- Location: At the base of Andes in Rio Negro Province in west Argentina
- Attraction Type: City
- Significance: Has a unique combination of hill slopes, ski resorts, and lake
- Best Time to visit: November to March; June to August for winter sports
- How to reach: By flights; alternatively by road from major Argentine cities and towns
- Nearest International Airport: San Carlos de Bariloche International Airport
San Carlos de Bariloche or just Bariloche evoke playfulness and a sense of adventure in all Argentines. Surrounded by the rugged Patagonian Steppes, the gleaming Nahuel Huapi Lake and the snow-capped peaks of the Andes Mountains, Bariloche in Argentina is a virtual paradise on earth. Winter or summer, autumn or spring, this place is always thronged by tourists from all over the world. Whether you spend your vacation in tranquility or inactivity there is never a moment of monotony in Bariloche.
Bariloche at the foothills of Andes Mountains and overlooking Nahuel Huapi Lake derives its name from ‘Vuriloche’ which stands for ‘people behind the mountain’ in Mapudungun language. The local Mapuches used the secret Vuriloche Pass to cross the Andes which was unknown to European settlers and priests. Bariloche, unlike other Latin American cities, is a modern city with its history dating back to the end of the 19th century. Carlos Wiederhold a German by birth but settled in Chile migrated to Argentina and set up a shop named ‘La Alemana’. Instead of Don Carlos, the letters addressed to him all mentioned San Carlos from where the name San Carlos de Bariloche was derived.
Bariloche Activities Every moment you spend in Bariloche is eventful. The Museum of Patagonia has a marvelous display of pre-Hispanic inhabitants and stuffed animals of the local region. A cruise boat ride to El Bosque de Arrayanes Island is stress-relieving. A forest of orange-colored trees would leave you baffled. A whole day cruise of Nahuel Huapi Lake is equally invigorating. In the course of this cruise visit snow-covered Tronador volcano and the National Park. Kayaking in the turquoise blue waters of the lake is also an exciting pastime.
The mountain slopes of the Andes allow some of the most alluring treks in South America. Walk up to Cerro Otto, a fantastic viewpoint for the entire region of Bariloche. A rotating restaurant at Cerro Otto adds to your thrilling trek to the top. Cero Tronador with its black glacier and Saltillo de las Nalcas waterfall is also an exhilarating excursion. Paragliding in these Andean slopes is an electrifying experience. In case you love skiing, the slopes of Cerro Campanario, and Cerro Catedral are incomparable.
Staying in Bariloche
San Carlos de Bariloche has a number of comfortable and elegant accommodations to choose from for putting up. Design Suites Hotel, Galileo Boutique Hotel, Grand Hotel Bariloche, Aconcagua Hotel, Hostel 1004, and Tango Inn Downtown Hostel are some of the notable places to check-in.
For your culinary needs, you could check out some of the popular eateries in Bariloche. La Parrilla de Julian, El Boliche de Alberto, Friends, and Taberna Breogan Celta are some of the restaurants famous for their mouth-watering delicacies.