From Buenos Aires: Gaucho and Ranch in San Antonio de Areco
- Small group
- Pickup available
- Duration: 9 hours
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This is a MUST DO experience while in Buenos Aires. Daniela, our tour guide was very nice and knowledgeable, she even prepared a MATE tea for us to test it and explained the origin and the culture around this tea in Argentina as well as how to be prepared We had a stop in San Antonio de Areca and visited a museum of old traditions conserved by this family for many generations.. Once reaching the estancia, we've been welcomed with empanadas and a glass of wine or juice at our choice. The settings are very nice, you can spend the nights at the estancia. There is a swimming pool available for guest. We ride the horses or take the carriage for 30 min and then return and have he lunch that consisted in different types of grilled meat, salads and drinks. The meat (asado) is deliciou and the staff was dressed as gatchos. But the peak of the day was the traditional dancing. The owner and one of the staff kids were performing (4.5 y and 3 y old) with the other staff. They were very sweet.
Took two hours to get to San Antonio de Areco, stopped at the small town on the way to the ranch. Nice church. Very informative guide. At the ranch we had a drink and some empanadas - they were excellent. Then there was a choice of horse riding or a carriage ride. It was possible to wander around the ranch. Lunch went on and on, the food was good. Don't fill up on the first round of meat - there were sausages, then pork, then chicken, then lamb, then beef, then more beef and more beef. There were some 'salad' dishes to go with all the meat. Wine, beer or soft drinks. Two choices for dessert. Then there was a 'show' with dancing and some singing. Audience participation - not for me!!! Very basic. Best part was the horse whispering demonstration, that was brilliant. I was expecting more gaucho demonstrations, but not to be. Another two hours back to Buenos Aires. Nice to get out of the city and see some countryside.
The tour was pretty good, there where just three things which would have made it better - there was a small war between the air conditioning and the heating: sometimes the AC was cooling way too much and then the heating would cook our feet. (Most probably a technical problem, but nevertheless a little bit annoying) - The guide himself was really nice and knew a lot about the sites - but I was hoping for a few more facts or stories which are not from Wikipedia ;) - We had to wait almost one hour for the pickup at our hotel - maybe it would be better to not tell everyone the same pickup-time (start of the tour: 1:45 pm - pickup-time 1:45pm for EVERYBODY at the bus). It is not realistic to pick up everybody at different locations at the same time, it just causes long waiting times.
What a wonderful tour. Kudos to our guide and the company. There was a mixup in our pick up hotel and they sent a car to pick us up. Our tour guide was well informed and provided history along with pictures and actual item for our experience while on the bus. Once at the ranch we enjoyed the food, buggy ride, entertainment. I highly recommend this for first time visitors to Buenos-Aires. Thank you!
We had a great time getting away from the city for a day. We had an English speaking guide for our tour named Aime K. She really was an exceptional person - so energetic, enthusiastic, considerate and patient. We enjoyed the horse back riding, the bbq, and the entertainment at Estancia Ombu and visiting the colonial town of San Antonio de Areca