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  • Writer's pictureUrsula

Argentina & Uruguay 05.01.-11.2.24

From Torres del Paine, it's a long drive via Rio Galegos, Puerto San Julian and Comodoro Rivadavia to Puerto Madryn. The route is relatively unspectacular with the exception of the small Monte Leon National Park on the Atlantic coast. There we visit a penguin colony and enjoy the view of the coast from Lion Head.

After a short break in Puerto Madryn, we make our way to the Valdes Peninsula where we check into the Estancia Rincon Chico for two nights. On the huge former sheep farm, we make two excursions a day through the steppe past guanacos and nandu-like birds... the coast where the elephant seals cavort at this time of year. We are on our own and can observe the animals at close range. A very impressive experience.

We also have spectacular views of the coast from above.

The estancia also has an orphaned cute little guanaco, which is very curious and trusting and makes a wonderful photo opportunity.

Another long route via Puerto Madryn and Bahia Blanca takes us to Buenos Aires, where we move into a vacation apartment in the French-influenced Recoleta district.

We book a bus tour through the most interesting districts of Buenos Aires and stop in the government district of Montserrat...

... in the colorful but poor district of La Boca where Messi and Maradona are revered...

... and in Recoleta at the imposing flower sculpture with opening and closing petals, which was unfortunately badly damaged by the storm.

Finally, we visit the impressive cemetery of Recoleta where some famous people, including Eva Peron, have found their final resting place.

On the way to Gualeguaychú, we make a stop in touristy Tigre where we take a boat trip through the many canals of the huge Tigre Delta. We encounter many rowing boats and meet supply boats, which bring all the necessities of life to the numerous inhabitants of the islands and dispose of their waste.

We spend a night in Gualeguaychú to take part in Argentina's biggest country carnival. Three carnival groups compete with their huge, beautiful themed floats and dancers in fantastic costumes. Each group has one hour to present itself in the parade through the Corsodromo. It is a cheerful, colorful and impressive evening with loud music. We are excited to see how Rio de Janeiro will compare in February.

We spend the next three nights at the Posada Uguay in the Iberá National Park, a huge wetland area with similarities to the Brazilian Pantanal.

Our first excursion is to the Fernandez Lagoon, where we encounter the first capybaras right by the jetty.

We glide by boat through a long canal to the lagoon. On the way, we observe caimans and capybaras wallowing in the muck...

... enjoy the beautiful landscape and discover many flowers and birds.

Thomas finally has the opportunity to take part in a riding excursion.

We bid farewell to this unique place with its warm hosts and many exotic animals.

A rough dirt road, which must not be used in the rain, takes us to Posadas.

From there we continue to Puerto Iguazu where we stay at the beautiful little hotel 'Selvaje Lodge Iguazu' in the middle of the jungle. We visit the spectacular Iguazu waterfalls on the Argentinian side where you can reach the various viewing points on footbridges. Unfortunately, two platforms are closed because the access routes have been damaged by flooding. Nevertheless, we are overwhelmed by the enormous masses of water.

We take the train back to the parking lot where we also encounter a coati.

We now travel via Posadas and Concordia into the wine region of Uruguay. In Carmelo we visit the two small, friendly wineries 'El Legado' and 'Pueblo Tannat' where we enjoy Uruguayan Tannat for lunch and dinner respectively.

On the way back to the hotel we find this cute model:

In the pretty colonial town of Colonia del Sacramento, we are amazed to see large squares, avenues and, time and again, vintage cars. The food in Uruguay is much more refined than in Chile and Argentina. Everything else is also more well-kept and modern, but also a lot more expensive than in the rest of South America.

In Jose Ignacio we enjoy a few days' rest and treat ourselves to another wine tasting and lunch at the popular Bodega Garzón.

On the way to Montevideo we make a stop in Punte del Este where we take the opportunity to pose in front of the famous 'Dedos'.

In Montevideo, we stroll through the cozy old town with friends who have just arrived on the cruise ship.

We use the rest of our time in Montevideo to prepare for the journey home. Thomas takes the car to the port for shipment to Texas. And we make our way to Rio de Janeiro, followed by a cruise via the Amazon to Florida, from where we will report at the end of March.

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