While there are so many attractions in Buenos Aires not to be missed, our time in Argentina would not be complete without visiting the luscious ranches on the countryside near Buenos Aires.
The best option is to plan a day trip from Buenos Aires to visit a estancia or ranch to experience the gaucho life. A gaucho is a skilled horseman who becomes one with his horse through the practice of gentle horse whispering.
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Experiencing a Gaucho day trip in Buenos Aires:
How to experience a Gaucho tour in Buenos Aires:
We took the full day Gaucho Party tour with Signature Tours. The tour began at 8AM with a pickup from our hotel in a minivan with just one other couple and the tour guide. Our guide, Pablo is the most energetic tour guide we have ever had.
On the drive out of Buenos Aires we drove passed several of the cities main attractions with a crash course on the city and its 500 years of history.
A two hour, 120 km drive northwest of Buenos Aires brought us to the small tranquil town of San Antonio de Areco. We had the chance to get out and tour a local silversmith’s shop and walk around the historic city square.
Our day at the Estancia El Ombú de Areco
Estancia “El Ombu”
After the short visit to the town it was on the the Estancia, or cattle ranch. We visited El Ombu de Areco, which is one of the only functioning ranches that is also geared towards tourism. There are several other estancias in the area which are just traditional looking houses built solely for tourism.
We were greeted at the estancia with traditional empanadas and drinks after a tour of the grounds. We also met with the chef to get a sneak peak at the grill for lunch. After a short time to relax and photograph the grounds it is time to enjoy the majestic horses.
With the choice of a horse or buggy ride it was time to explore the expansive grounds of the estancia. Steven picked riding a horse and Jazmin went for a ride in the buggy, so we could experience both to tell you which is best!
The buggy ride is perfect for anyone who has a fear of riding horses. It is a relaxing journey around the farm, with plenty of time to learn more of its history. The horse ride itself takes you on a longer loop around the farm, passing a bubbling brook. The horses are relatively calm and will easily follow the guide without any intervention. The choice is yours, but when is the next time you plan on riding a horse?
After the horse ride it was time for our favorite time of the day, an Argentinian meat BBQ with more than we could possibly enjoy. Our happy stomachs were met with round after round of a variety of beef cooked to our liking. The meal was enjoyed in conjunction with the guests who were sleeping at the estancia.
As the meal came to an end the folklore show began. Just be ready for dancers head into the audience for your chance to give the local moves a try. To end our time on the estancia there was a demonstration of gaucho skills and the amazing bond of horse whispering.
On the drive back it was time for some well deserved rest with any final question about the estancia, Buenos Aires or Argentina answered by Pablo. Combined with a short nap we were dropped off at the hotel after an exciting day at El Ombu de Areco.
Honestly, one of the most memorable highlights of the day is our fantastic and knowledgeable tour guide Pablo. Not only was he easily able to answer any question we had, he was happy to dive straight into the different performances throughout the day. If you have the chance to go on this tour or any other from Signature Tours lead by Pablo, take the opportunity and enjoy!
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