- Learn to dine (and dance!) like a local while exploring the capital
- Visit two wineries—on two wheels—while partaking in several tastings
- Hike to a scenic viewpoint overlooking the tallest peak in South America
- Go river rafting and ziplining on the same day, surrounded by Andean scenery
|Day 1||Arrive in Buenos Aires, Explore||Buenos Aires|
|Day 2||Buenos Aires Walking Tour & Tango Lesson||Buenos Aires|
|Day 3||Fly to Mendoza, Explore||Mendoza|
|Day 4||Half-Day Winery Bike Tour||Mendoza|
|Day 5||Full-Day Tour & Trek in Aconcagua National Park||Mendoza|
|Day 6||Full-Day Rafting & Ziplining Adventure||Mendoza|
|Day 7||Return to Buenos Aires, Depart|
Day 1: Arrival in Buenos Aires
Welcome to Argentina! Renowned as the "Paris of South America" and the "Queen of El Plata," the capital city of Buenos Aires is defined by passion. This is exemplified in the rich tango heritage and its citizens' limitless enthusiasm for fútbol (soccer), which is far and away the country's most popular sport.
When you arrive at the airport, your driver will be waiting to take you in a private car to your hotel, where you can relax after a long flight. But make no mistake: the city will beckon you. So after a quick recharge, be sure to venture out into the welcoming arms of Buenos Aires and explore.
When evening falls, and dinnertime arrives, simulate the locals and order a thick, juicy steak (Argentina has some of the best beef in the world) drizzled with the nation's famous chimichurri (a garlic, herb, and vinegar sauce). Know that Buenos Aires is a culture that thrives after dark, and it's not uncommon for locals to have dinner well past nine in the evening, especially on weekends.
Day 2: Buenos Aires Walking Tour & Tango Lesson
One great way to experience Buenos Aires is to do so on foot. So after a fortifying breakfast, prepare yourself for some walking and sightseeing throughout this European-inspired metropolis with the aid of an English-speaking guide.
Some highlights of a walking tour around Buenos Aires include:
Plaza San Martín, located at the end of downtown's commercial pedestrian thruway, Florida Street. This leafy plaza, anchored by a majestic ombú tree, is named after one of the heroes of Argentina's independence movement, General José de San Martín.
The Obelisco, an icon that sits at the nexus of the city where the 16 lanes of Ave. 9 de Julio cross bustling Corrientes Ave. Here you'll find Buenos Aires' theater and music district. It's a hub of activity any day of the week, but it's particularly alive on weekend evenings.
Colón Theatre, a nearly 2,500-seat teatro that is perpetually vying with Rio de Janeiro's Theatro Municipal for the title of the most opulent opera house in South America. The building's elegant neoclassical exterior and pitch-perfect interior acoustics make this building a must-visit.
Plaza de Mayo, which is Buenos Aires' main square and home to the Casa Rosada, Argentina's presidential palace. The famous "pink house" (as the presidential palace is colloquially known), is also rife with history. It's on the front balcony that dictator Juan Perón made some of his most famous speeches with his glamorous wife, Evita, at his side. Ultimately it was she who won the hearts and minds of the Argentine people.
Metropolitan Cathedral, is the principal Catholic church in the city and another historic building that also faces the Plaza de Mayo. It was consecrated in 1791, but its earliest origins date back to the late 16th century when a humble chapel first sat on the current site.
Puerto Madero, whose shimmering office towers and central canal make this one of the most elegant neighborhoods in the city. Some upscale restaurants can be found here, as can Puente de la Mujer, a bridge whose sleek and sensual lines define its title of "Woman's Bridge."
Barrio San Telmo, which is BA's oldest neighborhood and boasts a vibrant tango and arts scene. Its antique markets, cobbled streets dotted with faroles (French streetlamps), and old brick buildings with wooden balconies all add to the uniquely bohemian atmosphere. Sundays are especially buzzing as the main street market comes alive around Plaza Dorrego.
- Barrio La Boca is a well-preserved historic neighborhood that's nearly as old as San Telmo. The area is known for La Bombonera, the stadium of one of two principal soccer teams in the city: Boca Juniors. It's also home to colorful Caminito Street, a pedestrian zone teeming with old restaurants and tanguerías.
In the evening, you'll experience an unforgettable night of dinner and tango performances in one of the best tanguerias in Buenos Aires. It's venues such as these that preserve the musical heritage of the city. You'll feel it in the ambience, you'll hear it in the melancholy rhythms of the guitar and bandoneon, and you'll see it in the dances of fish-netted and besuited bailanderos. It's a dance that tells the story of loss and heartbreak, passion and love. And if that isn't enough, you'll even have the opportunity to get up on the dance floor and partake in a tango class.
Day 3: Fly to Mendoza, Explore
After breakfast, a driver will meet you, and you'll transfer to the airport to catch your flight to Mendoza. This western region is a wild expanse of fertile land that's ground zero for the country's booming viticulture industry. A seemingly limitless number of vineyards abound here, with many producing Argentina's flagship wine grape: malbec. Mendoza also features some breathtaking scenery and outdoor opportunities. With the Andes looming high above the area's vineyards, there is a wide range of opportunities for hiking, horseback riding, and whitewater rafting.
Upon arrival in the city, you'll have the rest of the day to relax and explore at your leisure. The city center features expansive plazas and wide boulevards shaded by canopies of bushy green sycamore leaves. In stark contrast to Buenos Aires, people in Mendoza move at a relaxed pace, making this the perfect city to enjoy a tranquil stroll.
Some suggested activities around town include:
- Stroll Mendoza's famous parks. One of the most popular meeting spots for locals is Plaza Independencia. It features impressive fountains and is dotted with elegant acacia and tall plane trees. Parque General San Martín is the most impressive park in the city, as its well-manicured grounds dotted with palm trees were designed by the famous Argentine landscape architect Charles Thays (who also designed the most famous parks in Buenos Aires).
- Visit a museum. There are a few in Mendoza. One recommended option is the Museo del Pasado Cuyano, which features many exhibits on the history of Mendoza as well as collections of weapons from the independence era.
- Enjoy some local cuisine. Mendoza sits in the middle of the rugged countryside at the foot of the Andes. So as you'd expect, the fare here tends to be rustic. That said, you'll find a wide variety of eateries and many high-end options too. There's none more famous and revered than 1884, the flagship restaurant of legendary Argentine chef Francis Mallman, who perfected the technique of cooking over an open flame.
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.
Day 4: Half-Day Winery Bike Tour
Start the day with an early breakfast in Mendoza. At the given time, you'll be picked up for a half-day bike tour near the town of Luján de Cuyo in the heart of Argentina's wine country, famed for Malbecs and other reds. Not only will you get some exercise as you pedal through the beautiful vineyards framed by snowcapped mountains, but you'll also tour two wineries and take part in tastings.
Your first winery stop of the morning is Carlos Pulenta's CAP Vistalba. After a tour and tasting, including two of their best wines, you'll pedal to the second winery called Nieto Senetiner, a historic Argentine producer that dates back to 1888. Here, you'll taste three different wines, followed by a three-course lunch with (more!) wine pairings that will be served at the on-site restaurant.
At the end of the bike tour, you'll be transferred back to Mendoza, where you'll have the rest of the afternoon to relax and explore the city.
Day 5: Full-Day Tour & Trek in Aconcagua National Park
After breakfast in Mendoza, get ready for some spectacular scenery as you embark on a full-day driving tour through the Argentine Andes. The first part of the drive gets you into the small mountain villages such as Uspallata, Puente del Inca, Penitentes, and Horcones.
From here, the drive continues uphill, where you'll stop for a short trek that reaches the viewpoint of Mount Aconcagua, the highest peak in South America, rising a whopping 22,837 feet (6,961 m). At the end of the trek, you'll return to the car and drive back to Mendoza for the evening. This nine-hour trip includes private transportation, a bilingual guide, lunch, a snack, and an entrance ticket to Aconcagua National Park.
Day 6: Full-Day Rafting & Ziplining Adventure
After breakfast at your hotel, get ready for another outdoorsy excursion—this time to Potrerillos in the Andes, just under an hour's drive from Mendoza. Your first activity of the day is a guided whitewater rafting trip of around 7.5 miles (12 km) along the rapids of the Mendoza River. This moderate and fun activity can be enjoyed during the summer months, and the rapids are Class III or higher. You will receive safety instructions and gear before setting out on the water.
After lunch, it's time to go ziplining—a rushing experience that allows you to glide along multiple long steel cables while suspended by a pulley and harness. This particular spot is a guided circuit of 4,593 feet (1400 m) formed by six stretches. You'll first receive some information, safety tips, and gear, and then it's time to trek up to the zipline's starting point above the valley floor. This is an unforgettable way to experience panoramic views of Potrerillos Valley and Cordon del Plata Mountain Range, dating back millions of years.
When these two activities are complete, you'll return to your hotel in Mendoza in time to enjoy the rest of the afternoon and evening in town.
Day 7: Return to Buenos Aires, Depart
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight back to Buenos Aires. Upon arrival in Buenos Aires, transfer to the international airport for your flight back home. ¡Buen viaje!
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