Trip Start Jan 16, 2011
174Trip End Jan 15, 2012
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Heat, 35 degrees celsius! 7:45am pick up is here to bring me and some other hostel people to Peninsular Valdes: a prime destination to see Patagonia's wildlife - and we met them just when we entered the island, after a 30 min drive from Puerto Madryn: cuis chinco (a small mouse) and guanacos, 2 maras (huge rabbit-like rodents) under a tree - but very far, and the less exciting sheep. Short stop at the visitor centere with an interesting museum and exhibits as well as the sceleton of a austral whale. Then on to Puerto Piramide While some went on a boat tour to see sea lions, I hiked around, up to the top of the cliffs to take some pictures. Next stop was Punta Norte with it's famous sea lions! Hundreds of them! The male do look like a lion from the distance with their mane. Their roar however is sometimes like that of a lion, sometimes like that of a sheep! Unfortunately we missed an orca, which was seen an hour earlier. Damn - what a pitty
A short while later we got to see the Magellanic penguins, just south of Puerto Norte - also from a bit of a distance only, as the whole of Peninsular Valdes is a protected area and it's not even allowed to step outside the car except at the viewing stations.
Last stop: Punta Cantor and its elephant seals. As it's not really the right season for them to stop there, we only saw about 7 of them, but the landscape around there was just amazing - you got to see that! The coast is shaped from tides in a spectacular way...check out the pictures!
Kind of lost on what to do next - too many options, but tours are very pricy and I will see some of the same fauna in other parts of Patagonia, hostel is full for the next day - in high season you really got to book ahead everywhere. Very tempting is a tour a guy from NY strongly recommended me,a place called Ninfas to see sea elephants on the coast close up - not a National Park, thus you can get as close as you can / or the sea elephants allow you. Unfortunately they won't depart tomorrow. So let's sleep over it!