Train graveyard on the way to Buenos Aires
From El Calafate
it is actually 40 hours by bus to Buenos Aires
, but you after the four hour bus from El Calafate you have to wait about 3-4 hours in Rio Gallegos
for the connecting bus to Buenos Aires, which almost all leave at 8 or 9pm to arrive in the morning two days later. I really wanted to stop somewhere in between, but really the only option was Puerto Madryn. The problem was that at this time of the year, according to other travelers that had just visited there, all the abundant wildlife that frequents the Valdez Peninsula had all left town for the winter, save for some penguins; actually a rather good idea and one that I was also adopting.
Another shot as this was the only interesting thing I saw
So I bought the ticket through to Buenos Aires. The scenery, at least what I saw during the daylight hours, was very very bleak. There were vast expanses of large open plains of either grassland or scrub brush. And that was it. I did see two wild ostriches and lots of cows though. The only semi-interesting part was the train graveyard that we passed before stopping in San Antonio Oeste. Unluckily enough, the television on my level of the bus was not working so there was not even any bad movies shown for the duration of the trip. We pretty much stopped every few hours for 10-20 minutes each time at one small dumpy city after another so there weren´t any super long stretches of bus travel, but by the time the sun came up on the second morning I was really ready to get off the bus, and looking forward to seeing Buenos Aires as I had heard lots of good things about it. And finally around 9:30am we did arrive, to Labor Day in Buenos Aires, with almost everything closed and many of the streets more or less deserted.