Puerto Santa Cruz - Photos: Jorge González
Resting on the southern bank of the ample estuary of the river bearing the same name, Puerto Santa Cruz is located in the Province of Santa Cruz.
The district is reached through Comandante Luis Piedrabuena, after crossing the Santa Cruz River and traveling 28 kilometers along Provincial Route 288.
The Santa Cruz River is a natural port and as such, it has been visited by countless expeditions throughout history.
It was discovered by Captain Rodriguez Serrano, member of Magellan’s expedition, on May 2, 1520, who decided to name it after the Invention of the Holy Cross –Santa Cruz in Spanish-, the religious festival corresponding to that date in the calendar of saints.
Besides, the area was visited by the British ship Beagle in 1832. Led by Captain Fitz Roy, one of the members of the expedition was naturalist Charles Darwin, who was carrying out studies in these latitudes.
At present, the town supplies the adjoining rural venues and has a Rural Society facility housing sheep cattle auctions and markets.
The district also has thermal waters with healing properties. They spring from a 400-meter-deep well at a temperature of 24° C.
One of the main local attractions is Monte León National Park, where the Patagonian steppe gives way to the curious cliff formations and the incredible beaches visible when the tide is low.
This national park occupies 60,000 hectares of steppe and 40 kilometers of coastline, an area dwelled by Magellanic penguins, cormorants and other 20 species of sea birds, as well as by the biodiversity typical of this area, natural habitat of guanacos, choiques, foxes and cougars.
Every year early in February, Puerto Santa Cruz celebrates the Provincial Sea Bass Festival, which not only includes fishing contests but also a handicrafts market and music shows.