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Whether you are in the early stages of planning your travel or have booked your trip and are looking for some last minute information our Argentina Travel Guide will help advise you and cover any questions you may have.

Argentina is a vast country, and the climate various significantly depending on which region of Argentina you are visiting. Argentina is popular as a year-round destination, and places like Buenos Aires, Iguazu and the Andes regions can be visited as 12 month destinations (as long as you don't mind a spot of rain which can occur in certain months). Patagonia however is best explored during the summer months from October to March when the temperatures are more mild and snow has melted making access easy. To find out about the best time of year to visit each of the regions and what weather to expect during your travels see below:

argentina buenos aires weather chartWeather in the Buenos Aires:

Buenos Aires is Argentina's fabulous capital city, famous for tango, steaks, and a rich history and culture.

Located on the Eastern coast of South America Buenos Aires enjoys a very warm sunny summer from November through to March. During the spring and autumn the temperatures are more moderate and during the winter months of June and July the temperatures can be mild but not overly cold. Rain is common throughout each of the seasons.

argentina calafate weather chartWeather in Patagonia / El Calafate

Patagonia is a very large region of South America straddling both Argentina and Chile.

El Calafate is one of the most popular tourist destinations within the Argentina Patagonia region. This stunning town is located on the banks of the equally beautiful Argentina Lake. Patagonia is located at the southern tip of South America, so this means that the winters are very cold with frequent snow. The best time to travel to this region of Argentina is during the summer months from October to March when the days are warmer, snow is less prevalent, roads and paths more accessible and the fabulous scenery comes to life with an abundance of flora and fauna.

argentina iguassu climate chartWeather at Iguazu Falls

The Iguazu Falls are one of natures most stunning natural spectacles and a true marvel of our fantastic world.

The falls are located inland from the east coast of South America on the border with Brazil and Paraguay in a sub-tropical humid rainforest region. During the summer months from October through to April temperatures can be very hot and sunny, with the temperatures falling through the milder winter months which are an equally popular time to visit. Due to the humidity rainfall is common, although don't let this put you off visiting - rain can make the waterfall look even more spectacular!

argentina salta climate chartWeather in Salta

Salta is located in the far north of Argentina on the rolling eastern slopes of the Andes mountains and near the beautiful valleys and wine-growing regions of Cafayate.

Located at an altitude of around 1100 metres above sea level Salta has wet and dry seasons, typical of the Andes region. The wet season runs roughly from late October through to early April, whereas the dry season is from late April to early October which is the best time to visit this part of Argtentina. Temperatures throughout the year are moderate to warm and sunny.

argentina ushuaia climate chartWeather in Ushuaia

Ushuaia is famous for being the most southerly city in the world and this extreme southerly location can mean extremes of weather.

Temperatures in Ushuaia rarely reach above 15 degrees centigrade during the summer months, and during this period days are typically windy and cloudy. During autumnm the temperature drops quite rapidly and winters can be bitterly cold with frequent snow and a minimum of around 7 hours of sunlight. The best time to visit Ushuaia is during the summer months of May, June, July and August.

 

The Argentina Peso ($) is the current unit of currency in Argentina with one Argentine peso consisting of 100 "centavos".

The currency is available in a range of coins (1, 5, 10, 25 and 50 centavos, and 1 and 2 pesos) and notes (5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 pesos). Often availability of change can be an issue in Argentina, with shortages of the smaller denominations of coins, so it is worth keeping hold of change where possible as some shops might not accept payment by larger value notes.

ATM machines are found throughout Argentina, in particular in tourist destinations and in major cities such as Buenos Aires and Mendoza. If you are travelling into very rural areas cash machines may be less available so it is always advisable to take cash with you in these instances.

Most restaurants, hotels, cruise vessels, and other businesses will accept payment by Visa, Mastercard and American Express, although check before you make your purchase.

Inform your bank of the dates and destinations of your trip prior to travel. We recommend you save a copy of your credit card details and the international contact number to telephone in case your card is lost, stolen or damaged during your trip.

Inflation in Argentina is currently estimated to be at around 20%, so this is something to consider when travelling to Argentina.

We highly recommend you visit a medical professional before your holiday and inform them of exactly when and where you will be travelling to make sure you are given the correct immunisations, medication and medical advice for your trip.

It is also important you carry with you any of your own medication you may require during your trip, and it is recommended you also carry some form of suitable medication to ease headaches and upset stomachs.

Be aware that some parts of Argentina are at altitude, including the Andes region and parts of Patagonia, so altitude sickness is something you need to be aware of if travelling to regions at altitude. To reduce the symptoms of altitude sickness and to help you acclimatise as quickly as possible stay hydrated by drinking water, avoid alcohol at least for the first few days at altitude and try to avoid energetic activities. If you are concerned about this further we recommend that you discuss your travel plans with your doctor prior to travelling.

The Zika virus has been reported in countries across South America, and if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant we advise that you speak to your local GP and / or travel health clinic and seek professional medical advice before travelling.

The NHS travel website has further useful and helpful information: www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk.

We are not medical professionals and medication should only be taken following professional medical advice.

Spanish is the official language of Argentina and it is spoken throughout the country.

Spanish in Argentina differs slightly from Spanish spoken in the majority of other Spanish-speaking countries due to the use of the formal "vos" (and conjugations thereof) instead of "tu" as spoken in most other Spanish-speaking countries. 

We recommend that you try to learn at least a few basic Spanish words prior to your trip to increase your enjoyment of your holiday and to help immerse you more in the culture of South America.

At the time of writing UK nationals with a British passport do not need to apply for a visa in advance of travel to Argentina and will be issued with a 90-day visa upon arrival, however always check the current situation prior to travel. Some nationalities will be required to apply for a visa in advance of travel, and some nations also need to pay a "visa reciprocity fee" (where countries charge each others citizens to enter their country) to obtain the 90-day visa. In all instances we recommend you check with your local embassy before travelling.

Upon entry to Argentina you will complete an Andean Immigration Card which will be stamped and returned to you, it is important you keep this document with your passport at all times as you will need it to pass through passport control when you exit Argentina and if you have lost this document you may be required to pay a fine.

Make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months after the completion date of your trip. We also recommend you take a photocopy of the photo page of your passport.

Please note that in some instances we will make certain reservations for your holiday linked to the specific details on your passport (including name, passport number) so it is important you do not renew your passport or any details on your passport prior to travelling. If you need to renew your passport after booking but before travelling this is usually possible and we would recommend you travel with both your new and old passports just in case, however check with us in advance to confirm. If you have any questions regarding passports please just get in touch.

For all nationalities, including if you are travelling on a British passport, it is your responsibility to ensure you have the correct documentation to ensure you can enter Argentina and all other countries included in your holiday.

It is not advisable to drink tap water in Argentina and we recommend you only consume bottled water and carry a bottle of water with you at all times. For similar reasons avoid ice in drinks (unless you are confident it has been prepared using sterilised water) and if you are eating salads or fruit check they have not been washed in tap water.

Argentina is one of the best destinations in South America to visit for fantastic cuisine and part of any travel to Argentina is sampling and tasting the various delights the country can offer. 

The classic Argentina dish is barbecue "asado" beef usually served with delicious Malbec red wine which is popular throughout the country. Beef is served in almost all restaurants in Argentina, however there are some fantastic steak restaurants in Buenos Aires in particular that showcase the traditional cuts of beef and barbecue techniques.

Asado barbecue cooking isn't just restricted to beef: mixed grill barbecue platters served on a mini barbecue on the table to keep the meat warm are also popular throughout the country. In addition to beef the platters contain a variety of other meats including pork sausage, black pudding, beef "chitterlings" (intestines), and lamb (particularly in the southern Patagonia region where lamb farming occurs).

If you have a sweet tooth then "Dulce de Leche" is a must to try, this sweet sticky milk-based delight is used as a flavour in deserts, biscuits, cakes and even spread on toast at breakfast.

Throughout Argentina there are countless food stalls and shops selling mini snacks and the most popular snack is empanadas which are mini pasties / savoury pastries available with a variety of fillings including meat, chicken and cheese.

Argentina is famous for its wine production and the wine-growing regions near to Mendoza and Cafayate produce fine wines including Malbec. Wine is available in restaurants throughout the country, but to truly enjoy the best wine in the foothills of the Andes travel to the northern Argentina region is a must.

Vegetarian cuisine is not as popular throughout South America as it is in Europe or the UK and this is also true in Argentina, although restaurants are starting to offer more vegetarian options particularly in the tourist regions.

Never travel without suitable travel insurance. Travel insurance is a requirement of our Booking Terms and Conditions and it is your responsibility to ensure you have travel insurance applicable to your personal circumstances and holiday. Advise your insurance company of any pre-existing medical conditions and ensure you are covered for all activities included within your trip.

We recommend you take a copy of you insurance policy and a copy of your policy and terms and conditions with you on your holiday.

We are able to provide the contact details of a Travel Insurance company if required.

The key things to pack are your passport (we also recommend you email yourself a scan of the relevant pages), money, suitable luggage including a day-sack, water-proof clothing, your camera and memory cards, and your flight e-tickets.

Deciding what clothes to pack really depends on what time of year you are travelling and which region of Argentina you are visiting. In the southern Patagonia region if you are travelling during the winter months you will need very thick clothing including thermal hat and gloves, and if you are travelling to this region during the summer months the weather can still be windy and mild so layers of clothing are recommended including scarf, jacket, hat and gloves. In the hot and humid coastal regions including Buenos Aires and Iguazu summer temperatures can be very hot and sunny so sun hats and sun cream are highly recommended to protect your skin from the harsh Andean sun, with lightweight waterproof clothing a must due to frequent rain in this region.

Other items to pack include a suitable personal first aid kit, binoculars, a torch with batteries, an electricity adaptor (a typical international plug converter is usually suitable), toilet paper (carry a small amount with you at all times on your trip as some restaurants and cafes in South America don't always provide toilet paper), a travel guide book, strong sun lotion (the sun can be very harsh particularly in the highland regions and in Buenos Aires), sun hat and sun glasses, insect repellent, plastic bags (to keep things dry), earplugs, strong insect repellent, a lightweight towel, toiletries, and an alarm clock. Suitable footwear is also vital, with trekking shoes or trekking boots perfect for general travel and a must for trips to Patagonia.

When you book we provide you with a full packing list in our Welcome Pack.

South America is a relatively safe continent and the vast majority of people that visit South America travel without problems.

South America does have lower standards of health and safety than some countries and is a poorer continent than other parts of the world and this can mean that opportunistic petty crime can occur, particularly in the larger cities like Buenos Aires, so an element of common sense is required to reduce the chances of you having a problem. Always stay within tourist areas and try not to stroll along quiet streets or away from the tourist areas of towns, particularly at night. Avoid carrying large amounts of money with you, only carry what you need for that particular day and use a money belt if possible, ensure money and other valuables are left in the safety deposit boxes in your hotel. Keep the personal possessions that you have with you during the day, such as your bag or camera, on your person at all times and avoid leaving them on seats or under tables at restaurants. If you need to travel by taxi during your trip avoid flagging taxis down in the street and make sure to only ever use an official taxi organised through your hotel.

Restaurants: Although tipping is entirely discretionary tipping a small amount (5-10% of the bill) is quite common in tourist restaurants, and some moderate and high-end restaurants might include a service charge on your bill (so check before tipping).

Hotels: Unlike other parts of South America in Argentina it is common to tip the staff in the hotel that are helping make your stay that little bit extra special, this includes the staff that change your sheets and clean your room each day, the porters that help with your bags, and the waiters, doormen and other staff in the hotel. A small tip of a few pesos is perfectly reasonable.

Guides: Tipping tour guides is common right across South America but the amount to tip depends on the length of your tour and how much you enjoyed the tour. If you feel your guide was good at their job, spoke clearly with good English, was engaging, knowledgeable and passionate about the destinations you visited and created a very enjoyable experience then you would typically expect to tip. For a typical half-day tour a tip of the equivalent of around £2.00-5.00 per person is a good starting point, and you can increase this amend depending on the length of the tour.

Tipping is optional so you should never feel obliged to tip.

In our holidays typically excursions, accommodation, transfers and domestic travel including flights are all included (on self-drive holidays excursions and entry fees may not be included), so really the only additional costs you will incur when in Argentina will be for things like drinks or meals that are not included, tips, and other costs such as souvenirs.

Argentina is a more expensive country to visit compared to other countries in South America (such as Bolivia), however it can still be good value compared to travel in UK or elsewhere in Europe. The more expensive regions of Argentina are the larger cities, including Buenos Aires, and the more rural tourist areas including parts of Patagonia.

In general it is possible to find a moderate restaurant and pay around £12.00-£15.00 for a good meal, slightly more if you order more than one course or drinks. Alcohol costs around £2-3 for a bottle of beer, wine is generally good value (in particular in the northern wine-growing regions) although imported non-Argentinian wine is more expensive. There are many "hole in the wall" type eateries (BBQ sandwiches, pizza, hot dogs etc) where it is possible to eat much more economically. Food and drink costs in hotels, particularly the more luxurious hotels, are slightly more expensive than the restaurants and bars nearby.

Inflation in Argentina is generally high (current estimates state around 20%) and this can mean the prices of products fluctuate which is something to be aware of.

Unfortunately not all airlines operate the same luggage requirement standards, so it is difficult for us to specifically advise what the luggage allowance will be for your holiday.

Typical luggage allowance for international flights is 20kg or 23kg depending on your airline, and this can be confirmed by checking the relevant airlines website. Please bear in mind that your Argentina travel will likely involve domestic flights within Argentina or South America so it is important you comply with the airline that has the lightest requirements to avoid issues. Some domestic airlines in Argentina, including Aerolineas Argentinas, do have lighter luggage restrictions of 15kg for some of their domestic flights, and if your luggage is heavier than 15kg you may need to pay an additional fee at the check in desk. Your airline will be listed on your booking confirmation documentation, and if you need assistance with this please let us know.


The information on this page is intended as a helpful guide only. If you have any further questions regarding Argentina please contact us - we are always more than willing to help.