Mendoza: The land of good wine
ABOUT MENDOZAMendoza is a beautiful city, surrounded by mountains, full of things to do and see. The city was founded on march 2 in 1561 by Pedro del Castillo. He named it “Ciudad de Mendoza del nuevo Valle de la Rioja” after the governor of Chile, García Hurtado de Mendoza. Before P
edro del Castillo, Mendoza was inhabited by tribes such as “Huarpes” that devised a system of irrigation. This system was developed later by the Spanish. This allowed the population to increase. Another important fact, is that Mendoza suffered a severe earthquake in 1861 that killed at least 5.000 people. The city was rebuilt, incorporating large squares and wider streets in order to tolerate better the seismic activity.
WHERE TO STAYI will recommend some places to stay but it obviously depends on what you are looking for.
- Park Hyat Mendoza Hotel, Casino and Spa: it is a 5 stars hotel that offers accommodation in central Mendoza. the Facilities includes: a spa, casino, some restaurants, a fitness center and a swimming pool.
- Diplomatic Hotel: it is also a 5 stars hotel, surrounded by wine shops, restaurants, and stores.
- Mendoza Inn Hostel: is one of the city´s better hostel. It has a spacious backyard and a pool.
- Break Point Hostel: it has a big pool, a TV area, a huge kitchen, balconies and a little bar.
- Also I suggest that you try using AirBnB
WHAT TO DO
Wine ToursTo begin I suggest doing a wine tour in which you can learn a lot about the process of making wine, the different types and, also, you can taste it. Many of these tours includes meals where you can appreciate the typical foods of the region.
PotrerillosBesides that, make sure you visit “Potrerillos”, a little town in the mountains, one hour away from Mendoza city. In this town, you can enjoy the nature and, the gorgeous and the peaceful landscape. You can also visit the Potrerillos dam where you can go fishing, kayaking, among other entertaining things.
Villavicencio Natural ReserveI strongly recommend visiting Villavicencio Private Natural Reserved, owned by one of the most sold water brand in Argentina. In t
he reserve you can see a hotel and spa built in 1940 that is now closed to the public but you still can hike around the hotel and the surroundings.
General San Martin ParkAlso, you should visit “General San Martín Park” where you can take a jog and enjoy the fresh air while you take a look at the lake where people practice rowing.
Fader MuseumThis museum was named after the most important impressionist artist from Argentina Fernando Fader. inside this museum you will find an amazing collection of Argentine artist from different periods and sometimes there are special expositions too.
Touristic BusMendoza also has a touristic bus in which you can visit monuments, parks, green areas and landmarks in only two hours time.
Las LeñasLas Leñas is one of the largest ski resorts in Argentina. Its known for its good powder snow and excellent opportunities for extreme and even off-piste skiing.The ski center includes ski and snowboard school for all ages and childcare facilities. The skiing season usually lasts from mid June to mid October. It also opens during summer for mountain activities such as mountain biking, horse riding, climbing and other activities.
Aconcagua MountainAconcagua is the highest mountain of America. You can visit the Aconcagua Provincial Park where you can take a tours to know the safe part of the mountain and be hypnotized by the dazzling view. The road trip to the park is also really enjoyable and full of beautiful landscapes to see.
VendimiaEvery march takes place The Grape Harvest Festival (Vendimia), one of the most important festivals in the country. In the main event you can enjoy a fabulous show, featuring hundreds of dancers and performers, where you can witness the selection of the National Vendimia Queen.
Atuel CanyonAtuel canyon is a narrow canyon through which flows the river Atuel . It is located in Valle Grande , from the department San Rafael, Mendoza. Here you can practice rafting, also you can camp, admire the view, mountain cycling, paragliding, fishing, etc.
Los Reyunos Dam“Los Reyunos” is an embankment dam on the Diamante River. It is use to generate hydroelectricity. It has a nautical club where fishing and water sports such as skiing , wake boarding , windsurfing , boating , diving, fishing are practiced , among others. Around its shores are weekend homes , restaurants , campgrounds , cabins and a hotel.
Cornelio Moyano MuseumIt is a Museum of Natural and Anthropological Sciences located in the General San Martin Park . The building of the museum was declared asset of Cultural Heritage of the Province of Mendoza. It has a scientific library named ” Florentino Ameghino ” which is consulted by advanced students and specialists.
Foundation Area Museum
The museum is located on Pedro del Castillo Square. It has exhibitions of items of historical and archaeological value of the region. It also has an underground level where you can see the remains of the village fountain destroyed by the earthquake of 1861.
GASTRONOMYThe city is full of restaurants of every kind, but if you want to have a full Argentinian experience you should try our barbecue. There are a lot of places that serves this type of food; the most popular ones are: “El Asadito”, “Don Mario”, “Don Alonso” and “El Patio de Jesús María”. If you want to have options you should go to “Arístides Street” where you can find all Kind of restaurants and bars; or go to one of the malls that have many popular eating places.
EXTREME SPORTSIf you love adrenaline, here in Mendoza you can practice a lot of extreme sports. For example:
- Rafting: you can do it in Mendoza river or in Atuel river. You should try practicing rafting on a full moon night tours which are fun and usually includes an asado (barbecue) and a roaring bonfire.
- Canopy over the Potrerillos dam:
- Paragliding: to do this you can hire and excursion with an experienced instructor. It usually takes place in a hill that is fifteen minutes away from the city called “Arco”.
USEFUL INFORMATIONIn the links below you will find tourism information of Mendoza: http://turismo.mendoza.gov.ar/ http://cultura.mendoza.gov.ar/museos/museo-juan-cornelio-moyano/ http://www.betancourt.com.ar/ http://www.argentinarafting.com/ http://www.aconcagua.mendoza.gov.ar/ http://www.lonelyplanet.com/argentina/central-argentina/mendoza/hotels
I hope you enjoyed this guide Mendoza and you found the information useful and entertaining . Follow me on my blog to see my future post.