This famous ria, which is the end of an entire drainage system in the Province of Santa Cruz, is providing more and more reasons to enjoy this area. Picturesque, colorful and with new sports, in addition to its own attractions.
Looking at the map, it is easy to understand that Lake Viedma
empties its waters in La Leona River and the latter ends at Lake Argentino, thus contributing its waters to the Santa Cruz River (direct emissary of Lake Argentino), which then crosses almost 400 kilometers up to the point where the ria bearing the same name is formed and reaches the longed-for mouth at the Argentinian Sea.
“The color of the waters of the ria is not always the same. It changes all the time”, the local neighbors assert. Those who live in the nearby area affirm that the ria changes its color during the different moments of the day and that it also acquires dissimilar hues according to the weather conditions.
At plain sight, it may be observed that the population is settled
on the southern margin of the ria, which provides a colorful beauty to its twenty-five kilometers of length.
Its access mouth is formed between Punta Norte and Cascajo (looking from the sea into the continent) and once inside it, a 2-kilometer-wide channel comes into sight. In addition to port activities, it also welcomes other practices on its shores, among which canoeing, water ski, wildlife mapping and sailing stand out.
All along the length of this ria, both close to its mouth in the sea and upriver, angling enthusiasts will find a perfect spot to fish either on board a boat or at the coast (on both shores). They may catch excellent specimens of sea bass and large silverside. And upriver, in the source of this drainage system, there are sites where the Santa Cruz River forms ponds where rainbow trout –highly coveted by fly-fishermen- have been planted.
Close to Puerto Santa Cruz and on the mouth, there lies Isla Leones (Lions Island), located in the center of the ria. This is a perfect haven for the various communities of birds that live and breed in this area.
Walking along both banks, it is possible to observe the remains of small watercrafts once abandoned which used to have a fundamental role in commerce throughout the region and even internationally. Seeing them today causes a sensation of irremediable historical deterioration.
The Centennial Cross, inaugurated on December 1, 1978, is one of the icons in this city and it is located in the surroundings of the ria. The place has been emblematically chosen for it was the one-hundredth anniversary of the historical landing of the naval squad led by Commodore Py.
This cross has been raised on the local waterfront, in the intersection of Julio A. Roca and Comandante Luís Piedra Buena Avenues. This is one of the iconic tours in this city that is on the way of becoming a recognized tourist destination.
Year after year, the ria is gaining more fans and service operators, which see the 25 kilometers of its length as perfect scenes for adventure, in the summer, on public holidays or long weekends.