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Trelew - The Valdes Peninsula - Argentina Travel Information

Photos from Trelew

אל דסאפיו (2003) El Desafio אל דסאפיו (2003) El Desafio אל דסאפיו (2003) El Desafio אל דסאפיו (2003) El Desafio אל דסאפיו (2003) El Desafio פינגווין מגלאני (2003) Magellanic Penguin פונטה טומבו (2003) Punta Tombo פינגווין מגלאני צעיר (2003)Magellanic Penguin גור ארמדילו שעיר (2003) Baby Hairy Armadillo מושבת אריות ים - חצי האי וואלדס (2003) Sea Lion Colony - Valdes Penninsula גורי אריות ים - חצי האי וואלדס (2003) Sea Lion cubs - Valdes Penninsula גור ארמדילו שעיר (2003) Baby Hairy Armadillo

(Península Valdés)

The area around the city of Trelew offers some interesting attractions, and is definitely worth a few days of exploration on your way along the eastern shore of Argentina.

Punta Tombo - Reserva Provincial Punta Tombo

Each year, as the days of spring become longer and warmer (from mid September until the beginning of April) the penguins arrive to Patagonia's shores in the Chubut Province. This is the most important Magellanic Penguin colony in Patagonia and the biggest Magellanic Penguin colony outside Antarctica.

Over 250,000 couples arrive each year to a place called Punta Tombo to lay their eggs and then raise the chicks.

The big advantage of Punta Tombo reserve is that you can actually walk among the penguins, follow them and learn their habits, all from a short distance.

The best season to visit the place is end November, when the penguin's chicks have already hatched. The best time to watch the penguins is towards sunset, as they come out from the sea to shore, get themselves dry and head back to their nests.

An important rule to remember during touring the reserve is not to touch the penguins and not to get too close - especially not to the young ones! If the parents of the young penguin will sense your smell on it, they might stop feeding it! Another point is that although the penguins are generally considered as a calm animal, they might attack you with their sharp beak in case they feel threatened.


Entrance fee to the reserve is $5.

Getting there

It is possible to reach Punta Tombo with an organized tour (bus) from Trelew. The bus ticket is about 20 Peso.

Arriving by car (could be rented in Trelew), you must drive from Trelew toward Rawson and then turn to road number 1 (actually an unpaved road) and drive about 120 km of boring road. When it rains, you should check if the road is open, since it is usually closed when it rains hard.

When driving on an unpaved road, pay attention to the vehicles coming towards you. Many cars were damaged by the gravel flung at them by passing vehicles.

What is a Magellanic Penguin?

The Magellanic Penguin is a migrating bird, about 50 cm high. During the migration months the penguin will pass more then 3000 km to Brazil's beaches, searching for warmer weather.

The penguin nests near the beach under the bushes. Many times the penguin's family will return to the same nest they left a year before. The penguin is an equalitarian animal, meaning the male and female share all the responsibilities of raising the chicks - building the nest, hatch on the eggs and feeding the chicks.

The courting period and laying the eggs are difficult and strenuous times for the penguin. During that time the penguins stay on shore without food, and go to the sea only to drink. Each female usually lays 2 eggs, and hatch on them 40 days. The young penguins are born around November covered with fair grey fuzz.

Egidio Feruglio Paleontology Museum

The Egidio Feruglio Paleontology Museum in Trelew is one of the most important museums in the world for dinosaurs. The museum presents models of over 30 types of dinosaurs and over 1700 other exhibits originally from Argentina and other parts of South America.

The museum is located at the city center in a new impressive building - 140 Av. Fontana.

The museum offers films and guided tours, including a lab tour, where dinosaur remnants are being researched.


The museum is open Monday to Sunday, including holidays:
Monday to Friday: 08:30 - 12:30 & 13:00 - 20:00
Weekends and holidays: 09:00 - 12:00 & 14:00 - 21:00

El Desafio

In the village of Gaimen, about 20 km from Trelew in Argentina, a weird mixture of materials, colors and shapes form the El Desafio Park ("the challenge"), a park built out of waste materials (or in other words - junk).

Old cars, empty bottles, boxes, paint cans and many other leftovers of 20th century technology create a colorful maze full of life, where visitor walk through, fascinated as children.

The park is built as a maze full of life and youthful energy, and in every corner humorous sayings greet the visitors. All the things in the park, from the fences surrounding it, through the dinosaur models scattered in it and up to the Taj Mahal model, were made only of waste materials.

The park is the life work of Don Joaquin Raimundo Alonso. Don Alonso, an 87 years old men with grey hair welcoms all the visitors with a big smile on his face. "Welcome! Take as many photos as you want - I built this park with my own two hands" he says as he lifts his arms pointing at the park with great affection.

Don Alonso started to build the park in 1980 after he retired from his work and arrived to Gaimen. "The park was 20,000 sq meters with 2 apple trees, and I had 6 grandchildren" he tells. The park started as a football field and a maze that he built for his grandchildren as a present. "People started arriving to the park and liked what they saw" he remembers. "I felt almost ashamed from what little I had to show them, so I decided to create various things until it started to look better". The park was even recognized in 1998 Guinness book as the biggest park made of recycled materials.

During the years until the park was officially opened in January 17, 1984 Don Alonso used about 30,000 empty drinking cans, 5,000 empty plastic bottles, 5000 meters of telephone wires, 12,000 oil tin covers, 50,000 empty whine and beer bottles, all that in addition to old and broken televisions, refrigerators, washing machines, water containers and cars.

When asked, Don Alonso proudly says that today he already has 4 married sons, 10 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. "They bring me big joy when they come to visit me on Sundays" he says.

When the visitors enter the park, they face a wall with a "welcome" greeting in 45 languages. "The reason for it is that I had visitors from over 60 countries already, among them Indonesia, Japan, China, Iran, Iraq, Saudi and all Europe countries".

Don Alonso starts the tour in the park in a garden that is made of real flowers and metal flowers in the memory of those who died in the Falkland war.

Gaimen village, where the park is situated, was established in 1874 by a group of Walsh settlers that escaped the despotism that threaten the culture and legacy of England and accepted Argentina's government offer to immigrate to it. Patagonia, whuch was completely unsettled, fitted their needs and way of life.

Valdes Peninsula - Península Valdés

UNESCO declared Valdes Peninsula in 1999 as a World Heritage Site.