Tag Archives: horseback riding

RIDING INTO THE DUNES

Only 10 km away from Cafayate, Estancia Chimpa rests in the middle of the Calchaqui Valley, waiting for you to enjoy a day in the northern countryside.


This fascinating estate is at your disposal for spending the night but today we will tell you about one of the many activities it has to offer.

The Nanni family, passionate for the valley, its mountains, grapevines and horses, made of this 7600 hectares plot a beautiful relaxing place to rest and spend the day.

The estate´s main house stands out for its architecture and style; with two wings that define its structure: the South Wing, antique and original from the XXth century; and the West Wing refurbished between 2004 and 2006. In the summertime, a big exterior pool at the back to enjoy the landscape provided by the immensity of the surrounding mountains.  

The adventure of the day at Estancia Chimpa involves a one hour and a half horseback riding in the surroundings of this dreamy estate. Authentic creole gauchos who know the area as the palm of their hands, will lead the ride. Starting at the horse’s corral, you’ll be riding through the green vineyards where the Nanni family grow cabernet, torrontés and malbec grapes, among others.

Soon after, the scenery changes dramatically into a dazzling mass of white sand: behold the Cafayate dunes, a sandy area that enlightens the panorama drawing the visitors attention because of the curious figures formed on the surface by the wind.

This wonderful ride is available year round. During the winter, the ride takes place between 10:30 and 14 hs, trying to make up the most of the sun and avoid the coldest hours. In the summer, the best is to go out at dusk or dawn. Also, night rides are a classic at Chimpa; a wonderful experience with a different perspective of this natural environment, amazing starry sky view, a cozy bonfire and the nocturnal noises of this unique place.

For those who like the countryside and riding horses, while visiting Cafayate this is the estate to stop by. For more information, contact your Kallpa Tour executive.

GENERAL INFORMATION

  • 1.30 hs excursion. Minimum 2 pax per riding.
  • 24 hs advanced booking required.
  • It is advisable to bring sunblock, comfortable clothes, sunglasses and a cap.
  • Conditions: Min age 3 years old / Max age: 60­-65, depending on physical conditions. Traveller max weight/height permitted 100kg / 2 mts.

 

Horseback riding at Estancia Rio Mitre

Get closer to nature and live a rustic countryside riding experience at a traditional Patagonian estancia looking over the Lago Argentino.


Estancia Río Mitre is a working family ranch and farm located 40 minutes from El Calafate and only 30 km from the Perito Moreno Glacier. Alighted on an area of risen ground and overlooking the Lago Argentino, Río Mitre provides breathtaking views all around.

Estancia Rio Mitre_Calafate
Estancia Rio Mitre

So close but yet so far from modern technology, this is the place to visit to get away and make yourself unreachable for a while: no WiFi, no 3G, no mobile signal. You will surely relax visiting this far off land, spending the day or stopping by for tea on the way back from the Perito Moreno.

Animals run free here…guanacos, dogs, chickens, sheep, lambs and horses. Even a grey fox visits from time to time; you may be lucky and meet him. All of them are very friendly and are used to pose for pictures with the visitors. Take as many selfies as you like with all of them!

Free sheep!
Free sheep!

Besides animals and landscapes, the main attraction in Río Mitre is the horseback riding experience. The estancia offers different options, even longer rides for 10 days, but brief travellers may spend half day in the morning or in the afternoon and ride too.   

Riding the steppe
Riding the steppe

In the morning, around 9 am, the estancia staff will pick you up from your hotel in Calafate and drive you for almost 60 km. Part of the road is on gravel, so the adventure begins before arriving. On the way, the Patagonian steppe at its peak will offer a unique scenery with a far away horizon and wide lands, passing by several ranches. This is also a good opportunity to observe diverse bird species in the wild.

Once arriving to Río Mitre, a warm welcome by Esteban Echeverría -the estancia´s owner and a natural storyteller- and other attentive staff members that will invite you with coffee or the traditional mate and delicious tortas fritas (homemade fried pastries).

Gaucho riding at lake shore
Gaucho riding at lake shore

After settling in, a guide that will join you during the whole horseback riding will take you to the stable to meet your horse for the ride. Once everyone is comfortable with the assigned steeds, the journey will begin.

Ready to ride
Ready to ride

Always surrounded by dreamy landscapes, the ride will take you crossing the valley and, for starters, to the first settlement of the Echeverría family at early twentieth century. Then, a visit to an ancient indigenous camp. The way back to the stable will be by the shore of the Rico arm of Lago Argentino, watching and learning about flora and fauna along the whole valley.

Into the wild
Into the wild

The significant beauty of nature and the feeling of freedom riding through these vast lands is overwhelming and hard to explain; it´s only possible to describe through the experience itself. This is a place to fall for unforgettable sunsets and long summer days in close contact with nature, feeling at ease and free.

The mighty Patagonian steppe
The mighty Patagonian steppe

Certainly the ride will make you hungry, but not to worry! Lunch will be waiting for you: taste a delicious Patagonian country asado and share a table full with conversation and stories. Once you’re finished, at around 2 pm we will get back to El Calafate town.

After an exhilarating morning outdoors and a fulfilling meal, the drive probably will make you fall in and out of sleep, blending the Patagonian steppe outside and the memories of a fun and unique experience at almost the end of the world.

For more information about this horseback riding experience and other options at Estancia Río Mitre, please contact your Kallpa Tour executive.

Sunset at Estancia Rio Mitre
Sunset at Estancia Rio Mitre

GENERAL INFORMATION
  • This excursion may be shared with other guests.
  • Includes transfers, infusions with fried pastries, 2 hs horseback riding with guide, barbecue with salads for lunch.
  • Drinks not included.
  • Rides available in the afternoon also, different itinerary.