Blogs from San Martín de Los Andes, Neuquén, Argentina, South America


EXTREMELY long wait at the Border and even longer day of driving.... Well, I was wondering when this day would come....Jan.29th, we are all needing some space:) Our living in a very very small space 24/7 has hit everyone hard today....after 35 days not bad:):) We arrived late afternoon in San Martin de Los Andes in the Lake District of Argentina. We headed straight for the beach and went for a swim and then Helados (ice cream).....the cure to all! San Martin de Los Andes is a beautiful town surrounded by mountains. We had dinner and explored the town. As it was extremely busy we woke and got outta dodge:):)... read more
It's amazing what a good swim will do!

We crossed into Argentina at Chile Chico, a weird little gold mining town at the end of the precarious road around the southern shore of Lago Carerra. I would bore you with yet more pictures of the lake, as it was quite amazing, but to be honest, I was too preoccupied with keeping our car on the road to take many..... it was, thankfully, clear weather, but with a 40+ knot wind it was a continual battle with the wheel..... along the way we could look back over the northern ice fields...... have I mentioned my interest in ice? Eyes on the road...... After the crossing you could not have found a greater contrast in scenery. The snowy mountains had been replaced by the Pilbara...... where's the lakes, rivers, ice and snow, lush greenery, forrests etc..... ... read more
The Pampa dry and flat
Los Alerces National Park

sonntags in argentinien… ist wieder mal ein bisschen, wie sonntags bei uns am land: mit rumtata-blasmusik-marschkapelle und buntem volkstanz! das sonntägliche hauptplatz spektakel wird von klein und groß der bevölkerung san martin's und zwei blonden touristen bestaunt - anschließend gibt es kuchen und kaffee ;-) . unsere letzten argentinischen pesos werden in tupperware und reiseproviant investiert… wir organisieren uns zunehmend besser und haben jetzt sogar schon gekochtes mittagessen mit auf den busreisen und unseren eigenen hostel-food-behälter! knuspriger reis mit ei und shrimps (reis!!! juhuuu!) wird getuppert mit zum bus richtung chile genommen. sobald wir die chilenische grenze erreichen wird es kalt, neblig und nass-nass-nass! was ist nur mit chile los? welche wettergötter wurden hier verärgert?! am frühen abend kommen wir in pucon, chile an und müssen leider erfah... read more
argeninian male dancer

heute ist ein besonderer tag: ich kann früh morgens mit meiner geliebten schwester skypen!!! leider macht dieser kontakt nach hause ein wenig wehmütig… zum ersten mal wäre ich gerne ein wenig zu hause ;-( . bei erneut wunderbarem wetter und im mietauto auf der ruta de los siete lagos (tour durch die sieben seen) verfliegt der “kummer” rascher. ausnahmsweise dürfen wir ein ziemlich neues auto (sogar einen fiat!) fahren und ich als conductor kurve markus zu den aussichtspunkten der zahlreichen (mehr als sieben) seen. zwischen den teils beachtlichen bergen erstrecken sich in unübersehbaren buchten die glitzernden seen. die oberflächen, glatt wie spiegel, doppeln die bergaussicht und geben den blick bis zum grund frei. von san martin de los andes bis nach villa la angostura, über teils gefährlich schlaglöchrige straßen der berühmten ruta 40, kurven wir zum ... read more
kuh speed
y montañas

My plan for the next few days was to travel north about 3 hours from Bariloche to San Martin De Los Andes. San Martin De Los Andes sits at the northern end of the very beautiful route of the 7 lakes and on the southern edge of the Lanin national park (more lakes and mountains, ho hum), which is dominated by the 3,700m+ Lanin Volcano. Prior to coming to San Martin I had vague plans to join an organised trip to walk/climb around Lanin (this would be good practice for the even higher climb up Cotopaxi when I got to Ecuador). But on arrival, conscious that it might not be the best therapy for my back and finding San Martin less accessible than I had expected, it now seemed unwise and unlikely in the 3 full ... read more
Basalt Cliffs between San Martin and Quila Quina
The Viewpoint Above San  Martin De Los Andes
On the Way Out to Hua Hum

Today we hit the road! After the explanation of the strange ways that the rental car system works here, I cannot explain it, it is all in Spanish, we loaded our bags into a two door Fiat and took off. But before leaving Bariloche, John wanted to visit Tehuelche. This is a small producer of travel gear and clothing. It was a great place, supporting a team of seamstresses and the family that owns the company. We found it after driving past it several took yet another helpful Argentine to guide us to the place. John picked up a pair of pants and custom ordered another! We then left Bariloche headed for Villa Traful which you reach via 25 km of gravel road. when we got there we found it was significantly smaller than expected ... read more

We awoke 'early' at the crack of dawn...well, about 8am which seems early when it is still pitch black outside. We quickly had breakie and got a taxi into town to collect our hire car. Unfortunately, we were informed yesterday that there were no automatic transmission vehicles available for hire anywhere in Bariloche which is annoying considering that I don't really know how to drive a manual. So Rach unwillingly volunteered to be my driver for the day. After getting all the paperwork done in the 'office', we had a short walk to find our car. On the way, we passed all sorts of vehicles ranging from brand new ones to rust buckets and we were holding our breath as to what sort of vehicle our 400 pesos would get us. Thankfully, it was a nice ... read more
Breakfast crepe!
Va La Angostura village

Never have I been so unaware of the imminent arrival of Christmas than this year. It takes me by surprise when I remember the date. Today was quieter and slightly anticlimatic after the excitement of the lake and the fishing yesterday. All that smiling and adrenalin had taken its toll and I was very tired today. Good job it was Sunday. Not much was going on and so we followed suite. I had my breakfast of croissants, coffee and orange outside by the river. It has been getting warmer each morning. Nady led Ben and I to a nearby park and we got to see the real side of San Martin, where the non tourists live, just across the other side of the river.She wanted to show us the wee sack swing; a swing that you ... read more
Sunday rest

We’ve just had a day to remember out on Lake Lalog here in San Martin de los Andes. Javier, the owner of the apartment hotel where we’re staying has a boat to go out on the lake with. There’s the half day trip and the full 9 hour trip including roast lamb on the beach. To be honest I wasn’t that interested. Previous boat trips for me have been about half an hour of doing something different and enjoyable and then just a long wait in the cold to get back to where you started from. But the rest of the family were keen, so I went along. I asked Javier if there were life jackets, to which he answered “yes” and then introduced me to Captain Fabian, who was in charge of the boat. They ... read more
Javier's Log "Mansion"
Maybe we'll change those retirement plans
Captain Fabian

Day 8 ramblings: Rob Bell, Nick Cuthbert and 458 Italias Before I write the real Day 7 Blog, I've written some thoughts and ramblings. Joe thinks you'll not be interested. Andrea thinks you will. So, if you're nearer to Joe's age, then skip to the next Bog, if you're old like me you might find some resonance. Gray Travelling through different countries gives lots of time for reflection. First there’s having left all the stress and business behind, then there’s lots of time just to sit and watch and inevitably the comparisons start. Compared to the Argentina I first experienced more than 22 years ago there have been some major changes, some would say development. The whole feel of the place is very different. In many ways it feels like a European country with the infrastructure, ... read more

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