Argentina trip report
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We have just returned from a 10 day trip to
We flew from DFW on a direct American Airlines flight to
We spent the first three nights at Bobo Hotel (54-1147740505) in Palmera Viejo in the “Pop Room”. It is on the second floor facing
Upon return to B.A. we stayed at an apartment on Laprida close to Pacheco de Melo rented in Recoleta thru ApartmentsBA. This was not a pleasant experience. Their representative met us at the apartment around . She showed us how where things were and our approximately 20 page contract that itemized every single item in the apartment (every piece of silverware, etc). We weren’t sure it was all there but felt we had no choice but to sign the paperwork. I had forgotten that I could make the deposit by pay pal so we gave her the required $600 cash deposit and the balance of our rent. Five minutes after she left, I flushed the toilet and water gushed out of the drain in the bathroom floor and flooded both the bathroom and kitchen. One of us located a squeegee and tried to push it back down but it wouldn’t go. The other tried to call the agency on the local phone. We followed the directions we were given by the representative but could not get through. Knowing that they closed at we panicked, tried emailing, and finally got through on the phone. They sent over repairmen who sucked out all of the sludge and paper that was clogging the drains. When they were finished, they used some rags to wipe up the mess but the tub where they had dumped the water was still nasty. We went out to eat and returned to the apartment later to take a shower. It did the same thing•flooding both the kitchen and bath with water, sludge and bits of toilet paper. The office was closed so we used the squeegee and our bath towels to clean-up the best that we could. We were leaving the next morning early (before the office opened) and would be gone till after they closed so I emailed them to tell them what had happened and requested 1)they try to fix it 2) they send someone to clean up the mess and 3) fresh towels to replace our badly soiled ones. No attempt was made to work on the system or clean but we did get fresh towels. We took a shower and used the toilet with no problems but when I washed dishes and emptied the water in the kitchen sink, we flooded again. This was Saturday morning, there was no one in the office and we had not activated the cell phone to call the emergency cell number so we cleaned it all up again. This was the end of our flooding but the apartment remained soiled (bits of dried paper) and neither of us felt comfortable using the tub for anything but a 2 minute shower. The agent who checked us out (he did not find anything missing and returned our full deposit) on Monday was apologetic and we hope he made an attempt to get the problem solved before the next renters arrived. As for the rest of the apartment, it was nicely furnished, clean (except for the sheets and they had hair on them) and at a great location. The internet connection was extremely poor to non-existent. I would rate the accommodations B- but the service D. I realize I have gone into extensive detail regarding this situation but want other travelers who are considering renting an apartment to be aware of the situation we encountered
We found meals to be excellent, for the most part, and very reasonable. In general, we ate at moderate restaurants and the average price for two tenderloin steaks (loma) or one steak and pasta or chicken, one appetizer, one or two desserts, and a bottle of Malbec to be less than $40 including tip. The lunch specials which included a glass of beer or wine and from two to four courses were $8-12 each. Some of our favorite restaurants were as follows:
Located in Puerto Iguazu, this restaurant features a locally caught fish that is very mild and was well-prepared. Also, great desserts.
59 (something•can’t remember the rest of the name) Located on Borges at about
Delicious breakfast for two for less than $7. Also, good fixed price lunch. Presentation seems to matter at this restaurant more than others we visited. Servers wear white wide-legged pants and flowing tops•seem quite trendy.
Deli at Felabella (Chilean department store on
This was a quick lunch stop we made while shopping and had a terrific meat and cheese tray with the best pate’ I have ever tasted. About $10 including beer.
El Palacio de la Papa Frita on Laprida
This is a huge restaurant that is very opened. Our meal was good and service was excellent but we made the mistake of eating at and we were the only ones in the restaurant for 15-20 minutes. This made us slightly uncomfortable.
We ate at several less memorable restaurants but only one really bad one. We went to Colonia one day (described below) and ate at a restaurant right on the water as you round the curve sort of across from what looks like a little park. We ordered chevito•a beefsteak sandwich with tomatoes, lettuce and eggs and it was, literally, not edible (bad taste to the meat and extremely tough--I fed mine to a crippled sheep dog and she didn’t complain). Service was very slow and two sandwiches, fries, and beer were over $40US. We didn’t complain because the waiter (who appeared to be the manager) seemed to be very proud of the meal.
The Bobo Hotel made a first-class travel reservation for us on the Buquebus catamaran (fast boat) It was for a Monday and a reservation would not have been necessary because it was empty. Also, there was no need to go first class•the only difference I could see was that tourist class had more seats in a row•and the trip is relatively expensive for even tourist class (about $60pp). They requested that we arrive an hour early to go thru security then they were 45 minutes late leaving port so it was a long morning. The ride was quite smooth but boring. We had 5 hours in Colonia and that was too much time, in our opinion, because the museums are pretty minimal. The old part of the town is a complete contrast from
This was another rainy day (we had a lot of those) and I had read from a trip advisor reviewer not to bother to go on a rainy day but ignored this very good advice. We enjoyed the train ride up but the charter taxis were not operating and we saw almost no river taxis. We talked to visitors who had taken the catamaran and they found it rather long and boring with the inclement weather. We shopped for awhile•prices are better but the fruit market consists of mostly tourist items and household goods•nothing too exciting. It is an easy trip to make. At the Retiro station, there are instructions at the ticket window on how to get there. The highlight of our trip was a train stop at
Estancia Los Dos Hermanos
We had read about this estancia on trip advisor and had to try it. Despite the rain (once again) it was a lovely day. The guides Mercedes and Don Juan were very gracious hosts•making sure everyone was comfortable and having a good time even with the challenging conditions. Arrangements had been made for a driver to pick us and two other couples up around for the 75 minute drive ($40 for each couple). The rain had flooded the entry road to the ranch but Mercedes met us in a 4-wheel drive vehicle and loaded us into the bed to take us on the last leg of our journey. After a continental style breakfast and introductions, we mounted our horses and began a one hour ride around the ranch. I think they doubted my riding ability (ok, so I was the oldest and fattest one of the group and had already told Ana that I hadn’t been on a horse for 10 years and not many times, period) and my horse fancied being at the back of the pack•way at the back. Every few minutes Mercedes would get behind me and employ her switch because no amount of kicking on my part could persuade my horse to “get-up”. After a delicious barbeque including a lomo (tenderloin) steak that melted in your mouth, we mounted our horses again for a two hour outside-the-estancia ride. This time, Don Juan stayed behind with me and continuously mad a “tsking” sound and my horse did much better about keeping up. We didn’t get to gallop as much as other groups because it was so muddy that the horses sunk down in at places•but, the ride was challenging enough for me! After a snack of warm, homemade cake and a tour of the overnight cabins we returned around to the city. I believe the total cost was $65 per person plus the transportation.
Truly awesome•and I am not a huge nature lover. We spent two half days on the Argentine side and ½ day on the Brazilian. The guide books and trip advisor both cover this area pretty well so I won’t go into detail•just follow their guidelines for touring. One question I had before leaving was if I could store my luggage at the airport and I could not find an answer or anyone who knew. So, I emailed
We hit several of the popular outdoor markets. The first weekend, it was warm and sunny and there were so many vendors and shoppers that it was a little overwhelming. The San Telmo Antique Fair, La Boca, and the
Gallerias Pacifico was the only true “mall” that we visited and I recommend it not so much for the shopping as for the beauty. I also enjoyed the Design Recoleta stores•wonderful art and home furnishings.
This was a good trip and I could go on and on but this report is already longer than I intended. I hope it is helpful to at least a few others who are traveling to