- See the highlights of Buenos Aires
- Get a taste of life as a gaucho on a working ranch
- Get up close to dolphins, whales, and penguins in their natural habitats
- Cruise just meters away from the awe-inspiring Pepito Moreno glacier
|Day 1||Arrive in Buenos Aires, Family Cooking Class||Buenos Aires|
|Day 2||Private Tour of Buenos Aires' Highlights||Buenos Aires|
|Day 3||Transfer to San Antonio de Areco & Estancia||San Antonio de Areco|
|Day 4||Explore the Estancia, Barbecue & Return to Buenos Aires||Buenos Aires|
|Day 5||Fly to Puerto Madryn & Bike Tour||Puerto Madryn|
|Day 6||Península Valdés & Whale Watching||Puerto Madryn|
|Day 7||Punta Tombo Penguin Reserve||Puerto Madryn|
|Day 8||El Doradillo Beach Adventure||Puerto Madryn|
|Day 9||Fly to El Calafate, Family Dinner||El Calafate|
|Day 10||Perito Moreno Glacier: Hiking & Boat Trip||El Calafate|
|Day 11||Los Glaciares National Park Boat Trip||El Calafate|
|Day 12||4WD Patagonian Steppe Tour & Indigenous Rock Paintings||El Calafate|
|Day 13||Fly to Buenos Aires & Explore||Buenos Aires|
|Day 14||Depart Buenos Aires|
Day 1: Arrive in Buenos Aires, Family Cooking Class
Welcome to Buenos Aires! After you and the family have settled into your accommodation, your guide will take you on a tour of the Boedo neighborhood. This area is off the tourist trail, so you'll get some true local Buenos Aires flavor on these bohemian streets. You and the kids will love the colorful murals—like an outdoor museum, they'll take you through the history of tango and fútbol (soccer), two cultural cornerstones.
Speaking of local flavors, your guide will take you out for dinner here. Beginning with an aperitif at Café Margot, the heart of the neighborhood and haunt of celebrities, you'll head to a local family's home for the main act. A slight twist—you'll be making your own delicious empanadas with the help of your hosts. This hands-on activity will keep the kids entertained while you enjoy a glass of delicious Malbec wine. Here's to the start of a great family holiday!
Day 2: Private Tour of Buenos Aires' Highlights
Today you'll see the highlights of Buenos Aires in a convenient private tour by car. Starting with the fascinating historic and political heart of the city, Plaza de Mayo, you'll find impressive monuments, government buildings, and the Metropolitan Cathedral. Next, head to San Telmo, where the whole family will be entertained by its street artists and markets. If you're lucky enough to visit on a Sunday, stroll through Plaza Dorrego's open-air market.
Afterward, you'll continue to colorful La Boca, home to El Caminito—famous for its murals, architecture, and dancers, it's a great place to absorb the city's atmosphere and take a few family pictures. Meanwhile, soccer fans are in for a treat—La Boca is also home to the Boca Juniors Football Club, where Diego Maradona first made his name. For dinner, try one of the city's many casual, family-friendly restaurants—the meat-eaters in your family won't want to leave without trying one of Argentina's famous steaks!
Day 3: Transfer to San Antonio de Areco & Estancia
Leaving the urban vibe, you and the family will strike out for San Antonio de Areco, the heart of traditional rural Argentina, for two days. Here, you'll discover village life, gaucho customs, and pampas (plains) traditions. Take a look around town to see pulperías (traditional gaucho bars), the renowned Draghi's Silversmith Museum, and traditional workshops. Enjoy a delicious lunch at one of the local restaurants.
Next, head to the iconic Puente Viejo (Old Bridge) and over the Río Areco to the famous Ricardo Güiraldes Gaucho Museum. The kids will be fascinated by the collection of machinery, artifacts, and costumes from gaucho life in the past. Late in the afternoon, you'll make your way to a working ranch, Estancia El Ombú, where you can take a sunset horseback ride or just relax and appreciate the rural views at sunset. Enjoy a traditional dinner and stay here in the beautiful Italian-designed 19th-century accommodation overnight.
Day 4: Explore the Estancia, Barbecue & Return to Buenos Aires
Spend the morning enjoying the relaxed rural pace at the estancia (ranch). Take the kids horseback riding or for a carriage ride through the expansive grounds. Depending on the time of year, you may be able to view or even assist with farm activities such as herding cattle. If you'd prefer, just take a stroll and follow your nose—eventually, it will lead you to your lunch, a delicious asado (barbecue). Paradise for meat lovers, the star of the show will be the grilled cuts of beef, but there's plenty of choice for vegetarians with salad and vegetable dishes as well.
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.
Day 5: Fly to Puerto Madryn & Bike Tour
This morning your driver will take you to the domestic airport to catch your flight to Trelew Airport. A private driver will meet your family here, and a short drive later, you'll be in one of Argentina's scenic highlights, Puerto Madryn. Once you've settled in your accommodation, head out on a family bicycle tour of the coast (all equipment provided). Your expert guide will talk you through the local flora and fauna while you bike through the stunning landscape on specially-designated trails. There'll be breaks along the way to soak up the view and have a snack or two—the perfect introduction to your time in this corner of paradise.
Day 6: Península Valdés & Whale Watching
This morning is your family's chance to get up close to majestic southern right whales with a tour from the village of Puerto Pirámides. Your guide will pick your family up after breakfast and drive you through the stunning scenery of the Península Valdés, during which you'll hear about the unique ecosystem here and the features that make this a World Heritage destination.
Once you reach the village, you'll depart on a guided cruise of the peninsula coastline. Your captain and crew will tell you all about the coastal ecosystem, the abundant species found here, and of course, the stars of today's show—the enormous southern right whales. You and the kids will be awed by these giant mammals as you watch them in their natural environment. After a two-hour tour, return to dry land, where your driver will pick you up and take you back to Puerto Madryn for the night.
Day 7: Punta Tombo Penguin Reserve
Prepare to be charmed today as you and the kids head to Punta Tombo to visit one of the world's largest Magellanic penguin colonies. Along the way, you'll double the cute factor as you stop off at Playa Unión for a 1.5-hour cruise to spot Commerson's dolphins. The world's smallest dolphins, these strikingly-marked black-and-white creatures will enchant the whole family.
After your cruise, you'll head back on the road to Punta Tombo. When you arrive, you'll have free time to explore the walkways to the shore. This will get you near the penguins' paths and nesting sites, so you and the kids will be able to have a close look at these curious birds as they pass through the reserve in search of food. Afterward, you'll return to Puerto Madryn, where you can relax and let the kids play on the beach for the rest of the day.
Day 8: El Doradillo Beach Adventure
Wildlife is the focus again today, with a unique experience at El Doradillo, a 1.8-mile (3 km) beach close to Puerto Madryn. The unusual coastal layout means that the main attraction, southern right whales, can be seen swimming close to shore as they shelter here to reproduce and nurse their young. The beach is also a famous conservation reserve for seals, sea lions, orcas, and penguins. With fantastic vantage points from coastal walkways and cliffs, it's an ideal destination for any budding nature photographer.
Explore the area at your own pace, or take the family on a half-day guided walking tour. Easy enough for the kids, too, you'll break for a picnic lunch of pan-fried chicken, bread, a traditional dessert, and drinks. Due to the calm waters and steep surf, you'll generally see southern right whale cows and calves only feet away from you, just off the shore—making for a never-to-be-forgotten family picnic!
Day 9: Fly to El Calafate, Family Dinner
After a last, leisurely family breakfast in Puerto Madryn, your driver will pick you up and take you to Trelew Airport, where you'll catch a flight to El Calafate. After a day on the road and in the air, your arrival will make all the travel worthwhile—in the heart of Southern Patagonia, home to some of the world's most beautiful glacial and alpine scenery, you'll receive the warmest of welcomes.
You and the kids will dine on tasty traditional and seasonal dishes, such as lamb goulash and vegetable cassolette. If time allows, explore the town and its surroundings a little—keep an eye out for the local flamingoes at the nearby Laguna Nimez reserve— before heading off to bed to rest up for tomorrow's adventures.
Day 10: Perito Moreno Glacier: Hiking & Boat Trip
This morning your family will get a memorable introduction to the region's biggest draw with a day trip to Los Glaciares National Park. After taking a bus to the park, you'll sail across Lago Rico, then disembark to begin a 1.5-hour hike with a view of Perito Moreno Glacier's south wall. As you make your way through mixed terrain and lush forest, you'll be able to savor your striking surroundings from many different angles.
Finally, it's time for a close-up look as you and the kids rest your legs and take to a boat instead to appreciate the glacier. From only a few feet away, you'll be able to see almost every detail. Back at the port, you'll take a bus to the footbridges for two hours of free time to stroll around and enjoy the panoramic views. The sturdy balconies are well-designed and safe for the kids to wander about, plus there's a snack bar if the young ones are peckish or ample spots for a picnic. Afterward, catch a bus back to El Calafate.
Day 11: Los Glaciares National Park Boat Trip
One day at Los Glaciares is not enough to see all its wonders, so today's trip is designed to take you even deeper into the park. Rise bright and early for a bus trip back to Punta Bandera, where you and the kids will board a large boat to continue up the arm of Lago Argentino. You'll be awed as you cross the Upsala Channel between massive icebergs. Soon afterward, your family will get its first glimpse of Spegazzini, an impressive glacier with walls of up to 440 feet (130 m).
At the base of the glacier, you and the kids can disembark and follow the easy path for stunning views of the base and ice wall. You can grab some lunch here and browse the souvenir shop for the perfect memento. Spend some time snapping some family pictures, or take a short alpine hike. Afterward, you'll return to the boat. From the port, you can take the bus back to your accommodation.
Day 12: 4WD Patagonian Steppe Tour & Indigenous Rock Paintings
Get a fascinating glimpse into Patagonia's ancient past on a 4WD tour with an archaeological flair. The kids will love the excitement of driving off-road over the Patagonian steppe terrain—the trail also offers panoramic views of the Andes and Lago Argentino. Along the way, you'll learn about the history of the region's Indigenous people and the first colonial expeditions, pausing to stretch your legs and explore at points of note.
The highlight will be your main stop: an attractive series of caves and rocky eaves where you and the kids will discover Paleolithic rock paintings over 4,000 years old. The fun doesn't end here—dine near where Paleolithic families may once have gathered, with a picnic lunch inside one of the caves. The fare will be more modern, though, with a tasty lamb or vegetable dish accompanied by wine (or juice for the younger ones) and a dessert.
Day 13: Fly to Buenos Aires & Explore
Today you and the kids will fly back to Buenos Aires to have a bit of urban fun. There are loads of family-friendly things to do here, with plenty of parks and museums. Grab some empanadas and ice cream from one of the many food trucks and head to a nearby park for a tasty picnic. Afterward, head to the Japanese Garden. Well worth a visit, it's tranquil and safe for the kids—they'll love spotting fish in the ponds there.
Day 14: Depart Buenos Aires
It's your last day today— time to say goodbye to Buenos Aires! Enjoy a leisurely breakfast at your hotel, and if there's time, head out for one more stroll around town. Make time to stop off at El Ateneo Grand Splendid—heaven for bookworms, the opulent theatre setting and café on the old stage will also appeal to less bookish types. While there is a limited selection in English, there is a whole floor dedicated to children's picture books. At the appointed hour, a driver will transfer to the airport for your departure. Buen viaje!
More Great Argentina Itineraries
Looking for more inspiration for your family trip to Argentina? Check out these other Argentina itineraries, explore different ways to spend two weeks in Argentina with your family, or discover the best time to visit Argentina.