Los Arrayanes National Park was created in 1971 and includes the Quetrihué Peninsula that it goes into Lake Nahuel Huapi, in the south of the Province of Neuquén. It has an area of 1,796 hectares belonging to the ecoregion of Patagonian Forests and aims to protect these particular trees.
How to get to Los Arrayanes NP?
The Quetri Hue peninsula is located at the northern end of Lake Nahuel Huapi. It can be reached from San Carlos de Bariloche (Río Negro) or from Villa La Angostura (Neuquén). You can take a lake excursion, from San Carlos de Bariloche (Puerto Pañuelo) and from Villa La Angostura (ports La Mansa and La Brava). And on foot or bicycle, from Villa La Angostura, which is connected to San Martin de los Andes through RN 234 and RN 231 (111 km), and with Bariloche through RN 231 and RN 237 (77 km).
Despite being a small area (20 hectares), a large number of southern arrayanes trees (myrtles) are preserved here, giving rise to a beautiful and old forest with unique characteristics. In addition, there are forests of coihues, cypresses and ñires in this peninsula. This NP is located in the ecoregion of the Patagonian Forests.
The walkway in the Park
When you get off the catamaran or at the end of the trail, you come to a wooden walkway. It is an interactive tour that lasts about 30 minutes, and is easy to walk around. Unfortunately, it is not easy for people with reduced mobility or in wheelchairs. Something that some National Parks should start working on. At the end of the short walway (about 800 m), there is a café where you can have something to drink and eat.
In the interior of the peninsula there are two lagoons called Hua Huan and Patagua, where otters in danger of extinction live. You may see some birds like the carpenter pitío, the parrot cachaña, and the araucana remolinera.
The arrayán is the star tree of this PN. What is the arrayán? The arrayán, or myrtle, is an Argentine native tree, from the Andean-Patagonian region. Its great attraction lies in a cinnamon bark covered with white patches. If you touch it, it is cold and smooth, something very peculiar. It grows slowly on the banks of rivers and lakes. Some reach a height of 15 meters. It is a perennial tree that in summer is filled with numerous white flowers. The effect of the sun crossing the canopy of these trees in the forest is just magical.
How to explore Los Arrayanes NP?
Los Arrayanes National Park can be explored on foot or by bicycle.
The path extends for almost 12 km (7,5 miles) through mountainous terrain. You can read our adventure riding our bikes (or on foot) in our article Biking in the Arrayanes trail. If you are considering doing it, you should read it. It is not quite for everybody.
The views from this trail are incredible!
Other activities around this area:
Villa La Angostura
San Martín de los Andes
Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapí
National Parks and Natural Reserves in Argentina
Administración de Parques Nacionales
Casa Central – Carlos Pellegrini 657 (C1009ABM)
Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires
Tel: (+54 11) 3984 – 7100
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