You may know it as the land of Gardel and his Tango, Evita and Peron, or as the country that hosts the amazing and beautiful city of Buenos Aires, but Argentina offers tourists a land of diverse and amazing adventures.
Located in South America, Argentina has an area of almost 3.8 million square kilometers, which makes it the second largest country in South America. Because Argentina is located in the Southern Hemisphere, its winter occurs in June and its summer in December allowing tourists from northern nations to enjoy the beach during Christmas break or ski in the Andes during the summer. One of Argentina’s main characteristics is the contrast between its fantastic Iguazu falls and rainforests in the north, vast eastern plains, impressive Andes mountains to the west and the magnificent glaciers in Patagonia in the southern part of the country.
Argentina boasts a magnificent flora and fauna. In fact, Southern Argentina is home to the Puma, huemul, pudú (the world’s smallest deer), and wild boar. The coast of Patagonia is rich in animal life: elephant seals, fur seals, sea lions, and species of penguin. The Iguazu Falls, located on the northeast of Argentina, have a good infrastructure for travelers and plenty of activities offered in the area. The falls and the area surrounding are part of the Iguazú National Park that preserves the local subtropical rainforest ecosystem. The most impressive of the Iguazu falls is known as the Devil’s Throat (Garganta del Diablo), shared with Brazil.
Where to stay?
Looking for a cosmopolitan city? head to Buenos Aires. Once considered the “Paris of the Southern Hemisphere,” Buenos Aires offers all kinds of cultural activities. You can choose a night visit at a tango place and dinner at one of the many restaurants that offer the traditional asado (Argentine steak). Due to the exchange rate (1 Argentine Peso = 0.33 USD as of November 2006), its shopping centers are frequently visited by tourists looking for the latest fashions.
Looking for a nice relaxing time at the beach? Pack your bags and head to Mar del Plata where the “Mar del Plata Film Festival” takes place. Just remember that the seasons in Argentina are the opposite from the seasons in the northern hemisphere, therefore beach season starts in December and ends in March.
A wide range of accommodation possibilities are available in Buenos Aires and the rest of the country. You can choose from student hostels to bed and breakfasts to luxurious palaces and modern five-star hotels. You can also find lake-side lodges in the Patagonia region and cabanas close to the mountains.
Where to Study
Here is a list of some of the top universities in Argentina. Most of these universities have international student programs, so contact them directly for more information.
- University of Buenos Aires
- Austral University
- University of CEMA
- University of Palermo
- IAE Business School
- Catholic University of Argentina
- University of La Plata
- ESEADE School of Economics and Enterprise Management
Visas and Documentation
Citizens of the UK, US, Australia, Canada, EU countries and most South American countries do not require tourist visas for stays of up to 90 days. The cost of a Tourist visa is US$28 and the cost of a Business visa is: US$47. Passengers requiring visas for transit only should still apply for tourist visas. The cost of visas varies monthly depending on exchange rates. Please contact the Argentine consulate in your area for further information.
For more information on Argentina, visit its official tourism site: http://www.turismo.gov.ar/
Links you may find useful: Wikitravel, Buenos Aires Spanish School