Argentina Print E-mail

Just wait till you get to Argentina. Arriving in Buenos Aires is like jumping aboard a moving train. Outside the taxi window, a blurred mosaic of drab apartment blocks and haphazard architecture whizzes by as you shoot along the freeway toward the center of town. The driver – probably driving way too fast while chain-smoking and talking incessantly about government corruption – finally merges off the freeway. Then the real city appears, the cafés, the purple jacaranda flowers draped over the sidewalks, stylish porteños (residents of Buenos Aires) walking purposefully past the newspaper stands and candy kiosks and handsome early-20th-century stone facades.

Get people free-associating on the word ‘Argentina,’ and it’s quickly apparent why the country has long held travelers in awe: tango, Patagonia, beef, soccer, Tierra del Fuego, passion, Mendoza wine country. Get them riffing a bit more on the subject, and their wanderlust will be inflamed: from the soul-stirring Parque Nacional Iquazu in the country's subtropical north, to the thunderous, crackling advance of the Perito Moreno Glacier in the south, Argentina's natural attractions are the stuff travelers' dreams are made of.

The country beholds some of the Andes’ highest peaks, several of which top 6000m near Mentoza and San Juan. It’s home to wetlands that rival Brazil’s famous Pantanal, massive ice fields in Patagonia, a vast, sweltering, thorn-riddled wilderness known as the Impenetrable, cool lichen-clad Valdivian forests, glacial lakes, deserts, Andean salt flats, a spectacular Lake district, penguins, flamingos, caimans, capybaras and more.

But Argentina’s cosmopolitan and natural marvels are only part of the equation. Visitors will also experience a country at a crossroads – an Argentina emerging from its worst economic crisis ever with a renewed, forward-looking sense of self. Cristina Kirchner, the country’s first elected female president, took office in 2007, following in the footsteps of her husband, Nestor Kirchner, who enjoyed higher approval ratings than any other president in recent years. There’s a palpable optimism in the air. Yet there’s also a real sense of urgency, one that’s fueled by skepticism, by daily reminders of government corruption and by signs that economic recovery has been far from universal. No one wants to make a wrong turn.

Travelers who dig beneath the tourist-office version of Argentina will find a cultural climate electrified by discussion, argument and creative fervor. Argentina is in the throes of reinvention, and many people have a lot at stake. More than ever, Argentines have a lot to argue about. Spend any amount of time here, and you’ll find yourself wrapped up in the discussion too, hopefully with a couple of locals. Argentines are, after all, some of the most amicable, seductive, engaging folks on the planet.



"Fast Book" your Villa

dateinput  Arrival
dateinput  Departure

Search by country

Last Minute Deals

Visit SigmaWeb!