If just driving through the Chilean wine country isn’t enough, and what you really need is a weekend of relaxation ensconced in comfort, a few luxury-oriented wineries a short drive from Santiago, Chile can give you just what you’re looking for.
Photo: Santiago Brusa
Perhaps you’ve heard: Buenos Aires’ culinary scene has been undergoing a metamorphosis. In the not very distant past, if you weren’t in the mood for grilled meat, pasta, or tapas – the latter two a throwback to the city’s Italian and Spanish heritage – you were out of luck at dinnertime. Today, a growing number of innovative chefs bring much-needed diversity to the city’s dining sphere, while others focus on perfecting traditional recipes for an increasingly discerning clientele. Of course, the foodie scene isn’t necessarily easy to access: as any traveler who’s ever visited a large city can attest, it’s easy to overspend on a mediocre meal. Enter the professional epicures. Though the following two services are quite different – the first a socially-minded food tour, the second a personalized ‘anti-tour’ through the city’s lesser – known food highlights – both provide invaluable entry into gourmet Buenos Aires.
Santiago, Chile, a city of more than 6 million people has ultramodern glassed-in towers, colorful traditional markets, a resurgence of interest in old folkloric traditions, a sparkling metro, a large hill-turned-backyard to take it all in from and is overlooked by the towering, often snowcapped Andes. There’s way more than 72 hours worth of sightseeing and activities in and around Santiago, but if you had to limit it to just a long weekend, here are plenty of activities to keep you entertained, and give you a good overview
I feel my city is getting more and more exciting each year. Now that winter has arrived and people can’t admit the summer party is over, bars start opening their doors, some for the very first time.
Check out the hottest new bars and some that have already become classics in the city of kings:
One of Chile’s main attractions, and one of the products for which it is best known, is wine. From the areas nearby Santiago such as the Santa Cruz, Maipo and Colchagua valleys, to the warmer, more arid areas of the Aconcagua valley and further to the north and south, Chile produces wines, most famously, Carmenere, but Cabernet Sauvignon is growing in popularity, as are (newly) a few white wines, including some grown closer to the coast. Pinot Noir is also up-and-coming in Chile, in addition to the better-known reds.
Photo: Jason Hollinger
Just a few miles east of the Chilean border lies the northernmost ski resort in Argentina, Penitentes. The resort encompasses 740 acres of skiable terrain, with 20 groomed trails for beginner to expert skiers. Snowboarders are welcomed at the resort, as well. From the Penitentes slopes, you will be surrounded by the High Andes—you can even spot Aconcagua, the highest peak in the Western Hemisphere.
Photo: Ratha Grimes
If you read enough guidebooks, you can be forgiven for thinking that half of a country falls into the “can’t-miss” category. While this phrase is heavily abused by the travel writers of the world, some things truly cannot be missed. This is the case for landmark restaurant Andrés Carne de Res near Bogotá.
The restaurant, which has been an institution in the central Andes since it opened its first location in 1982, is nothing short of a delicious, colorful, musical all-night party. Plus, the fact that the flagship location takes up the space equivalent to a city block makes it literally impossible to miss it if you’re within a mile of it.
Photo: Lidyanne Aquino
Brazil doesn’t actually roll off the tongue of discerning oenophiles three-glasses deep into conversations about the next great terroir – it is, after all, a country fueled by caipirinhas and chope (draft beer), two beat the-heat-treats that would almost always be the go-to tipple of choice in the tropical heat. But that is changing. Brazil’s Vale dos Vinhedos, located 120km north of the country’s southernmost capital, Porto Alegre, is finally producing wines that have the Chileans and Argentines starting to glance over their shoulders.
Photo: Justin De La Ornellas
The prestigious U.S. magazine Wine Spectator recently recognized more than a dozen Argentine reds for their incredible value. Nine Malbecs were selected, along with a Syrah, a Cabernet Franc, a Pinot Noir, a Bonarda, and a Tempranillo, for the publication’s list of “14 Appealing Reds for $25 or Less“. All of the wines sell for $25 USD or less per bottle and are available for purchase in the United States.