A new national park in Argentina that will help protect the country’s incredible wetlands, forests and grasslands well into the future, as well as putting a new part of the country on travelers’ maps has been given the green light by the Argentine government.
Last week, the country’s congress passed new legislation that created Iberá National Park, located in northeastern Argentina. The national parks adds 395,000 acres to the neighboring 1.3-million-acre Iberá Provincial Park, making their combined land the largest nature park in the country.
The park is centered on the marshlands of Corrientes Province, which is one of the largest freshwater wetlands in South America. Within the park, visitors will find water, grassland, and forest habitats that are home to about 4,000 species of flora and fauna. It is estimated that in 10 years, Iberá Park will receive more than 100,000 visitors each year, who can travel to the incredible region for activities like birding and wildlife watching.
The land was donated through two foundations, the Conservation Land Trust (CLT) and Flora and Fauna Argentina, which were established by Douglas and Kristine Tompkins. Tompkins Conservation has also been behind efforts that have created ten million acres of new national parkland in Chile.. According to the organization, the Argentine park is also home to the most ambitious “rewilding” – restoring ecosystems that have been impacted by human pressures – project in South American.
“Today is a day to celebrate,” said Kristine Tompkins, president of Tompkins Conservation, in a statement. “For the wildlife at home here, for the people of Argentina, and for future generations who will experience this amazing landscape’s beauty and biodiversity, the new park’s designation is a great victory.”
With the creation of this park, South America has seen a host of new wild spaces preserved for travelers to explore. Following the donation of 10 million acres in Chile from the Tompkins Foundation, it now boasts the incredible Route of Parks or Ruta de los Parques, a 2800 km route that connects 17 national parks across the country.