Lake trip from Puerto Pañuelo - Isla Victoria & Bosque de Arrayanes

Bariloche Travel Blog

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Melissa in the Bosque de Arrayanes
Went up to the HI hostel this morning to find that none of the stuff we´d asked them to do had been done, so ended up doing it ourselves!  Went online and booked our overnight bus tickets for Mendoza next Tuesday - we´ve treated ourselves to ´cama´ class, so will see how that goes.  Walked into town and organised a day trip into the national park for Sunday, and a boat trip this afternoon.  The young man at the Turisur office was very helpful and spoke good English once he realized Melissa was doing a good job of mangling Spanish!  We then went to Del Turista chocolate shop to have a hot chocolate and a toasted sandwich while waiting for the bus to collect us and drive us along the coast to the port for our boat trip.
Harbour at Isla Victoria.
  The route is quite scenic and winding, and passes through lots of little towns heaving with tourist shops, and passes some very nice looking real estate.  Once the boat left port, the first stop was at Bosque de Arrayanes where we took a 45 minute walk around the forest.  They´ve built a boardwalk through the trees, but parts of it had been smashed by falling trees - must have had a good storm here in the not too distant past.  You could also get your photo taken here by the boat photographer, but we passed on that.  The island has good stands of the Arrayanes trees, for which it is named - apparently they are only found in this area, and look sort of like the paper bark eucalypt, although with a quite different leaf.
Lake view from Isla Victoria, near the Playa del Toro.
  Back onto the boat for a cruise to Isla Victora.  We had over an hour here, so walked down to the Playa del Toro to see the old rock paintings on the cliff wall.  They are quite hard to see now, but some are still fairly visible.  We then wandered back around the exotic tree path - a collection of trees from around the world planted in the early 1900´s.  The path also takes you past park employee housing and a lovely old house built for the man who planted the trees.  It is now getting a bit derelict, but would be nice if they restored it and made it into some sort of museum of the forestry industry that used to be on the island.  While on the boat, we chatted with an older couple from Windsor (near Sydney) who were also on a South American holiday, although on a bigger budget than ours!  Had another piece of steak tonigh, recommended by our friendly supermarket butcher.  It melted in the mouth, and cost only 7 pesos, so just over $2 Australian for the both of us. 
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Melissa in the Bosque de Arrayanes
Melissa in the Bosque de Arrayanes
Harbour at Isla Victoria.
Harbour at Isla Victoria.
Lake view from Isla Victoria, near…
Lake view from Isla Victoria, nea…
Part of the pine plantation on Isl…
Part of the pine plantation on Is…
Looking out from the harbour at Is…
Looking out from the harbour at I…
Sunset over the lake at Puerto Pa…
Sunset over the lake at Puerto Pa…
Bariloche
photo by: Amandaamaral1