Luxury Travel to Argentinian Patagonia
Luxury Travel to Argentinian Patagonia
The setting of one of the most beautiful places on earth, Patagonia, known for its scenic Andes mountains, massive glaciers and fierce winds. Famous for its Patagonian wools, excellent artisanal Patagonian chocolates and the latest by-word in exotic interior décor- petrified Patagonian wood. One of the most sparsely populated regions in the world; the breathtaking landscape of Patagonia, its exciting remoteness( Ushuaia, part of Argentinian Patagonia, is famously known as the southernmost tip of the world), and the adventurers, pirates (ref. Dread Pirate Roberts of the Princess Bride) and outlaws, all of whom have made their way to Patagonia and in turn, contributed to the legend that is Patagonia today. Landing at the Carlos Ott-designed Calafate airport is an instruction in Patagonian architecture- soaring ceilings with vertical cuts on the glass ceilings allowing ever-changing Patagonian light through, walls of rough hewn stones and an asymmetrical building structure, with doors and walls built slightly askew, referencing vernacular sheep farm buildings. Design hotels in Argentina have facilitated Patagonian both the Patagonian style of architecture as well as native Patagonian materials- Patagonian wool in the standing lamps and rugs, petrified wood for the chairs and coffee tables and art by local Patagonian artists gracing the common areas of the hotel. The Design Suites group has a strong presence in Argentinian Patagonia. All of its hotel properties in this area(Ushuaia, Calafate, Bariloche), share a similar theme in the materials used, architectural styles and a patronage of Patagonian artists. Patagonia is essentially divided into the Argentinian and Chilean ends and Argentinian Patagonia is in turn, divided into the towns of Bariloche, El Calafate and Ushuaia( your assigned Urbane Nomad travel designer will instruct you as to the ways of pronouncing these names with porteño flair).
The least southern of Argentinian Patagonia, Bariloche is the destination to hi if you fancy skiing in Patagonia. The town itself is an introduction to Patagonian architecture. Paragliding, rafting and golf are available the rest of the year.
An architecturally-distinguished airport and some of the most stylish hotels in Patagonia acts as a gateway to this sparsely populated town. With a compact city centre around which all life seems to revolve. Do not be surprised to find restaurants serving cuisine of international standards in this tiny town, though, with lovers of seafood and parilla, especially being in for a treat. Centred around the main square where youths congregate, do not be surprised to find yourself being offered to share a mate by a complete stranger. The Argentinian love for all things sweet is reflected in the selection of stores in he city centre- with a disproportionate number of stores dedicated to Patagonian artisanal chocolates, ice cream and the Argentinian favourite dulce con leche. If you’re not too tired out by ice trekking in the day, the night market catered for tourists in the city centre is a worthwhile visit. Aside from produce incorporating Patagonian wool and Argentinian leather, yo’d also find artists selling whimsical wood carvings of fairies, gnomes, witches and other denizens of the other world.
The majesty of Patagonia dawns upon you as the plane lands on the dirt strip of Ushuaia airport; the crisp fresh air of Ushuaia being a welcome change after the relative humidity of Buenos Aires. As you stand around waiting for your luggage, your eyes still fixated on the scenery outside, you’d already decided you’d love Patagonia. Officially the southernmost part of the world, this city seems almost an antithesis of Buenos Aires. A quaint small town where everybody is pleasant and seems to know each other, where life is almost pastoral with kids playing on their makeshift garage bands in their literal garages after school and where, after a trip to Tierra del Fuego, you’d entertained the though of retiring in at least once. A ride on the ‘Train to the End of the World’ may be touristy(complete with a prisoner’s uniform that is for sale in the tourist store) but the visuals accompanying it- the mist emitted from the steam train, horses drinking off clear streams and splendid waterfalls is enough to reinforce your belief that you’d somehow landed on a version of heaven on earth. Couple this trip with an activity within Tierra del Fuego- horseriding, rafting or trekking being popular options. Get the one-way train ticket into Tierra del Fuego National Park and ironically ponder the fate of the prisoners as the drivers who were supposed to transport you to the auxiliary activity turn up an hour late and you have nobody but wild horses and the occasional tourist bus to keep you company.