Penguins colonies in Argentina

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1. Posted by o.les (Budding Member 16 posts) 6y Star this if you like it!

Who can recommend easiest and nearest Penguins colonies from Buenos Aires? Interested in 1 day trip. Does it involve flights? What company is doing trips there? Thank you:)

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3. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1886 posts) 6y Star this if you like it!

The closest would be the zoo, otherwise there are penguins in Puerto Madryn but it still takes a whole day to get there. Most penguins are in the far south of the country, so yes flying will be involved but realistically it will be longer than a day trip. You didn't say when you were travelling. Each colony is seasonal and the available colonies will depend on when you travel.

[ Edit: Edited on 15-Nov-2017, at 00:21 by Teoni ]

4. Posted by o.les (Budding Member 16 posts) 6y Star this if you like it!

Thank you. I think it will be in January 2018 in few month time. Not interested in zoos. Can see at zoo in uk. Want to see them in wild. Is Puerto Madryn closest from Buenos Aires? Are there organised trips anywhere from Buenos Aires? Day trip would be better but 2 days also ok if hotel would be organised. Or I will need to make all arrangements myself? Maybe there some travel companies to organise tours there? Is anyone lives in Buenos Aires?

5. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 2870 posts) 6y Star this if you like it!

O.les, if you read a bit on the link given by Teoni you'll see that:

"Isla Pinguino near Puerto Deseado [is] the only site where tourists can see Rockhopper penguins in Chile or Argentina"


"None of the [Macaroni Penguin] colonies in Chile or Argentina are within easy reach of the continental mainland, making them unsuitable for tourism."

That leaves you with:
"Recommended sites to view Magellanic penguins in Argentina are Peninsula Valdez, Punta Tombo, Cabo Virgenes, Monte Leon and Puerto Deseado."

To do this from Buenos Aires, Teoni's suggestion of Puerto Madryn / Peninsula Valdez is 1300km away - further than London to the top of Scotland. The other options are worse. This is not likely day-trip or 2-day trip territory - it strikes me as something you do as part of a bigger trip to Torres del Paine and Tierra del Fuego over the course of a couple of weeks.

I stand to be corrected but I can't see a market for it so I doubt you're going to find an organised tour offering this, in the same way that you don't see operators offering Shetland daytrips from London.

6. Posted by Sander (Moderator 5986 posts) 6y Star this if you like it!

FWIW, with three days it's probably doable to fly to Ushuaia (about as far as you can go while still staying in the country, but you're going to be flying a long distance anyway if you want to do this), head to the many tour operator stands at the harbour and book a daytrip with them to Isla Martillo for the following day (combined with a visit to Estancia Haberton, from where you'll take a zodiac to the island), where you can walk between the hundreds of nesting Magellanic penguins (and probably also a few dozen Gentoos). And then on the third day you can fly back, though I'd recommend lingering for a couple of days, and maybe visit El Calafate on the way back for a visit to Perito Moreno, since a stopover there tends to not increase the cost of the flights at all.

7. Posted by Borisborough (Moderator 1861 posts) 6y Star this if you like it!

If it's really too difficult for you to see penguins in Argentina, how about arranging for your trip to be in New Zealand? We have five different types here and you can even see the little blue penguins as far north as Auckland. [You could go to Australia instead but ...]

8. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1886 posts) 6y Star this if you like it!

Your timing should be all right though if the information about the penguins is right the nesting season for the Magellanic will be over and the babies will be nearly grown, though I suppose that means more penguins;) There are penguin tours at Puerto Madryn but they don't start at Buenos Aires. You have to make your own way there and arrange your own accommodation. As the other posts have emphasised there is no day trip from Buenos Aires. I don't know what your whole trip plan is but if wild penguins is something you really desire than perhaps amending those plans to spend more time in the south of the country rather than rushing down south and rushing back north might be more practical.

9. Posted by o.les (Budding Member 16 posts) 6y Star this if you like it!

Thank you a lot to all of you. I can see that I was not realistic. Yes thanks to you all I will rearrange my trip. I did not book it yet so thinking ab 3 days in Buenos Aires n 3 days in the south. Looked all info and probable choose Isla Pinguino but still have a job to see if there is direct flight from Buenos Aires and maybe even book in advance the tour to the island. Thanks again

10. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1886 posts) 6y Star this if you like it!

You can use to figure out where the closest airports are and who flies where. Though just at a glance the closest airport seems to be Comodoro Rivadavia but you will still need to make your own way to Puerto Deseado but it is certainly closer than Buenos Aires to Puerto Madryn:) Here is a nice account of what it is like visiting this island along with some tour operater suggestions:

Hope this help, and good luck with your search for the penguins