Argentina in a Van

Argentina is one of the largests countries in South America, with changing landscapes, charming cities, welcoming people, great wine and many other things that make it really difficult to leave from.

In Numbers

    • Conversion rate: €1 = ARS 45
    • Kilometers Traveled: 2000 Km
    • Avg spending per month: € 982
    • Avg Diesel Liter Price: € 1
    • Avg spending per day: €33

 

Money

Most of places ask for cash but you can pay by card at big stores (supermarkets) and gas stations.

ATMS

All ATMS charge you for taking money out. The cheapest ATM fee we got was 222 ARS at Banco Nacion all other banks charged around 400 ARS. The most we could get out of an ATM was 4000 ARS.

Internet

We asked around and the main companies are Claro, Movistar and Personal. Both have OKish coverage, and offer unexpensive data plans. Plans are usually sold as packs, which last from one days to a week. We personally went for Movistar and it worked fine most of the time.

Where to get a SIM

You can buy a SIM pretty much anywhere, the price was 30 ARS when we where here. The country inflation is off the charts, so it will probably have a different price when you are here.

Activating your SIM

Activating our SIM wasn’t as easy as we thought. There are two methods.

Activating your SIM with a local ID

If you happen to know someone in Argentina, you can activate your SIM with their DNI number, which is the fast easy way.

Activating your SIM without a local ID

In this case you will need internet access so you can connect to facebook and send all the information required so they activate your SIM. The documents you need to send consist in your passport and a selfie (pretty much), this will be asked by the company when you contact them through facebook. After you send the information required it will take from 1hr to a couple hours till they activate your SIM.

Buying a data package

Activating a data package is quite forward, you just send a text to the specific number of the company you chose and buy the pack you want. The information is depicted in the SIM card packaging. The only thing is that to buy a package you need to have credit in your account.

Charging credit

We recommend going to a gas station, YPF is the one we usually went to, and charging a couple ARS with your credit card. You can also charge credit at local stores, but they will usually ask for cash.

Grocery Shopping

Small shops usually had the best prices and greengrocery shops had the best prices and quality for fruits and vegetables.

Our top five products

Here the list of our top five products we loved to buy in Argentina.

  • Soda: Sparkling water that comes in a siphon, so it never looses the sparkles. It was cheaper than buying flat water.
    • Where to find them: Everywhere. Price ranges from 30ARS to 40ARS for a 2L Soda.
  • Fruits and Vegetables: Fruits and vegetables are of great quiality and not expensive.
    • Where to find them: The best are found at greengroseries.
  • Pepas (Cookies): Vanilla cookies with mermelade in the center. We loved them and they where cheap.
    • Where to find them: At any store.
  • Meat: We are not great BBQ people, but in Argentina you find a BBQ at every campsite, or even public areas, so we cooked an asado every now and then. The meat is just of such great quality and unexpensive that its worth it. As we didn’t know that much about meat we would buy a whole chicken and BBQ it.
    • Where to find them: At las carnicerias (butcheries).
  • Mate: Have you seen all the argentinians carreing a thermos and puring hot water in to a wooden cup? Well, they are drinking mate. Mate is in infusion that us coffee and tea wake you up, only that mate wakes you up even more. Mate is also used to socialize, passing in a group from one person to another.
    • Where to find it: at any store. remeber though that you will need the whole combo, mate, the mate cup, and a mate straw (bombilla).

Where to sleep

iOverlander had many places to offer all around Argentina. We usually stayed at stablished campsites, which where no more than 5€ for the 3 of us and the Van, or wild camping sites. Every weekend camping sites or any place where you can go do an asado (BBQ) gets full of argentinians playing loud music and having fun, so be prepared, because there is not much you can do about it besides finding another spot to pass the night, or joining them.

Getting around

Maps

We downloaded google maps offline beforehand when we had wifi.

Roads (5/5 Stars)

Roads are mostly in perfect conditions, no holes, and mainly asphalted. Some times to get to some of the sleeping spots we found in iOverlander we had to go through some dirt roads, but it was never a problem for our 2WD Peugeot Boxer, La Pepa.

Tolls

In general there where no tolls in argentina.

Our highlights

There is sooo many places to go, on our case we were looking for natural spots and places to climb or surf. The spots we visited were the following:

The crossing from Santiago to Medoza (Paso los libertadores)

Going up from the Chilean side the landscape is not really amazing but the road is so steap and has so many turns, that its an stressfull adventure on itself. After you cross the border the views get insanely beautiful, colored rocks, canyons, el puente del inca, its just amazing.

Ichigualasco Park

Purmamarca

Cafayate and Quebrada de las Conchas

Hornocal (Montaña de 7 Colores)

Valle Fertil

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