Top Things To Do in Argentina While Volunteering

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One among the world’s most scenic drives, the most beautiful bookshop in the world – there are countless reasons for a person to pack their bags and head straight to Argentina. A huge South American country with no shortage of adventurous travel opportunities. From glacier excursions to breathtaking natural wonders — the things to do and places to visit in Argentina span far and wide. Sites that shouldn’t be missed whilst Volunteering in Argentina include the Quebrada de Humahuaca, Manzana de las Luces, and the largest waterfall system in the world, the Iguazu Falls. VolSol has crafted some amazing volunteer programs in Argentina including Childcare, Teaching English, Community Development, Sports Coaching, Women Empowerment, Art & Culture Experience etc. that are apt for college/university students, groups, families as well as gap year travelers who are looking for a meaningful journey in Argentina.

Iguazu Falls and its grandeur

Forming a natural border between Argentina and Brazil, the Iguazu Falls creates one of South America’s coolest attractions. The Iguazu Falls is a compilation of 275 different cascades that spans nearly 3 kilometers in length. Devil’s Throat, the main attraction standing at a staggering 80 meters, is beaten in height only by Victoria Falls in Africa. Iguazu Falls has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1984 and was recently voted one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature.

Recommended activities:

  • Viewing the falls up close is the top priority. This can be done via self-guided hiking on the trails around the falls and is one of the most highly recommended things to do in Argentina.
  • Gain a different perspective by taking a boat tour around Devil’s Throat — just be prepared to get wet.

Best season:

The volume of the falls is at its peak during the rainy months (December and January). However, this makes hiking, boat tours, and other activities less enjoyable and accessible due to bad weather. It’s recommended to go during the drier months of March – April, and August – September to fully enjoy all the extras.

A Stroll with Penguins

The southern part of Argentina draws hundreds of thousands of penguins every year who come to nest and feast on the plentiful fish supply before they prepare for migration. The tuxedo-wearing birds are adorable and they’re also surprisingly comfortable around humans, which has made walking with the penguins an uber-popular thing to do in Argentina. Naturally, tourists cannot resist walking next to a waddling penguin.

Recommended locations:

  • Punta Tombo, mid-way down Argentina’s east coast, has the largest colony of Magellan Penguins, making it a great place for interaction. The 3km long trail leads travelers right past the penguin’s burrows with close views of the birds lounging on the rocks and beaches.
  • Isla Martillo is another prime penguin viewing spot, located at the very southern tip of the country. This island houses over 1,000 nests of Magellan and Gentoo Penguins.

Best season:

Late spring, summer, and early fall months of September – April.

Glacier Expedition

Argentina’s location in the Patagonia region of South America means this country has no shortage of glaciers to explore. In fact, it’s one of the main reasons people come to Argentina. This country boasts some of the largest glaciers on the continent, many of them lying in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Glacier National Park. Identifying the best ones to visit is tough when you’ve got over 300 glaciers to choose from.

Recommended glaciers:

  • Glacier Upsala, the largest in South America, is naturally a must-see for its sheer size of 870 square kilometers. It’s not the most accessible glacier, but the journey to get there makes it all the more special.
  • Perito Moreno is another big one and a definite thing to do in Argentina. This glacier is unique in that it continues to grow as opposed to retreating as many other glaciers in the region. It’s towering 80-meter-tall ice cliffs are best appreciated via boat tour. The jumping off point to both these glaciers is the small town of El Calafate offering plenty of Perito Moreno glacier tours to join.

Best season:

You can visit the glaciers any time of year. High season (summer) is from December – March and has the warmest temperatures, but also the most tourists. The shoulder seasons of spring and fall are becoming increasingly popular due to mild day temperatures and fewer visitors.

Salta and Jujuy

Salta & Jujuy are neighboring towns that are like yin and yang. Scenic Salta is known for its gorgeous Andean landscape. Jujuy receives lesser attention but is definitely not a miss. These provinces hold some of South America’s most awesome natural wonders. The rocks in this region are full of different minerals, creating a sort of rainbow-color effect that’s simply mesmerizing. A trip up north is worth it for Salta and Jujuy alone.

Recommended sights:

  • Serrania de Hornocal in the Quebrada de Humahuaca of Jujuy is a geological wonder that will leave you breathless. The carefully carved V-shapes of the limestone mountains are impressive, but its most spectacular aspect is definitely the rainbow of colors that have seemingly been painted in large stripes across the formation.
  • Quebrada de las Conchas or Shell’s Ravine/Gorge is in the south of Salta province. This 40km area of multi-colored rocks has taken on a unique form after being whipped into different shapes by the wind and rain. One look and you’ll think you’ve landed on Mars!

Best season:

Spring and early summer months of October – December for pleasant temperatures that haven’t yet reached their summer-high peak. It’s also a drier time in the region which is best for outdoor tours and activities.

Take a sip of Vino

Argentinian wine is at the top of its game. Thousands of miles away from the glaciers in the south, Argentina’s wine regions are mainly grouped in the north of the country. As the 5th largest wine producer in the world, Argentina proudly produces top-quality bottles with distinct flavors and sought-after aromas. Hence, wine tasting cannot be missed when in Argentina.

Recommended Winelands:

  • Mendoza is the heart and soul of wine country. This region houses more than half of the country’s wineries and is responsible for roughly two-thirds of all wine production in Argentina. One of the country’s best wines, Malbec, is a must-try variety in the region.
  • Salta province is famous for having some of the oldest and most unique vineyards. At 1,700 feet, the Cafayate region produces fruity cabernet sauvignons and full-flavored whites cultivated from some of the highest vineyards in the world!

Best season:

Mendoza should be visited from November – February for the warmest temperatures. Salta is different; April – June, and August – November are best.

The El Chalten Trail

The mountain village of El Chalten charms with its small-town authenticity and wows with its world-class hiking trails. Sitting at the base of Mount Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre on the border of Chile and Argentina, El Chalten beckons to adventurous travelers wanting to discover the Patagonian Andes. Visiting El Chalten, nicknamed the ‘Trekking Capital of Argentina’ is definitely a top thing to do in Argentina.

Recommended trails:

  • Mount Fitz Roy reaches over 3,300 meters, making successful summit climbs few and far between. Not to worry — there are many other scenic trails around the mountain. The most popular is Laguna de Los Tres trail (20km round-trip) that leads through stunning valleys and forests, past glaciers, lagoons, and glacier lakes and yields spectacular views of the peak.
  • A few hundred meters shorter than Fitz Roy, Cerro Torre is another mountain located in the Patagonian Ice Field. The 22km Laguna Torre trek is of low difficulty and leads to an optimal viewing point of the peak with the Torre Lagoon in the foreground.

Best season:

Summer (December – March) has the mildest temperatures and most preferable weather. However, it’s crowded. We suggest the months of March – April (end of summer/early fall) and November (end of spring) for a more intimate experience with tolerable temperature.

The Bariloche Visit

Known for its picturesque setting surrounded by lakes and nestled in the foothills of the Andes Mountains, Bariloche is a must visit place in Argentina. European architecture, local brews, local art & culture programs, and chocolates are some of the town’s special aspects. But, above all, Bariloche is renowned for its laid-back albeit stunningly scenic hikes. It’s hard to choose just one, so plan to stay for a while to experience them all.

Recommended trails:

  • Refugio Frey is an 8-hour round trip trek to the lodge of the same name, however, a reservation is needed if you want to shack up the night. The hike is pretty easy in terms of terrain, can be completed in one day, and yields vistas of rock torrents and sparkling lakes.
  • Cerro Campanario is another easy hike that offers rewards far greater than the effort exerted. After just 30 – 45 minutes of hiking you’ll be treated to panoramas of lakes, peninsulas, and the distant Andes Mountains. You can also scoot to the top in 7 minutes via chairlift if you’re short on time and/or energy!
  • Cerro Llao Llao is also another trail in Bariloche. It takes just half a day, requires little effort, boasts super views and even includes a dip in a glacier lake if you’re so inclined!

Best season:

Summer (December – March) for warm, sunny, ideal hiking weather.

Argentina on its own – as much challenging – as it is rewarding, does offer one with ample activities and terrain to be enthralled and cherished upon. Volunteering in such a beautiful country at the need of the hour becomes all the more adventurous, satisfactory and heart whelming.

Feel free to drop us a message at [email protected] to get started on your trip.


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