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  • Day7

    San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina

    February 16, 2017 in Argentina ⋅ 🌬 18 °C

    Thurs, Feb 16th: Today we woke up with MUCH cooler weather. We truly got a taste of the weather in Bariloche which is always dependent on the winds and Andes Mountains - it can vary in Summer from 50s to 90s so we packed well. It was overcast with rain on and off and low 60s. We started off the morning with having medialunas (sweet croissants specific to Argentina and Chile - SO GOOD) and cafe con leche (similar to latte) at Cafe Delirante which was connected to a local sporting goods store that offered outside/walk-up seating.

    We booked a tour on Lake Nahuel Huapi that day which covered a tour of The Arrayanes Forest Park (Bosque de Arrayanes) and Victoria Island. A bus picked us up in town outside of a local hotel and then took us to the boat. This is the same boat tour that the Obamas took in March 2016 (in fact their photo was posted on the boat from their visit). While the weather was disappointing, we were not going to let it spoil our visit, so we wore warm clothes and brought our rain gear. The tour we booked described to be English speaking however this is not true - everything is in Spanish, however they made sure they had some guides that could speak English. We were fine with this - we are visiting a foreign country and didn't expect special treatment, but I must say that they were kind and checked in on us from time to time. It gave me a chance to really practice my Spanish and I was pretty proud that I could keep along. There was just one other couple on the boat that spoke English, but they were from Germany so it wasn't their primary language and they didn't know Spanish (so man I bet they were confused!).

    The Arrayanes Forest was very pretty - it was a bit disappointing because the last few years they experienced a drought so the trees color were not as brilliant as they had shown in photos we Googled before hand. However, it was still impressive. You end at a cute little cabin. The boat then took us over to Victoria Island which was much more impressive. Hisorically, this island was used for entertainment for guests for hunting and enjoying nature by a very wealthy Argentinan man - so wealthy, he imported animals to the island to hunt. Many of the trees were cut down and harvested there too, so once the government took back the island, they planted trees throughout - many of which are from North America. Huge sequoias were planted in rows to form a wall on the outside of the island to protect the native trees from the strong winds from the Andes Mts. We hiked a trail and saw some amazing views. The island is very pretty and ended up being the highlight of the day.

    When we got back into town we found the temps dropping even more - the winds were wicked cold and about 25mph and temps dropped to low 50s. We went to dinner nearby the place called Rosa Mosqueta which I swear was part of the hobbits' village in Lord of the Rings. It was adorable and had this large round door that you had to duck to get into (we actually questioned if it was the actual door...). We had more proveleta, steak, and mashed potatoes. The meal was amazing and we agreed tied with Alto El Fuego. Man, Argentina is going to ruin steak for us now in the US!
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