Patagonia begins in central Argentina, about 450 mi/725 km southwest of Buenos Aires, and stretches from the Rio Colorado to the Strait of Magellan. This vast, beautiful region is a haven for naturalists and adventure travelers. It comprises almost 30% of Argentine territory and is filled with a rich diversity of plants and animals, including guanacos, penguins and elephant seals; windswept and barren terrain; lakes; and unspoiled nature.

It's a popular destination for those who like to fish, especially November-May, when trout, salmon and native species, such as trahira, can be hooked in the rivers and streams flowing through the Andean foothills. Big-game hunting is also a popular sport in Patagonia.

There are three major sections: the Rio Negro and Neuquen Provinces (access via Bariloche); Chubut Province (includes Puerto Madryn, Gaiman, Los Alerces National Park and Comodoro Rivadavia); and Santa Cruz Province (Rio Gallegos and Glaciers National Park).

Because the area lacks accommodations and travel facilities, it is best to take an escorted tour. Layered clothing, including a windbreaker, is a must, as it can get cold—into the 30s F/1-5 C (and occasionally colder)—traveling south, even during the hemisphere's summer months.

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