Our gorgeous landscape set Mendoza apart, but we suggest getting “out there” and enjoying one of our many...… Outdoor adventures. Words may be used to evoke sentiments, feelings and remembrances of a place. But what of al place so visual, so unique, so compelling that words alone can never quite live up to the experience of having visited. We do have a word for this place… Mendoza… Where your emotions are stirred, your spirit is lifted, your senses rise, you soar. You are elevated!
Situated in the centre-west of the Republic of Argentina, in the south of the American continent, the province of Mendoza is bordered in the north by the province of San Juan, in the east by San Luis province, in the south by the provinces of Neuquén and La Pampa and in the west by Santiago de Chile.
Throughout its 150.839 square kilometers, Mendoza has both highly attractive and hugely varied landscapes: Mountains, deserts, oases, plains and rivers. Among these many contrasting natural features are the Andes and Aconcagua, which at 6.959 meters in height is both highest and most attractive peak in the whole of the American Continent.
The proximity of Chilean ports on the Pacific coast allows Mendoza a close link with the world’s seaways, especially with the countries and markers of East Asia.
Because of its privileged position, Mendoza is a strategic point in the Mercosur route (Southern Common Market made up of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay) and an important centre of economic and cultural development as it is on the trade route with Buenos Aires, Montevideo, Santiago, Valparaíso and San Antonio (important Chilean ports) and several cities in brazil. For that reason Mendoza is a necessary staging post on the way to other centers of business and tourism, in Argentina and South America as well as in the rest of the world.
Mendoza is also the name of the province’s capital city, which is situated 1.080 km from Buenos Aires (the capital of Argentina, 390 km From Santiago (the capital of Chile) and 756 meters above sea level. The time zone is three hours behind Greenwich Mean Time. The unit of currency is the peso, and the official language is Spanich.
Dominated to the west by the Andes, the north by the desert, the east by plains and to the south by Payunia, Mendoza’s climate varies according to the season of the year and the altitude of the land.
In the plains the climate is temperate demi-sec continental with rain in summer, but as the altitude increases towards the mountains, the drop in temperature is accompanied by snow, especially between May and September.
When the temperature rises again and the thaw begins, river levels rise. They provide irrigation for the extensive cultivated areas, supply the cities with water and offer ideal conditions for water sports.
Summer (December to March) is hot, with occasional storms with temperatures ranging from 20ºC to 40ºC. Autumn (March to June) is warm and the vegetation takes on a copper, gold and brown tint and there is often agreeable, fresh, light rain. Winter (July to September) is cold and dry, temperatures vary between 0ºC and 10ºC and high in the mountains, snowfall can reach 600 mm. Spring (September to December) brings warmth, and the Zonda blows from the north, an unexpected and brief hot wind which causes the temperature to fall on the days that follow.
Mendoza’s seasons favour certain sports, but the sun is a constant. In winter, the powdery snow which is characteristic of the mountains of Mendoza is ideal for skiing snowboarding, sledging, and many others activities. Likewise the summer is ideal for a wide range of adventure activities made possible by the wide fast flowing Mountain Rivers and the Andes offer exciting challenges including mountaineering and climbing Aconcagua.
The spectacular natural sights of the region can be seen in autumn and spring when the extensive vineyards begin to produce grapes and prepare for harvest, offering the visitor a display of beautiful shades of green in spring and spectacle of bronze and yellow in autumn.
Each season has its own variations but, generally, the climate of Mendoza is characterized by its radiant sun and warm temperatures.
Access, tourist areas and services
Mendoza can be reached by air using “El Plumerillo” International Airport which is situated twenty minutes away from Mendoza city, and two airports in departments to the south, Malargüe and San Rafael. The flying time from Buenos Aires to Mendoza is one hour fifty minutes, just forty five minutes from Santiago de Chile and tree hours fifty five minutes from Sao Paulo, Brazil. Mendoza’s international airport is also Santiago de Chile’s alternative airport, and flights from all over the world are often diverted to Mendoza due to adverse weather conditions in Chile.
An important road network links Mendoza to the rest of the country and to Chile. The region has 4.000 km (2.500 miles) of paved roads. It is linked to Patagonia and the northwest by Ruta Nacional Nº 40, and Ruta Nacional Nº 7 is the main artery for Mercosur trade, connecting it with Buenos Aires, the rest of the country and Chile.
Mendoza is divided into five tourist areas; the wine region (Gran Mendoza), High Mountains, the Valle de Uco, the Nevado Region (in the south) and Tierras con Historias (in the east). The total population is 1.650.000. Each region has its own particular attractions, from adventure sports to rural and ecotourism and wine tours which include visits to important wineries and tastings of their famous world class wines.
In each area, visitors can explore the history and culture of the people and enjoy the many local traditional festivals. The infrastructure the regions allows visitors to make use of all the services, such as shopping, doing business or organizing conventions.
Although Mendoza receives visitors all year round, the peak tourist season is linked to the key activities, the ascent of Aconcagua (December to March), the National Wine Harvest Festival (the first weekend in March), Easter (April) and the start of the winter season (June). At these times, tourists are easily accommodated in the region’s hotels.
How to get to Mendoza
There are many options in order to reach this province; Mendoza has an international airport (Aeropuerto El Plumerillo). You can find connecting flights to Buenos Aires, Santiago de Chile and Cordoba from this airport. Another possibility is to get to Mendoza by bus or by car. One of the best tours we offer is crossing the Andes by car, with a bilingual guide, and discover everything our mountain range has to offer.
Lodging at Mendoza
Mendoza Holidays offers a very upscale lodging service during your trip to Mendoza , with 4 to 5 star hotels right at the city downtown (Park Hyatt, Sheraton, Huentala, Aconcagua, El Portal Suites, Park Suites, Hotel Argentino). Other very recommended options include staying in rural lodges, close to the wineries such as Club Tapiz, Finca Adalgisa, Postales del Plata, Casa Glebinias, Lares de Chacras, Cavas Wine Lodge,etc.
Activities in Mendoza
We invite you to immerse yourself in the world of wine, where we offer from very complete wine tasting courses to the possibility of being part of the most complete wine tours with our professional bilingual guides. We also offer Adventure Tourism, such as rafting along the Mendoza River, mountain climbing (Aconcagua), horseback riding (crossing the Andes Mountain Range), 4WD through amazing trails, fishing, paragliding, mountain biking, trekking and skiing in the Andes. (visit our sister web www.laslenasholidays.com).
The visitor can choose from international cuisine to traditional ‘parrillas’ (restaurants specializing in barbecued meat), pizzerias, fast food, seafood restaurants or the popular ‘carritos’, street stalls selling all kinds of sandwiches with local fillings.
Many typical local specialties can be sampled in Mendoza’s restaurants, such as empanadas (pastries), tortitas con chicharrones (bread with pork scratching), chivito a las brasas (barbecued steak sandwich) or dulce de alcayota, (local fruit jam). Special restaurants can also be found, which serve dishes such as beef in pastry, stew, “chanfaina” flavoured corn paste wrapped in corn leaves (humitas), seasoned pig’s trotters, omelettes cooked in the embers, pumpkin fritters, maize pudding, and grape syrup amongst others. Beef is the essential ingredient of the majority of regional meals.
A few minutes outside the city center are good restaurants which allow meals to be enjoyed in a natural setting, for example Chacras de Coria (Luján), the Palmares Open Mall (Godoy Cruz) and the Mendoza Plaza Shopping (Guaymallén).
Mendoza has wide variety of places for enjoying a show during dinner, or drinks in a pub. There are also theme bars, such as wines bars where you can enjoy a glass or a bottle of excellent local wine, and learn to appreciate the quality of each variety.
The menus available in wine bar restaurants can satisfy the most demanding if gourmets where the wines have been carefully selected by connoisseurs. They are situated just meters from the central hotels (Peatonal Sarmiento) and in the outskirts of the City (Chacras de Coria).
During the traditional siesta, (a break in the middle of the working day), business in the city close, usually between 1.30 and 4.30 pm. Tourists aware of this can try out the refreshing siesta and later continue with their programme of activities.
While commercial activities pause, restaurants open their doors to the public, and the evening eating times extend from 8.30 to midnight. But if you want to have lunch or dinner at any other time of the day, the large shopping centers have food available all day.
Mendoza Weather Forecast:
Mendoza 10 day weather forecast, updated four times a day and shows the weather summary plus detailed sun, rain, snow, wind and temperature. The weather forecast extends out to 10 days showing information for morning, afternoon and overnight. See the links below the weather forecasts for other cities, towns and villages near Mendoza.
Mendoza Holidays Wine Tours has once again received an International ¨Best of Wine Tourism Award¨ (2010/2011/2012 & 2013) thanks to the exceptional and memorable wine tourism experience offered to clients. Great Wine Capitals Global Network. www.greatwinecapitals.com