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Travel Tales from Argentina and South America
Although there is not a single route that is better than others when traveling through Patagonia, many visitors begin their Patagonian expedition in El Calafate, which is located in the northern part of Patagonia.
For this reason, El Calafate has earned itself the title of ‘Gateway to Patagonia.’ Though don’t let this moniker fool you; Calafate is much more than just a gateway. Rather, the village of Calafate is surrounded by picturesque mountainous landscapes and offers numerous opportunities for exploration before you depart for the rest of Patagonia.
Because Calafate has so much to offer, we have compiled this list of the top things to see and do in El Calafate, found in the Argentine side of Patagonia
The top thing to see in El Calafate is actually not in Calafate, just outside the village is Los Glacieres National Park, home of the famous Perito Moreno Glacier.
One of the top things to do is visit this incredible feat of nature in one of the most beautiful national parks in Argentina, Patagonia and the world.
The Perito Moreno Glacier is one of the largest in the world and is often recognized as one of the few in the world to be growing, rather than shrinking.
Beyond its statistical fame, Perito Moreno offers its visitors gorgeous sights and unique opportunities for adventure. While the vast majority of visitors choose to take a cruise across Lake Argentino to see the glacier up close, many opt for an even closer look and take part in a glacier walk. No matter your preference for exploring the glacier, your time at the Perito Moreno Glacier will be an experience of a lifetime.
Beyond Perito Moreno, Calafate is home to a number of other attractions. If you’re looking for things to do in Calafate, you should consider visiting the following places while you’re there.
The Glaciarium is an impressive museum offering information about ice, glaciers and the Patagonian Ice Fields. However, this is more than just your typical museum because it is both entertaining and educational. In fact, this 2500 square meter museum is ideal for the whole family.
If you want to see something cool that isn’t ice and snow, head to the La Leona Petrified Forest. This is a paleontological site full of petrified tree trunks and numerous fragments of dinosaur bones. During your visit, you can take a tour of the forest and explore the endless system of gorges and ravines within.
You’ll be impressed by these unique landscapes, especially when you compare it to the other incredible sites that call El Calafate home.
If you’re looking for something a little different, but definitely part of the argentine experience. Try spending a night inside Los Glaciares National Park at Estancia Cristina Lodge. This estancia is a ranch lodge that was founded in 1914. It will give you the chance to really reconnect with nature, all while providing beautiful views of the coast of Lake Argentino. You can really make the most out of your time by going on glacier tours, going horseback riding, hiking or even fishing in the incredible waters of Patagonia.
Another great Estancia we love in Calafate, well near Calafate inside of Los Glaciares National Park is Nibepo Aike Ranch. Here the accomodation options are equally as cosy and offer up incredible homegrown meals with vegetables straight from the garden.
Whatever adventure you decide to go on in Calafate, you are sure to have an incredible time.
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