Ways of Living Nature
Whales, capybaras, guanacos, killer whales and many more! These are some of the best places to discover the Argentina´s amazing wildlife.
Valdés Peninsula and Puerto Madryn: Marine Fauna Paradise
The Valdés Peninsula is one of the best places in the world to see marine animals. Southern right whales are the ultimate stars but, depending on the time of year, you can also see killer whales, dolphins, penguins, sea lions and sea elephants. There is plenty of land fauna too, such as guanacos, Patagonian maras, lesser rheas, armadillos and foxes.
In Puerto Madryn, one of the places where to stay and explore the peninsula, you can go snorkeling with sea lions and practice scuba diving. There are different ways of discovering the area and each month awaits you with different species and experiences.
Discover other places to see marine fauna: Patagonic Sea Route
Iberá Wetlands: The Great Argentine Safari
Iberá is the ideal place if you want to see abundant wildlife. This vast national and provincial park is full of capybaras, yacare caimans, marsh deers, black-and-gold howler monkeys, brockets and many other animals that will amaze you on each outing. It is also a not-to-be-missed destination for bird watching.
There are several gateways to visit the wetlands, which are the departure points of boat and kayak tours, horse riding experiences and several hiking adventures. Most of the species can be seen all year round.
Plan your trip: Iberá Wetlands . Check the nature calendar to know what to see each month.
Iguazú National Park: The Animals of the Rainforest
The Atlantic Rainforest is home to Argentina’s largest variety of plant and animal species. A good way to discover them is to visit Iguazú National Park, where you can encounter South American coatis, capuchin monkeys, toucans, agoutis and all kinds of birds and butterflies.
Apart from strolling along the walkways, other two options to see wildlife are the Macuco trail (6 km round trip on foot) and driving along Route 101, which crosses the park (40 km on a dirt road, always driving very slowly to avoid hitting animals).
Tip: Pay attention to insects, especially butterflies. You will discover a new world.
Plan your trip: Iguazú National Park. Check the nature calendar to know what to see each month.
Other places where to encounter forest animals: Urugua-í Provincial Park, Yabotí Biosphere Reserve and Moconá Provincial Park.
Urugua-í Provincial Park: Encounters with Tapirs and Black-fronted Piping Guans
Tapirs are the largest land mammals in South America. Even though they are shy, there is an area in Urugua-í where they can be frequently seen.
Black-fronted piping guans are large rainforest birds. Every day, at dawn and at dusk, they gather in the Urugua-í Stream, where they can be easily spotted.
The ideal thing is to camp at the park and wait for them in the viewpoints at sunrise or during the sunset. The experience is even better if you are accompanied by a guide.
Deseado Estuary and Pingüino Island: Southern Rockhopper Penguins and Commerson’s Dolphins
Puerto Deseado and its surrounding areas invite you to sail alongside the most beautiful dolphins in the world and visit the only continental colony of southern rockhopper penguins. Both are a symbol of Patagonia.
Boat tours sail around the very same places that Charles Darwin visited 200 years ago where, apart from Commerson’s dolphins and penguins, you can see plenty of other marine wildlife.
Ushuaia and the Beagle Channel: Scuba Diving and Wildlife at the End of the World
Tierra del Fuego, Antártida e Islas del Atlántico Sur
At the gates of Antarctica, many animals are waiting to be discovered. There are boat tours that depart from the port of Ushuaia to Los Lobos Island, which is home to two species of sea lions, and to Los Pájaros Island, where you can see albatrosses, snowy sheathbills, steamer ducks and cormorants.
If you like penguins, Martillo Island is a must-see destination. Here, apart from viewing Magellanic penguins, you will find the only colony of gentoo penguins in Argentina and, from time to time, have the opportunity to see king penguins.
If you enjoy scuba diving, plunge into the waters of the Beagle Channel and discover different species of fish, starfish, octopuses, southern king crabs, jellyfish and other marine invertebrates within and among kelp forests. There are outings for beginner and advanced divers.
Antarctica: Emperor Penguins, Leopard Seals and Whales amidst the Ice
Tierra del Fuego, Antártida e Islas del Atlántico Sur
Ushuaia is the main gateway to Antarctica, one of the planet’s greatest wildlife havens. Cruise lines offer different tours and activities that include excursions by zodiac and kayak, on-foot outings to visit colonies of emperor, Adelie and other species of penguins and watching of whales, killer whales, leopard seals and marine birds.
Its pristine icescapes, immensity and solitude make Antarctica a unique experience.
El Palmar National Park: Among Viscachas, Foxes and Capybaras
El Palmar is a good place to encounter viscachas, capybaras, foxes, greater rheas and all kinds of birds. In spring and summer, Argentine black and white tegus and aquatic turtles let visitors see them.
It is ideal to visit it with children and enjoy the amazing landscape created by the yatay palms. You can go all year round.
Costanera Sur Ecological Reserve: Tegus, Aquatic Turtles and Coypus in the City.
Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires
This is a not-to-be-missed destination for bird watching. Additionally, during spring and summer, you can stumble upon Argentine black and white tegus and find aquatic turtles and coypus (aquatic rodents the size of a rabbit) in the lagoons.
You can also come across urutu pit vipers, poisonous snakes that coexist peacefully with visitors. A true safari experience in the heart of Buenos Aires.
Puna and High Andes: Vicunas and Andean Flamingos
Catamarca, Jujuy, La Rioja, Salta, San Juan, Mendoza
Vicunas are an icon of Argentine fauna. You can see them in herds, withstanding the most extreme landscapes of the Puna and the Andes, or witness the Chaku, an ancestral community practice of live shearing that takes place in Catamarca.
In the high Andean lagoons, you can also view thousands of flamingos and other birds that are typical of the Puna and that attract photographers and bird-watchers from all over the world.
Plan your trip: San Guillermo National Park, El Leoncito National Park, Laguna Brava Provincial Reserve, Antofagasta de la Sierra and Laguna Blanca Biosphere Reserve, Laguna de los Pozuelos Natural Monument, Tolar Grande , Los Andes Provincial Reserva (Salta) and Laguna de Llancanelo (Mendoza). Check the nature calendar to know when to go.
Southern Patagonia: Patagonian Huemuls, Guanacos, Pumas and Lesser Rheas
Southern Patagonia is the ideal place to set out on the search for these four icons of Argentine wildlife.
Patagonian huemuls are typical deers of the Patagonian Andes. If you are lucky, you may see them on the trails of Perito Moreno and Los Glaciares national parks.
Guanaco and lesser rhea herds usually accompany visitors as they stroll around the steppe.
Also, in Patagonia National Park, it is becoming more and more frequent to encounter pumas.
As an added bonus, you will almost certainly see Andean condors in all these places.
Gran Chaco: Giant Anteaters, Tapirs, Peccaries and Chacoan Maras Chaco, Santiago del Estero and Formosa
Chaco, Formosa, Santiago del Estero
Apart from being home to birds and reptiles, some destinations in the Chaco region invite you to set out on the search for mammals. Encounters are never guaranteed, but if you go with guides, move with patience and have a little luck, you may meet giant anteaters, southern tamanduas, white-lipped peccaries, collared peccaries and Chacoan maras.
Yungas: Jaguars, Squirrels and Black-and-chestnut Eagles Salta and Jujuy
Finding them is not easy, but the search is worth it. Baritú and El Nogalar de los Toldos, in the north of Salta, are two wild destinations (only for adventurers!) where you can camp overnight and wake up surrounded by footprints of jaguars, tapirs and many other animals.
In El Rey, you may see peccaries and tapirs, and in Calilegua, with a little bit of luck, you may come across capuchin monkeys, squirrels and black-and-chestnut eagles.
Plan your trip: Baritú National Park and El Nogalar de los Toldos National Reserve, El Rey National Park, Calilegua National Park. Check the nature calendar to know what to see each month.
Guanacos, Patagonian maras, Andean condors, Armadillos and Foxes in the Desert
La Pampa, La Rioja, San Juan, San Luis, Mendoza
If you visit the national parks in central and western Argentina, you will almost certainly encounter guanacos, Patagonian maras (rodents the size of a hare that can only be found in Argentina), several species of armadillo and foxes.
It is also very likely that you will see Andean condors and, if you go in summer, many lizards and even turtles.
Parque Luro: The Rut of the Red Deer
Between March and April, in the forests of Parque Luro Provincial Reserve, you can witness the rut of the red deer, a species brought from Europe that has become part of La Pampa’s cultural heritage. The rut is the period of the year when female red deers are in heat and males compete for them, roaring and fighting against each other.
Parque Luro is 35 km south of Santa Rosa.