Highlights of an Argentina wildlife holiday

With one of the continent’s most significant wildlife reserves and diverse natural resources from the steamy jungle to parched deserts and icy glaciers, the natural wonders and wildlife of Argentina are wide-ranging and can be combined into one thrilling and adventurous wildlife holiday.

Witness the spectacular Iguassu falls, one of the natural wonders of the world.

Valdes Peninsula and the Patagonian Coast

Boasting an impressive concentration of wildlife, the Valdes Peninsula is Argentina’s principle wildlife area, set along the Patagonian Coast. It was designated as a wildlife reserve in 1967 in order to protect the ecosystem and the wildlife and birds that inhabit it. With viewpoints overlooking Bird’s Island, which is home to sea birds such as terns, cormorants, gulls, and herons, and which has trails that take you through the reserve, nature enthusiasts will no doubt enjoy this protected sanctuary. Undoubtedly the main attraction on the isthmus is the southern right whales that can be seen offshore between May and December when they arrive to give birth.

Further south you will reach Punta Tombo, where over half a million Magellan penguins can also be seen from September to March, with babies most commonly sighted from December onwards. This is another wildlife highlight of Patagonia and seabirds such as kelp and dolphin gulls, comorants, terns and giant petrels are also found here along the coastline.

Orcas can also be found in the open seas off the coast, and on occasion can beach themselves on the shore to catch sea lions and elephant seals!

Jungle and Desert

Perhaps the most famous of Argentina’s natural wonders in the mighty Iguassu Falls, located in the steamy jungle area of Misiones in the north. Here 24 kilometres of water thunder up to 70 metres into the gorge below in a deafening display that is overwhelming to behold and comprises some 275 separate waterfalls.

The landscapes as you head further south into the country from Iguassu shift dramatically, and entering the region of Salta you arrive in a red-hued desertous land, with cactus trees dotting the dry Andes range and unusual rock formations around Jujuy, the picturesque village of Cachi and the beautiful scenery of the Cafayate winelands. Eventually hitting the Lake District around Bariloche, the landscape is again transformed into a natural wonderland of jagged and snow-capped mountains, winding lakes and lookouts over the stunning Swiss-reminiscent scenes.

Southern Patagonia is home to another natural phenomenon of Argentina, namely the Perito Moreno glacier, which is the world’s only advancing glacier and a truly breathtaking sight to behold.  Whether you wish to hike the glacier, take a boat trip to watch strips of the glacier creak, groan and splash loudly into waters below or simply appreciate the cobalt blue shades of the glacier from afar, this is one more example of Argentine nature at its most powerful.

At the falls, you can explore swathes of dense forest, and see a variety of wildlife including monkeys, iguanas and countless species of birds.

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