Mendoza, Argentina: A wine-lover’s heaven. If you’re traveling through Argentina or Chile, Mendoza is a must-see.
Here’s how to spend the perfect weekend in Mendoza, Argentina:
Where to stay:
If you’re traveling alone, there are plenty of hostels located around the city. Look for something close to the center so you’ll be close to everything.
If you’re traveling with someone (or even alone), AirBnb is another great option here! The apartments are very affordable and they’re usually well-located. I recommend Let Home Mendoza. The owners are very friendly and helpful. They gave us maps of the city and information about the nearby attractions. Also, the apartment was located in the center of town and was very convenient and secure.
What to do:
Take the day to relax and enjoy the city. I recommend the Mendoza City Tour. You pay around $10 USD for a guided bus tour that takes you all around the city. You’re allowed to get on and off the bus a certain number of times to explore. Get off at some of the parks and plazas (or the zoo!), grab a bite to eat or a beer, and enjoy. Make sure to bring your camera because the view of the Andes is spectacular.
Mendoza is famous for its wine, but its beer is worth a try too! Head to Antares for some great craft beer and a chill atmosphere. For sure you won’t be disappointed!
Now, for the wine.
You should leave your place by 10am at the latest.
First take a bus to Maipú. You can buy bus cards in various stores and kiosks. Tell the bus driver that you want to go to Mr. Hugo’s Bicycle Rental so that you don’t miss the stop.
Once you get off, walk to Mr. Hugo’s and tell them you want to rent a bike (it will cost you about $10 USD for the day). They will give you a map, explain the best places to go, and when to return.
I recommend going to the wine bar for a wine tasting first. The owner is super friendly and the wine is delicious. I can’t remember the name, but it should be on the map you get from Mr. Hugo’s. It’s also the closest place to the shop. We bought two bottles of wine (which together cost about $10 USD). The owner gave us a bottle of the house wine for free and a small complementary bottle of wine for making a purchase. Four bottles of wine for $10 isn’t so bad! The wine tasting here costs about $4 USD and you can try five different wines. The servings are generous.
There are many vineyards to visit in the area. Trapiche was my favorite. The wine is delicious and the staff are friendly. For $10 you get a tour and a wine tasting. After the wine tasting, you can take the bottles and sit out on the terrace. Let’s just say I left here feeling pretty happy.
The Wine Museum is also an interesting stop. You pay about $10 USD to enter, but they return the money to you at the end of the tour to use in the gift shop (read: more wine!).
No matter where you decide to go, a day in Maipú is a day well-spent.
You’ll likely be tired after a full day of exercise and wine. One idea is to a restaurant, eat some food, and relax. If you feel up to a little challenge and have a lot of room in your stomach, head over to El Patio de Jesus Maria.
For one price, you can eat all the Argentinian meat your heart desires. I need to emphasize that you should really be hungry because this place is no joke. It’s on the pricier side and you need to eat a lot to get your money’s worth.
For a great breakfast buffet (though a little on the pricey side), head to Restaurante El Mirador. It’s located in the Sheraton hotel. The buffet is great, but the view is better. It’s a great place to go and take photos with the Andes in the background and a great way to start the day!
Enjoy your last day in Mendoza. Grab some wine with lunch. Visit any places you missed and begin planning your return!
Keep in mind that Mendoza is EXTREMELY hot in the summer (November/December-March/April). If you prefer cooler weather you should go during the winter.
Be careful with taxis. Make sure they don’t overcharge you.
Argentinians go out late. So don’t expect clubs and bars to start filling up earlier than midnight.
If you’re traveling from Chile, decide if you want to travel at night or during the day. In the winter, you can only travel during the day due to snow in the mountains. The bus ride is 8 hours. At night, the ride will go by faster and you won’t waste the day. However, the views are incredibly beautiful during the day.