Destination guide: El Calafate
Useful information about El Calafate
El Calafate's most typical dishes are tasty portions of meat accompanied by vegetables. Along these lines, one of the most popular dishes is delicious grilled Patagonian lamb with salad, with dessert made from locally grown fruits.
There's a warm atmosphere in its welcoming cafés, which offer a selection of sweet pastries to go with their reviving coffee. It's worth highlighting the typical calafate jelly, made from the fruit which gives the town its name.
Undoubtedly, the homemade chocolates so characteristic of Patagonia are the greatest temptation the town offers, especially the exquisite chocolate lambs filled with dulce de leche (milk caramel).
This is not all though, as there are also places specializing in fast food, such as pizza and sandwiches.
The official currency of Argentina is the argentine peso ($ARS). However, US dollars (US$) are accepted in the majority of places catering to tourists. Bills come in denominations of 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 pesos and coins in 5, 10, 25 and 50 cents and 1 peso.
All products and services include a Value Added Tax (known as IVA) equivalent to 21% of the value of what is being purchased. If you're a foreign tourist and you buy an Argentine product worth 70 pesos or more during your stay, you can ask for the IVA back. To do this, you must ask the salesperson for the original type B invoice and the "Global Refund Check" for your refund and show these two documents, plus the item purchased, when you leave Argentina, so that Customs can stamp the documents and process your refund.
The official language spoken in El Calafate and throughout Argentina is Spanish.
Before you begin your journey to Argentina, bear in mind that the majority of the country is in the GMT-3 time zone, although during summer some provinces adopt summertime hours, turning their clocks back an hour.
In Argentina, the voltage used is 220 V/50hz, but if any of your electrical appliances use a different voltage, you can always find adaptors in specialist shops throughout the country.