We came back and forth into Argentina three times (flying from South Africa, our trip to Uruguay and after our time in Chile) and all total spent about three weeks in the country. Argentina is massive and unfortunately we didn’t get a chance to get down south to Patagonia, but we did explore some magnificent spots, including the most fabulous falls ever.
Argentina is the second largest country in South America in size and population.
Aconcagua, located in the Andes in the Mendoza province of Argentina, is the highest mountain in the Americas (6,960m) and the second highest in the world behind Everest.
The tango originated in Argentina in the La Boca district of Buenos Aires at the end of the 19th Century.
Argentina was the first country to adopt fingerprinting as a method of identification.
Ushuaia, Argentina is the southernmost city in the world (andddd the starting point for most trips to Antarctica…I MUST go!)
Argentina boasts the highest number of psychiatrists per capita of anywhere in the world. In the last study, it was determined that Argentina had 145 psychologists per 100,000 residents. (Denmark was apparently second with 85)
1. Iguazu Falls – Iguazu Falls is incredible. There aren’t enough words to describe the amazing natural beauty at Iguazu. Iguazu National Park is a UNSECO World Heritage Site and one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature. A definite must see if visiting Argentina!
2. Mendoza – Mendoza is the heart of Argentinean wine country, so it was obviously at the top of my list of favorites! The city itself is really cute and great to stroll around. You can head to a football match at the stadium just on the edge of town, where you’ll perhaps catch a game featuring one of Argentina’s most popular citizens (and I suppose, arguably, one of the top football players in the world?!) – Leo Messi. Take a sunset horseback riding tour, which concludes with a BBQ and wine around the campfire with a guitar. Finally, be sure to check out the many phenomenal wineries of Mendoza. Our bike & wine tour that we tried to do on the cheap with fellow hostel mates didn’t turn out as expected, but it was still quite the adventure. And included lots of delicious Malbec!
3. Aldea Luna/WWOOF – what started out somewhat shaky, ended up being a wonderful week and fantastic WWOOFing experience. Aldea Luna is wonderful! The family-run organic farm was a real highlight of our time in Argentina. From gardening to cooking (and learning new recipes!) to playing games to exploring the surrounding area; the week was top notch. If you have any interest in working on an organic farm, there’s no better place than Aldea Luna!
4. Buenos Aires – All total, we spent almost two weeks in Buenos Aires and celebrated Christmas here with a visit from my mom and Bill. Even had the chance to meet up with my friend Brent from LA who was traveling to Argentina with his brother. As well as, our friend Marc from Koh Phangan who came to travel with us for his last week on the road.
Buenos Aires is filled with lots of great sites and activities. Rent bikes and head down to La Boca for the day, enjoying the colorful buildings, an empanada lunch and of course, a tango show since it originated in the neighborhood. Another Buenos Aires highlight was our tour with Buenos Aires Street Art Tours; checking out and learning all about the street art and graffiti of BA. Of course, no trip to Buenos Aires is complete without copious amounts of steak and wine. We indulged in a fantastic meal at La Cabrera – make sure you convert the grams to ounces properly, or you’ll end up with a massive steak. Finally, head to the horse track and place a few wagers on the ponies in Espanol.
5. Argentina Buses – Argentina is quite a large country and if you’re on a budget & not flying (although the buses aren’t cheap, by our previous country standards), it takes a considerable amount of time to get from place to place. So we spent a good deal of time on buses; our longest one totaling twenty two hours. Once we discovered the Cama option, they’re actually not that bad. And some even serve wine with your hot dinner.