Argentina

Argentina
Studded with outstanding natural wonders and endowed with one of the world’s hot-list cities, Argentina is a vast and varied land. The wine, the fishing, the tango, the mountaineering, the skiing, the literature, the beef, the architecture, the clubbing – all this will provide you one of the most exciting journeys you’ll ever take! No joke. While so many things in Argentina are exciting, some things are better defined as ‘mind blowing.’ Here are 11 of these things or 11 reasons for you to visit Argentina.

1.  Argentine Wine
It is a rare and special treat to drink a glass of wine in the same city its grape was grown.  Argentina is the fifth largest wine producing country by volume, so these opportunities abound. You can enjoy Salta's aromatic Torrontes and classic Cabernet Sauvignons in the north or a meaty Mendoza Malbec in the central region of the country. The small town of Maipú, near  Mendoza, is so packed with wineries, olive oil farms and other gourmet businesses that it’s easy to hit five or six in a day. All offer tours and most finish proceedings with at least a small sampling of their produce. 

2.  Iguazu Falls
"Poor Niagara!" These were the words Eleanor Roosevelt reportedly exclaimed when she visited Iguazu Falls for the first time. There are waterfalls and there are waterfalls. And then there’s Iguazú. A visit is a jaw-dropping, visceral experience, and the power and noise of the cascades live forever in the memory. The falls were established in 1984 as Natural World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Along with Nahuel Huapi National Park in Patagonia, Iguazu Falls is one of the most frequented tourist sites in Argentina, and for good reason. Visitors can enjoy the awe inspiring views of the falls along with tours, treks, and water sports at their base. An added benefit is the setting: the falls lie split between Brazil and Argentina in a large expanse of national park and rainforest.

3. Tango
 Go on, give it a try. So what if it’s one of the world’s most sophisticated dances. It’s so sexy, you’ll be fired up enough to make it through that long Buenos Aires night.  For a unique outdoor experience, head to the bandstand at the Barrancas de Belgrano park in Buenos Aires, where the casual milonga ‘La Glorieta’ takes place on Sunday evenings at around 8pm (free tango lessons are given earlier). Also try Club Gricel with its wonderful aging wood dance floor and Confitería Ideal, the mother of all historic tango halls.

4. Buenos Aires
 The Argentina capital is one of the world’s most exhilarating cities, with astounding art, fascinating neighbourhoods, fabulous food and a passionate population blazingly devoted to having fun all night long. Feast on steaks at Palermo's Las Cañitas or wander for hours in the Recoleta cemetery, where BA's rich and famous are buried. Bring a camera for Evita's grave.

5.  Ushuaia Winter Sports
Ushuaia is commonly regarded as the southernmost city in the world, located on the southern coast of Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego. It offers abundant opportunities to enjoy its rich culture, history, and natural beauty. Sports enthusiasts can play in the winter wonderlands of Glacier El Martial and Cerro Castor areas and go skiing, sledding, snowboarding, and more. Nature and wildlife lovers can catch a glimpse of local birds, penguins, seals, and orcas that colonize the islands in the Beagle Channel. Art lovers can take in the Biennial of Contemporary Art at the End of the World, hosted in Ushuaia since 2007.

6.  The Awesome Color and Pleasure of Salta
The city of Salta offers a wealth of experiences from the natural wonders of its geology, to delight of its local foods, to an interesting cultural and historic background.  Tourists enjoy guided tours through the Calchaquí Valley or venture out in their own rented cars to see the incredible multi-colored rock formations and the quiet adobe villages nestled with-in and built long ago. The Salta region is also known for its delicious wines and traditional fare such as humitas, locro, and empanadas.


7.  The Andes
Stretching nearly the whole length of Argentina’s western edge, this amazing mountain range offers high deserts, scenic lakes, great hiking and the continent’s highest peak, Cerro Aconcagua often called the "roof of the Americas." In the Andean northwest, the World Heritage–listed Quebrada de Humahuaca snakes its way upward toward Bolivia. It’s a harsh but vivid landscape, a dry but river-scoured canyon overlooked by mountainsides whose sedimentary strata have been eroded into spectacular scalloped formations that reveal a spectrum of colors in undulating waves.

8.  Festivals
A country that is never shy to celebrate, Argentina has many a wonderful festivals. Buenos Aires is a host to festivals all through out the year including the “The Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Film (BAFICI)”, “Fashion Buenos Aires” which celebrates fashion in a week-long event twice a year, “La Rural” the nation's two-week farm fair and gaucho festival, a gay pride parade, as well as festivals celebrating art, music, tango and more. JuJuy celebrates the “Semana de Jujuy” when the quaint city bursts to life for a week of partying to celebrate its founding. In Villa General Belgrano(near Córdoba) Oktoberfest is enjoyed in the first two weeks of October – with an enormous beer festival that celebrates German culture.

9. Glaciar Perito Moreno
 Among the Earth’s most dynamic and accessible ice fields, Glaciar Perito Moreno is the stunning centerpiece of the southern sector of Parque Nacional Los Glaciares. Locally referred to as Glaciar Moreno, it measures 30km long, 5km wide and 60m high, but what makes it exceptional in the world of ice is its constant advance – up to 2m per day, causing building-sized icebergs to calve from its face. In some ways, watching the glacier is a very sedentary park experience, but it manages to nonetheless be thrilling.

10.  The Steaks in Argentina
Beef. It’s what’s for dinner. Argentina has the world's highest consumption rate of beef, at 65 kg a year per capita. They love it and know it well. What makes Argentine steaks so tasty? Many beef producers in Argentina still use the older methods of pasture and grass feeding their cows. This is a more expensive process, but the cows are healthier and, so it is said, the beef tastier. There is a movement in Argentina towards feeding lots and grain feeding, so you better get on down to an Argentine parilla (steakhouse) while the getting is good!

11. Tierra del Fuego
Maybe it’s the austral light, or just knowing that the next step south is Antarctica. Whatever it is, this trove of mystical islands, cut off from the northern world by the Straight of Magellan, is indescribably magical. A storied past of shipwrecks, failed religious missions and indigenous extinction contributes to the powerful mystique of this end-of-the-earth location. Travellers flock here to glimpse the furthest reaches of the continent, and ah – what a view it is! The barren northern plains of Tierra del Fuego give way to peat bogs and moss-draped lenga forests that rise into ragged snowy mountains.
For getting around and seeing these marvels, you can generally rely on a well-developed infrastructure inherited from decades of domestic tourism. Argentina offers such a hallucinating variety it’s all but impossible to take in on one trip – don’t be surprised if you find yourself longing to return to explore the bits you didn’t get to see the first time around.
Highlights

- Buenos Aires, the capital of tango
- Patagonia, a region with icebergs, unique wildlife and adventures
- Puerto Iguazú, the most incredible waterfalls in the world
- Mendoza, matches the incredible taste of the region's wines with its beautiful landscapes
Geography
Argentina is the second largest country in South America and bordered by Bolivia and Paraguay in the north, and Uruguay and Brazil in the east. It is also bordered by the Atlantic, Chile and the Andes peaks. The northern area is the swampy and partly wooded Gran Chaco, bordering Bolivia and Paraguay. South of that are the rolling, fertile Pampas, which are rich in agriculture and sheep- and cattle-grazing and support most of the population. Southward is Patagonia, a region of cool, arid steppes with some wooded and fertile sections.
Language
The only official national language of Argentina is Spanish, but English, Italian, German, and French are also spoken. A few immigrants and indigenous communities have retained their original languages. The most prevalent dialect is Rioplatense, whose speakers are primarily located in the basin of the Río de la Plata.
Money
The local currency is the Argentinean Peso. 1 USD is about 39,96 Argentinean Pesos .
Climate
The north of the country is characterized by very hot, humid summers with mild drier winters, and is subject to periodic droughts. Central Argentina has hot summers with thunderstorms and cool winters. The southern regions have warm summers and cold winters with heavy snowfall, especially in mountainous zones. Higher elevations at all latitudes experience cooler conditions. The southern regions, particularly the far south, experience long periods of daylight from November to February, and extended nights from May to August.
Gastronomy
Argentines consume large amounts of beef. Another traditional food is the "empanada", a circular piece of pastry folded in two around a filling, which can be baked or fried. Italian food, like pizza and pasta are common. Also sweets, especially "dulce de leche", are popular. Dulce de leche is a dark brown fluid paste, made from milk and sugar stirred at very high temperatures. It is an essential ingredient of cakes, and shares the place of jelly and jam in breakfasts. It is also used to top desserts.
Argentina is famous for its wine, most notably the red wine from the province of Mendoza, where weather conditions are optimal.
History
The country was first explored in 1516 by Juan Díaz de Solis. From there on, Argentina developed slowly under Spanish colonial rule. Buenos Aires was settled in 1580 and on July 9, 1816, independence was formally declared. This large country has a long and interesting history and due to this history the country is what it is now: an amazing beautiful country with something to offer for everybody.
Religion
Around 93% declare themselves Roman Catholic. The country also hosts the largest Jewish population in all of Latin America, about 2 percent of the population. It is also home to one of the largest mosques in Latin America, serving Argentina's Muslim community.
Culture
Argentine culture has been primarily informed and influenced by its European roots. Buenos Aires, considered by many its cultural capital, is often said to be the most European city in South America, due both to many people of European descent and to imitation of European styles in art forms such as its architecture. The other big influence are the "gauchos" and their traditional country lifestyle of self-reliance. Finally, indigenous American traditions, like drinking mate tea, have been absorbed into the culture.
Music
The Tango is Argentina's musical symbol. Today, tango has worldwide popularity, and the rise of neo-tango is a global phenomenon. If you are in Buenos Aires you should experience dancing the Tango yourself. We can provide dancing classes which will make your true Argentinian experience come true.

European classical music is well represented in Argentina. Buenos Aires is home to the world-renowned Colón Theater. All major cities in Argentina have impressive theaters or opera houses, and provincial or city orchestras.
Wildlife
The Andean Condor is the largest carrion eating bird in the World and it is found throughout the country. Birds of prey are common in the mountains: buzzards, eagles, hawks and kestrels.
In the southern Andes, the guanaco makes an appearance, alongside the deer, Andean foxes and skunks. In the Lake district - in the Magellanic forests - the bird-life is almost oblivious to humans.
In the pampas and steppe land of Patagonia many interesting species can be seen. Waterfowl is common, and also the black-necked swans, coscoroba swans and the amusing steamer ducks. The South American version of an ostrich, the rhea, is a peculiar creature, notable because the male single-handedly incubates the eggs and cares for the young.
The Atlantic coast and archipelago of Tierra del Fuego are rich in marine life. Occasionally albatross may be seen, skuas, gulls, terns, magellanic penguins. The Valdés Peninsula has colonies of seals, sea lions, penguins and whales can be seen from the shore. The elephant seals arrive late August and start their aggressive breeding display.
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