It’s almost impossible to travel to Argentina and not be seduced by its climate, its inhabitants and its breathtaking landscapes. That’s why it’s one of the best choices for restless and active travelers who cannot stay indoors for a long time, love new experiences and need to enjoy the essence of a place by discovering its nature, its secrets, its people. If you identified with this description, here are the four best outdoor adventures you can start getting ready for:
The immensity of Argentina makes it the perfect place for walking addicts. Not only do the main cities offer a great variety of sites and attractions that allow you to go across them by foot for the whole day, but amazing mountains and isolated natural wonders of the country are waiting for you to put on your best boots and get lost in them for days. The best option are always the national parks, where you can often camp and extend the adventure for weeks.
Besides the well-known parks in Patagonia like The Glaciers and Tierra del Fuego, Nahuel Huapi, Los Alerces, the Lake District or the northern province of Jujuy, there are other unique places were trekking is absolutely worth it (by the way, most of them are also interesting for climbers…). Although perhaps the most amazing site of them all is El Chaltén, a region located in the south of The Andes. Its astonishing beauty, untouched flora and fauna and great infrastructure of trails and refuges make it the perfect hideout to get lost for days, weeks or months. Once you start walking, let’s see if you want to turn around…
The great variety of terrains of the country make it easy for any kind of cycler to grab a bike and choose the ideal path for them to live a two-wheel adventure. Those who travel to Argentina looking for untouched and unique nature can rent or take their own bicycle to immerse themselves in the unique south and discover The Glaciers, Los Alerces, San Martín de los Andes, Ushuaia or the Lakes District. Meanwhile, don’t forget about the rich indigenous culture, historic ruins and wine-tasting sites that provinces like Salta or Mendoza have to offer in their deserted, dry but beautiful routes where it will be really difficult to find another lively two-wheeled tourist.
Also, for the city slickers who don’t want to leave the pavement, the buildings and the bustle behind, there are endless options of bike rentals in many towns, but especially in Buenos Aires, where the “bicisenda” (bike lanes) makes it easier to discover every street, corner, park and contrast that are disguised in the chaotic capital.
For a couple years now, Argentina has become a good choice for tourists who are interested in winter sports and want to experience them atop of some of the tallest mountains in the world. Those who live in warmer, drier regions of the continent or those who want to avoid the summer in the northern hemisphere, it doesn’t matter: there’s place for everyone. To have the opportunity to slide down The Andes is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure that even those who have never tried on a set of skis should try.
Thanks to the constant low temperatures of the south, like those of Cerro Castor (the southernmost ski resort of the world and the youngest of the country), it doesn’t matter what time of the year you travel to Argentina: there’ll always be a place with snow waiting for you. Although perhaps the best season for winter sports is, of course, the months of July and August, when you’ll be able to pump up your adrenaline in Cerro Catedral and Cerro Otto (Bariloche), the longest ones of the nation, or in Las Leñas (Mendoza), prestigious for its steep hills perfect for extreme skiing and snowboarding.
Horseback riding is not only an amusing experience but also an important part of the history and culture of the country, unavoidable for those who travel to Argentina and want to absorb the most of its folklore. Meet the “gauchos”, the traditional cowboys of Latin America, their day to day in an “estancia” (ranch) and if you’re for it, get lost with them in the mountains and become a real cowboy for a couple days.
It goes without saying that the most amazing places to live this adventure can be found in the Patagonian Andes, the mountainous central province of Córdoba or the natural reserve of Esteros del Iberá, one of the largest wetlands in the world, among others. But if you don’t have the time to travel so many kilometers, don’t worry, in the same province of Buenos Aires there’s a great variety of ranches to spend the day or the weekend. They can be found in Mercedes, Las Heras, Cañuelas, the lovely Tandil or the singular San Antonio de Areco. There’s no excuse: yeeehaw!
Written by Irene Valiente