It was a memorable trip with seamless operation. We will use this travel company for future S. America travel and recommend it to our friends.
My husband and I have been taking Argentine tango for a few years. Many friends had visited Buenos Aires and raved about the experience. We'd been planning a trip to pay homage to the birth place of tango, to soak up on the history of the land and culture. We also wanted to visit Patagonia for the landscape, its flora and fauna.
We researched several travel sites to review our options. This travel company became our top choice, not only for the high marks on customer feedback, but for its commitment of introducing tourists to the land in a socially and environmentally "Responsible" manner.
Thanks to our travel agents, we had an itinerary for early March, 2018, that combined tango in Buenos Aires with Patagonia. Our travel team came to the hotel to greet us and brought a gift set of yerba mate with ceramic cup and wooden scoop crafted by local disadvantaged artists. We appreciate that!
We had a wonderful "tango' guide to show us the Buenos Aires through tango lens. We spent an afternoon sightseeing the city, the streets of La Boca and Carminito, learned the life and culture of the era, the art of Benito Quenquela Martin, Carlos Gardel, Filiberto, their influence in the development of tango. At night we attended a milonga to see how the porteños do tango. The next day our travel company arranged a tango lesson and a spectacular performance at the iconic La Ventana. In addition to tango, the gaucho culture was well represented by a guitarist with a 12-string guitar and a lasso performance.
After BA we spent 3 days each in Ushuaia and El Calafate. The transition to local operators was seamless. We had a great time seeing 3 species of penguins, Magellanic, Gentoo and king penguins on Isla Martillo. We also saw sea lions, fur seals, grey foxes, imperial cormorants, turkey vultures, southern giant petrels, black brow albatross, skuas, cauquens and caracaras, to name a few. We saw the flag trees of the Tierra del Fuego bending to the force of wind, much like the tuckamores of the Newfoundland, Canada, we saw on a visit there.
We visited the Penitentiary and Maritime Museum in Ushuaia, did zip line at the Cerro Frias, ice walk on the Perito Moreno Glacier, and horse back riding at the Estancia.
Our travel company's recommendations on food were also remarkable. We particularly enjoyed our hotel in El Calafate, its Patagonia lamb and pasta dishes were excellent.
We enjoyed the culture, the nature and friendly people of Argentina.
We particularly wish to thank the travel team on its responsiveness on making a contingency plan. Our last day of sightseeing was the Upsala Glacier and Cristina Ranch. Unfortunately the tour was cancelled due to safety, and we got the notice when we returned to the hotel around 7PM. We called our representative immediately. She worked with the tour operator for a trip to the Estancia for the next morning. They also arranged to refund the cost difference before we leave El Calafate to BA and JFK.
We would have researched the culture more carefully. Our BA guide introduced us to many notable places and persons that we did researched after the visit. We realized that many sites we visited would have taken special meaning had we known more beforehand. In particular the Madres of Plaza de Mayo, and the origin of tango, La Boca and the colorful immigrant culture.
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