Viedma is the capital of the Rio Negro Province in Argentina. It is located along the Rio Negro or Black River, with a bridge connecting it to the city of Carmen de Patagones on the other side which happens to be in the Buenos Aires province. Put simply, visitors get to see two cities and two provinces for the price of one. Couple this with the fact that these two cities are an important gateway into coastal Patagonia, and you have a very popular tourist destination. While most other cities combine a historic old town core with an urban sprawl spread around it, Carmen de Patagones and Viedma have a clear demarcation of responsibilities. Viedma is the modern one with government buildings and history buffs can simply cross the bridge to see the old town. Needless to say, you will need to get a car for hire in Viedma to see both cities and nearby attractions.
Your tour of Viedma can start with a visit to the Catedral de la Merced or Cathedral of Our Lady of Mercy from 1912, with the adjacent Diocese of Viedma. Assuming you have got a car for rent in Viedma, you will be visiting the Plaza Alsina to the east of the Cathedral, where you must visit the Museum Salesiano. You will also be going to Plaza San Martín, where you see the Casa de Gobierno from 1926 and the stately Governor's residence. You may also enjoy the Governor Eugenio Tello Museum (Museo Gobernador Eugenio Tello) to learn about European settlement and see some of their creepy old skeletons and skulls.
You will be able to see over two centuries of history dating back to 1779 still intact in the old town here in Carmen de Patagones, since it has been well preserved as a National Historic Village. You can start with Mihanovich Dock built in 1907. The Fortress Tower dates back to 1780 and is now a historic monument. Do not miss the Emma Nozzi Regional Historic Museum or a stroll along the narrow San José de Mayo Street and the Maragatas Caves up ahead.
One other thing we have not mentioned up until now is that Viedma happens to be a base for spa and beach holidays. The Patagonian coast where the Rio Negro empties itself into the Atlantic is just 18 miles from Viedma, and you can easily drive along the coast to a succession of resorts like El Condor, La Lobería and La Ensenada with huge cliffs overlooking beautiful beaches. Going the other way along the coast from El Condor will take you to Bahia San Blas.
There is one depot at the Viedma Airport (VDM) offering a car rental in Viedma for travelers, and there are a couple of agencies located at hotels in the city itself. You can compare all the agencies online, find a good deal and book your vehicle right now so that there will be no travel hassles when you reach Viedma.
05 April 2020
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