Puerto Madryn can be considered one of the best spots to start the Patagonia trip. It is big enough to have all the shops that you may need for the trip and has a good touristic side. It is at the entrance of Peninsula Valdes. It is a huge place with hundreds of kilometres of roads and without any human settlements. Since we adopted hitchhiking as our mode of transportation, this would be out of question without a vehicle. Without a reliable vehicle even. With some extra tanks of petrol as well. I could easily have spent a couple of weeks there with all the animals and nature. I made a strong note to come back to Peninsula Valdes some time later, better prepared and with a car or a van.
Around Puerto Madryn, there is a penguin colony in Punto Tombo which we have not gone and a sea lion reserve at Punta Loma that we have not visited as well. Mariana didn’t want to pay for penguins (which I partially agree, because it was expensive for such a trip) and didn’t want to go to the sea lion reserve since it was on the other direction. (which I agree completely). During the season you can also watch whales here but I suspect she may have found another reason not to watch them due to the harm we cause by breathing out carbon dioxide or something. We opted for Punto Ninfas which had an elephant seal colony instead. After visiting the Ecocentre in the city which was quite informative about the wild life around we raised our thumbs to Punto Ninfas. After two German girls who were taking photos of each hitchhiker they picked up, dropped us at the junction of Punto Ninfas and handed us our photo. Unfortunately the photo was not too good quality, but still, was a nice memory.
During that day no other vehicles passed to Punto Ninfas so we camped there in the junction. All day the next day, no cars passed to that direction. I started questioning if we get to Punta Ninfas how we could come back. With that, we changed our minds and decided to head for Rawson instead and the next day we were lucky to find a car that could take us there. I assume it was out of pity more than help, because we were standing in the middle of nowhere with no sign of civilisation around.
The road to Punto Ninfas which we could not take
I always thought that the hardest part of solo travel is using the public bathrooms with bags. Being with someone helps you to overcome this problem. The first lesson I learned was that I may now use the public bathrooms but may not be able to go everywhere I wish when I travel with Mariana.