San Carlos de Bariloche is the most touristic city of the province of Río Negro, 1.719 Kms far from Buenos Aires, with an international airport like Viedma, its capital.
In Río Negro, the warm and transparent sea, the valleys with different shades of green, the steppe and the cave paintings live together with adventure tourism in mounts and meltwaters. The diverse native fauna gives place to activities like hunting, fishing, bird watching, diving and gastronomy. As part of the Patagonia, it features excellent weather and geographic conditions for mountain activities and paragliding. In the suburbs of the city of San Carlos de Bariloche, we find the ski center Catedral one of the most important centers in the southern hemisphere and permanent venue for Ski and Snowboard Tournaments for both professionals and amateurs. Nautical sports become popular in summer while the lake banks attract tourists with the first strong sunshine. Golf also has formidable courses for its practice. Besides, this province hosts important valleys devoted to the production of fruits and vineyards and cities with many cultural options that are worth to be known.
More to see
Enjoy the adventure With it's countless fun-filled activities, it's easy to understand why Bariloche was crowned the national capital of adventure tourism. Enjoy all the adventure in the great outdoors, just the way you like it. The greatest challenge is deciding what to do first!
Scuba Diving: Discover Deep Bariloche Bariloche offers adventure in the sky, on the ground and also underwater! We invite you to explore a new world, hidden in the clear depths of underwater Pagatonia. You'll see the most spectacular colors and shapes of an entire natural universe in the clearest water you could ever imagine.
Water temperature varies depending on the season and the size of the lake. In late summer, for example, the temperature of the Nahuel Huapi Lake is between 13° and 14° Celsius. Between November and May, you should dive wearing a wetsuit: the suggested thickness is 6 millimeters in two pieces, plus boots and hood. This kind of suit lets water in, which is easily heated by body temperature. As water stays inside the suit, temperature remains unchanged.
For the rest of the year, it is convenient to wear a drysuit, always with a buoyancy compensator, a compressed air cylinder, flippers, mask and weight belt.
Instructors and dive masters (guides) are authorized by the Administration of National Parks and by the Argentine Coast Guard. They also have insurance. They work under the safety rules and procedural standards of the PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) and OLAS (Latin American Organization of Undersea Activities).
Climbing: As High as Your Dreams Take You Climbing is practiced on very steep cliffs and requires not only physical strength but mental endurance is also crucial.
During the climb you'll reach considerable heights. To ensure maximum safety, we recommend that you go with a specialized professional guide. We also suggest that you do not climb by yourself and that you use the appropriate gear (waist harness, carabiners, helmet and climbing shoes.)
Mount Catedral - Frey Lodge The climbing area of Mount Catedral is one of the largest on the continent. Surrounded by magnificent landscapes, the red-granite spires, with cracks, plates and holes, make the mount's granite towers a natural paradise for climbers from all over the world. The site is at 3-4 hour walk from the base of the mountain.
Sport Climbing on Mount Ventana
Located 10 kilometers (6 miles) from Bariloche, it offers a stunning view of Gutiérrez Lake and Mount Catedral.
Ice Climbing on Mount Tronador This is the most attractive mountain to climb. The route begins with a walk up to the Otto Meiling Lodge, where you can spend the night and have a delightful candlelight dinner surrounded by the stunning glacier and mountains. At dawn, the group resumes the tour to reach the summit by midmorning.
Kayaking Tours: How far are you willing to go? If you're looking to spend a great day with the family, Kayak tours are ideal. Everyone can take part, regardless of their age. There are half-day and full-day guided tours, as well as tours of two or more days. The tours are available all year-round. Explore the shores, majestic scenery, the bay’s unique flora and fauna and with the backdrop of the snow peaked Andes. Single and double kayaks have dry compartments so that you can carry equipment and food. Kayaks are extremely stable, so the inexperienced and people with disabilities can enjoy this wonderful adventure. There is some safety training Before setting off. Water-proof jackets, mittens (if the weather requires them), life jackets and flaps are all provided for so you only need to bring a pair of sandals or shoes that you don't mind getting wet.
Accompanied by a specialized guide, you will explore a range of lakes: Nahuel Huapi, Moreno, Gutiérrez, Mascardi, Los Moscos, Hess, Fonk, Roca, Guillelmo and Steffen, among others. The tours include transportation, meals, gear and bilingual guides in all tours, in addition to tents and kitchenware. If the trip is for more than one day, kayakists need only bring their own sleeping bag and insulating mat.
River Kayak and Duckies Bariloche and its surroundings offer a great variety of lakes and rivers that are ideal to practice kayaking. The lakes and rivers range in difficulty, from calm waters to the most challenging rapids (class 5), so that beginners can take it slowly and progress gradually. Since no special skill is required, kayaking is a great sport for both kids and adults. Although, it’s necessary to master some basic techniques to begin with so it’s best to start slowly (in calm waters) and progress in accordance with your own learning curve. Once you have mastered these basic skills, the possibilities are limitless, both for going down rivers and for slalom and rodeo or freestyle techniques. Sailing in duckies or inflatable kayaks is the most rapidly growing water activity in the last few years. These are extremely stable, easy-to-manage boats. There are guided tours in the Manso and Limay rivers.
Biking: Challenge the Mountains The Nahuel Huapi National Park has a rich and varied geography which makes it the ideal scene for mountain-biking.
You can bike to magnificent viewpoints, get some exercise and even take on the mountain challenge with it's steep slopes. With so many itineraries to choose from, the best choice is to talk with operators who will give you the necessary advice and provide specialized guides to put together the ideal tour in keeping with your expectations.
The tours may be guided by expert riders with knowledge of the terrain. The most popular place to practice this sport is Mount Catedral Bike Park. Other alternatives are the trail from the base of the mountain to Gutiérrez Lake (especially designed for practicing descents) and the different paths across the woods and the steppe. Bariloche is also internationally known as host and organizer of high level competition events, such as the Open Shimano Descent Championship held in 2014 and 2015 on Mount Catedral. Just as the mountain is the meeting point for skiers during the winter, in the summer the Bike Park opens its doors to adventure so that bikers from all over the world can enjoy a wide variety of circuits with varying difficulty levels appropriate for all. Bariloche’s Main Mountain Biking Circuits:
GUTIÉRREZ LAKE From Villa Los Coihues, you may start a tour through different trails to Cascada de los Duendes, and from there to Virgen de las Nieves. It is a low-difficulty tour that takes approximately three hours.
The journey starts at Gutiérrez Lake, and goes through some local paths until reaching a post of the National Park Administration, and then dives into the woods until it reaches Cascada de los Duendes. You may return following the Gutiérrez creek through an internal trail that leads to the area of Virgen de las Nieves, through beautiful coihue and cypress woods.
COLONIA SUIZA Riding to this small village of old settlers from the center of the city and back may take a full day. Colonia Suiza is a small village with a rich history, which still preserves the typical houses of the old European immigrants who settled in the area in the 19th century. The curanto is one of the most famous attractions. It is cooked in a hole in the ground where hot stones and nalca leaves give it an autochthonous and indescribable flavor. Another important attraction is the crafts fair, organized on every Wednesday and Sunday.
VICTORIA ISLAND Another alternative is to get to Puerto Pañuelo - Pañuelo Port, across from the Llao Llao Hotel, and take the catamaran to the island. When you get to Puerto Anchorena, all bikes get off and start riding through exotic woods, to enter the gigantic native woodland along the Northeast coast. At the end of the journey awaits the spotless shores of Piedras Blancas, where you can enjoy a well-earned break. It is an 8-kilometer ride, with some ups ad downs which will lead you to discover the local flora and fauna, in addition to the history of the place, told by houses that date back to the previous century. Victoria Island is striking because of its scenery, its rich flora and peculiar fauna. During the journey, you may even come across some red deer.
ÑIRIHUAU Going from Bariloche to the airport, across the Ñirihuau valley, the steppe offers a different scenery to bikers. Then, you may return through Arroyo del Medio to Avenida de Circunvalación, going through a condor refuge in Las Buitreras. The recommended season for this mid to low-difficulty tour is October-May.
LOWER MANSO RIVER This 20-kilometer ride across the valley follows the lower Manso river. There, you can see the history of colonization, since the descendants of the first settlers still take to their customs and inhabit the national park. You may stop at these settlements to exchange experiences and nurture on the histories of the locals. At the end of the tour, there is a hanging bridge that leads you to a shore on Manso River.
DOUBLE LAKE CROSSING This tour can be made by boat and by bike from Bariloche to Pertrohué, round trip, through the Pérez Rosales Andes crossing. There are also adventure tours in Pertrohué and optional biking up the Osorno vulcano for experienced bikers.
SIETE LAGOS TOUR Tour from Bariloche to San Martin de los Andes. In addition to that, Bariloche offers two important Bike Parks: one in Mount Catedral (Woodpark) and a second one in Villa Lago Gutiérrez (Goriland), where you can learn and practice freeride and slopestyle, two novel fun alternatives growing rapidly around the globe. There are also mountain biking initiation clinics.
MOUNT OTTO From the top of Mount Otto, 1400 MSL there is a trail across a lenga (White Oak) woods that leads to Piedra de Habsburgo. The return to the summit is along the same trail.
MOUNT CATEDRAL The Mount Catedral Bike Park has circuits expressly developed for both beginners and expert riders to experience the full adventure of mountain biking in the spectacular scenery of the Nahuel Huapi National Park. Located at the heart of the Andes, it has trails through the woods, downhill slopes for different technical levels and a 4X (Four Cross) circuit, considered among the best in the country.
Stand Up Paddling: Balance and skills over water
Stand-Up Paddling (SUP) is a way of sliding where the paddlers uses a row to move forward in the water, while standing on a surf board. This sport, originally invented in Hawaii, is gaining more and more fans. Bariloche, with its large number of water bodies, is ideal to practice it.
The calm and crystal waters of Bariloche's lakes offer a wide array of possibilities: from beginners' classes and guided tours to yoga classes on the boards.
Stand-Up Paddling specialized operators provide all the technical and safety gear to enjoy a fascinating experience with nothing to worry about.
The Nahuel Huapi, Moreno and Gutiérrez lakes are the perfect framework to practice this discipline. You may do it all year round, and it is recommended for the family or groups of friends because of its ease and speed of learning.
Hiking: One path, a thousand views
You can hike along numerous trails in Bariloche. It doesn't require any previous experience when accompanied by a mountain guide but it does require physical fitness and a willingness to cope with any unexpected hurdles that may come up during the expedition.
The duration of the hike can last one day but there are also shorter trails that are more suitable for families with young children.
Before setting off it is essential that you obtain accurate information on the condition of the trails and the varrying difficulty levels. If the tour is within the Nahuel Huapi National Park, the trekking tour needs to be registered in advance.
MOUNT LLAO LLAO AND VILLA TACUL A beautiful hike through the woods with incredible scenery from Mount Llao Llao's viewpoint. From there, you can continue to Villa Tacul and enjoy its beaches, ideal for diving and spending a beautiful afternoon.
LÓPEZ BAY A simple and pleasant hike, ideal for those new to trekking. The most outstanding are the spectacular views of Brazo de la Tristeza, López Bay and the East slope of Mount Capilla.
ESCONDIDO LAKE A beautiful tour consisting of two trails that can be combined: Escondido Lake and Romano Bridge. During the first hike, you will cross right through the Coihues Woods with its characteristic formations of natural tunnels. You will reach the lake which is known for it's warm water in the summer. You can then continue on to Troncos Bay, where there's an incredible view of Mount López, Mount Capilla, Mount Bahía López and the origin of Brazo Tristeza.
Also, the Romano Bridge offers a nice short walk leading to an old stone bridge built by the National Parks Administration back in 1937.
FOUR LODGE TOUR The Andean hike tour which visits the Frey, Jakob, Laguna Negra and López lodges. A trail for the adventurous among us who want a physically and technically demanding experience. Hikers spend the night at the lodges, that serve dinner and breakfast. The hiking tour may be taken in full or in parts.
DOUBLE ANDES CROSSING A tour that covers the history and culture of an entire community. South of Mount Tronador, you can visit the legendary Vuriloche Crossing, tracing the steps of the Jesuits along their mythical route, once used to reach the Nahuel Huapi lake. During the tour you can visit self-sustainable villages, as well as hot springs and sites reserved only to a handful of visitors.
Once you've crossed over to Chile, you will arrive at a picturesque village called Cochamó. Coming back along the Andes to El León crossing you will reach the Manso River,it has so many rapids and falls that its name seems inaccurate ("Manso" means "placid" in Spanish.)
HUELLA ANDINA The Huella Andina project is the first long trail in Argentina and was started in 2010 as a joint initiative by the Federal Ministry of Tourism (MINTUR) and the Directorate of Offer Development.
Huella Andina's main trail varies between low to medium in difficulty and covers approximately 540 km (335 miles) from Villa Pehuenia, in the Province of Neuquén, to Baguilt Lake in Trevelin, Chubut Province. It passes through the outskirts of different towns and villages, including Junín de los Andes, San Martín de los Andes, Villa La Angostura, San Carlos de Bariloche, El Bolsón, Lago Puelo, Cholila and Esquel. It also tours the Lanín, Nahuel Huapi, Arrayanes, Lago Puelo and Los Alerces national parks, in addition to certain provincial reserves and public and private land.
It runs in parallel with the biological corridor of the North-Patagonian Andean Biosphere Reserve.
Ancient European flavors are nowadays the obliged ingredients of local cuisine.
Patagonia was the land chosen by many European immigrants that arrived to Argentina at the beginnings of the 20th century. Germans, Swiss and Austrians left their marks in the flavors of the local cuisine and their traditional dishes can still be tasted at the main tourist destinations in the region. Such traditions can be found in artisanal beer elaboration techniques at San Carlos de Bariloche; in smoked sausages, fish, meats and other spices like salt and pepper (smoke and wood intensify flavors and grant a rustic touch to the meals). Besides, at the little village called Colonia Suiza, at a few miles from Bariloche, the traditional curanto is prepared in the open. This particular experience, that takes place Wednesdays and Sundays, consists in digging a hole in the soil where they put vegetables, meat, fish and cold-cuts, each layer of ingredients being covered with Chilean Rhubarb leaves, then soil and wet clothes, creating a great pan. Chocolate, on the other hand, is the sweet product that characterizes the region, ideal to attack the low temperatures of cold and long winters. It is also one of the most typical travel souvenirs. San Carlos de Bariloche has an endless number of chocolate houses that elaborate their products in an artisanal way, combining them with exquisite fine and dried fruits.
The region has excellent restaurants, smoke products facilities and beer houses that comprise the most important gastronomic offer in Patagonia and which gather the most prestigious chefs in Argentina.
Bariloche´s intense nightlife
Among forests, mountains and the imposing Nahuel Huapi Lake, a city that beats at the rhythm of the country’s big cities.
When the night falls on the lake, the most prestigious restaurants at Bustillo Avenue turn their lights son. A good glass of wine and an entry of smoked cheese are excellent companions for the stories of an intense day. At the city’s downtown, the stars are craft beers and delicious chocolates. Music starts with proposals for all tastes: discos open until dawn, beerhouses and Irish pubs. At the Casino, gambling is accompanied with live music. Because in Bariloche, the largest city in the lakes region of the Andean Patagonia, daytime fun continues in the evening.
How to get to Bariloche From anywhere in Argentina. Bariloche is located in Argentina, in the Southwest of the province of Río Negro, at the foot of the Andes. You can reach Bariloche by airplane, car, bus or train.
San Carlos de Bariloche is an International Airport that is fully-equipped for every type of airplane. Aerolíneas Argentinas, LAN, Andes and LADE fly to Bariloche from Buenos Aires, Córdoba, Rosario, Mar del Plata, Viedma and Calafate. International flights also touchdown in the airport during the winter months.
Language Spanish is the official language of the Argentine Republic.
Currency The legal tender of course is the Argentine Peso.
Electricity The current in Argentina is 220-240v
Visas To enter Argentina a passport is required and it must be valid for the duration of the stay (for touristic stays of up to 90 days). A visa for Argentina is not required by: Estados Unidos, Alemania, Andorra, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Barbados, Bélgica, Bolivia, Brasil, Bulgaria, Canadá, Colombia, República de Corea, Costa Rica, Croacia, Chile, Chipre, República Checa, Dinamarca, Ecuador, El Salvador, República Eslovaca, Eslovenia, España, Estonia, Finlandia, Francia, Grecia, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungría, Irlanda, Islandia, Israel, Italia, Kazakhstan, Japón, Letonia, Liechtenstein, Lituania, Luxemburgo, Macedonia, Malta, México, Mónaco, Montenegro, Nicaragua, Noruega, Nueva Zelandia, Países Bajos, Panamá, Paraguay, Perú, Polonia, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Reino Unido de Gran Bretaña e Irlanda del Norte, Rumania, Federación rusa, San Cristobal y Nieves, San Marino, Santa Lucía, Santa Sede, San Vicente y las Granadinas, Serbia, Singapur, Sudáfrica, Suecia, Suiza, Suriname, Tailandia, República de Trinidad y Tobago, Turquía, Ucrania y Uruguay.
Mobile Argentina has domestic and international calls, sending and receiving fax and Internet access in times of 08: 00hs to 24: 00hs every day. Public telephones work with legal tender coins or $ 0.05; $ 0.10; $ 0.25, $ 0.50 and $ 1,- both nickel and bronze. It is also possible to use Cellular telephony providers such as Claro, Personal and Movistar.
Wifi In some places (airports, hotels, hostels, bars and restaurants) you'd probably find free wi-fi.
Ministerio de Turismo de Rio Negro: www.rionegrotur.gob.ar