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Daily Daydream: San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina

SmarterTravel

See some of the best natural beauty that Argentina has to offer is in San Carlos de Bariloche. From this one city, you can check out mountains, forests, and lakes. Don’t worry, you won’t be forced to eat trail mix just because there’s so much wilderness to explore: The city itself boasts world-class restaurants, nightlife, shopping, casinos, and drinking.

Adventure activities abound. On dry-land there’s hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, and skiing; while the water offers kayaking, rowing, and boating. Then there’s the air, with activities like parasailing and ziplining.

It’s easy to see why Bariloche is nicknamed the “American Switzerland,” with its impressive mountains and crystal clear lakes. The lake water is so clear that scuba diving is popular (in the warm months, of course.)

Where is it? Western Argentina, at the base of the Andes.

Where to stay? At the luxury Charming Lodge and Private Spa, which lives up to the name! Book a suite with a Jacuzzi or an apartment, and bask in a whirlpool overlooking Lake Nahuel Huapi. Rates start at $218 a night, but you do get slippers to take home, so really, it’s a bargain.

What else should I know? Although not really known world-wide as a dining destination, don’t miss out on Bariloche’s specialties–like locally produced chocolate and beer.

Who’s it for? Adventure-sports fans, Switzerland-lovers, gourmands, nightlife partiers.

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