Monday, November 28, 2011

Adios Argentina, Hola Chile

Last Monday morning we were so sad to leave Mendoza. If we could have stayed a few more days, we would have liked to have gone hiking or rafting…there is lots of adventure tourism in Mendoza. Our friend Hannah even recommended hang gliding in Mendoza, but I don’t think we are quite that daring, haha. Argentina was much a more laid back country than Chile. The food was also a lot better, and the Spanish was easier to understand. Don’t get me wrong – Chile is great – but I would really like to go back to Argentina some day (Buenos Aires!).

Our bus was scheduled to depart from the Mendoza bus terminal on Monday at 1 PM. The process was 100 times easier than it was in Chile. We spent the last of our Argentinean pesos on snacks for the road, boarded the bus a few minutes before 1, and left almost on time (and we both had visas this time J ). The trouble came when we got to the Argentina-Chile border. The line of cars was backed up for miles, and it ended up taking over 4 hours to get through customs. It was brutal. I had to keep reminding myself while we were waiting that at $25 USD each way the bus tickets were a lot more affordable than plane tickets. The views along the way were really nice, but 10.5 hours on a bus is a loooooong time.

Here are a few pictures that we took on our last day in Mendoza and on the way back to Chile. I'll try to narrate with captions as well as I can! Enjoy!
View of Mendoza from the top floor of the hotel

The Park Hyatt Mendoza - amazing hotel

Packed up and so sad to leave

There are little canals throughout Mendoza - see the right side of the picture above. They built this system to keep the plants watered. It paid off...the trees lining the streets are really nice.Canal and tree-lined street near the hotel

That's right...ketchup-flavored potato chips (didn't try them)

At the Mendoza bus station, loaded up with snacks and ready to board the bus

There were awesome views of the Andes Mountains on the trip back to Chile

This lake was just outside of Mendoza. It is a snow-melt lake, and the minerals in the water give it the gorgeous color. The pictures don't do justice to the color.

The line of vehicles at the Chile-Argentina border

We got off the bus after a few hours to stretch and take some pictures...still smiling because we didn't realize that we wouldn't be crossing the border until after dark

That's it! Zack, please take me back to Argentina some day!


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