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Parque Nacional Mburucuyá/Argentina

Introducing Parque Nacional Mburucuyá

Well off the beaten track, this national park (498022; mburucuya@apn.gov.ar) lies about 180km southeast of Corrientes. It belongs to the same ecoregion as the Esteros del Iberá and although visitor services are nowhere near as advanced, it offers greater biodiversity.

The land was donated by Danish botanist Troels Pedersen, whose work in the area identified around 1300 species of plants, including some previously undiscovered. The park holds three natural regions: the Chaco, characterized by palm, carob and quebracho forests, pastures and riverine estuaries; the Paraná Forest, with magote islands, pindó palms and tacuarazú cane; and the Spinal Zone, with its xeróphilo forests, yatay palms and grasslands. There is an abundance of fauna: 150 species of birds have been spotted, as well as capybaras, caimans, foxes, swamp deer and the near-extinct maned wolf.

At present there are only two walking trails within the park. The Sendero Yatay passes through 2.5km of forests and grassland dotted with yatay palms to a lookout point on the Estero Santa Lucía. The Sendero Aguará Popé has explanatory signs along its 1.2km length as it winds through a variety of environments and crosses a small creek where caimans are often spotted.

The visitor center (9am-5pm) is 9km into the park. Both trails leave from near here.