Blogs from San Carlos de Bariloche, Río Negro, Argentina, South America

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Today we are driving the Circuito Chico; a popular 60 km scenic lakeside loop. We start by taking a chairlift 1000 metres up Cerro Campanario, where a series of platforms provide 360 degree views of the surrounding mountains and lakes. We take the chairlift back down. A dozen ahead of us is a lady in a wheelchair. The lift is stopped while she is helped into her seat. This means that when she reaches the bottom and the lift is stopped again, we are dangling at the highest point. Being left dangling in a chair hanging on a wire halfway up a mountain is not my idea of a good time. Luckily we get moving again while I am still contemplating some sort of escape bid. We continue to pretty little San Eduardo Chapel, made of ... read more
View from Cerro Campanario
View from Cerro Campanario
View from Cerro Campanario


Today we return to El Calafate for our flight to Bariloche. It’s 125 miles to the airport but Hertz insist the car is returned with a full tank which adds a further 20 miles to our drive. The distance between things is difficult for a Brit to get used to. It’s also 130 miles between toilets. But that’s another story… We set off at 7.15 am. It’s a remote road with nothing except lake one side and pampas on the other. In the first hour we pass 4 cars, 3 guanacos, 2 rhea and a grey fox. We have worked out a way to halve our excess baggage fines. This involves checking a piece of hand luggage and using a bag-for-life for carry on items - the height of sartorial elegance. Sadly, I’ve had to ditch ... read more
Rhea
Hotel guest
View from Villa Huinid


Die ochtend krijgen we een heerlijk en uitgebreid ontbijt in het pension en zetten we vervolgens koers richting de Argentijnse grens. De wind is gaan liggen en de zon schijnt weer, dus prima weer. Bij de grens staan tientallen vrachtwagens te wachten de andere kant op, maar aan onze kant is niemand. We krijgen weer een hoop stempels op allerlei formulieren, in Argentinië hebben ze nog geen paspoortscanners, dus alle gegevens moeten met de hand worden ingevoerd. Ze zijn niet geïnteresseerd in onze bagage, dus na vijf minuten kunnen we weer verder rijden. Ook hier is het landschap erg vlak, wel zijn er veel vulkaankegels zo ver als je kunt kijken. In Rio Gallegos, de grootste stad van Zuid-Argentinië willen we tanken, maar de diesel is op. Gelukkig is er een paar minuten verderop nog een ... read more
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I am traveling by myself. But I am not alone. Today it took a team of 3 mechanics working most of the morning to get my designated bike (just back from a trip) ready to roll again. I hung out and asked awkward questions, often causing more work. The yard was full of bikes and bikers from Argentina, Chile, Brasil and Costa Rica, messing with gear and talking biker travel talk. All male. Most had grey hair like me. I drove 80 km to the border and had to wait in line for half an hour with 30 other cars, making friends with people I kept meeting again through the day. They would wave and honk when they passed me stopped by the side of the road taking pictures. I then found out I had lost ... read more
Long wait to leave Chile.
By the side of the road.
Argentine forest cover


Unseasonably hot and humid today I sit at the family dining table accompanied by the gentle tapping of a Danish keyboard. Beside me Ellen is studiously learning Spanish verb conjugations in silence; a prospect I can only dream of. From the sixth floor flat we have a splendid view of the mountains across the lake. Last night we ventured into town after dinner to have a social drink and perhaps some music if we were lucky. Five minutes later we entered a section of closed roads and passed the first of four packed pubs with bands playing, all within 100 metres. More than a thousand people of all ages were out there. There was much happiness in the air. People danced unselfconciously with hips that twisted beyond typical British restrain. Babies wobbled on parent’s knees, soaking ... read more
Clarinets and saxes playing happily together... note to kbc Christmas band that it can be done....


Greetings from sunny Argentina! We made it through Buenos Aires (38 degrees) to wonderful San Carlos de Bariloche in the lake district of northern patagonia (24 degrees). 3 nights in a youth hostel (everyone was so kind as well as not as young as we had thought) ) and 3 days cycling and taking our first walk in the foothills of the Andes. Crumbs they are HUGE...... "can't wait for the real thing" (Jan)...... "let's climb that one" (Pete). I promise not to take a picture of every bridge we come across but I have attached a picture of our first Argentinian bridge. I think they will get more scary than this one....we'll wait and see and I will be sure to keep you informed. And just as we were getting used to the malbec and ... read more
Today's choice of headgear is......
Ponte numero uno en argentina


18/1/2017 We arrived in Bariloche at around 1pm. It was a very long journey but because we slept most of the way and were given breakfast in the morning on the bus we felt ok! We got a taxi to our hostel. The hostel we were staying at was called Rodinia hostel and was very near the city centre. We dropped our stuff off and had a little explore around. The surroundings were amazing with a stunning lake and mountains in the distance. As there was quite a lot to do in Bariloche we decided to use today to plan what we were gonna do over the coming days. We went to the tourist information centre and also the national park information centre. We decided we wanted to hike one mountain and rent our bikes to ... read more


After returning from the "Refugio Frey" trek I have rested for tow days in Bariloche - at the first day I took public transportation to Llao llao park and most famous hotel - although it was raining a lot so I didn't want to hike for long. I also went to two different places to get information about my next trek - "Lagona Negra". The first place was the office of the Nauel Huapi national park and the second was the "Club Andino" office. Both places were good for getting information and that's raised my confidence on going out to the trek by my own. I was planning to hike for two days - hiking to and spending the night at "Lagona Negra" in "Refugio Italia" at the first day and going back the same way ... read more
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After a great couple of days at Sabatico Hostel, were I meet a cool young Australian couple (actually the girl emphasized that the guy was from New Zealand...), after a lot of walking around the city, about15 KM a day and after a short bad stomach I took a 2.5 hours flight to San Carlos De Bariloche - AKA the famous sky resort at the west of Argentina, located in the "lake district", at the north of Patagonia. I arrived at mid autumn (Mid April), and enjoined both the tasty possibilities of the city (like the amazing and famous "jauja" ice cream) and the nature around. I stayed at Periko's Hostel which is mostly build by real solid wood from the surroundings. Bariloche is also located near the Nahuel Huapi National Park- "Island of the Jaguar" ... read more
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Notre escale à El Chalten prend fin après presque 4 jours de randonnées quotidiennes. Cette petite ville, capitale auto-proclamée du trekking argentin aura tenu toutes ses promesses! Nous prenons un bus en soirée à destination de Bariloche, toujours en Argentine, pour une durée de 24 heures, une grande première pour nous! Ce bus doit parcourir près de 1500 km le long du flanc Est de la Cordillière des Andes et je m'attends à pouvoir admirer une multitude de pics rocheux et volcans enneigés. Finalement il n'en est rien... la Ruta 40 que nous empruntons est beaucoup trop à l'Est des montagnes pour qu'on puisse les voir. Dès le début du voyage nous découvrons des paysages semi-arides et désespérément plats... La végétation est basse et clairsemée, le sol sableux et poussiéreux de couleur ocre ne semble pas ... read more
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