Puerto Madryn was founded in 1865, when 150 Welsh arrived
at Argentine coast on board the "Mimosa" and baptized this
natural port "Puerto Madryn" after a Welsh castle that belonged to Sir Jones Parry, who made an agreement with the government in 1863 for the settlement of the colonies in this area.
Proper settlements started in 1862, when the
railway track between Madryn and Trelew was built and Welsh, Spanish
and Italian immigrants were hired for its construction. Thus the city
started to grow around the railway and port activities. The coast,
together with the railway track, were the leaders of its growth until the
end of the 50s and 60s, when tax exemptions were removed and the last maritime
enterprise disappeared, as well as the Merchant Company of Chubut, and finally the Patagonic Railway closed down.
At the beginning of the
60s some textile industries settled down, again thanks to tax
exemptions. But years later all such industries closed down and people started
to emigrate at the beginning of the 70s. The activity which had
fostered the growth of the city was no longer there. Later the settlement of an
plant in the north of the city moved the industrial area to
the north. The plant is still there and doing well.
Mid 70s the population of Puerto Madryn experienced what
is known as explosive growth; in less than 10 years its population tripled and
there were new industrial settlements. The place recovered its former activity and also acquired a
tourist character. It became head of services in the area,
stressing its interest in the preservation of the environment and
keeping the legacy of those who fell in love with the place at first sight.
Puerto Madryn is situated in the
northwestern region in Chubut province, by the shore of the Golfo Nuevo and presents a mild climate. Its rock formation is 10 to 15
million years old and fosiles are often found in the deposits of the
Tertiary sediments. The Quarternary deposits of sandy gravel that spread
over the plateau are known as "Rodados patagónicos". They are about 100.000 years old and spread along the coast to
west. The shores of Puerto Madryn can be divided into 1) beaches:
pebble and sediments of thin to medium sand; 2) active cliffs or
"bandas" that take up a great extension of the cost; 3)
abrasion platforms or "restingas" beach ridges are seen in most of the
points that limit the beaches.
The shortage of rains determines a
semiarid surrounding, worsened by the action of the winds. Yearly there
are rains of 175 mm: Rains are scarce in summer, winter is "rain season". Average temperature
ranges between 12º and 13ºC. The average temperature of Golfo
Nuevo water is 18ºC in summer and 7ºC in winter and in autumn seldom lower than 10ºC; in spring about 12ºC.
Activities: This land at the end of the world is the capital of Argentine diving and underwater world and where you can also go sailing,
windsurfing and boatfishing