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Guide to San Carlos de Bariloche Outdoors

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As one of the gems of Patagonia, Bariloche boasts of some of the most impressive sights in Argentina. Characterized by translucent lakes, imposing mountains, and dense vegetation as far as the eye can see, it is the perfect destination for nature lovers everywhere. In this guide, we'll take a look at the ten best outdoor locations this wonderful area has to offer.

Good for
  • Thrill Seeker
  • Nature Lover
  • Peace and Quiet Seeker

10 Places

4 City Tips

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10 Places

Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi

Observation Decks & Towers, Forests, National Parks, Nature & Wildlife Areas, Bodies of Water

Cerro Campanario

Nature & Wildlife Tours

Cerro Otto

Mountains, Lookouts

Cerro Lopez

Other Outdoor Activities

Cerro Tronador

Mountains, Hiking Trails, Volcanoes

Catedral Alta Patagonis

Ski & Snowboard Areas

Isla Victoria

Islands, Piers & Boardwalks, Bodies of Water

Bosque de Arrayanes

Forests

Circuito Chico

Hiking Trails

Circuito Grande

Other Outdoor Activities

Lucía V's City Tips

  • By car: The easiest way to get around is by car. There are multiple rental agencies in town.
  • By bus: You'll need to buy a "tarjeta de aproximación" (electronic card), sold in the offices of the companies that manage the buses, and in different shops around town.
  • The city government's website offers more detailed information on the bus system and where to buy tickets.
  • For more information on transport, visit the tourist information office at the Centro Cívico or Bariloche's tourism website.
  • Save
    Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi
    Observation Decks & Towers, Forests, National Parks, Nature & Wildlife Areas, Bodies of Water
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    Lucía V Says:

    The town of Bariloche is located inside the Nahuel Huapi National Park, which also includes the towns of San Martín de los Andes and Villa Langostura. The Park offers visitors multiple outdoor activity options - like skiing, trekking, fishing, and kayaking - as well as stunning sights.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Thrill Seeker
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • During high season (June/July for winter, January/February for summer, and Easter Week) there are crowds everywhere. Avoid these months if you wish to have a more relaxing visit.
    • For those who love fly fishing, there are areas in the park specifically allotted for this activity.
    • My favorite time of year in Bariloche is autumn (late April/May), when the trees turn from green to a reddish, copper color that gives the landscape a magical atmosphere.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 123 things to do in San Carlos de Bariloche
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Tranquil Beauty 29/11/2017
    • Parque Nacional office -helpful advice 29/10/2017
    • Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi
    Phone:
    +54 294 442-3111
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    08:00 - 16:00
    Other:
  • Save
    Cerro Campanario
    Nature & Wildlife Tours
    See more photos
    Lucía V Says:

    From the top of this mountain, you will be able to feast your eyes on some of the most breathtaking views of the Nahuel Huapi National Park. Nothing quite compares.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • There are chair lifts to carry you to the top, from which you'll also get amazing views as you ascend. Open until 6pm in winter and 7:30pm in summer.
    • The tea room at the top is a classic: the best spot to have a coffee and something sweet overlooking the lake and the forest.
    Plan to stay:/
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 89 Tours in San Carlos de Bariloche
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Amazing view by Quick Hike or Chairlift 02/12/2017
    • You don’t have to get the chailuft 25/11/2017
    • Cerro Campanario
    Address:
    Avenida Exequiel Bustillo 17500
    San Carlos de Bariloche R8405ARA
    Argentina
    Phone:
    +54 294 442-7274
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    09:00 - 17:30
    Other:
  • Save
    Cerro Otto
    Mountains, Lookouts
    See more photos
    Lucía V Says:

    Another mountain that offers spectacular sights, the Cerro Otto is best known for its rotating tea room at the top that provides guests with 360° panoramic views of the surroundings.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Thrill Seeker
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • There's a cable car system that stretches from the bottom to the top of the mountain, and a funicular that goes from the end of the sled trails back to the top.
    • In winter, visitors can enjoy sledding on the special trails devoted to this activity.
    • There are several trekking paths available, as well as cycling excursions.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #10 of 123 things to do in San Carlos de Bariloche
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Excellent views 03/12/2017
    • Perfect short day hike 02/12/2017
    • Cerro Otto
    Address:
    Avenida de Los Pioneros Km 5
    Circuito Chico
    San Carlos de Bariloche R8400BIA
    Argentina
    Phone:
    +54-294-444-10-31-444-10-35
    Other:
  • Save
    Cerro Lopez
    Other Outdoor Activities
    See more photos
    Lucía V Says:

    The Cerro López is a popular destination for its trekking paths and the shelter located at 1,600 meters above sea level, from which visitors can enjoy some of the most extraordinary views of the Nahuel Huapi Lake and the surrounding area.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Thrill Seeker
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • From the shelter, there are two trekking options to two different peaks: La Hoya (1850 meters), where there is snow practically all year round; and Pico Turista (2,050 meters).
    • The shelter is the biggest in Bariloche, with a capacity of 100 people. It is closed only during the winter months.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #17 of 128 Outdoor Activities in San Carlos de Bariloche
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Great hike! Not for everyone though... 08/05/2017
    • Cerro Lopez - a challenging and rewarding hike 08/05/2017
    • Cerro Lopez
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    Cerro Tronador
    Mountains, Hiking Trails, Volcanoes
    See more photos
    Lucía V Says:

    The Cerro Tronador is the highest peak in the Nahuel Huapi National Park, where the numerous glaciers are the biggest attraction, viewed from the shelter located at 2,100 meters above sea level.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Personal favorite: the glacier Ventisquero Negro, whose ice is tinted black due to the sediments it has incorporated in its advancement.
    • The ascent is only permitted until 2pm, and the descent until 4pm.
    • Another must-see is the Cascada Los Alerces, a secluded waterfall surrounded by larch trees ("alerce" in Spanish), from which it takes its name.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 123 things to do in San Carlos de Bariloche
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • A must go! Unique sorroundings, rivers, woods, and a magnificent mountain 12/12/2017
    • Beautiful scenery! 02/12/2017
    • Cerro Tronador
    Address:
    Argentina
    San Carlos de Bariloche
    Argentina
    Phone:
    +54 294 442-8273
    Other:
  • Save
    Catedral Alta Patagonis
    Ski & Snowboard Areas
    See more photos
    Lucía V Says:

    The Cerro Catedral is most renowned for its ski resort on the northeast side of the mountain, which offers several ski runs of varying difficulty. During the warmer months, the Catedral is the stage for another popular mountain activity: rock climbing.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Thrill Seeker
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • If you prefer to avoid skiing and rock-climbing, it's still worth going up the mountain just to be captivated by the incomparable views.
    • There are many other activities, like trekking and zip-line (for children), as well as various restaurants and resting areas at different points up the mountain.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #5 of 123 things to do in San Carlos de Bariloche
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Great skiing even late into the season 28/09/2017
    • The Best Snow Resort in South America 13/09/2017
    • Catedral Alta Patagonis
    Phone:
    +54 294 440-9000
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    09:00 - 18:00
    Other:
  • Save
    Isla Victoria
    Islands, Piers & Boardwalks, Bodies of Water
    See more photos
    Lucía V Says:

    This island, located in the center of the Nahuel Huapi lake, is one of the most popular attractions in the National Park. It is characterized by a dense forest, crossed by several pathways for visitors to explore, and numerous beaches offering imposing views of the translucent surface of the water.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • The visit to Isla Victoria is by catamaran, and usually combined with a visit to the Bosque de Arrayanes.
    • This is the perfect excursion for relaxing; enjoying the peacefulness of the lake, and immersing yourself in the silence of the paths between the trees.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #7 of 123 things to do in San Carlos de Bariloche
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Victoria Island and the Myrtle Tree Forest 20/11/2017
    • Winter Wonderland 14/07/2017
    • Isla Victoria
    Address:
    Nahuel Huapi Lake
    San Carlos de Bariloche
    Argentina
    Phone:
    +54 294 443-1372
    Other:
  • Save
    Bosque de Arrayanes
    Forests
    See more photos
    Lucía V Says:

    The visit to the Bosque de Arrayanes is a truly enchanting experience that should not be missed. The soft reddish-brown hue of the Chilean Myrtles' smooth bark gives the forest a magical atmosphere that makes it seem like you've stepped straight into a fairy tale.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • An excursion here involves walking through the forest on tiered wooden pathways that were built to avoid the constant trampling of the soil.
    • There is a small tea room in the middle of the forest; a great place to stop and relax with a hot drink.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #47 of 200 things to do in Province of Rio Negro
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Beautiful place! 12/11/2016
    • worth the trip 20/05/2015
    Phone:
    +54 294 447-5258
    Other:
  • Save
    Circuito Chico
    Hiking Trails
    See more photos
    Lucía V Says:

    The Circuito Chico is one of the attractions that you should visit first if you've never been to Bariloche, as it shows at a glance, the most typical sights of the marvelous mountainous landscape. Following this circuit, you'll not only see the imposing mountains, but also the lake, the beaches, small villages like Colonia Suiza, and miles and miles of forest.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Be sure to have adequate footwear, and bring sun protection and water to stay hydrated.
    • A trip here takes half a day, and it's a perfect spot to explore by foot to see the landscape up close.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #4 of 123 things to do in San Carlos de Bariloche
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Beautiful 09/12/2017
    • Tough but well worth it 01/12/2017
    • Circuito Chico
    Phone:
    +54 294 459-5608
    Other:
  • Save
    Circuito Grande
    Other Outdoor Activities
    See more photos
    Lucía V Says:

    The Circuito Grande extends 250 kilometers, and includes the beautiful 'Ruta de los 7 Lagos,' the towns of Villa La Angostura and Villa Traful, as well as the Traful River and the Limay River. It is indeed a unique experience that extends far beyond Bariloche and offers the chance to explore the best of Patagonia's scenery.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Personal favorite: the Mirador Traful, a viewpoint located on the border of a cliff overlooking Traful Lake.
    • In Valle Encantado, you'll see strange rocky formations that have interesting names based on the shapes they resemble. The most clear example is the "Finger of God."
    • It's a full-day excursion that can be done by foot, car, bike or bus.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #26 of 128 Outdoor Activities in San Carlos de Bariloche
    • Circuito Grande Organized tour is a little boring 08/03/2017
    • Highly recommend !! 17/01/2017
    • Circuito Grande
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