Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

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WildBill
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Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by WildBill » Thu Nov 01, 2018 9:32 am

Howdy

We are planning a trip to Argentina over the winter break. We will be there for 10 days. Looking for recommendations and suggestions for places to visit and interesting activities.

We have plans roughed out and in progress, but have not finalized yet and are open to any and all suggestions. We are four active adults, we enjoy outdoor activities, hiking, sightseeing and eating. Limited Spanish fluency but not shy in using what we have :happy

Our rough itinerary

Arrival in Buenos Aires and 3-4 days in Buenos Aires and possibly visit Montevideo.

Fly to Patagonia and spend 5-6 days in Argentina and Chilean parks. Aware that reservations at this time will be tight. How feasible are self directed trips via car and what tours or venues are highly recommended. Any other suggestions appreciated.

Back to BA.

Any and all suggestions and recommendations welcome.

Thanks to all

W B
"Through chances various, through all vicissitudes, we make our way." Virgil, The Aeneid

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Smorgasbord
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by Smorgasbord » Thu Nov 01, 2018 9:55 am

I recommend taking the ferry from Buenos Aires over to Colonia.

coalcracker
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by coalcracker » Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:02 am

We did essentially this same trip about 10 years ago. Some things may have changed, but the mountains are the same :D

First, both my wife and I agree it was our favorite vacation of all time; we travel extensively and it still holds up as #1.

Patagonia was really the highlight. If you are into the outdoors, consider shaving a day or two off Buenos Aires and spending a bit more time down south. We flew from BA to Calafate, spending about a day there to hike on Perito Moreno Glacier. I have not done any other glacier hiking elsewhere, but it was incredible.

Next we were picked up in Calafate for a small group tour. With the caveat of "times may have changed," we found it very difficult to make our own arrangements to get from Calafate to Torres del Paine. Calafate is in the middle of nowhere and we couldn't fine info about car rentals. Plus, we were mostly camping and didn't want to shlep our camping gear from the US. We did the W circuit in Torres del paine (you would not have enough time for the complete circuit). The pristine beauty of that area bowled me over. As we hiked through the valleys we would occasinally hear a glacier calving or small avalanche in the distance. I'll never forget it.

The company we used was called patagonia adventure trip: http://www.patagoniaadventuretrip.com/ Looks like they are still around. The guide was great and our group was small, only 5 other people.

Buenos Aires was also great, although I'm guessing it has changed a lot since I've been there. For example, Airbnb might be a great choice for an apartment, but wasn't around when we went. I didn't know about it when we went, but if you are a foodie check out the puerta cerradas (closed-door) restaurant scene. Apparently they are some of the best restaurants in the city. Otherwise, I hope you enjoy steak and red wine

Have fun!

alfaspider
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by alfaspider » Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:20 am

I do recommend seeing Uruguay if you have the time, and I think you really only need a day. I really enjoyed both Colonia and Montevideo. We took the ferry to Colonia, did a few hours of sightseeing + lunch, then continued on to Montevideo via bus. Montevideo had some great live music in the cafes. We took the ferry back to BA in the morning.

Argentina is also a really cool place, and ridiculously cheap for Americans.

letsgobobby
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by letsgobobby » Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:40 am

We did similar about 12 years ago. 1 week in BA and 1 week in Argentinian Patagonia.

It’s a big country with long distances. It takes about 4 hours to fly to El Calafate from BA, and sometimes you have to stop in Ushuaia along the way. In El Calafate, we took a bus for several hours to get to El Chalten, the mountain base town for hiking Cerro Torre and Fitz Roy. We did a 3 day backpacking trip up and around those mountains - really spectacular. I’d highly recommend this journey. In other words, we didn’t have time to go the Chile side in the 5 day trip. I’m sure it can be done, just wouldn’t want to spend all my time traveling and not as much time experiencing.

BA was a really neat place. As a Boglehead one of the great joys of BA was that it was dirt cheap. At the time wonderful pasta dinners were $4, steak dinners $7, glass of wine $2, etc. I have a feeling that is not true any more. It’s still a neat place and worth visiting.

Make sure you stop at the Museu de la deuda externa - the Museum of Foreign Debt. It is a fascinating look at the history of Argentine money and financial crises, and the dangers of extreme indebtedness. As a Boglehead it’s a must see.

michaeljc70
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by michaeljc70 » Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:51 am

I've been to Argentina at least a dozen times. I've only been to Patagonia once, so I don't have any input on that. The ferry to Montevideo is a good day trip. I think a day in Montevideo is probably enough. I believe they had a fast ferry and regular ferry. I took the ferry to Colonia as others have suggested and thought it was a waste of time. Yes, it is a UNESCO site, but having a few old crumbling buildings doesn't make it worth it to me. I recommend Mendoza, but you probably won't have time for that. I visited wineries, went white water rafting and things like that. I took an overnight bus (left around 10pm, arrived next morning) that had lay flat "beds" for around $30.

I don't know what the logistics of travel are given they are different "countries", but I really enjoyed seeing the Falkland Islands too.

alfaspider
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by alfaspider » Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:52 am

letsgobobby wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:40 am


BA was a really neat place. As a Boglehead one of the great joys of BA was that it was dirt cheap. At the time wonderful pasta dinners were $4, steak dinners $7, glass of wine $2, etc. I have a feeling that is not true any more. It’s still a neat place and worth visiting.

Argentina is in the midst of another currency crisis. Things are pretty cheap.

https://gulfnews.com/business/economy/a ... -1.2278614

sid hartha
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by sid hartha » Thu Nov 01, 2018 12:44 pm

Places to see in Buenos Aires:
Recoleta Cemetery
Puerto Madero
Plaza de Mayo and La Casa Rosada
Corrientes Avenue
La Boca
El Zanjón de Granados
Palermo

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car733
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by car733 » Thu Nov 01, 2018 1:46 pm

Things I would recommend you do in Buenos Aires:

- Visit the "Teatro Colón"
- Eat Pizza in the different pizza places close to the Obelisco. Last time I was there, my friends and I walked around eating a single slice in each one of them.
- Ice-cream. I would recommend you try Rapanui.

PS: I am an porteño living in America :)

mayday23
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by mayday23 » Thu Nov 01, 2018 3:49 pm

alfaspider wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:52 am
letsgobobby wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:40 am


BA was a really neat place. As a Boglehead one of the great joys of BA was that it was dirt cheap. At the time wonderful pasta dinners were $4, steak dinners $7, glass of wine $2, etc. I have a feeling that is not true any more. It’s still a neat place and worth visiting.

Argentina is in the midst of another currency crisis. Things are pretty cheap.

https://gulfnews.com/business/economy/a ... -1.2278614
I haven't been price changes in Recoleta or other higher end BA places due to the currency 'crisis'

michaeljc70
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by michaeljc70 » Thu Nov 01, 2018 6:55 pm

mayday23 wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 3:49 pm
alfaspider wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:52 am
letsgobobby wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:40 am


BA was a really neat place. As a Boglehead one of the great joys of BA was that it was dirt cheap. At the time wonderful pasta dinners were $4, steak dinners $7, glass of wine $2, etc. I have a feeling that is not true any more. It’s still a neat place and worth visiting.

Argentina is in the midst of another currency crisis. Things are pretty cheap.

https://gulfnews.com/business/economy/a ... -1.2278614
I haven't been price changes in Recoleta or other higher end BA places due to the currency 'crisis'
I was wondering that. I've been to Argentina (and Mexico) many times and the currency valued greatly. That didn't mean they didn't adjust the prices upward to adjust things. There definitely has been some variation as to how expensive things were, but because one time you 10 peso to the dollar and the next time you got 38 didn't mean it was necessarily cheaper.

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SurfCityBill
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by SurfCityBill » Fri Nov 02, 2018 1:46 pm

If you can stop in San Carlos de Bariloche and stay at the Llao Llao en route to Patagonia you won't regret it.
Heading North, after Montevideo, Iguazu Falls is a must, especially for outdoor enthusiasts.

jayjayc
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by jayjayc » Fri Nov 02, 2018 5:18 pm

coalcracker wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:02 am
if you are a foodie check out the puerta cerradas (closed-door) restaurant scene. Apparently they are some of the best restaurants in the city. Otherwise, I hope you enjoy steak and red wine

Have fun!
My highest recommendation goes to Adentro Dinner Club. http://www.adentrodinnerclub.com/english/home.html

You will visit the home of a chef and his wife who is the hostess. You'll dine with a few other guests in a family atmosphere, like a dinner party. Incredibly fun and even more incredible was the food. One of my favorite parts was when the chef showed us his grill and spoke passionately about it. I was enthralled so he let me slap some beef onto his precious grill and cook alongside him (but only for 1 min...I was his guest!). There are other aspects to this dining experience that made it so fun but I won't say anything so it won't ruin the surprise.

michaeljc70
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by michaeljc70 » Fri Nov 02, 2018 5:37 pm

jayjayc wrote:
Fri Nov 02, 2018 5:18 pm
coalcracker wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:02 am
if you are a foodie check out the puerta cerradas (closed-door) restaurant scene. Apparently they are some of the best restaurants in the city. Otherwise, I hope you enjoy steak and red wine

Have fun!
My highest recommendation goes to Adentro Dinner Club. http://www.adentrodinnerclub.com/english/home.html

You will visit the home of a chef and his wife who is the hostess. You'll dine with a few other guests in a family atmosphere, like a dinner party. Incredibly fun and even more incredible was the food. One of my favorite parts was when the chef showed us his grill and spoke passionately about it. I was enthralled so he let me slap some beef onto his precious grill and cook alongside him (but only for 1 min...I was his guest!). There are other aspects to this dining experience that made it so fun but I won't say anything so it won't ruin the surprise.
I went to this chef's home for a tasting menu a couple of years ago and enjoyed it: https://www.casasaltshaker.com/schedule-reservations/

It is pricey for Buenos Aires, but it includes wine and I believe the table only sat 8 people. The Chef is from Michigan BTW so the cuisine is definitely fusion and not authentic Argentinian cuisine. There are a lot of good restaurant choices, but this is good if you want something more intimate and unique. Given your limited time in BA, I'd go the restaurant route probably.

parigi723
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by parigi723 » Sat Nov 03, 2018 9:51 am

If possible,do not miss Patagonia,(Bariloche and the great lakes) I agree with a visit to ROU,I'm sure you'll enjoy it!!!!!!
Have a safe trip! araucano.

Valuethinker
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by Valuethinker » Sat Nov 03, 2018 5:04 pm

michaeljc70 wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:51 am
I've been to Argentina at least a dozen times. I've only been to Patagonia once, so I don't have any input on that. The ferry to Montevideo is a good day trip. I think a day in Montevideo is probably enough. I believe they had a fast ferry and regular ferry. I took the ferry to Colonia as others have suggested and thought it was a waste of time. Yes, it is a UNESCO site, but having a few old crumbling buildings doesn't make it worth it to me. I recommend Mendoza, but you probably won't have time for that. I visited wineries, went white water rafting and things like that. I took an overnight bus (left around 10pm, arrived next morning) that had lay flat "beds" for around $30.

I don't know what the logistics of travel are given they are different "countries", but I really enjoyed seeing the Falkland Islands too.
Michael

Given the war and Argentina's continued claim on Las Malvinas I doubt that a direct flight is possible.

I have not checked so things may have normalized. Brita would see it as a Trojan Horse shades of Tom Clancy Larry Bond novel Red Storm Rising

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Watty
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by Watty » Sat Nov 03, 2018 6:14 pm

Is it difficult to travel in Argentina if you only speak English?

michaeljc70
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by michaeljc70 » Sat Nov 03, 2018 6:20 pm

Watty wrote:
Sat Nov 03, 2018 6:14 pm
Is it difficult to travel in Argentina if you only speak English?
Not particularly. I think more rural areas would be tougher. In Buenos Aires or other tourist areas, I would say it is on par with some European countries that are not great at English (so, not like Scandinavia, Germany, etc). All the better restaurants and hotels have people that speak English in BA. Taxis, not many speak much English. Museums often have the placards in Spanish and English. I know some Spanish, but am not fluent, and have never had a problem. All the places I have rented over the years, the person that let me in and did the paperwork spoke English.

alfaspider
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by alfaspider » Mon Nov 05, 2018 8:20 am

mayday23 wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 3:49 pm
alfaspider wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:52 am
letsgobobby wrote:
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:40 am


BA was a really neat place. As a Boglehead one of the great joys of BA was that it was dirt cheap. At the time wonderful pasta dinners were $4, steak dinners $7, glass of wine $2, etc. I have a feeling that is not true any more. It’s still a neat place and worth visiting.

Argentina is in the midst of another currency crisis. Things are pretty cheap.

https://gulfnews.com/business/economy/a ... -1.2278614
I haven't been price changes in Recoleta or other higher end BA places due to the currency 'crisis'
If the prices are the same in Argentine pesos, then the dollar prices are lower. Some higher end hotels may always quote in dollars, but restaurants and other activities were always pried in pesos (at least when I was there).

TigerNest
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by TigerNest » Mon Nov 05, 2018 8:33 am

Iguazu Falls is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Truly a memorable trip.

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car733
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Re: Argentina Trip Over Winter Break

Post by car733 » Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:13 am

TigerNest wrote:
Mon Nov 05, 2018 8:33 am
Iguazu Falls is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Truly a memorable trip.
And it's a fast weekend getaway from Buenos Aires.

- Friday evening: Fly to Iguazu
- Saturday: All day on the Argentinean side
- Sunday: Morning on the Brazilian side and fly back in the afternoon

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