In this series, we’re exploring some of our very favorite city and countryside pairings. In each case, the city and the surrounding region both merit exploration on their own. But when combined, the pairings lay the groundwork for a vacation that leaves you feeling both invigorated and refreshed.
No visit to Buenos Aires would be complete without attending a first-class tango show.
In spite of Argentina’s economic turbulence, the citizens of Buenos Aires remain ebullient. This is still a city that loves to party. Tango bars, known as tanguerias, remain immensely popular, and every Sunday dancers show off their paces in the charming Plaza Dorrego. “Thanks to its broad boulevards, tree-shaded squares and noble neoclassical buildings,” Mr. Harper writes, “it is sometimes not difficult to fancy yourself in Paris.” Most first-time visitors to the city make a point of seeing the Casa Rosada, the executive mansion from which Eva Perón made her famous last speech, and La Recoleta Cemetery, full of ornate mausoleums including the one belonging to Perón. But we also recommend taking time to explore lesser-known sights such as Palermo Soho, a trendy low-rise neighborhood of art galleries and chic restaurants and bars, and MALBA, the Buenos Aires Museum of Latin American Art, which has an excellent modern and contemporary collection. Those with more time should also consider a cruise in the delta of the Paraná River, the many channels of which are lined with mansions, country cottages and marinas. And of course, no visit to Buenos Aires would be complete without attending a first-class tango show. Rojo Tango and Esquina Carlos Gardel have two of the best; if you prefer something more hands-on, your travel consultant can arrange a private tango lesson.
From Buenos Aires, it’s a short flight to some of the world’s most spectacular scenery. At the northern end of Patagonia, Bariloche beckons with majestic snowcapped peaks, crystalline blue lakes, waterfalls, ancient forests and colorful wildflower meadows, a breathtaking wilderness landscape that is protected by a vast network of national parks and ecological reserves. Skiers flock here in the winter, and the summer offers myriad outdoor activities such as kayaking, golfing, hiking, horseback riding, sailing and trout fishing. Often referred to as the “Switzerland of South America,” this region has a unique central European/Argentine flavor because of its original Swiss and German settlers. Mr. Harper’s recommended hotels all boast lake or river views, making it wise to also leave time to simply relax at your resort, glass of fine Malbec in hand, taking in the expansive vistas.
This piece originally appear in the Traveler magazine. Click here to access the full issue.