January 17, 2008

Trip to Argentina

Going to Argentina was an adventure. We decided to take our kids on a backpacking adventure to Patagonia. The worries were many: would the kids get too tired? Would we get transportation for the places we wanted? Would we be able to get to the south and come back in 14 days?

Well, we started off in Buenos Aires, we got to the hostel 30 minutes before New Year´s day and joined a celebration which was going on at the rooftop of the hostel. It was amazingly hot (37ºC at night) and believe it or not the water had finished so we had to have a shower using a water bottle. That night we decided to move south as soon as we could. We spent a day in Buenos Aires (BA) and took a bus to Puerto Madryn in order to see penguins and sea elephants, it was not the whale season yet. The weather in Puerto Madryn was VERY WINDY and a bit cold. The tour to see the sea animals was fantastic, we had a great time. After Puerto Madryn we decided to move more towards the south, our aim was El Calafate, but as there were no direct buses we had to go to Rio Gallegos first and then get another bus to Calafate. The town is very charming and the hostel was very good with the only disadvantage of letting people smoke in the hostel. In Calafate we got a tour to see the Perito Moreno Glacier. The view of the Glacier is one of the most beautiful things I´ve seen in my life. Here we reached the middle of our trip. From there we started going north through the famous route 40, reaching El Chaltén first. El Chaltén is the capital of trekking in Argentina. People from all over the world go there for trekking and mountain climbing. The village is located inside a National Park and is a place I´d definitely visit again. As we were tired by then we went on a short trek (3 hours) up the mountain. Going up was hard but manageable and the view makes it all worthwhile. This was a long tiring trip north towards Bariloche. We got to Bariloche at 23:00 and to our surprise they had cancelled our reservation because we hadn´t confirmed it 24 hours in advance (How could we? On a bus?). The hostels were all full and we had to stay at the only hotel they found for us and pay 4 times what we had planned. The weather in Bariloche was incredibly cold for us (6ºC) but the kids loved it. We went up Cerro Catedral (a ski station) by cable car which was a highlight for the kids and a tense moment for me (hahaaha). We stayed there for 2 days and got another bus back to Buenos Aires to get ready to come back home.

All in all, I could say I saw wonderful things I hadn´t imagined. Although we spent many hours in buses (good ones by the way) we had a chance to really see and feel the Patagonia, its extension, its nature, its beauty. The only thing I pity was the impossibility to meet my Argentinian net friends (Gladys, Nelba, Gabriella and Carla R). With such a tight schedule we ended up not meeting :( . Well, maybe another time.

This is a slideshow I´ve made with pictures we took, hope you like them.


Unknown said...

Dear Ana,

I just loved to accompany your experience. Your family photos are just great! Thanks for sharing with us.


Carla Raguseo said...

Wonderful slide show, Ana!

You vistited some of the most amazing parts of the country. :)

Thanks for posting it so soon. I really hope we can meet f2f next time.

Carla R

Maria Claudia Bellusci said...

Hola desde Argentina, Ana!
You did a lot in only 14 days! I loved the photo of the family carrying their backpacks. And I laughed at the typical Argentinian frustrations you encountered like missing a hotel booking or having to get a wash with bottled water. There's a long way to go as regards tourist services here. I'm glad you enjoyed yourselves all the same and the kids could see the snow for the first time. By the way, my two younger kids saw snow just this year for the first time when it snowed in our town, where it hadn't snowed for almost a century. Can you believe that?
Best wishes,

Anonymous said...

Fantastic photos, Ana, you and your family must have had the best time in Argentina! Isn't Perito Moreno amazing??? Hhhmmm... I think it's time to get the dust off my backpack!!! :-)

Thanks for posting the pictures,
Um beijo,
Mônica (BH)

Fabiana Bridi Santos said...

Hi Ana,

I can't believe you actually saw a glacier and penguins in the wild. They seem so distant from us!!

These are certainly memories you and your family will be able to share for the rest of your lives.



Ana Maria Menezes said...

Carla A, carla R, Claudia, Monica and Fabiana,

I´m really glad you liked the photos. I really wanted to share the beauties we have seen.

Mary H said...

Hi Ana,
Thank you so much for sharing your experiences and photos about your trip! Also, I liked following you on Twitter when you could update us. From your pictures, all I can say is it looks like you and your family have had some wonderful experiences!!


Camila Sousa said...

Hey Ana... Wowwwww....

I could follow you in your journey!! What great picts...
10xx for sharing with us. Great slide show u did!! I almost forgot u r an expert, hehe....


Michael Shade said...

What a busy and adventurous trip - the children look as though they're enjoying every minute of it!

Great pics and a great slide-show - it works really well when you do: View all slides - and it takes you to a full-screen view in slide.com.

Ana Maria Menezes said...

Mary, Camila and Michael,

Thanks for visiting the blog and it´s my pleasure to share my trip with you. :)


Danúbia Bull said...

What a wonderful journey! I got my cup of coffe and read through your post a along with the pics and it seemed I had been there as well!
what a beautiful family!

Anonymous said...

Just love this song. Can you tell me the title so I can get my hands on it! :-D


Anonymous said...

Oh I see, It is the iPod that is playing. I thought it was the slideshow. I will get the name from there then.
Cool blog. All widgeted-up! :)

Anonymous said...

Hello Ana Maria. What a wonderful trip. I´ve never seen penguins or whales. The only problem. I don´t like cold temperatures. Congrats to you and your students. Horacio.

webgina said...

WOW... love all the widgets and clips and slideshows... so much to look at I don't know where to begin! I love the fun and easy-going atmosphere of your blog!

Ana Maria Menezes said...

Dear Danubia, Horacio, Cristina and Gina,

This is one of the beauties of blogging : meeting such wonderful people. Great you´ve enjoyed the blog.


Prof. Nelba Quintana- La Plata- Argentina said...

Hi, Ana María: I am happy you enjoyed your trip to the South of Argentina, but sad to know you had some inconveniencies :-( Well, as Claudia mentions, Argentina tourism is re starting to work after some years of inactivity.
I have not been to Calafate, but everybody says it is wonderful.
I particularly love Bariloche area:lovely in summer as well as in winter.
I really felt sad we could not meet... it may be a good excuse to go to Brazil . hahaha
Congratulations on your blog!!! I love it. Great widgets ( a widget fan)
I have not seen your photos yet because I have just come back from holidays and I am trying to catch up with mailing.
All my love from Argentina.

Ana Maria Menezes said...

Dear Nelba,

It´s a pity we didn´t get to meet but yes, why not come to Brazil and pay me a visit? Thanks for dropping by and do have a look at the pictures to enjoy the beauties of your country.

anamaria :)

Aurélio Jr. said...

yes the cast is the best

an tank you so much for yor visit in my blog, i loved your blog to, but the best part is your photos from argentina.

nice blog.

Gabriela Rosso said...

Dear Ana,

Thanks for sharing your pixs. I loved them and you did so much in 14 days!! a pity we didn't meet!! may be next time we could meet!!we are starting school in a week so I'm trying to get everything organized.

hasta pronto!!

Thais said...

Hi Ana Maria.

Thanks for the coment in my blog...
I saw your slide and I think that your trip was very good and your blog is very interesting!

Thanks for tell me the site of animals..i think i will include something in my blog ...