakes such as Meliquina, Traful, Hermoso and Espejo Chico.
These lakes are of glacial origin and some have islands. They are surrounded by fagaceae and coniferous forests and offer entertainment such as kayaking and canoeing and sport fishing. In several there are camping areas and small inns.
Punta Tombo Penguin Reserve
The Magellanic or Patagonian penguin is a species of bird that nests in the Falkland Islands and on the coasts of Patagonia in Argentina and Chile. In the past they were slaughtered en masse to produce animal fat and in the horrendous practice of using them directly as fuel for steamship boilers.
Although there are enough specimens of Magellanic penguins, a new threat looms over the species, consisting of the imbalance of the sexes, since the proportion of the male population is growing significantly at the expense of the female, due to a higher mortality rate in females.
To preserve the Magellanic penguin, the Punta Tombo Wildlife Reserve was created, a protected area that is in the Argentine province of Chubot and that covers 60 km of coastline and penetrates 5.6 km into the sea.
Punta Tombo is used by the Magellanic penguin as a feeding and transit area, with the presence of up to 400,000 specimens having been recorded. The area is visited by about 100,000 tourists a year, especially foreign wildlife watchers.
The Calchaquíes Valleys are a system of depressions and mountains in northwestern Argentina, in the province of Salta, which stand out for the beauty of their natural spaces and ancient towns and for the quality of their wine production.
It has traditionally been one of the best places in the country for the cultivation of white grapes, particularly torrontés, which gives a fresh wine, with a smooth texture and moderate acidity.
The town of the valleys most recognized for its wines is Cafayate, head of the Salta department of the same name. It is a small city that preserves several architectural jewels from its past, such as its church and a corn mill built by the Jesuits in the 18th century.
Tours through the vineyards and wineries of the valleys constitute one of the main tourist activities in Cafayate. An area of great scenic beauty is the Quebrada de las Conchas, with high walls, curious geological formations and paleontological sites.
In mid-February, the Serenade to Cafayate, one of the most prominent folk festivals in Argentina, takes place.