Travel Guide South America Argentina Bariloche



Bariloche stad en Nahual Huapi meer

Bariloche stad en Nahual Huapi meer

© Raf-Ellen

Bariloche, or officially San Carlos de Bariloche, is a city in the Rio Negro province in Argentina. It's located at the shore of Lago Nahuel Huapi at the foot of the Andes mountains and has about 140,000 inhabitants. It's the most famous skiing resort in Argentina but has much more to offer, also during the summermonths. Despite being an undeniable tourist magnet, Bariloche is set amidst incredible landscapes which should not be missed by nature-loving travelers. Another claim to fame is its Swiss-like atmosphere and its chocolate boutiques and breweries, and look for the St Bernard dogs on display for tourists.



Sights and Activities

  • Museo de la Patagonia (Museum of Patagonia), Centro Cívico s/n (At main plaza, near the Tourist Info center), ☎ +54 294 442-2309, e-mail: [email protected]. Tu-F 10:00-12:30 and 14:00-19:00, Sa 10:00-17:00. "Stuffed" native wildlife, pictures, and a great section covering the indigenous pre-Hispanic inhabitants of the region. Entrance on voluntary donation.
  • Huemul Project Site (on Huemul Island, just outside San Carlos de Bariloche). In the early 1950s, an Austrian scientist named Ronald Richter attempted to build the world's first fusion power plant on an island in a lake in the Andes, the undertaking being known as the Huemul Project. A couple of years and an equivalent of several hundred million US dollars later it came into light that Richter never had got any proof of his design actually functioning in the first place. As the patron of the project, President Juan Perón, was ousted in 1955, Richter was arrested for fraud. Today the ruins of the project can be visited on the island, and the city itself remains a center of Argentinian nuclear research.
  • Skiing in winter
  • Trekking and climbing in summer.

Bariloche is not all about skiing. Downtown you can find a beautiful place with shops, and a lot of night life. Also you can take tours, like the Circuito Chico. You can also waterski and go wakeboarding, there is a yacht club, and a huge forest of trees that only grow in Bariloche. You can also find a world-record-breaking lake. There is no machine that would ever reach the bottom of the Nahuel Hapi. But if you feel like water-skiing safely, you can go to the Gutierrez Lake. From the skiing mountain, "Cerro Catedral" you have amazing views, good skiing slopes, fine dining at night, going on motorized vehicles, etc. You can also ski while seeing the Condor fly. In summer you can also go to the Cerro Catedral. Activities go from horse-back riding and trekking, to white water rafting, bikes, and the Zorb.




San Carlos de Bariloche weather is transitional between the wet climate of the Andes to the west and the dry climate of Patagonia to the east. Areas to the west such as the city centre receive more precipitation than areas to the east such as the airport. Summers last from November to March, when temperatures are generally around 20 °C or a little more on average. Nights are chilly with only about 5 °C or 6 °C on average. Winters last from June to August with temperatures during the day of around 6 °C or 7 °C but with light frost at night.



Getting There

By Plane

Teniente Luis Candelaria International Airport near Bariloche offers quite a few flights for such a relative small place. It has many flights to Buenos Aires and also other domestic flights, including to places like Viedma, El Calafate, Comodoro Rivadavia, El Bolson, Esquel, Mar del Plata and Puerto Madryn.
International flights include Santiago de Chile, Puerto Montt, Montevideo and Sao Paulo.

By Train

The Tren Patagonico has weekly service slowly winding along the vast open plains on an 19-hour journey from Viedma on the Atlantic coast stopping by in San Antonio Oeste and several remote outposts along the route. The train offers Pullman seats and sleepers and it's also possible to bring along vehicles. Departures are Fridays at 18:00 from Viedma, arriving just after 12:00 the next day.

By Car

To go by car to Bariloche from Buenos Aires takes about 22 hours. One of the best alternatives is to go to Neuquen on the first day (a distance of about 1,200 kilometres) and then to continue the second day driving about 450 kilometres.

There is more than one route to get to Bariloche by car from Buenos Aires:

  • Short route - Take “Ruta Nacional Nº 5”, then take “Ruta Provincial Nº 1” nearby Lonquimay. Then, take “Ruta Provincial Nº 18” nearby “Macachin”. Take “Ruta Nacional Nº 35” south for 22 km, and then turn right and follow “Ruta Nacional Nº 152” through General Acha and until the “Casa de Piedra” where the route name changes to “ruta provincial Nº 6”. You must follow this until the intersection with “Ruta Nacional Nº 22”, where you must turn right again through Cipolletti – Neuquen. These big cities are connected by a bridge with an AR$0.65 toll. Follow through the "million" traffic lights until you exit the city. Approximately 32 kilometres later, stop in Arroyito and sleep deeply. Continue driving south using “Ruta Nacional Nº 237”, which will lead you to Bariloche.
  • Long route - take “Ruta Nacional Nº 3” south. Rest in Azul for 15 minutes, follow south until Bahia Blanca, rest for some time. Follow south; take “Ruta Nacional Nº 22”, set the air conditioner on and turn on your CD player; don’t travel too slowly, or you might fall asleep! Rest in Choele Choel. Drive through lots of tiny cities and through Cipolletti – Neuquen, big cities which are connected by a bridge with an AR$0.65 toll. Follow through the million traffic lights until you exit the city. Approximately 32 kilometres later, stop in Arroyito and sleep deeply. Continue driving South using “Ruta Nacional Nº 237”, which will lead you to Bariloche.

By Bus

Buses go frequently to Buenos Aires and Rosario, from where there are onward connections to the northeast. You have to go to Mendoza for destinations to the north and northwest like Salta and Tucuman. There are also buses to other Patagonian cities more to the west and south. Buses also go over the Puyehue pass to Osorno and Puerto Montt in Chile.

By Boat

The Cruce de Lagos tour offers a combination of boat and bus travel through the Andes mountains to Chile. You can arrive or depart Bariloche by taking a series of ferries that wind through several lakes and connect by short bus rides from the Pacific at Puerto Montt, Chile. It's a one day trip unless you opt to stay overnight at Hotel Peulla near the pass.



Getting Around

Excellent public bus service, served by just one company (since 2017): My Bus. The only exception is if you want to visit Dinahuapi, then you should catch a bus of "Las grutas". If you are planning on using the buses more than a few times, buy a magnetic card—otherwise tickets will suffice. The magnetic card is the same "Sube" system used in Buenos Aires so your can reuse the card if you already have one. As in Buenos Aires, the same card can be shared by more than one person. Alternatively, you can buy the one for the My Bus company on arrival in the bus terminal for AR$11 plus a minimum first credit of AR$29 (subsequent top-ups have a minimum of AR$10) to get into town (AR$6). If you don't have the card, you can ask a passenger to exchange a trip in return for money. Further top-ups are possible in kiosks; the tourism office in the Centro Cívico has a full list, and complete information on bus lines. The trip from downtown Bariloche to Llao Llao is AR$6.




Bariloche offers an excellent array of restaurants, with cuisines from all around the world, serving quality food.

  • El Boliche de Alberto. Has, according to some, the best meat in Argentina. There are two restaurants in town, and one located about 8 kilometres out of town. Ask a taxi driver to take you there. Be aware that if you arrive after 20:00, you may have to wait in line for 30 minutes or more, especially if you are a party of 6 or more. El boliche de Alberto has a meat version of the restaurant which specialises in meats such as beef, chicken or pork etc. and there is a pasta version which serves a variety of different pastas.
  • Parrilla El Refugio del montañ Julian, San Martín 590. Also called "El Refugio Del Montañes", this family-owned restaurant has a homey atmosphere (especially compared to the tourist-trap feel of El Boliche de Alberto) that adds to the experience. The meat is very good, you don't have to wait 2 hr to enjoy it, and the location is conveniently on one of the main avenues in Bariloche. However serving sizes are quite small and pricey (AR$200 for a modest 2-person dinner with desert and no wine).
  • Taberna Breogan Celta (also on San Martín, one of the main avenues). This local restaurant features the local smoked wild game. Especially recommended is the meat-n-cheese plate featuring venison, wild boar, salmon, and two kinds of cheese.
  • Casita Suiza. One of the best regional restaurants in Bariloche. You also can ask Swiss specialties like fondues, raclettes and pierrades. edit
  • Cassis Restaurant (Peñón de Arelauquen, Ruta 82, Lago Gutiérrez), ☎ +54 2944-476167.
  • Friends, Bartolome Mitre. Special, great salads and sandwiches, especially good pasta.
  • Sesamo. This downtown restaurant serves amazing Middle Eastern food. The best ethnic food in town.
  • Morfy's (behind the Museum of Patagonia). Small sandwich shop that serves delicious food in massive portions. Offers many types of sandwiches and just about any type of topping for them that you can think of for low prices. The owner is very friendly and speaks Spanish, Hebrew, and a little English.




  • Choppin Tapas y Fondue (on the circuit in Llao Llao, 1.6 kilometres away from the famous Hotel Llao Llao (by the Shell gas station)). Eclectic, semi-hippy, great music, with an incredible view of the hotel, golf course, and mountains in the backdrop. Excellent homebrew beer on tap.
  • Antares Brewery, Ada M. Elflein 47. Nice variety of food and great beer. The barley wine is especially potent. Two-for-one pints during happy hour, every day 18:00-20:00.
  • The Map Room, Urquiza 248, ☎ +54 (02944) 456-856. A bar.
  • Wilkenny, San Martín 435. Irish-themed bar popular with tourists. There are better choices.
  • South Bar, Juramento. Popular local bar.
  • Malabar, Juramento. Popular local bar.




Prices vary with the season, being the highest during ski season (July-August) and very high during summer (December-February). The accommodation is varied, from renting bungalows and cottages to five-star hotels with the best views.

  • La Justina, Quaglia 726, ☎ +54 294 452 4064. Just a Few blocks from the City Center. Big, spacious rooms, cozy common spaces for relaxing,watching TV or DVDs, listening to music or playing games. Free internet and breakfast, a well stocked kitchen, and very friendly owners. They can help you with any tourist info you need, and rent bikes. members get 10% off.
  • Camping Hostel Los Coihues, Lihuel Calel 156, Villa Los Coihues, ☎ +54 9 294 4467481, +54 9 294 430-8879. Well-priced for the experience. Located in a quiet area, you can easily travel in and out of town on Bus 50 while enjoying the true natural beauty of Patagonia. The campsite is located on a huge, lush yard complete with trees, large outside grills, a crystal clear Patagonian river available for kayaking, 24/7 hot water, Wi-Fi, clean bathrooms with showers, and kitchen use. The owning family, who also live on the property, address any touristic questions or concerns. Kayaks are also available for guests to use on the river passing through the yard or on the nearby Lake Guiterrez. Hostel AR$50, camping AR$30.
  • Costa Azul Apart, Av. Bustillo 4200, ☎ +54 294 4 442444. Costa Azul Apart offers 21 cozy apartments that feature standard amenities like cable TV and a private toilet and bath. Some of its amenities include Wi-Fi access, car rental and tour assistance, and room service. Best rates on official website start at AR$180.
  • Aurora Hostel, O'Connor St (next to the cross with Rivadavia St). Nice, clean, it seems like home with a friendly family. Only AR$50 for a bed in a small 4-bed dorm. AR$50.
  • Periko's, Morales 555, ☎ +54 2644-522326. Named after the owner's dog.
  • Hospedaje Penthouse 1004, San Martín 127, Edificio Bariloche Centre 10th floor, ☎ +54 2944-432228, e-mail: [email protected]. Offers an amazing panoramic view. Excellent public areas, especially the kitchen. Free breakfast, Wi-Fi internet and has a computer for use but it is very busy and hard to get access to. Won't make reservations if you you are arriving after 14:00. Bed in 4- or 6-person dorm: AR$260 or AR$220, double with private bath AR$700.
  • Hostel El Gaucho, Belgrano 209, ☎ +54 2944 522464. Near the civic center. Clean, cozy hostel owned by an Argentine and a German. AR$50.
  • Hostel La Puerta Verde, Quaglia 160 1º floor, ☎ +54 2944-429051, e-mail: [email protected].
  • Hostel Refugio Patagonia, Mitre 1338, ☎ +54 2944-422539. You can feel at home with Tato and Sandra, who are building a big "quincho"/barbecue saloon.
  • Lake View Bed & Breakfast, Pioneros kn 4.6 (5 minutes from downtown), ☎ +54 2944-1534-1876 (Mark).
  • Marcopoloinn Hostel, Salta 422, ☎ +54 2944-400105, e-mail: [email protected]. Modern, clean hostel. Free breakfast and dinner, fast internet, Wi-Fi. Lots of party folk. Good value. Dorms from AR$75 (HI members), AR$70 (nonmembers).
  • Tango Inn Downtown Hostel, Salta 514, ☎ +54 2944-400004, e-mail: [email protected]. Modern, clean hostel. Free breakfast, fast internet, Wi-Fi. Very good free breakfast buffet for guests. Very quiet. Dorms from AR$40 (YHA members), AR$47 (nonmembers).
  • Ruca Hueney Youth Hostel, Ada María Elflein 396, ☎ + 54-294-4433986, +54 2944-437026, e-mail: [email protected]. Free breakfast, internet. 6- and 8-bed dorms, one double room and two quad rooms. Dorms from AR$.
  • Hostel 41 below (Hostel 41 below), 94 Pasaje Juramento, e-mail: [email protected]. Central quiet location, Kiwi-owned and run, Lake view, comfortable chilled out living, Extensive music selection. Fun, young atmosphere. Many tour options to book right there for the same prices as in town. Book swap and wi-fi throughout. Homey feel.
  • Nomad Backpackers, Salta. When all the other ones are fully booked, this one might be worth a try.
  • Hostel Achalay, Morales 564, ☎ +54 294 452-2556.
  • Hosteria Bello Horizonte, Salta 394, ☎ +54 294 442-2621, e-mail: [email protected].
  • Kospi Boutique Guesthouse, Mitre 1361 (one block and a half east from Diagonal Capraro on Mitre), ☎ +54 9 294 424-4442, e-mail: [email protected]. Despite having all the charm, cosiness, cleanliness of the "Boutique Guesthouse" in its name, and with a homey feeling to top, the price could definitely put it in the Budget section if you are not looking for a dorm. The hosts Juan and Lucia are warm, friendly, welcoming and helpful. Good kitchen, Wi-Fi, free (homemade!) breakfast. The rooms are cozy, however you will not get views of the lake (except in the upstairs communal area) and the bathrooms are definitely small. Nevertheless, the place is perfect to have a relaxed stay away from the party crowds. Double with private bathroom AR$320.
  • Edelweiss Hotel, Av. San Martín 536, ☎ +54 2944-445500.
  • Penon Del Lago, Av. Exequiel Bustillo 800, ☎ +54 294 446 3000.
  • Nido del Condor, Av. Bustillo Km. 6.9, ☎ +54 11-4315-3305.
  • La Farola - Lago Gutierrez, ☎ +54 29449-551072.
  • Hotel Tirol Bariloche, Libertad 175, ☎ +54 2944 426152. Check-in: 12:00, check-out: 10:00. The 3-star Hotel Tirol Bariloche is in the city´s heart, 100 meters from the main street and has spectacular views over Lake Nahuel Huapi. It has private parking inside the hotel and free Wi-Fi throughout the building.
  • Grand Hotel Bariloche, Mitre 408 (On the main street, half way down the commercial route of Mitre avenue, 100 metres from the Nahuel Huapi lake.), ☎ +54 2944 430622. Grand Hotel Bariloche is a 9-story hotel (3,000 m².) They offer 75 rooms organized in singles, doubles, triples and apartments. Room rates start at USD37.
  • Rochester Hotel Bariloche, Av. Bustillo 6700 (Next to Nahuel Huapi Lake), ☎ +54 11 5032-5569, e-mail: [email protected]. The hotel offers Super King beds, dry heat and steam saunas, Finnish bath, Scottish shower, fitness center, and a heated interconnecting indoor and outdoor pool.
  • Galileo Boutique Hotel, Av. Antartida Argentina, s/n, Base Cerro Catedral, ☎ +54 2944 460-020. Galileo Boutique Hotel is located along the base of Cerro Catedral in San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina. Major landmarks, such as the Nahuel Huapi Lake and the city’s Civic Center, are within proximate distance from the hotel. Feel as if you’re in the Swiss Alps when relaxing in Galileo Boutique Hotel’s luxurious Rooms, Suites, and Apartments, each adorned with quaint cypress wood frames and geometric roofs. They have great early bird discounts. In winter is right next to the slopes and in summer you can trek to Refugio Frey from the hotel´s parking lot. from USD130.
  • Hotel Llao Llao. Beautiful alpine style hotel, built in 1939 (and renovated sincr), adds to the dramatic backdrop of the mountains. A classic resort: there's a golf course, boating, and much for the wealthy to see and do. Nightly rates were around USD300 in Dec 2004, so the AR$8 coffee might be the way to go in order to enjoy the view, the ambiance, etc, without paying an arm/leg to stay there overnight. Excellent service, slightly OTT decor. About 25 km from the city centre and about 35 km from Cerro Catedral.
  • Design Suites Hotel, Av. Exequiel Bustillo 2500 Km2.5, ☎ +54 29444 57000, e-mail: [email protected]. Check-in: 15:00, check-out: 11:00. Modern hotel (not all suites as the name might imply), with all the benefits (spacious rooms, free Wi-Fi, stunning panorama views, clever design touches) and drawbacks you expect from a boutique hotel. The suites themselves are not traditional suites, rather larger rooms with a couch and a balcony. 3 km from the city center. From US$180.

View our map of accommodation in Bariloche



Keep Connected


Internet cafes are still widely available in most places, even in smaller towns, though many people are connected through the internet at home or by mobile device. Many cafes and restaurants offer free WiFi with an advertisement in their windows. All you need to do is buy something and ask for the password. Apart from specific places, including soms airports and major stations, quite a few cities are offering free wifi, including Buenos Aires, Mendoza and Iguazu Falls.


See also: International Telephone Calls

The country calling code to Argentina is 54. To make an international call from Argentina, dial 00 followed by the country code and the rest of the telephone number. All 0800 numbers are toll-free numbers, except if you call from a mobile phone. Emergency numbers are available for Police (101), Ambulance (107) and Fire (100). Emergency dispatcher for Buenos Aires (city), Santa Fe (city), Rosario (city), Salta (province), Corrientes (province), and Buenos Aires (province) 911. In a mobile phone 112 forwards to 911.

You can get a prepaid Movistar / Claro / Personal SIM card for a few pesos / free at phone shops, all you pay is about 20 Pesos for your initial credits. Inserting the SIM card into your unlocked American or European mobile phone should work, although to register the SIM you have to enter your passport (or any 9 digit) number - you then have your personal Argentinean phone numbers. Calls cost around 1 Peso per minute. Receiving calls is usually free, except for international calls, and some cross network / inter-city calls - hence buying a SIM card purely to keep in touch with people overseas may not be worth it.

Without a cellphone, there are similar cards with credits for international calls. You get them at so called locutorios, where you can also use the phone booths. You dial a free number to connect to the service, then your secret number for the credits, and then the international phone number you want to call. Using these cards, a one-hour call to Europe will cost about 10 Pesos. Don't call without such cards or even from your hotel - it will be way more expensive.


Correos de Argentina is the national postal service of Argentina. There are also two private carriers operating nationwide (OCA and Andreani) and a number of regional ones though Correos de Argentina will be the one most likely to be used by travellers. Post offices are mostly open between 8:00am and 8:00pm Monday to Friday and 9:00am to 1:00pm on Saturday, though there are regional variantions with longer hours in central post offices in big cities and shorter ones in small towns. Services are pretty reliable but slow, mostly taking about two weeks to deliver a postcard or letter to the USA or Europe, but usually within a few days sending it domestically. There is also a more expensive express options. You can track a package online at the Correos de Argentino website. Parcels take at least 3-5 days domestically and weeks internationally. Otherwise try international companies like FedEx, TNT, DHL or UPS to send parcels. It is probably more reliable as well as faster.


Quick Facts


  • Latitude: -41.14929
  • Longitude: -71.30127

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This is version 28. Last edited at 10:22 on Feb 15, 18 by Utrecht. 11 articles link to this page.

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