Off the Beaten Path: Day trip to La Campiña

(Photo by gotencool)

Set in the Buenos Aires town of San Pedro, La Campiña is a 25 year old orange farm owned by a couple who wished to turn their love for the land into their life. Now a days the farm not only cultivates over 100,000 fruit trees, wheat and soy, it is also open for public visits and special lunches made from La Campiñas own  produce.

Visits include a tour of the orange plantation (with the added joy of the orange blossoms perfume in the spring), of the selection process, of a dovecot, jam making area, storage and the restaurant.

La Campiña is open on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and holidays from 10AM with the last guided tour starting at 4.45pm.  Charters to San Pedro and back are offered by Turismo Billoch and take approximately two hours and a half to get there.

Whilst you are in the area you can also visit the charming town of San Pedro, set on the shores of the Parana River. The town, which is a fruit and fishing paradise and is famous for its ensaimadas, has some excellent views and is also home of an old battle field (La Vuelta de Obligado) and of a museum showcasing renowned artist Fernando Garcia Curtens work.

 

We Recommend: Day Trip to Colonia

(Photo by estradAfora viagens )

Argentines cross over to Uruguay frequently for weekend getaways to lovely towns and summer holidays at the beach. One of the common destinations for a day away is Colonia del Sacramento, a historic town founded in 1680 with a combination of Portuguese, Spanish colonial and Post-Colonial styles.

This small charming town is just an hour away from Buenos Aires by Ferry and has a variety of attractions. Some of these  include the historic quarters where Bastión del Carmen, an old fortress lies, seven museums including the tile museum (Museo del Azulejo) where a collection of valuable Portuguese, French and Spanish tiles are exhibited, the municipal and indigenous museums which tell more about the heritage and history of Colonia, the Spanish museum,  the Portuguese museum and Casa de Nacarello which is an 18th century Portuguese house, and an aquarium. We also recomend that you walk down the lovely coast at sunset before stopping at Lentas Maravillas (Santa Rita 61, Barrio Historico), a great teahouse overlooking the river. There are also some wonderful art galleries and some interesting restaurants such as La Florida, a renovated antique house which serves gourmet dining (Odriozola 215) , El Drugstore (Portugal 174), which has a colorful ambiance including an antique car set for two to dine in, and the traditional Pulperia de los Faroles(Misiones de los Tapes 101).

Colonia is just a ferry ride away.  Both Buquebus and Colonia Express offer various promotions for ferry rides to Colonia as well as special day trip fares.

We Recommend: A Rural Expedition to an “Estancia”

(Photo by ChrisGoldNY)

With the arrival of spring and sunny days to come the span of activities broadens in the outskirts of the city where short trips to the countryside make for a great way to experience what the local culture is all about.  As your are probably very well aware of, one of the focal points of Argentine tradition is the countryside, home of gauchos and many an unfortunate cow.  The estancias are rural estates that not only carry out typical rural activities but also have a rich history depicting the settlement patterns and land disputes of this young country.

Horseback riding, polo, fishing, and Fiesta Gaucha (including folkloric dances and races) are all offered as part of the Estancia experience.

Some places to check out are:

La Candelaria Estancia & Polo Club

A top-notch estancia offering everything from gaucho shows to parachuting and massages in a gorgeous French style chateau surrounded by fragrant nature.

Estancia Santa Susana

This typical estancia outside the city regularly celebrates a Fiesta Gaucha with traditional meals and activities. This is a great day trip option in which transport to and from the Estancia is included.

Estancia La Horqueta

Built on the shore of a lagoon and surrounded by trees this natural haven offers canoes, bird watching, and horseback riding. Plant lovers will get a chance to walk around the estate with Enrique Pierri, an expert on the surrounding vegetation.

More options here.