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Argentina

Deep in the south of South America is this land of infinitely enchanting landscapes. Welcome to Argentina. It is the second largest country in South America, constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires. From the snow-capped peaks of the Andes and the dusty plains of Patagonia to the 'Land of Fire' the Tierra del Fuego, natural and historic wonders reign supreme here. Whether exploring the lush rainforest of Missiones, horse riding in the scorched red mountains of Salta, trekking the turquoise lakes and evergreen forests of the Lake District or playing the gaucho in the fertile Pampas, the country provides wonderful, boundless adventures, so be prepared for some astonishing sights and experiences.

At the heart of all this is the capital city, Buenos Aires. It is a smart, contemporary city that is full of life and bursting with energy. While the spirit of tango is alive and well and the gaucho heritage is celebrated, modern Argentina is more cosmopolitan in its outlook than many South American countries. Soak up the atmosphere of the San Telmo district of Buenos Aires, with its many cafes, antique shops, tango clubs and a Sunday flea market on Plaza Dorrego or stroll through the capital's chic Recoleta district, famous for its Cementerio de la Recoleta. Marvel the multi-colour houses and artistic talent of La Boca, where Italian immigrants settled to work in the shipyards and the tango was supposedly born and also see the top spots of the Pampas.

A visit to the scenic peaks of Sierra de la Ventana is also a must. If this is not satisfying, be dazzled by the sheer power of Iguazu Falls or gaze at the Andes topped by Mount Aconcagua. Nearby, the Cristo Redentor statue offers magnificent views from approximately 4,000m above sea level. If you want some more adventure, be awestruck by nature on the Valdes Peninsula or witness herds of seals, sea lions and take a whale watching boat trip to visit the penguin colony at Punta Tombo.

The people of Argentina are warm, friendly and open to visitors. Despite a dark period of military dictatorship and a series of economic crises, the Argentines have a tenacious spirit and lust for life that is infectious. This passion shines through in the nation's great love of football, food and partying. Visitors to this country will find it easy to get into the swing of things, bringing back long-lasting memories of fine local wines and enormous steaks, along with those of the unforgettable and extraordinary landscapes.


Quick Facts

Location: eastern South America.

Time: GMT - 3 (GMT - 2 from third Saturday in March to first Saturday in October).

Capital: Buenos Aires

Visa: Pre-departure Visa required. Some nationalities can get 60/90 days permit on arrival.

Language: Spanish is the official language. English, French & German are widely spoken.

Weather

The climate of Argentina ranges from the great heat and extensive rains of the subtropical Chaco in the north, through to the pleasant climate of the central Pampas and the sub-Antarctic cold of the Patagonian Sea in the south. The main central area is temperate, but can be hot and humid during summer (December to February) and cool in winter.

Currency

The currency of Argentina is the Argentine Peso