We are currently in beautiful Bariloche, Argentina. The gateway to Patagonia. It is a resort town on a large glacial lake surrounded by spas, hotels and beautiful homes. Hostels here are more expensive than anywhere we’ve been so we are volunteering in exchange for a free room. Our buddy Shakes drove on south to achieve his goal of Fitz Roy and Patagonia. So, we are on our own again. We are slowing down here and plan to enjoy the lakes, mountains, hikes and culture, i.e. the food!
We splurged on an expensive dinner the other night – expensive in our new reality means $37 per person. Cory had the lamb, I the filet and Shakes the prime rib. We shared salad, mashed potatoes, a beautiful bottle of Argentinian wine, dessert and espresso. Our total bill came to $1200 ARS (Argentinian pesos), roughly $85 USD. And this filet was perhaps the best I’ve ever had. Ever. Seriously. We sat on the outdoor terrace of the house-turned-restaurant called Alto el Fuego, under giant trees and with a view of the lake. We were the very first to arrive for an 8pm dinner, the time when the restaurant opens after the afternoon siesta. As we were leaving at about 10:30pm, after enjoying our beautiful slow dinner, local Argentinians were just arriving for theirs.
I am completely enamored with Argentina. From its nuanced Spanish, to its Italian-styled accent, to its late to bed – late to rise – siesta-loving culture, to its obsession with perfecting the grilling of meat….. All of these things make up a distinct culture unlike any we have yet experienced in South America.
One more thought…and this is about our travels generally, not just Argentina. People of all nationalities, ages and backgrounds populate our hostel. Meeting interesting travelers from all over the world has become one of my favorite things about travel. And it’s also one of the things I didn’t think about before starting this journey. I had no idea how impactful these brief meetings would be. It’s so inspiring to meet other similar-minded travelers, all on their own journey, sharing their experiences with other strangers and inspiring others simply with their stories. I hope we’ve inspired others as we’ve been inspired.
Here are a few images from Bariloche: