There is a lot of natural beauty in Argentina waiting to be explored.
The culture, the history, the people, the food, and the landscape all have elements of authentic beauty.
A trip to Argentina would not be complete without exploring some (or all!) of the UNESCO World Heritage National Parks. Throughout the country, there are five natural heritage sites and six cultural heritage sites. For the purpose of this blog, we are going to focus on the natural sites.
Away from the bustling city of Buenos Aires, you can find some of the largest rainforests, temperate forests, and deserts in the world.
If you are a nature lover, photographer, animal lover, human being, or an admirer of our beautiful planet, one or more of these sites listed below should be on your bucket list.
Top Natural UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Argentina
Iguazu National Park
The waterfalls of Iguazu National Park is a magnificent semi-circle waterfall. It is named after the indigenous term “great water. This site borders Argentina and Brazil.
At its highest point, it stands at 80m high and is 2,700m in diameter. The massive spray that is produced by the falls feeds the surrounding rainforest and often, almost always, creates beautiful rainbows that frame its drop-off. The rainforest is rich in tropical vegetation and wildlife, making a journey to the falls even more rewarding.
Iguazu National park was deemed UNESCO World Heritage Site status in 1984.
Ischigualasto – Talampaya National Parks
If you want to be in awe or understand more about those who came before you, head to Ischigualasto – Talampaya National Parks. 275,369 hectares in Northern Central America make up the combination of Ischigualasto – Talampaya parks.
It is here, in the desert region, that the most complete continental fossil records are found from the Triassic period.
Ischigualasto – Talampaya National Parks became UNESCO World Heritage site recognized in 2000.
Los Alerces National Park
Los Alerces is a fairly new UNESCO site, inscripted in 2017. Located in Northern Patagonia this Patagonian forest is jaw-droppingly beautiful.
Los Alerces National Park has a unique formation. Previous glaciers have formed lakes, moraines, valleys, rivers, and lagoons, all of which are different in colour and size.
The reserve stretches to 71,443 hectares in addition to a 10km band around the site. This is the only ecoregion of temperate forests in Latin America. Included in the reserve is the endangered Alerce Tree, known as the second longest living tree on earth. Here, conservation is vital for its survival.
Los Glaciares National Park
If you haven’t already seen or heard about Los Glaciares National Park, research some of its photographs and you will be amazed by its raw, rugged, stunning beauty.
Located Southwest of the Santa Cruz province in Argentina, this park includes glaciers, mountains, and lakes Argentino and Viedma. Lake Argentino is the largest freshwater lake in Argentina with a max depth of 150m and surface area of 1,415 km.
This site is a great place to experience diverse high altitude vegetation, along with mammoth size glaciers that crash down into milky glacier lakes and rivers. A photographer’s dream.
Deemed a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1981.
Everything about this site warms our hearts. Peninsula Valdés is dedicated to the conservation of marine animals, specifically those breeding, including but not limited to elephant seals, right whales, and Magellanic penguins.
This is one of the best places in the world to see large marine mammals in their natural habitat.
Two inlets have formed along the Atlantic coast of Argentina that make up the Peninsula Valdés. Due to the size and location of these inlets, animals find that the waters here create a perfect shelter for rest or breeding.
It is here that an amazing display of mother nature takes place. The orca whales in this area hunt sea lions and have learned the craft of intentionally and quickly beaching themselves to attack and obtain their prey before heading back into the waters. This pod is one of only two pods in the world that have learned this technique. You may have seen this filmed on National Geographic and will have the opportunity to see it in person at this site deemed UNESCO World Heritage in 1999.
Which site speaks to you?
Just like all of the sites listed above, all travellers are different, and vacations should be customized to travellers’ desires. What are you looking to experience on your next vacation?
If you have any questions about travel to Argentina please contact our South American travel specialists today!