Bahia Bustamante Ranch (Video)
Province of Chubut

360 degrees of Pure Nature
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3 days / 3 nights Program

The 3 night program allows you to discover the authentic Patagonia from its most ancient history, back to the time when it was a green oasis. Now you will discover the tree trunks of a petrified forest, the silent survivors of that era.

Six comfortable houses by the sea were remodelled to house our guests. Each house includes 2 twin bedrooms, living room, fully equipped bathroom, heating and hot water and a terrace with a sea view.  A generator provides electricity to the village from sundown until 23 h.  At the grocery store, you will be delighted with our exclusive regional meals based on our own products such as seaweed, lamb, fish and seafood.

This program invites you to explore the area, discovering the secrets of this land of pioneers and explorers.  You will get a glimpse of the real Patagonian lifestyle: the harshness of its weather, the remoteness, and desert plateaus that end with the sea.  In the arid stillness of the landscape and the whistle of the wind, you will discover the core of this marvellous ecosystem that is full with life.  You will learn to take care of it, in order for man and nature to live together.      

Program:

Day 1: BAHIA BUSTAMANTE and PENINSULA GRAVINA:

We will tour through the seaweed village: the church, the old school, the square, etc.  Lunch will be served at the old grocery store.  In the afternoon we will explore Gravina Peninsula -by bike or Jeep- with its beaches and archaeological sites.  We will walk to the beaches “Tobaganes” and “Playa del Amor”, identify different types of algae, and visit Baliza Ulloa, the highest peak in the peninsula, from where you can get a good look at the region’s topography.  We will make a stop at the small village museum so that you can get acquainted with the history of the region:  Malaspina Expedition, the arrival of Lorenzo Soriano, the early years of algae industry and the flora and fauna of the area.  Dinner and night.

      
Day 2: VISIT TO PETRIFIED FOREST AND PATAGONIAN RANCH: 

After breakfast we will set off to the petrified forest, located 30 km away from the village.  In the middle of the Patagonian steppe, you will see fossilized remains of the ancient forests.  The huge tree trunks are now petrified, with the characteristic glow of opal, which has replaced the tree’s original organic matter.  You can appreciate tree rings, traces of bark and many other features.  We will walk to “La Piramide”, where you are able to listen and enjoy the Patagonian silence.  The path goes along the hillside and back to the starting point.  Depending on the weather conditions and the groups preferences, it can be arranged to visit the forest in a combination of jeep and bikes.  Lunch will be served at Las Mercedes Ranch.  After some traditional “mates”.  Return to Bustamante.  Dinner and night.
Bahía Bustamante is part of a group of ranches that includes Las Quebradas, Las Mercedes and La Margarita;  all together they have more than 20.000 animals.  Depending on the weather and the kind of work done in each particular season, it can be arranged so that you can have “a day at the ranch”, to get you acquainted with the process of the production of wool and sheep meat. You will be able to participate in the typical activities involved in wool production: marking, weaning, shearing and classifying.  You will also be guided throughout the farmyard, shearing area and stables.         

 

                       
Day 3: CALETA MALASPINA:

After breakfast we will make a tour –by bike or jeep- to Penguin’s Island.  Land access to this island is only possible during low tide (in this coast the difference between low and high tide is 5 meters).  We will explore the different islands and you will be able to watch and take pictures of the penguins in their nests.  After lunch, and after the tide has risen, we will set off to the estuary, for the exclusive sailing tour around Malaspina Cove, also visiting Vernacci Island, one of the richest areas in marine fauna biodiversity in the entire Patagonian coast. There we can find approximately 100.000 penguins, 4000 sea-lions, and 13 of the 16 different kinds of marine bird species that nest on the argentine coast.  During summer, with the arrival of the migratory species, bird population is almost of 1.000.000.  Among these species, two of them can only be found in this area: the Olrog Seagull, and the non-flying Vapour Duck.  Dinner and night.         

Day 4: SEAWEED INDUSTRY

In the morning, we visit the working place where the seaweed harvest is carried out. There we get to know a varied number of species being marketed by our company, their processes and uses.

End of services

Suggestion:: If you are going to Trelew there are two ways to get there; the road you take will depend on the amount of time available before departure. 

A: Through Camarones, visiting the Cabo dos Bahías Reserve.
B: Through Gaiman, visiting this Welsh Village, with its traditional Teahouses. 
In both cases, a visit to the Egidio Feruglio Palaeontology Museum can be added.  

 

Included:

- 3 night stay in one house ( 2 rooms + 1 bathroom + 1 living room)
- Full Board (Breakfast, Lunch or Pic nic, Dinner)
- Activities in Bahía Bustamante

Not included:

- Beverages
- Extras
- Transfer in/out
- Tips

 

Children Policy:  0-3 years free; children between 4-8 years sharing house with parents. One child per adult will have a discount.

 

Activities included:
Every day, the guide will make a program to explore the different features of Bahía Bustamante.  This programming will depend on the tide and wind conditions. 

In your free time, you can explore by your own means the kilometrical beaches of Bahía.  During low tide, it is highly recommended to take a long walk along the coastline to watch the birds feed on the shore.  Also, you can learn to identify the different kinds of algae that wash up on the shore.  In order to go a little bit further and reach the peninsula, to explore and enjoy the sandy beaches that lay hidden in the labyrinths of reddish rocks, you can use the bikes that are available for our guests, or your own car if you have one. Guests also have access to books, maps and research studies made by biologists, and a play room equipped with a ping pong table, and many other fun games.  

Important:
-Each night, the guide will inform the schedule of activities programmed for the following day.  The order of these activities can be modified depending on weather conditions.
-All activities take place inside the perimeter of Bahía Bustamante.
-Most activities do not imply intense physical effort. Only kayaking and horseback riding demand previous experience.
-If you have binoculars, we recommend you bring them along.
-For your own comfort we recommend you bring adequate gear such as: warm coat or windbreaker, comfortable pants, leather or waterproof shoes, gloves, cap or hat, sunglasses and sun block for skin and lips.  During summertime, you should also pack swimming trunks, shorts and beach towels. 
-We have first aid equipment and assistance.
-Our guides are bilingual (Spanish - English).  Please consult for other languages.
-Credit cards are not accepted.
-Room check out is at 10:00 am.
-Prices and programming can be changed without previous notice.       

 

ADITIONAL INFORMATION ON BAHIA BUSTAMANTE:

Bahía Bustamante is a seaside village entirely surrounded by nature. It is located on the northern arch of San Jorge Gulf, an area characterised by its relevant biological biodiversity. There are few places in the world that house such an amount and diversity of seabirds and marine mammals.

Since 1952, the village has been exclusively devoted to the seaweed harvest. At the beginning, 500 people lived there who then used wagons pulled by horses to collect the crops. Today some 40 inhabitants live in Bahía Bustamante, devoted to the seaweed production, which makes this place the “world’s unique seaweed village”.

Its streets are named after seaweed such as Gracilaria or Macrocystis, etc.  Walking along its little streets you can get a glimpse at what this land of pioneers used to be like.  Beneath the old tamarind trees you can find the second tractor used by Soriano family to transport the algae wagons.  You can also see the school, church and the square where the argentine flag flies high on its pole.  The old pub “Lopez”, that faces the sea, is the oldest construction of the area, and it is a silent witness of the place’s history.  In its 80 year old yard, there is an old vine tree; despite the harshness of Patagonian climate, it somehow manages to give fruit every year.  The main houses were built in the sixties, they have a unique sea view and were recycled and equipped to receive our guests.  Two blocks away, we find the grocery store that was also recycled to serve our meals in a traditional Patagonian environment. 

Bahía Bustamante is part of a farming establishment.  It is surrounded by more than 10.000 acres used for the development of sheep industry, equipped with the latest technology to guarantee the best quality in wool.  The place offers many kinds of landscapes, covering the coastline, plateau and steppe. 

On the plateau you can experience the deep Patagonia: 360 degrees of infinite landscapes.  The plateaus that rose during the tertiary era lay outlined in the horizon.  Within the property, there is a petrified forest, that can be accessed by jeep, bike or on horseback.  It is quite normal to see guanacos, Patagonian hares, ñandu, and red and grey foxes. 
                
In the coast area, the landscapes are very varied.  Heading south from the village you see a buoy, the signal used to locate the village from the sea.  After you cross rocky ground, you enter Peninsula Gravina, where you can find beautiful sandy beaches that are sheltered from the wind by huge reddish rocks that contrast with the intense blue of the ocean.  In the peninsula you can also find aboriginal cemeteries.  During low tide, natural pools are formed between the rocks (they are great to freshen up during the hot summer days) and you can also walk to several islands to see the marine birds.  On board the “Atrevida” boat, we’ll sail through Malaspina Cove and get to a small island where you can find a
great diversity of marine fauna: sea lions, cormorants, seagulls, and penguins among others.  The boat is sometimes escorted by a group of dolphins.  You can also see killer whales and great blue whales.