Bursting at the seams with excitement, the best places to visit in Argentina are like scenes from a vivid dream.
Imagine dancing the tango in vibrant Buenos Aires or sipping fine Malbec in sun-drenched Mendoza. This guide is your ticket to 10 unforgettable destinations across Argentina.
Ready to pack your bags?
1. Buenos Aires
As the capital city of Argentina, Buenos Aires, affectionately known as the Paris of South America, is a bustling metropolis teeming with life. The city is renowned for its passionate tango shows, vivacious nightlife, and historic districts such as San Telmo.
A stroll down the cobblestone streets of San Telmo, filled with antique shops and street performers, is like stepping back in time. Its weekly Sunday market is an event you wouldn’t want to miss. At the heart of Buenos Aires stands the iconic Obelisco, a monument that commemorates the founding of the city.
Food enthusiasts will be thrilled with the gastronomic delights Buenos Aires has to offer. Traditional foods such as asado (barbecued meat) and empanadas (stuffed pastries) are not only staples but form an integral part of Argentine identity.
Pro Travel Tip: Master a few basic Spanish phrases to navigate the city with ease. Buenos Aires locals appreciate any attempt to speak their language.
2. Iguazu Falls
Straddling the border between Argentina and Brazil, the Iguazu Falls are a spectacle to behold. Consisting of 275 individual drops, they surpass the size of Niagara Falls, providing a breathtaking panorama that will leave you in awe.
The Garganta del Diablo or Devil’s Throat, the largest of the falls, is particularly impressive. A U-shaped cliff of 82 meters in height, 150 meters in width, and a 700-meter length, it stands as the highlight of the park, offering visitors an up-close experience with the falls’ thunderous power.
For those with a love for adventure, various boat tours take you right under the cascading water, while nature lovers will appreciate the diverse wildlife inhabiting the surrounding subtropical rainforest.
Pro Travel Tip: Visit the falls from both the Argentine and Brazilian sides to get different perspectives. The Argentine side offers a more intimate experience, while the Brazilian side offers panoramic views.
Nestled at the southernmost tip of South America, Ushuaia holds the title of the world’s southernmost city. Known as ‘The End of the World,’ this unique city offers a variety of attractions for the intrepid traveler.
Foremost among these is the awe-inspiring Tierra del Fuego National Park. This nature lover’s paradise features dramatic landscapes, from windswept plains and craggy mountains to serene lakes and dense forests. Boat cruises along the Beagle Channel provide breathtaking views of the rugged coastline and, if you’re lucky, you might even spot colonies of sea lions and clusters of penguins.
Another notable feature of Ushuaia is its status as the gateway to Antarctica, with numerous cruises departing from its port.
Pro Travel Tip: The weather here can be unpredictable. Make sure to dress in layers, even in summer.
Bariloche, officially San Carlos de Bariloche, is a city nestled within the Andean foothills. Known for its Swiss-style architecture and delicious chocolates, it’s a prominent stop in Argentina’s Lakes District.
The iconic Llao Llao Hotel and the Circuito Chico offer spectacular views of the nearby Nahuel Huapi Lake and the surrounding mountains. The panoramas here are simply astounding, with azure waters meeting snow-capped peaks.
The city is also a hub for outdoor enthusiasts. Whether it’s hiking through the verdant forests in summer, fishing in the crystal-clear lakes, or skiing down the powdery slopes in winter, Bariloche promises adventures galore.
Pro Travel Tip: Don’t forget to try the local chocolates. Rapa Nui and Mamuschka are two of the most famous chocolate shops in town.
Welcome to Argentina’s wine country! Mendoza is synonymous with Malbec wine. Sitting in the rain shadow of the Andes, the region enjoys plenty of sunshine, making it perfect for vineyards.
Visitors can tour numerous vineyards, both large and small, tasting the rich, fruity Malbecs that Mendoza is celebrated for. Combine this with the local cuisine – a mouthwatering blend of indigenous and Mediterranean influences – and you have a food and wine lover’s dream destination.
But Mendoza isn’t just about wine. The surrounding Andean landscapes provide opportunities for adventure sports such as white-water rafting and horse riding.
Pro Travel Tip: Consider hiring a driver or joining a tour for your vineyard visits. It’s a safer and more relaxed way to enjoy the wine tastings.
6. El Calafate
Situated in the Patagonian steppe, El Calafate is your ticket to some of the world’s most stunning icescapes. The city serves as the gateway to the Los Glaciares National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Inside the park, you’ll encounter the remarkable Perito Moreno Glacier. This colossal ice formation spans over 250 square kilometers, and its sheer scale is enough to make anyone feel humble. Boat tours offer the chance to see this icy giant up close, and for the more adventurous, ice trekking expeditions are available.
Pro Travel Tip: For an extra memorable experience, visit the glacier at different times of the day. The changing light conditions make for dramatic variations in color.
If colonial charm and Andean heritage intrigue you, look no further than Salta. This northwestern city is known for its well-preserved colonial architecture, rich history, and lively folk music scene.
Stroll through the cobbled streets, visit the city’s fascinating museums, and marvel at the grandeur of the cathedrals. The MAAM (Museum of High Altitude Archaeology), which houses Incan child mummies, is a must-visit for history buffs.
An unforgettable experience is the ‘Train to the Clouds,’ one of the highest railways in the world, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding Andean landscapes.
Pro Travel Tip: Try some local dishes while you’re here. Tamales, humitas, and locro are traditional foods that will leave you wanting more.
Located at the geographical heart of Argentina, Cordoba is the country’s second-largest city and boasts a lively student population. This vibrant city has a rich history, with a number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites such as the Jesuit Block and Estancias of Córdoba.
The city’s fascinating mix of old and new can be seen in its architecture, ranging from historic Jesuit structures to modern shopping malls. Nearby sierras offer excellent opportunities for hiking and horseback riding.
Also, Cordoba is famous for the Cosquin Folk Festival, a popular music event showcasing the country’s folk traditions.
Pro Travel Tip: Visit during the festival season (January) to see the city at its most lively.
9. Mar del Plata
Welcome to Mar del Plata, Argentina’s most popular seaside resort. This bustling city attracts visitors with its beautiful beaches, energetic nightlife, and tantalizing seafood cuisine.
Whether you fancy lounging on the sandy beaches, surfing the waves, or simply strolling along the promenade, Mar del Plata has you covered. As the sun sets, the city comes alive with a vibrant nightlife scene. From beachside bars to nightclubs, there’s something for everyone.
Pro Travel Tip: Try some fresh seafood at the city’s port area, where restaurants serve dishes like fried calamari and seafood paella.
10. Puerto Madryn
Situated in Patagonia, Puerto Madryn is a city known for its rich marine wildlife. The city serves as a base to explore the Peninsula Valdes, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Peninsula Valdes is home to an astonishing array of wildlife, including whales, sea lions, and penguins. Whale-watching tours are available, offering the chance to see these magnificent creatures up close.
Pro Travel Tip: The best time for whale watching is between June and December, while January and February are perfect for observing sea lions.
From the bustling streets of Buenos Aires to the tranquil beaches of Mar del Plata, the vibrant wine country of Mendoza to the icy wonderland of El Calafate, Argentina’s diversity is truly stunning. Each of Wantigo’s top 10 places to visit in Argentina offers unique experiences, promising an unforgettable adventure.
Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a history buff, a food and wine lover, or a thrill-seeker, Argentina has something for you. So why wait? Pack your bags and set off on an adventure to explore these incredible Argentine destinations. Trust us, you won’t regret it!
Here’s to the beauty and diversity of Argentina’s landscapes and culture, and to your next great adventure. Safe travels!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best time to visit Argentina?
The ideal time to visit Argentina depends on the region you’re interested in. For Buenos Aires, spring (September to November) and fall (March to May) offer pleasant weather. Patagonia and the south are best visited during the summer months (December to March), while Mendoza’s wine harvest takes place in March.
Is Argentina safe for travelers?
Yes, Argentina is generally safe for travelers. However, like any travel destination, it is advised to remain aware of your surroundings, especially in crowded places, and keep your valuables secure. Always follow local advice and keep abreast of local news.
Do I need a visa to travel to Argentina?
For most tourists, Argentina does not require a visa for stays of up to 90 days. This applies to citizens from the United States, Canada, European Union, and several other countries. However, it’s always best to check the latest information from your local Argentine embassy or consulate before you travel.
What currency is used in Argentina?
The official currency of Argentina is the Argentine Peso (ARS). Credit and debit cards are widely accepted in cities and tourist areas. However, it’s always a good idea to have some cash on hand, particularly in smaller towns or rural areas.
Can I drink tap water in Argentina?
In major cities and tourist areas of Argentina, tap water is generally safe to drink. However, for those with sensitive stomachs, or in rural areas, bottled water is recommended. It’s always good to check with locals if you’re unsure.
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About Ronaldo Stewart
Wantigo was born out of a deep passion for exploring new places and experiencing different cultures. With a keen sense of adventure and an insatiable thirst for knowledge, I’ve traveled far and wide, immersing myself in the beauty and wonder of the world.