- Perito Moreno, Los Glaciares National Park
- Iguazu Falls
- Spotting sea mammals in Peninsula Valdes
- Buenos Aires
- Chatting with Argentinians
- Eating a lot of delicious, cheap beef
NICE TO HAVE:
NICE TO HAVE:
San Carlos de Bariloche was my last stop in Argentina, reached via another long bus ride from El Calafate. It’s a really nice town, specialized in chocolate and posh people. It was weird to see how wealthy Argentinians live, knowing how the rest of the country is doing. Bariloche is renown for skiing, mainly in Cerro Catedral, the largest ski center in Latin America. I went up for a day, but the weather wasn’t on my side. I still managed to have some fun, before being forced to descend back-country when the lifts closed due to a storm. And I made some local friends, so I felt more or less safe all the time.
In Calafate I reached the climax of my 3 month South America trip: the Argentinian glaciers, with Perito Moreno as the crown jewel. The pictures can’t do justice to the perfection of the view, nor capture the cracking sound of the ice. You’ll have to trust me: it’s absolutely fascinating. Or better yet, come over to experience it for yourselves.
This week, it was freezing cold, as you would expect when you explore Patagonia in the middle of winter. I spent a couple of days in Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world. Leaving aside the fame of it’s location, and the fact that they abuse the expression “the end of the world x”, the town is really charming and peaceful, and a perfect center for nature excursions.
From Buenos Aires, we took a long (~18 hrs) but comfortable bus to Peninsula Valdes. The bus stopped in Puerto Madryn, the nearest city, and from there we took a taxi to Puerto Piramides, the small town on the actual peninsula. Peninsula Valdes is the most important natural reserve of Argentina, famous for the abundance of sea mammals. I’d recommend staying in Puerto Piramides; it’s a quite charming town, and you can easily organize any activity directly here.
In the Lonely Planet guides, there is a section at the beginning called “The Best”. In the Argentina one, it puts the Argentinians at the top of the list, and rightfully so. I’ve spent the last week travelling by bus from Iguazu to Buenos Aires, visiting numerous places, and chatting with truly pleasant and interesting people.
Before finalizing my tour of Brazil in Iguazu, I spent 24 hours in Brasilia, the capital of Brazil. Enough to hate it, though also to recommend it to everyone. The urban planning is impressive, and the architecture really cool, it’s surely a one of a kind city. But it’s also a city without a soul. There is no historical downtown, walking to places is mission impossible, locals and visitors (mostly business ones) seem bitter…