Mar del Plata is one of Argentina’s most important fishing centers. Its port area, 8km south of the city center, is worth a visit, though public access to the jetty – and its graveyard of ruined ships, half-sunken and rusting in the sun – is now restricted. You can still watch the fishing boats come and go from the Banquina de Pescadores, the port’s scenic, rather aromatic and slightly touristy wharf.
Grab some calamari and a beer here and watch the massive, shaggy sea lions who snooze, flirt and fight on the dock. Forget the aquarium, this is the real show!
To get to the port from downtown, you have two options. You can take local bus 581 or 533 (which stop at various points downtown and along the oceanfront road) all the way to the wharf (AR$10). You’ll need a magnetic card to board. A taxi from downtown costs between AR$120 and AR$160. If you're going by taxi, consider arranging your return, as it's not easy to flag a taxi heading the other way. Note that the wharf mentioned here is not to be confused with the Centro Comercial de Mar del Plata, a cluster of high-end restaurants located near the entrance to the larger port complex.