San Carlos de Bariloche

Posted by on Mar 20, 2013

San Carlos de Bariloche

San Carlos de Bariloche, a popular tourist haunt all year round. In summer for its hiking/camping/day-trip options in the stunning natural beauty which surrounds it, and in the winter for it’s proximity to great ski slopes. This is tourist, chocolate, ice-cream, outdoor heaven with a resident born and bred Barilochean population of about 10 percent.

Bariloche has a distinct architectural style, which I believe is Swiss and is modelled, I would say, after some Alpine destination. Cute and classy little cafes appeal to a ssive tourist population, selling home-made artisan chocolaterie and ‘helados artesenales’ or ’boutique icecream’ for a premium. As for whether something is expensive in Argentina really depends on what you call expensive, and whether you get five, or seven pesos for your dollar. Thus far, I’ve managed seven, making these beautiful ice-creams only 3 dollars – which I don’t think is expensive. El Bolsón is a pickle, by comparison – if you plonk yourself in the plaza central and go for a Jauja icecream nearby, you’ll pay that, but if you walk a few blocks, it’s half price, for the same icecream. I don’t linger on costs only for comparison, and for the rather fickle and shaky economy that plagues Argentina.

I have stayed (thus far) with two hosts in Bariloche – the first was a friend of a friend of some friends-in-common of my travelling companion, and the second were friends of theirs.

Side trips included a walk in the peninsula San Pedro (regrettably before I had a replacement camera), a weekend camping trip to Playa Muñoz and an afternoon on top of Cerro Campanario, each providing beautiful views of the surroundings of Bariloche.