Destination guide: Mendoza & Nearby, Argentina
Mendoza is the main wine-producing area in Argentina and one of the largest producers of Malbec in South America. Don’t put it off any longer, purchase your tickets to Mendoza and visit the wine route, enjoy the winter in ski centers like Las Lenas and Los Penitentes and discover the magic of the forests and gardens of the General San Martin Park, inside which there are more than 300 species of plants, together with dozens of decorative statues.
Mendoza - Things to do
Iglesia, Convento y Basílica de San Francisco
Many mendocinos (people from Mendoza) consider the image at this church of the Virgin of Cuyo, patron of San Martín's Ejército de los Andes (Army of the Andes), miraculous because it survived Mendoza's devastating 1968 earthquake. In the Virgin's semicircular chamber, visitors leave tributes to her and to San Martín. A mausoleum within the building holds the remains of San Martín's daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter, which were repatriated from France in 1951.
Latitude: -32.8866404900000/ Longitude:-68.8415832519531
Opening Hours:09:00-13:00 Mon-Sat
Pricing: Admission Arg$2
Address: Necochea 201, City Center
Mendoza’s Museo Fundacional protects excavations of the colonial cabildo (town council), destroyed by an earthquake in 1861. At that time, the city’s geographical focus shifted west and south to its present location. A series of small dioramas depicts Mendoza’s history, working through all of human evolution as if the city of Mendoza were the climax (maybe it was).
Latitude:-32.8798977300000 / Longitude: -68.8281752700000
Telephone Number: +54 261 425 6927
Opening Hours:8am-8pm Mon-Sat, 3-10pm Sun
Pricing: Admission AR$10
Address: cnr Alberdi & Videla Castillo, Ciudad Vieja
Museo Histórico General San Martín
Museo Histórico General San Martín honors José de San Martín, the general who liberated Argentina from the Spanish and whose name graces parks, squares and streets everywhere in Argentina; the Libertador is especially dear to Mendoza, where he resided with his family and recruited and trained his army to cross into Chile. The museum is in a small arcade just off Av San Martín.
Latitude:-32.8821555500000/ Longitude: -68.8369735800000
Number: +54 261 425 7947
Opening Hours:9am-1pm & 4-8pm Mon-Fri
Pricing: Admission AR$7
Address: Remedios Escalada de San Martín 1843
Museo Municipal de Arte Moderno
Underground at the Plaza Independencia, the Museo Municipal de Arte Moderno is a relatively small but well-organized facility with modern and contemporary art exhibits. Free concerts and theatrical performances are usually held here on Sunday night at 8pm – stop by for the weekly program.
Latitude:-32.8931660800000/ Longitude: -68.8449197300000
Telephone Number: +54 261 425 7279
Opening Hours: 9am-8pm Tue-Sat, 4-8pm Sun & Mon
Extras: Plaza Independencia
Parque Provincial Aconcagua
The region's most famous park is Parque Provincial Aconcagua, home of 6962m (22841ft) Cerro Aconcagua, the highest peak outside the Himalayas and a favorite climbing destination. Reaching the summit requires a commitment of at least 13 to 15 days, including acclimatization time. Potential climbers may like to acquire RJ Secor's climbing guide Aconcagua (Seattle, The Mountaineers, 1999). Non-climbers can trek to base camps and refugios (rustic shelters) beneath the permanent snow line. From December to March, permits are obligatory for both trekking and climbing in Parque Provincial Aconcagua; park rangers at Laguna Horcones will not permit visitors to proceed up the Quebrada de los Horcones without one. Fees vary according to the complex park-use season.
Telephone Number: +54 261 425 2090
Address: W of Mendoza / Extras: N of RN 7
It’s hard to figure what’s the bigger draw here – the rustic-chic decor, the small but creative menu or the extensive wine list. Who cares? Enjoy them all.
Latitude: -32.8885405300000 / Longitude:-68.8492128000000
Telephone Number: +54 261 429 4200
Opening Hours: Lunch & dinner Mon-Sat
Pricing: Mains AR$50-70
Price Range: High
Address: Av Sarmiento 765
The very tasty, inexpensive Middle Eastern food (hummus, falafel, dolmas) here comes as a welcome break from all that steak. The shish kebab served with tabouleh salad is a definite winner.
Latitude: -32.8924031400000 / Longitude:-68.8532216000000
Telephone Number: +54 261 551 3949
Opening Hours:lunch & dinner Mon-Sat
Pricing: dishes AR$25-30
Price Range: Low
Address: Av Arístides Villanueva 217
Up on the 10th floor in the middle of town, this modern restaurant/wine bar offers a good range of well-cooked dishes with distinctly un-Argentine ingredients like quinoa, alongside sushi and risotto. If the meals seem pricey, the coffee is a good enough excuse to soak up the views from the sunny terrace. Catch the elevator in the Gómez building on Garibaldi. Don't bother looking for the sign - there isn't one
Opening Hours: Lunch & dinner
Price Range: Moderate
Address: Av San Martín & Garibaldi, City Center / Extras: 10th fl, Gómez Bldg
Av Arístides Villanueva
For a great night on the town, walk down Av Arístides Villanueva, where it's bar after bar; in summer, entire blocks fill with tables and people enjoying the night.
Address: City Center
A sea of white vinyl upholstery and laid-back electronica make this little bar a favorite for mixed drinks and cocktails.
Latitude: -32.8920255800000 / Longitude:-68.8549543700000
Address: Av Arístides Villanueva 305, City Center.
For the nightowls, this is the best, most reliable live music venue in town. Things kick off around 23:00 with happy hour, heat up around 01:00 when the first band hits the stage and keep going 'til sunup. Stop by for the weekly program.
Latitude: -32.8914638300000 / Longitude:-68.8379839900000
Sub-Type: Live Music
Opening Hours: Thu-Sat
Address: Primitivo de la Reta 1053, City Center
Av Las Heras
Av. Las Heras is lined with souvenir shops, leather shops, chocolate stores and all sorts of places to pick up cheap Argentine trinkets. Items made of carpincho (spotted tanned hide of the capybara, a large rodent) are uniquely Argentine and sold in many of the stores.
Sub-Type: Shopping Centre
Address: City Center
Unless you are looking for a very obscure top of the range bottle (or a sales assistant who knows what they’re talking about), the best place to buy wine in town, in terms of price and variety, is the supermarket Carrefour.
Latitude: -32.8847669700000 / Longitude:-68.8483364300000
Sub-Type: Food, Drink
Opening Hours: 8am-10pm
Address: Avs Las Heras & Belgrano
This cooperative offers provincial handicrafts, including vertical-loom weavings (Huarpe-style) from northwest Mendoza, horizontal looms (Araucanian-style) from the south, woven baskets from Lagunas del Rosario, and lots of braided, untanned leather horse gear.
Telephone Number: +54 261 420 4239
Opening Hours: closed Sun
Address: Av San Martín 1143, City Center
Extras: Below the provincial tourist office
Mendoza’s biggest annual event, the Fiesta Nacional de la Vendimia (National Wine Harvest Festival), lasts about a week, from late February to early March. It features a parade on Av. San Martín with floats from each department of the province, numerous concerts and folkloric events, and it all culminates in the coronation of the festival’s queen in the Parque General San Martín amphitheater.
Once you’ve hadenough fine wine and tramped around the city a bit, get yourself into the Andes, Mendoza’s other claim to fame, for some of the most spectacular mountain scenery you’ll ever set eyes upon. Numerous agencies organize climbing and trekking expeditions, rafting trips, mule trips and cycling trips.
Mule trips, trekking, rafting.
Telephone Number: +54 420-2064
Address: 9 de Julio 1023
Rafting, mountain biking, paragliding.
Telephone Number: +54 429-9665
Address: Lavalle 35, Local 8
Cabaña La Guatana
Horseback tours through the vineyards of Maipú.
Telephone Number: +54 15-668-6801
Address: Maza 8001, Lulunta, Maipú
Campo Base Travel & Adventure
Offers all adventures imaginable from trekking to paragliding (AR$210) to more conventional day trips.
Telephone Number: +54 425-5511
Address: Av Sarmiento 229
Full-service ski tours and lessons in Spanish or English. Best quality ski-equipment rental in town. Also brokers a range of on-mountain accommodations, from budget to luxury. Summer activities include sandboarding in nearby Lavalle.
Telephone Number: +54 630-0026
Address: Darragueira 558, Chacras de Coria
Based in Potrerillos, it specializes in rafting on Río Mendoza. Rafting trips cost AR$80 (35 minutes, Class I-II) to AR$230 (five hours, Class III-IV). Combined rafting and trekking AR$230 per day.
Telephone Number: +54 429-5030
Address: Sarmiento 768