Go Bicycle Touring in Argentina

argentina11223510043_a2a7b9fd46_zArgentina is a large, elongated country in the southern part of South America, neighboring the countries of Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Chile. With a population of 42,610,981 and a total area of 1,073,518 square miles, Argentina is the eighth-largest country in the world with both the highest and the lowest points in all of South America being located in the country.

From a cycling standpoint, Argentina is arguably one of the best bike touring locations on the planet. From Buenos Aires (the country’s capital city) to Mendoza (a region known for its excellent vineyard wines), to Patagonia (a place of extreme landscapes) and Ushuaia in the south (the southernmost city in the world), Argentina has something for everyone – whether you want to do some city cycling, mountain biking or even some long-distance road bike touring through the countryside.

Popular Bike Tour Destinations In Argentina

 

  • Buenos Aires now has 100 kilometers of bike lanes, and the city government estimates that locals take some 150,000 trips by bike each day.  The traffic in Buenos Aires is technically pretty bad, but it’s really no worse than in any comparably-sized city elsewhere in the world. Yes, you will have to dodge some potholes and skirt some gravel patches, but that’s part of city riding in Buenos Aires. Where possible, try and stick to the city’s wider roads, because drives tend to stick to the middle of the road, which creates a cycle lane for you on either side of them.
  • Patagonia is a region located at the southern end of South America, shared by Argentina and Chile. It is a sparsely populated wilderness with dramatic scenery and large distances between various points of interest… with towns and villages become scarcer as you get further south. Famous for it’s massive skies, impressive landscapes, and winds that seem to come from just about every direction, Patagonia is both a rewarding and challenging place to ride a bike.
  • Mendoza is the capital city of Mendoza Province, in Argentina. It is located in the northern-central part of the province, in a region of foothills and high plains, on the eastern side of the Andes. Two of the main industries of Mendoza area are olive oil production and wine making. The region around Greater Mendoza is the largest wine producing area in Latin America. As such, Mendoza is one of nine cities worldwide in the network of Great Capitals of Wine, and the city is an emerging enotourism (Wine tourism) destination and base for exploring the region’s hundreds of wineries located along the Argentina Wine Route.
  • Salta is situated in the Lerma Valley, 1,152 meters (3,780 feet) above sea level, at the foothills of the Andes mountains. Nicknamed Salta la Linda (“Salta the beautiful”), it has become a major tourist destination due to its old, colonial architecture, tourism friendliness, awesome weather and the natural scenery of the valleys westward. In addition to the small, local cycling scene, other popular sports of the Salta region include baseball (a game in which Salta players excel nationally), basketball, volleyball, rugby, and mountaineering.
  • Ushuaia is the capital of the Tierra del Fuego province in southern Argentina. Home to around 57,000 people and covering 23 square kilometers (9 sq mi), the area has been settled for the past 7,000 years. Temperatures range throughout the year from -1 degrees Celsius (30 °F) to average highs of 15 degrees Celsius (59 °F). Tourists flock here to see arctic wildlife such as penguins, seals, and killer whales. Visitors can take a ride on the End of the World Train to the Tierra del Fuego National Park, where many of these animals live. For those cycling from Alaska to Argentina, the city of Ushuaia is often times the very end of the line for these brave and adventurous bicycle explorers.
  • Mendoza Bike Tour – Explore the land of Malbec as you cycle through the prestigious Luján de Cuyo and Uco Valley vineyards. Pedal through the gorgeous Park General San Martín de los Andes in Mendoza.
  • Salta Bike Tour – The perfect tour for hiking and biking. Discover the awe-inspiring desert landscapes in the Valleys of Salta. Taste wines from the highest altitude vineyards in the world. Learn how to cook the best empanadas of Argentina…
  • Patagonia by Bike – A trip down Patagonia from Bariloche to Ushuaia. Cycling through the most spectacular places in Argentina and Chile. With this tour you can cover the diverse scenarios of one of the most enchanting places in the world.

Facts About Argentina

  • The national currency of Argentina is the Argentine peso (ARS).
  • Spanish is the official language of Argentina, however many people speak some English. German, French, and Italian are also widely spoken, as are several indigenous languages.
  • Most people wear modern fashions, especially in urban areas. Clothing that one finds in Europe or North America is readily available in almost all Argentine cities.
  • The evening meal is lighter than the lunchtime meal. Dinner is frequently served later in the evening, sometimes even after 9:00 p.m..
  • Beef has long been the staple of the Argentine diet. Popular dishes include baked stuffed beef and “empanadas” (meat or vegetable pies).
  • Friend’s Day is an official holiday in Buenos Aires, although it is not a national public holiday. On the 20th of July each year, friends gather together, parties are held, and everyone stays up late to celebrate their friendships with one another.
  • Easily recognized by the close embrace between dance partners and its quick decisive movements, Argentina lays claim to inventing the world-famous dance known as the Tango.
  • Argentina has been home to multiple discoveries of gigantic dinosaurs. The Giganotosaurus, Argentinosaurus and Eoraptor dinosaurs were all discovered in Argentina.
Photos by Justin de la Ornellas, Dimity B. and dany13.