We were looking for groceries and we found whales.
Peninsula Valdes Travel Blog› entry 225 of 251 › view all entries
September 8th, 2008 – by: cmgervais
Today we flew south from Buenos Aires to the region of Patagonia. When we landed in Puerto Madryn, there was some issue with our car rental (Budget is located in the town, not the airport, and there was no one there to meet us.) We eventually got it straightened out with the “help” of a very old toothless man, who then demanded a big tip. The man from Budget came to give us a ride to town, and after about two hours of painstaking paperwork, we were driving our GM Corsa along the coast to the Valdés Peninsula, where our hotel is located. It was surprisingly sunny and pleasant…we had expected weather much worse.
The entire Valdés Peninsula is a protected wildlife reserve, and we had to pay 95 pesos (about $30) to enter. The scenery here really can’t be described…how can something so barren look so beautiful? It is very flat, with an occasional rolling hill, and tussocks of tough looking grass and brambles. And sheep. Lots and lots of sheep.
We stopped at the visitor’s center, where a large Right Whale skeleton was on display. They also had displays with pictures of the local flora and fauna, some of which we hoped to catch a glimpse of later. There was a viewing tower facing out to the gorgeous coastline, but we didn’t stay long there, because we could see this from the car and we were eager to get going.
We drove to the town of Puerto Pirámides for supplies, but there wasn’t a whole lot going on in this town.
Steve finally managed to tear me away from whale watching, and we did find a little grocery store of sorts. Then we headed out of town on the gravel road to our final destination, Punta Delgado. The drive was nothing short of spectacular. In additional to a landscape that stretched out forever and the never-ending sky, we saw horses, sheep, a skunk, rabbits, guanacos, Patagonian Tinamou, and Patagonian Hares (“Mara”) on the way.
It was 7:30pm and dark out when we finally lifted the gate to let ourselves through to the hotel driveway. Our hotel, Faro Punta Delgado is also a working light house (the land is owned by the navy and is leased to the hotel) so it was pretty easy to find with a marker like that. Our room is rustic but comfortable, but we weren’t too happy to learn that there is no Internet or cell service, and the electricity is turned off every day from 9am to 1pm and from 4pm to 7pm. We are really in the middle of nowhere! Plus, the tap (and shower) water is salty.
We had drinks in the cute hotel bar while we waited for dinner (not served until 8pm, and we were so hungry!), and I used their reference books to learn the names of the animals we had seen on the road. We had a pretty mediocre dinner in a nice atmosphere, then turned in to our super comfy bed, excited for what Patagonia would show us tomorrow…
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!