42°46 S - 65°3 W - Puerto Madryn (in Welsh, Porth Madryn) is a city in the province of Chubut in the Argentine Patagonia. It is the head town of the Viedma Department, and has about 57,571 inhabitants according to the last census in 2001. El Tehuelche Airport is located 10 km northwest of the downtown. Commercial flights from Buenos Aires, Ushuaia and other Argentinian cities are available. Most tourists fly in the Trelew airport as flights are restricted into Puerto Madryn due to environmental concerns.
Puerto Madryn can be found in Chubut on the Golfo Nuevo, which is formed by the Valdes Peninsula and Punta Ninfas. The climate is a temperate semidesert, with an annual precipitation between 150 and 200 mm. Very windy all year long, cold, sunny and with few drinking water natural supllies.
The town was founded on July 28, 1865, when 150 Welsh immigrants who came in the clipper Mimosa named the natural port Porth Madryn in honour of Sir Love Jones-Parry, whose estate in Wales was named "Madryn". The settlement grew as a result of the building of the Central Chubut Railway by Welsh, Spanish and Italian immigrants. This line, opened in 1888, linked it to Trelew via the lower Chubut River valley. Puerto Madryn is protected by the Golfo Nuevo, which is formed by Península Valdés and Punta Ninfas. It is an important centre for tourists visiting the natural attractions of the Península Valdés and the coast. A new mall in the city center has helped tourism significantly, making Puerto Madryn a more attractive place for both international and domestic tourists visiting Patagonia. It is twinned with Nefyn, a small town on the Lln Peninsula in North Wales, result of its great link with Welsh culture since the Welsh settlement in Argentina.
Puerto Madryn is a natural spot, worldwide famous for its fauna. Check fauna calendar to plan your trip.
In winter excursions for whale watching, dolphins, Commerson's dolphins, penguins, sea lions and birds among others. During the summer, the beaches are very popular, where in addition to sunbathing and water sports such as kayaking, canoeing, windsurfing, kitesurfing and motosky among others there are restaurants and cafes that are open year round. The San José and Nuevo Gulfs are visited mainly for "submarine baptisms." Puerto Madryn is called the "Diving Capital of Argentina" cause Its waters are crystal clear and calm, allowing light penetration to 70 m deep.. International Cruises that target the south of Argentina and Chile stop by and enjoy the beauty of the city and nature. Also the city has a bus terminal that receives long-distance land transport that connect with the rest of Puerto Madryn in Argentina, and El Tehuelche Airport, which has several weekly flights from several Argentine cities.
The city of Puerto Madryn offers multiple accommodation and hotels of all categories and with a variety of services, both as a destination for relaxing and business conventions.
Puerto Madryn received between June and December the famous Southern Right Whale returning to the area every year to mate and procreate. Besides cormorants, gulls, sea lions and Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus). Also can be seen with the naked eye bottlenose dolphins, sea lions and even orcas. On the outsides of town you can also see guanacos, rheas (Patagonian rhea), a huge variety of birds that live near the coast, also known as Patagonian hares and martinetas maras (Patagonian bird) and other species.
WHERE TO SLEEP?:
We had been not so much time in Puerto Madryn, just a couple of days and is recommended to stay at least a week, this is why we only were able to test one hotel and it was "La Posada", a nice and very well set three star hotel manage by Griselda, a fluency french and spanish professional who will assist you in what ever you may need. The hotel has also english people speakers. "La Posada" is a fine and elegant hotel, with huge rooms, a beautifull garden with swimming pool in a location where water supllies are expensive, so having a pool is not an easy task. Breakfast i
s cool, you get Wi-Fi, private parking and more. We felt ourselves really confortable and is a Hotel higly recommended. Check La Posada website for further info and booking, http://www.la-posada.com.ar/
WHERE TO EAT?:
We had check five restos
1) "Las Dunas", with new owners and placed right in front the beach, this resto is the one that is chosen mostly for local people, so quality is warranty. Elegant, well set, nice, specialized in seafood and fish, you also can take good vegetarian food as I did. We start with a plate of different kind of chopped cheese and hams, and complete with fishes and rice with vegies. Aprox. a 25 U$ per person resto that we recommended. Local address : Las Dunas: Boulevard Brown 1900 - Puerto Madryn. Tel: +54 (2965) 457403
2) “La Estela” was the second resto we had tried. For our surprise, when we arrived, Nahuel, the manager, he already knew I was vegetarian and a grill full of vegetable was waiting for me, great detail. We also try what is called “provoleta”, a typical cheese from Argentina and Patagonia, and my partner try some Patagonian lamb and southern king crab (centolla) prepared on champagne, everything was exquisite. “La Estela” defined itself as a “parrilla” (barbecue resto), with a good wine selection and deserts. Excellent place to go. Local address : Roque Sáenz Peña 27 - Puerto Madryn - Tel: (02965) 45-1573
3) “Margarita” belong to same owners of “La Estela” and is a resto bar, specialized in fast food and drinks. We gived it a try and was fun. It´s a good option for an after hour time or week end fun time. Good music, good people, cool. Local address : Roque Sáenz Peña 15 - Puerto Madryn - Tel: (02965) 45-5871
4) “Una Mesa” (One Table), is a young and modern restaurant in Puerto Madryn. Manage by a young couple from Buenos Aires (Juan Pablo and Julia), “Una Mesa” propose gourmet dishes with author tastes in a simple but well place area in their own old house, in downtown. Visit “Una Mesa” at http://unamesa.blogspot.com/ , mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Local address: Belgrano 346, Puerto Madryn - Reservations at (02965) 474 479.
5) “Faro Punta Delgada” was the black sheep of the herd. We felt much disappointed because, the price of food are too high for the quality their provide or the services are to low for the prices they charge, but there is no way that you pay 4 U$ for an empanada or 20 U$ for just a plain cheese pizza. The resto - hotel is placed in the middle of now where, inside Peninsula Valdez, close by the elephants reserved and perhaps this is why things are more expensive, because bringing water and suplies are not easy, but they should inform this if that is the reason, if not, everybody goes out with a little bit bitter felling in their heart, annoying the elephant experience and not good for so beautifull place. So, unless you should go, be aware of this. Over expensive and bad quality services. Web site: http://www.puntadelgada.com/home.htm
Our first trip to Puerto Madryn was fully coordinated by “Argentina Vision”, a local tourist agency, which may provide you with anything you may need in tourist matters. Packed of professional people, their guides are locals who talk many languages including german, french, english, portuguese, and of course spanish. They are in every detail and hiring their services means you will relax and enjoy the area, so booking on “Argentina Vision” to experience Puerto Madryn is a very good option. Contact: http://www.argentinavision.com/ing/
Enjoy the area, have fun
Mark Royo Celano