After getting off the boat (but still feeling like I was on the boat), I spent a night in a gorgeous little hostel in Puerto Varas, rang my bank and told them off for putting a stop on my card when I´d told them I was going to Chile and Argentina, and had a drink with my Navimag friends in a bar overlooking the lake and a volcano. Unfortunately we could only see a bit of the volcano as it was overcast. I got an idea of what it might look like the next day as I travelled over the mountains and the border to Bariloche. The scenery was just stunning. Lush green mountains, snowy tops, volcanos, and lakes. I was knackered and felt a bit land-sick, but didn´t want to miss any views.
Bariloche is a little city on a lake, surrounded by mountains. It´s quite touristy, but it´s pretty gorgeous. It was lovely weather when I was there too. I met Becky from work and her husband Marvin there and we hung out for a couple of days, eating chocolate, drinking wine and playing cards. After they left on Monday, I started work on my translation and then
met up with some Navimag friends in a bar.
The next day, I went out for a bike ride by myself. There´s a well-travelled circuit you can do called Circuito Chico which starts at a place called kilometre 18, 18 kilometres from Bariloche. It was quite hard work as it was fairly hilly, but it was lovely. I saw the swanky hotel that Arthur mentioned but I didn´t go in as I wasn´t quite dressed right and still had 25km to go. Back at the hostel (Hostel 41 Below, very friendly place), I drank some leftover Gato Negro with the others.
Looking back, I wish I´d had more time in Bariloche, and in Patagonia in general, as it was totally stunning. It was the place for outdoor activities and not necessarily warm and sunny, and so it was also almost devoid of party travellers, which made it very pleasant indeed. I couldn´t get enough of the views from the bus as I left Bariloche on the way to Mendoza. We were winding through green-grey-lilac valleys next to a river so clear I could see the stones on the bottom from my bus seat. I am already planning a
trip back to Patagonia...
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