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Best Places to Visit in Argentina

David Pettitt

This vast and beautiful country stretches for hundreds of miles all the way to the tip of the South American continent. From sophisticated Buenos Aires to the expansive wilderness of Patagonia, the wildlife of the Valdez Peninsula to the mighty Iguazu Falls, Argentina tells a tale of riches and ruin, of community and isolation, of the heat of the tango and the ice of ancient glaciers. With so much to see and do, here are six of the top places in Argentina to visit.

 Perito Moreno glacier, Parque Nacional Los Glaciares, Patagonia, Argentina

Perito Moreno Glacier

The Perito Moreno glacier is, without doubt, one of Argentina’s, and the continent’s, most astonishing sights. Located within the Parque Nacional Los Glaciares alongside twelve other major glaciers, Perito Moreno is mammoth – a transparent-blue wall of ice spanning five kilometers at its widest point. Creaking and cracking as it makes its slow advance to Lake Argentino, watch as huge chunks of ice shear off the glacier-face and plummet to the waters below.

 

Magellan penguins of Puerto Madryn and the Valdes Peninsula, Patagonian Atlantic coast, Argentina

Puerto Madryn and the Valdes Peninsula

With a dramatic setting on Patagonia’s wild Atlantic coast, Puerto Madryn and the neighbouring Valdes Peninsula is the place to see an extraordinary array of wildlife. The marine life here, in particular, is exceptional. There are vast sea lion and elephant seal colonies and numbers of Magellan penguins can reach close to 100,000 in season. The Valdes Peninsula is also one of the best places to watch the migration of the southern right whale and, if lucky, killer whale.

 

Multi-coloured houses on vibrant Caminto Street, in La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires

Flamboyant and cultured, Buenos Aires is a cosmopolitan city that combines European charm with Latin American character. With its wide tree-lined boulevards, well-attended parks, first-class museums and galleries, excellent restaurants and outdoor tango, Buenos Aires is definitely a location to linger. Shop for antiques and people watch in San Telmo, marvel at the stately baroque architecture of Plaza de Mayo or head to vibrant and colourful La Boca.

 

The huge waterfalls, noise and spray of the Iguazu Falls on the Argentina-Brazil border

Iguazu Falls

Straddling the Argentina-Brazil border, the falls at Iguazu are one of the natural wonders of the world. Four times wider than Niagara, the scale is astonishing – there are well over a hundred separate falls plunging close to 100 meters to the river below resulting in a tower of spray and a thunderous noise. On the Argentinean side, it is also possible to get very close to some of the falls. UNESCO protected, Iguazu is a short two-hour flight from Buenos Aires.

 

Victoria Island on Lake Nahuel Huapi which is in Nahuel Huapi National Park close to Bariloche, Argentina

Bariloche and Nahuel Huapi National Park

Sitting in the heart of Argentina’s Lake District within Nahuel Huapi National Park, Bariloche is the perfect base from which to explore the region. Home to some of the most dramatic scenery in the country, this is a region of placid lakes, craggy snow-capped mountains, rivers, forest and glaciers. The bird-watching is excellent – especially for waterfowl – and the hiking equally good. Nahuel Huapi borders Chile and is the oldest national park in Argentina.

 

Remote lighthouse at the southernmost tip of the South American continent, Tierra del Fuego National Park, Ushuaia, Argentina

Tierra del Fuego National Park and Ushuaia

An alternative for some where to go in Argentina, Tierra del Fuego is the continent’s southernmost point and Ushuaia the world’s most southerly town. This region is a wilderness of rugged rocks and snow-capped mountains set within a dramatic windswept coastline. Ushuaia is the staging point for expeditions to Antarctica and has a wonderful location on the Beagle Channel. There is also a wide diversity of animal and birdlife including Andean condor and penguin.

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