Friday, 11 November 2016

Bariloche in 3 days

DAY 1 - Chico circuit and Bariloche town centre

After a travel day from Iguazu Falls to Bariloche, and checking in at Costas del Nahuel Hosteria in the evening, I had a good night’s rest. My room with a private bathroom was clean and cozy with pine furniture, and a window that opened to this breathtaking view of Lake Nahuel Huapi.
Room with a view of Lake Nahuel Huapi
My room rate included breakfast which was served in the hotel on-site restaurant. Here’s the breakfast table in the morning:
Breakfast at Costas del Nahuel Hosteria
There were plenty of seats in the restaurant and it was never full on the four days that I was there. The entire width of the restaurant had floor to ceiling windows that look out to the lake and the snow-capped mountains. The view was simply mesmerizing.

I booked three tours at the hotel front desk, all three tours included hotel pick up and drop off:
  1. Half-day Chico circuit on Day 1 morning
  2. Full-day Tour of Seven Lakes on Day 2
  3. Hal-day tour to Puerto Blest on Day 3 morning
The highlights of my Chico Circuit tour were the panoramic views from Mount Campanario summit, 1050 m in height. It rained a bit early in the morning then cleared up. We took the chair lift from the base of the mountain to the summit.  The air was fresh and it definitely felt like spring. Here are some pictures. Click to enlarge them.
View from Mount Campanario, Bariloche
View from Mount Campanario, Bariloche
Hotel Llao Llao, Bariloche
After the Chico Circuit tour, I was dropped off at my hotel. I decided to walk to the town centre for lunch. Bariloche is also well known for chocolates. There are many chocolate shops where staff offered free samples. There were lots of choices and some of the chocolate designs were unique. I made a mental note to return on my last day to pick up some as gifts to take home.

Chocolatier in Bariloche
Bariloche town square

DAY 2 - Tour of Seven Lakes

This full-day tour took our tour group from Bariloche to Villa La Angostura, and to the seven lakes: Lakes Espejo, Correntoso, Falkner, Villarino, Escondido, Machonico and Lacar. Villa La Angostura is a charming mountain village with lots of small shops and restaurants along the main street. Our tour bus would stop at each lake, to let us get down, view the Andean Patagonian scenery and take pictures. Here are some highlights:
Main street in Villa La Angostura
Spring flowers

Tour of seven lakes
Cows at road side
Calm water
Pretty waterfall
Lake hidden behind trees
Cows on mountainside
Interesting rock formations

DAY 3 - Puerto Blest

This morning I took the half-day tour by shuttle from Bariloche to Puerto Panuelo, then a relaxing ride by ferry boat from Puerto Panuelo to Puerto Blest. The entrance to this area of Lake Nahuel Huapi is surrounded by Mounts Capilla and Millaqueo, as well as Sentry Island. This is also one of the rainiest places in Argentina so it was no surprise that we had rain during our visit. When we got off the ferry, we walked up the wooden steps to Los Cantaros Lagoon, where there is a cascade, and Port Blest can be seen on the opposite shore.

Waterfalls near Puerto Blest
Wooden walkway
Cascade, Puerto Blest
Ferryboat in the rain, Lake Nahuel Huapi
In the afternoon, I walked into Bariloche town centre to buy a few gifts, including chocolates, before returning to my hotel and getting ready to fly home the next day.

My travel day from Bariloche to Toronto would include five airports (Bariloche, Aeroparque J. Newbery in Buenos Aires, Ezeiza International Airport in Buenos Aires, Washington Dulles and Toronto Lester Pearson International Airport). All connections were fine and I was back at home with fond memories of my trip to Argentina.

Have you been to Bariloche, Argentina? I'd love hearing from you. Please take the time to leave a comment.

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