Argentina: Mendoza & Patagonia

Guided Walking Tour, Argentina: Mendoza & PatagoniaGuided Walking Tour, Argentina: Mendoza & Patagonia

Argentina

Mendoza & Patagonia

overview

Argentina pulses with life and exceptional natural beauty. This adventure showcases the country’s most spectacular regions and its cuisine. Raise a toast to your journey in Mendoza, center of Argentina’s wine industry. From here, follow the foothills of the Andes, alongside ancient aqueducts dug by the indigenous Huarpes people. Your efforts are rewarded by a luxurious night in a traditional country house and the next day’s journey into the Andes. Picnic in the shadow of Mt. Aconcagua, the hemisphere’s highest peak. Take a boat ride in the Lakes Region. Wander the Victoria Island beaches, where native flora and exotic wildlife abound. Nothing quite prepares you for the wild majesty of the Patagonian steppe, with its vast panoramas of towering summits, shimmering waters, and giant condors circling 12,000-year-old archaeological treasures. Enjoy your midday meal atop a granite cliff with views of Mount Tronador, an extinct volcano mantled in glaciers. Venture out onto Nahuel Huapi Lake by kayak, or indulge in an afternoon at the spa. It’s your choice, in a country that has everything to offer.


Pre- or Post-Tour Extension

Linger longer! Add a Tour Extension to this adventure and explore more. Our extensions combine guided experiences with independent travel, allowing you to savor both insider access and ample private time, all the while staying in premium, hand-selected accommodations.

      Buenos Aires Extension »
      3 days, 2 nights
      Southern Patagonia Extension »
      4 days, 3 nights
Activity Level
Easy to moderate;
4-6 miles daily
Meet
Mendoza, Argentina
Depart
Bariloche, Argentina
Daily Itinerary
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itinerary
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pre-trip reading
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From our blog

Guided Walking 
8 days, 7 nights Trip Includes 

Trip Includes

  • One expert generalist guide and regional local guides, with you 24/7
  • All meals except for two dinners; local wine or beer included with dinners
  • All accommodations while on tour
  • Transportation from the meeting to the departure point
  • Entrance fees and special events as noted in the itinerary
  • The unbeatable and cumulative experience of the Country Walkers staff
per person double occupancy
Solo surcharge + $0
 

Airfare additional + $915

2014 Single supplement + $1,175
2015 Single supplement + $1,325
Call 800.234.6900 to book this trip.

REQUEST RESERVATION
Number of Travelers
Total in your party
Price From
per person double occupancy

Airfare additional + $915

Call 800.234.6900 to book this trip.

REQUEST RESERVATION

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Itinerary and Accommodations

Days
Destination
1
Chacras de Coria
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2
Chacras de Coria
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3
Chacras de Coria
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4
Bariloche
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5
Bariloche
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6
Bariloche
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7
Bariloche
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8
Bariloche
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Day 1

Chacras de Coria

Please Note: This is the 2014 itinerary. To view the 2015 itinerary, follow the link in the tour overview section above.

Exploration of Mendoza, 2-3 hours, easy to moderate

Upon arrival in Mendoza, you are met at the airport and proceed directly to your hotel for the next three nights, a country house-style property located in a picturesque village called Chacras de Coria, only 20 minutes from the regional capital of Mendoza, the heart of Argentina’s best-known wine routes and gastronomic venues. The hotel reflects the art of combining Andean stone with typical desert wood, resulting in a natural, modern aesthetic. The swimming pool, set in a garden, promises tranquil afternoons and calm nights. This area of ranches is renowned for its warm microclimate and scenic location at the base of the Andes.

Following time to settle into your room and a traditional lunch at the hotel, you set off for an introductory walk to become acquainted with your surroundings. You explore the Plaza de Independencia and Emilio Civil en route to General San Martin City Park. Originally designed as a training site for the Argentine Army, the park’s beautiful rosedal or rose garden and Cerro de la Gloria (Mt. Gloria) are now open for exploration by locals and travelers. Atop Mt. Gloria, sweeping views unfold of Mendoza with the backdrop of the Andes mountain range. This afternoon you return to the hotel with time to relax before dinner at a favorite restaurant within walking distance, toasting the start of your adventures with wines from surrounding vines.

Lares De Chacras

Argentina: Mendoza & Patagonia

Located in a picturesque village with tree-lined streets on the outskirts of Mendoza, this family-run, country-style house is built in traditional Andean style using local wood and stone. Amenities include a pool, lovely common areas, and a wonderful wine cellar.
Day 2

Chacras de Coria

Full-day wine tour of the Clos de Chacras and Norton wineries; 2 hours walking, easy

Following a good night’s rest, you wake to a satisfying breakfast at your hotel. Mid-morning, you set off for Clos de Chacras, a boutique winery constructed in 1921 but with a history dating back to 1883. Recently restored to its original grandeur, the bodega uses the latest technology to ensure production of some of the country’s most delicious wines, some of which you will have the pleasure of sampling alongside the bodega’s owner, whose grandparents started the winery.

Next you visit the Bodega Norton, a classic Argentine winery started in 1895 by one of the pioneers of Argentine viniculture, Sir Edmund James Palmer Norton. Among the growing vines, you are enlightened by our expert guide, who gives a detailed explanation about the leaves, grapes, and techniques of cultivation. In the heart of the vineyard—aromatic with the smell of the earth and the fresh breezes coming off the nearby mountains—appetites are whetted for the next quintessentially Argentine experience: the asado. During this participatory feast, you learn about Argentina’s barbecue tradition as you help prepare it, which is an art in itself! Enjoying the fruits of your labor in the beautiful vineyard gardens, you taste some of Mendoza’s best Cabernet and Malbec wines, while savoring insights from your wine expert.

You return to your hotel in the late afternoon with time to enjoy its pool and grounds, or to simply relax. Later, you venture out for dinner at a celebrated restaurant in the city of Mendoza.

Lares De Chacras

Argentina: Mendoza & Patagonia

Located in a picturesque village with tree-lined streets on the outskirts of Mendoza, this family-run, country-style house is built in traditional Andean style using local wood and stone. Amenities include a pool, lovely common areas, and a wonderful wine cellar.
Day 3

Chacras de Coria

Horcones Valley; 4-5 hours, moderate, 400-ft. elevation gain and loss; walks are at an elevation of over 9,000 feet

Today you set out early for a two- to three-hour scenic drive in the direction of the snowcapped Andes Mountains, and the starting point for a full day’s invigorating walk. The day’s destination is the Horcones Valley at the base of Mount Aconcagua; which, at 22,944 feet, is the highest mountain in South America and, as one of the famed “Seven Summits,” is a magnet for dedicated mountain climbers worldwide. The drive follows the Rio Mendoza through the small town of Potrerillos, into the Uspallata Valley, past Mount Penitentes (a local ski area), and over the famous bridge of the Incas, a geological and historical site where Incans soaked in the curative hot spring waters. The walk is a moderate route into the Horcones Valley, which eventually leads to Mount Aconcagua. Your extremely accomplished mountain guide—who has summited Mount Aconcagua 32 times!—accompanies you through rolling terrain at over 9,000 feet. Wildflowers flank the path, which leads toward the south face of Aconcagua and provides incomparable views of the snowcapped peak. A picnic lunch is unpacked in the fresh air, in full view of Mount Aconcagua.

Returning to your hotel later in the day, you may enjoy your final evening in Mendoza as you wish, either by opting to stay at your hotel and enjoying a gourmet meal in the hotel’s dining room, or by following your guide’s suggestions for a nearby restaurant within walking distance.

Lares De Chacras

Argentina: Mendoza & Patagonia

Located in a picturesque village with tree-lined streets on the outskirts of Mendoza, this family-run, country-style house is built in traditional Andean style using local wood and stone. Amenities include a pool, lovely common areas, and a wonderful wine cellar.
Day 4

Bariloche

Transfer to Bariloche (half day of travel). Cerro Llao-Llao; 3 hours, easy to moderate, 650-ft. elevation gain and descent

Today you fly to northern Patagonia, better known as the Lakes Region of Argentina, not far from the border with Chile, a geography of peaks, lakes, and unique forest. Upon arrival at the airport, you proceed to your hotel for the next four nights, a lakeside property located on the San Pedro Peninsula, just 25 minutes outside the city of Bariloche. Surrounded by breathtaking scenery of forested hills and crystalline lakes, the hotel is perfectly situated for your explorations of the region. Its 10 exclusive rooms, overlooking Nahuel Huapi Lake, feature individual balconies and access to the deck. The incredible views are sure to inspire you to stretch your legs after your journey.

After settling in, you then venture out to the scenic Llao-Llao Municipal Park. A sustained ascent brings you to a mirador, or lookout; you will want to have your camera ready! The wooded path leads past giant Coihue trees, which may be 500 or 600 years old; the colorful Arrayán trees, a variety of myrtle with twisted branches and smooth, red peeling bark; and the ever-present cypress with thick hanging moss. The walk culminates at the edge of Nahuel Huapi Lake, where glacial waters tempt the hardy for a brisk swim. Later in the afternoon, you return to the hotel with time to relax before a fine dinner in the hotel’s intimate restaurant, which serves locally produced Argentinean meat and local organic vegetables, prepared on the grill or in its clay oven.

Hotel Aldebaran

Bariloche, Argentina

Located on the sparkling shores of Nahuel Huapi Lake, this intimate boutique hotel welcomes you each evening with charm and comfort. This hotel boasts luxurious rooms with private balconies and amenities including a spa and gourmet restaurant.

Day 5

Bariloche

Isla Victoria; 4 hours, easy to moderate

Today’s excursion begins by navigating across the sparkling waters of Nahuel Huapi Lake and up to Victoria Island, rich in natural beauty and part of the Nahuel Huapi National Park, one of Argentina’s oldest and largest parks. The island itself was originally called Nahuel Huapi, meaning “Tiger Island” in the aboriginal Mapuche language; this name was later applied to the entire lake. The 12-mile-long island is full of centennial cypress, native trees, and exotic fauna.

You set off on a trail leading past isolated beaches and among a network of unique trees such as the ancient Arrayán, with its cinnamon-colored bark and white flowers. A natural wildlife reserve, Victoria Island is home to an amazing diversity of flora and fauna. If you are quiet and a little lucky, you might spot deer or pheasant. You enjoy a delightful picnic lunch on the island during this full-day visit.

Returning to your hotel later in the afternoon, you may choose to unwind in its spa facilities. Dinner this evening is at a favorite pub-style restaurant not far from the hotel.

Hotel Aldebaran

Bariloche, Argentina

Located on the sparkling shores of Nahuel Huapi Lake, this intimate boutique hotel welcomes you each evening with charm and comfort. This hotel boasts luxurious rooms with private balconies and amenities including a spa and gourmet restaurant.

Day 6

Bariloche

Patagonian Steppe; 4 hours, 700-ft. elevation gain and descent, easy to moderate

Today is dedicated to exploring the Patagonian steppe. Immense, and in places rugged and harsh, the steppe is a unique habitat characterized by vastness of land and horizon, with evidence of human history dating back over 12,000 years. Extending from the Andes Mountains to the Atlantic Ocean, the geography is made up of high plateaus, long ridges, and deep valleys with a geological composition of sand, rock, and volcanic ash. The low, bushy, and thorny vegetation that is typical of the region is home to a variety of fauna such as guanaco, foxes, maras (the Patagonian rabbit), and condors.

The day starts at Laguna de Los Juncos, with its unusual rock formations with condor nests above, and with spectacular views looking over the Pichi-Leufu River Valley. At the highest point of the walk, your guide prepares a typical Patagonian lunch. A sustained descent leads to the walk’s conclusion, and you return to the hotel in the later afternoon.

You are free this evening to head to a nearby restaurant, or perhaps to stay in and enjoy the hotel’s restaurant, which specializes in homemade pastas and wood-fired pizzas.

Hotel Aldebaran

Bariloche, Argentina

Located on the sparkling shores of Nahuel Huapi Lake, this intimate boutique hotel welcomes you each evening with charm and comfort. This hotel boasts luxurious rooms with private balconies and amenities including a spa and gourmet restaurant.

Day 7

Bariloche

Brazo Tristeza Balcony; 4 hours, 650-ft. elevation gain and descent, easy to moderate; optional afternoon of easy kayaking

Please note: a short section of this walk requires crossing a wooden bridge with a steep drop-off on one side. If you have any concerns about vertigo, we strongly urge you to phone our office.

Early risers this morning may wish to take a short walk, following the path down from the hotel to the lakeside dock. Following breakfast, you depart for Bahia Lopez, the start of the day’s walk. The route begins near the rocky beach of Nahuel Huapi Lake, along a wide, wooded trail, and continues on a gradual but steady ascent, flanked by purple mutisia wildflowers. After a short, steep rocky section (***the section that could be uncomfortable for those who have concerns about vertigo***), you are rewarded with outstanding views of the surrounding mountains, including the 12,000-foot, glacier-capped Mount Tronador, an extinct volcano that marks the border between Argentina and Chile. Upon arrival at a natural balcony, carved out of the granite cliffs by glaciers, you relax and enjoy a gourmet lunch prepared high in the mountains—food for the body and spirit. With luck, you may spot giant condors soaring in the wind. Condors are among the largest flying birds in the world, and to see them on the wing is truly a breathtaking sight.

After descending from the loop walk and returning to the hotel, this afternoon a kayaking option is available for those who wish to enjoy the scenery from another vantage point. This easy, guided paddle on Nahuel Huapi Lake is a wonderful way to spend a summer afternoon in Bariloche. The waters are generally calm, and the lake is edged with lush vegetation and diverse wildlife. Others may wish to take the afternoon to relax at the hotel or perhaps enjoy its spa. Another option is to take a taxi to downtown Bariloche for shopping opportunities. Tonight you celebrate your final evening together in true Argentine style at an exclusive private restaurant featuring local organic gourmet cuisine and fine Argentinean wines.

Hotel Aldebaran

Bariloche, Argentina

Located on the sparkling shores of Nahuel Huapi Lake, this intimate boutique hotel welcomes you each evening with charm and comfort. This hotel boasts luxurious rooms with private balconies and amenities including a spa and gourmet restaurant.

Day 8

Bariloche

Departure from Bariloche

Following breakfast this morning, you say adios to your newfound friends. Complimentary transfers to the Bariloche Airport are provided throughout the morning, depending on the time of your departing flight.

Itinerary Disclaimer

Bear in mind that this is a typical itinerary, and the actual activities, sites, and accommodations may vary due to season, special events, weather, or transportation schedules. We reserve the right to alter the itinerary since tour arrangements are made up to a year in advance, and unforeseen circumstances that mandate change may arise. Itinerary changes are made to improve the tour and your experience. If you are currently booked on a Country Walkers adventure, an itinerary has been sent to you for your exact departure date. Please call Country Walkers at 800.464.9255 if you have any questions about the exact itinerary or hotels selected for any of our tours.

Guides

Daniel Catania

Born in the Argentine capital of Buenos Aires, Daniel earned his guide certification through the Mountain Guides Argentine Association. He now makes his home in the Argentinian province of Tierra del Fuego, where he pursues his love of mountaineering, skiing, and photography. As a director and instructor for the Andean Club Ushuaia, Daniel is able to share his love of the Argentine landscape. He brings this knowledge of and passion for his country to our Argentina tour!

Martin Begino

Born and raised in Buenos Aires, Martin makes his home in Ushuaia, the capital of the Argentinian province of Tierra del Fuego and claimed as the world’s southernmost city. As a guide for almost twenty years, he brings with him extensive experience and his love for nature. He is the president of the Ushuaia Mountain and Ski Club and speaks four languages. Walking with Martin through Argentina, guests gain a complete understanding of all things Argentine!

Guest Comments

E. Sims, Texas, February 2011

Argentina is a must see CW destination. It's beauty, culture, and cuisine are marvelous. CW has put together an outstanding itinerary to experience Argentina.

J. Olen, Wisconsin, February 2012

The scenery was breathtaking all along the route. And our destination, Laguna Azul, was a definite WOW!

K. Edgerton, California, February 2012

Many companies do the same tours and sometimes it is hard to find the difference. But when things goes wrong and plans have to change, that is when you see the difference between a good company and a mediocre company. They way CW handled the forced change in our itinerary was far superior to anything I have ever experienced in my 20 years of adventure travel. To know that CW will do everything in their power and walk the extra mile for their clients to make things right and even better, as in our case, that is the company to travel with.

D. Olen, Wisconsin, February 2012

It had a lot of variety in terms of hiking paths and terrains. Seeing the different water falls, and then the surprise and beauty of Laguna Azul. Being able to sit there and eat lunch and soak in the place. The weather that day was perfect for hiking, Cool, warm and mostly sunny.

J. Haas, Michigan, February 2012

It was the most spectacular and the weather was perfect. The wonderful picnic was a surprise when we were just expecting sandwiches.

M. L. Schmalz, California, February 2012

This was an extraordinary experience from beginning to end. Both Dani and Juan Carlos were superb, taking care of us and answering all of our questions. All of the internal guides were outstanding as well. The accommodations were unbelievable- especially the Yurts on Lake Toro. The hiking was beautiful, the glaciers, the gourmet boat ride was fabulous, the final nine mile hike with a gourmet buffet set up for lunch was a complete surprise and so wonderful. It was very clear that so much thought and energy went into planning this trip. That people cared about our well being, our comfort, that Dani and Juan Carlos wanted to share the beauty and the love that they had for the region, and that made us feel so comfortable . I don't know how Country Walkers manages to do these wonderful trips time after time. This was our first VIP trip and we travelled with people who had been on 17 trips, on 22 trips...and we all agreed that none of us had ever had a "bad" experience. We came home and immediately started planning our next trip with Country Walkers. Who does that before they have even unpack their bags?

G. Haas, Michigan, February 2012

Patagonia was a place I have wanted to experience for more than 10 years. The trip CW put together was just amazing! Because the weather is always questionable, being in the parks for for about 3 days each allows some chance of good weather. However we were so lucky to hit great days though the entire trip. Our guides were outstanding as were the all the arrangements: vans, lodging, and incredible food and wine. Also when you didn't think it couldn't get better it did-—a special tea house in El Calefate, a goucho singer, an ice bar, a six course dinner on a yacht on a glacier lake, an unexpected lunch at the base of Mt. Fitzroy, and just a special group of fellow travelers we had never met and enjoyed so much. Last, but not least, the scenery was so dramatic! Wow!

D. Hood, Colorado, February 2012

Both of them were incredible and made a good pair. The end-of-the-trip slideshow that we all got was fabulous and was a tremendous amount of work on their part. I can't believe how hard they both worked—when did they sleep? Patient, funny, gracious and always accommodating.

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