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Planning an Argentina Trip

culture of Buenos Aires When planning an Argentina trip, you must consider 1) what parts of the country you want to see 2) the duration of your stay 3) the types of activities you like and 4) the weather.

Areas of interest: Buenos Aires, Iguazu Falls, Mendoza, Bariloche, Patagonia, and Salta & Jujuy

Let’s review each one.

  • Buenos Aires: If you enjoy a big city, you definitely want to spend a few days in BA. Fantastic architecture, restaurants, museums, and shows abound. The capital is also an excellent base for day trips to beautiful country estates or idyllic Uruguayan towns. Similar to New York, Paris, Rome…. you will never run out of things to do in this city.

    Argentina trip

    Colonia Uruguay

  • Iguazu Falls: On the border of Paraguay and Brazil, Iguazu Falls is the world’s widest waterfall. You can spend anywhere from one up to three days exploring the falls on both the Argentina and Brazil sides. Argentina Trip
  • Mendoza: In the west, close to the Chilean border, Mendoza is Argentina’s world-renowned wine region at the base of the Andes.
  • San Carlos de Bariloche: The Alps of Argentina, Bariloche offers excellent skiing in the winter and fly fishing in the summer.
  • Patagonia: The striking mountainous landscape of Patagonia is a playground for active adventure seekers. Hike Perito Moreno Glacier, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and explore Torres del Paine National Park. Enter to win a 9 day Patagonia tour with Say Hueque on their Facebook page (I did)!
  • Salta and Jujuy: In Argentina’s northwest region, Salta is known as “the beautiful.”   Colorful valleys and gorges are reminiscent of the American “wild west.” Charming colonial architecture and outdoor cafes add to the allure. Visit the fascinating salt flats in nearby Jujuy, and take a Train to the Clouds.

Trip Duration

Argentina is a fairly long country (the second longest in South America after Chile). The areas you visit on your Argentina trip will hinge largely upon the amount of time you have.

  • A week or less: Focus on one region of the country. Stick close to Buenos Aires with day trips to an estancia in the countryside or one of the cities in nearby Uruguay. Are you a wine lover? Head to Mendoza and explore wineries near the Andes.
  • Two to three weeks: With more time, you can either explore one region in greater depth, or you can visit the highlights of two to three regions. We opted for a combination and took a deeper dive into Buenos Aires (and the surrounding areas) and also visited Iguazu Falls. The “surrounding areas” included an overnight estancia stay and day trips to Montevideo and Colonia in Uruguay. Argentina Trip

    Argentina Trip

    Estancia Villa Maria

  • Unlimited time: If you’re on extended travel and want to see as much of the country as possible, spend a week or two in Buenos Aires, soaking in the culture of the city. Catch a tango show, explore the city’s many fantastic restaurants, and check out the amazing MALBA modern art museum.
    When planning an Argentina trip, you must consider 1) what parts of the country you want to see 2) the duration of your stay 3) the types of activities you like and 4) the weather (to a lesser degree).

    MALBA

    Then head northeast to Iguazu for three full days of exploring the falls in two countries. Make your way out northwest (via BA) to Stalta and Juyjuy for a week or so, then head a bit further south for some R&R in Mendoza. Feeling refreshed and relaxed, get your adrenaline flowing by continuing south to hike or ski in Bariloche (depending on the season). Round out your Argentina tour with two to three weeks hiking and exploring Patagonia.

Weather

Consider the seasons. Remember, the southern hemisphere is opposite, so be prepared to swap seasons if you’re coming from the North.

  • Winter– If you want to ski in Bariloche, you’ll likely head down sometime around July or August (but keep in mind August is the high season with school holidays). Hiking in Patagonia may be more limited in the winter. It would be way too cold for me! This time of year is very mild and pleasant at Iguazu Falls, though. The temps were in the 80’s for us! Buenos Aires can get near freezing, but the average temperature while we were there was in the low 50’s.

    Argentina Trip

    July in Buenos Aires was pretty cold!

  • Summer – Summers can get hot, even scorching, in Iguazu, easily breaking 100 degrees. Buenos Aires can be hot as well. This would be a great time to head down south to hike the glaciers and mountains in Patagonia or around Bariloche. The days are extremely long during this time of year, so you can do more!
  • Spring/Autumn– Argentina’s fall season is great for catching the wine harvest in Mendoza (February through April). In spring, wildflowers bloom in the mountain areas, and it would be an excellent time to visit Salta.

Travel resources:

Doing it yourself?

  • Consider using bus lines like Via Bariloche (which we used for our Iguazu trip). Splurge for the “super cama” – a fully reclining (read: bed) seat. It’s a 17 hour bus ride to Iguazu! You’ll need the space and the sleep! Via Bariloche operates all over the country.
  • Aerolinas Argentinas, Argentina’s airline, offers competitive prices.
  • For day trips to Uruguay from Buenos Aires, use the Buquebus hydrofoil.

For help planning your perfect Argentina Trip, check out the #1 recommended Argentina travel company, Say Hueque – Tours in Argentina  http://www.sayhueque.com.

  Argentina Trip

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Say Hueque, but all opinions are my own, as always. 

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15 Responses to Planning an Argentina Trip

  1. Colleen Brynn September 23, 2013 at 7:17 PM #

    It’s true… Argentina is so diverse and there’s lots to do there. I only had 4 days in BA and I really enjoyed my time there, but I think I need to go back with a bucket load more time. I’d like to see Patagonia and Iguazu for sure!

    • Lindsay September 24, 2013 at 1:03 AM #

      Colleen, It’s good that you had 4 days in BA! Yes, Argentina is such a large an diverse country. I see a few more trips in my future! Hope you make it back there soon as well! Be sure to enter the contest w/ Say Hueque- you might just win a Patagonia tour!

  2. Trips By Lance September 24, 2013 at 12:15 PM #

    Great advice. I haven’t been south of the border. I think Argentina would be a solid first step, especially if we can enjoy a great city culture while also taking a side trip to enjoy a wine region.

  3. i-heart-vino September 24, 2013 at 2:56 PM #

    I just entered to win the Patagonia trip on http://www.sayhueque.com/ . If I win, I will send you a postcard! Thanks!

  4. Meagan @ Life Outside of Texas September 24, 2013 at 11:23 PM #

    Would love to visit Argentina. Looks amazing!

    • Lindsay September 24, 2013 at 11:52 PM #

      Meagan- I think Argentina’s made it’s way in to my top 10! It’s seriously amazing! And I was there in the WINTER! I can’t even imagine fall/spring/summer!! Can’t wait to get back there!

  5. Trish Velarmino September 27, 2013 at 12:59 PM #

    OMG Lindsey, you´re getting me really excited!!! Checked the tours and the prices are kind of fair. Patagonia!!!

  6. Pola (JettingAround) (@jettingaround) September 28, 2013 at 4:28 PM #

    Argentina is one of my favorite countries (the food, the landscape, the architecture, and soccer – the list goes on!). I was in BsAs and Salta, including the surrounding mountains. Both stunning places. Next time I’m in Argentina, I *have to* check out Patagonia.

    • Lindsay September 30, 2013 at 7:30 AM #

      Pola, you and me both! I’m dying to see Patagonia. I’d like to check out Salta, too! I’ve heard it’s amazing!

  7. Brian September 28, 2013 at 4:29 PM #

    Wow, reading this makes me want to go!

    • Lindsay September 30, 2013 at 7:28 AM #

      Brian, you should go! Have you ever been to Argentina?

  8. Sara Catella October 10, 2013 at 9:55 AM #

    Lindsay….I just start planning my next trip to PATAGONIA!!!!! Why don’t you come with me??? 🙂

    • Lindsay October 10, 2013 at 11:46 AM #

      Yes! YES YES YES!! When are you planning to go?

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