- View Lanin volcano on the horizon
- Work cattle with the gauchos or help them bring the horses in
- The estancia is almost 100% self sufficient and they are justifiably proud of their beef
- Fantastic criollo cross horses suitable for all abilities
- Non riders are welcome and the fly fishing is particularly good
Day 1 1: EUROPE- BUENOS AIRESFly from Europe to Buenos Aires (not included). There is currently only British Airways which flies this route direct, but there are plenty of options with one stop, such as Iberia, Air France, TAM etc.
Day 2 2: BUENOS AIRES - BARILOCHE - HUECHAHUE - 1-2 hours ridingEstancia HuechahueOn arrival at Buenos Aires International Airport (Ezeiza) you will need to collect your luggage and make your way across the city to the domestic airport (Aeroparque). We recommend using a Remis, which is a pre-paid taxi and the desks are after baggage collection and before you enter the main arrivals hall. Check-in for your flight to Bariloche (c. 3hr). Please note that you must leave four hours between your arrival and departure flights in order to clear passport control, collect your luggage and transfer across the city.
On arrival at Bariloche airport you will be met and transferred to the estancia (c. 3-4 hours drive) where you will be met by your hosts.
NB. It is also possible to take an overnight bus from Buenos Aires to Junin de los Andes if you prefer - please ask for details.
Depending on the time of your arrival, there may be time for a short ride in the afternoon to familiarise yourself with the horses and tack.
IMPORTANT : The itinerary is entirely flexible and the following is an example of some of the rides and activities on offer, however, you can ride as much or as little as you like.
Day 3 3: CHENQUE HILLS - 5-6 hours ridingEstancia HuechahueA full days ride on Estancia Huechahue with an "asado" lunch. Follow the Huechahue stream through its basalt canyons, riding as fast as you want across the water-meadows sending the plovers and ibis screeching, before returning over the top of Chenque Hill, where the Andes rise up behind you and the vastness of Patagonia stretches out before you.
Day 4 4: CATTLE WORK - 5-6 hours ridingEstancia HuechahueA day spent working cattle with the gauchos. Lunch with the gauchos is strips of beef ribs threaded onto a stick and cooked over the open fire. A siesta in the shade and a chance to separate the cows on horseback or try your hand with a lasso in the afternoon.
Day 5 5: INDIAN BURIAL CAVES - 5-6 hours ridingEstancia HuechahueA full days ride on the estancia to visit the Indian burial caves. The caves were formed when the glaciers carved the valley, opening an entrance to the lava flow tunnels formed during previous eras of volcanic activity. The Tehuelche Indians laid out their dead, surrounded by their weapons and always somewhere where they could see their enemies coming. They decorated the walls with designs. The remains have disappeared, but the petroglyphs and the view are still there.
Day 6 6: CONDOR CLIFFS - 4-6 hours ridingEstancia HuechahueThis morning's ride offers the chance to see the estancia's stallion with the mares and new foals, and the opportunity to herd horses. After a late lunch there will be an evening ride to the cliffs where the condors and eagles roost. While sipping a cocktail and watching the sun go down, the condors return, soaring above and below you before settling for the night.
Day 7 7: INDIAN RESERVATION - 5-6 hours ridingEstancia HuechahueA days ride through the neighbouring Indian reservation. The estancia's saddle blankets and saddlebags are woven by some of the Indian women and the skins from the cows are worked into rawhide and then bridles and halters by the men. Stop to watch what progress is being made and to share a "mate" on your way through.
Day 8 8: ESTANCIA HUECHAHUE - 5-6 hours ridingEstancia HuechahueA full days ride to a different part of the Estancia. There are 15,000 acres in all so there is still plenty left to explore. Lunch will be on the river. On the way home a chance to see guanaco, deer, wild boar and “peludos” - the baby armadillo.
Day 9 9: HUECHAHUE - BARILOCHE - BUENOS AIRES - 1-2 hours ridingDepending on the timing of your flight there may be an opportunity for a short ride in the morning before being transferred to the airport.
Some airlines depart for Europe in the evening, in which case your flights should connect well, but others depart in the afternoon which will necessitate a night in Buenos Aires before departing for the UK.
International flights are not included but can be booked for you on request.
Day 10 10: EUROPEArrival back to the Europe today (if flying via Europe).
Dates & prices
- Flights to your destination (international/domestic) are not included, but can be booked on request - please contact us for rates.
- Prices are per person based on two riders sharing a twin or double room. There is no single supplement for solo travellers and you will be given a single room if available (if not, you will be required to share with another guest of the same sex).
- Groups are composed of a minimum of 1 rider and a maximum of 12 international riders, plus guides.
- You can arrive/depart on any day and stay for as long as you like. We recommend a stay of 7 nights. There is a minimum stay of 3 nights. Please ask for prices for shorter/longer stays.
- Transfers are not included and are approx. £420 per car (return rate). This transfer takes the direct route through the wide open Patagonian steppes. If you wish to transfer on the scenic "7 lakes" route then there is an additional charge of c. £60 for this.
- Fishing on-site is included but the cost of a fishing guide are an additional cost of USD 410 per day (USD 600 after September 2020). A guide can accommodate up to 2 fishermen and and includes fishing at Huechahue and other local rivers. Fishing permits are an additional USD 35 per day.
- Open to children aged 10+ accompanied by an adult.
- Rider weight limit: 95 kg / 15 st 210 lbs. Heavier riders please contact us.
The itinerary may be modified at anytime for security reasons, meteorological or events beyond our control such as blocked roads, rivers in flood, drought, strikes and local holidays. Equus Journeys, our local partners and their local guides will always strive to find the best solution and will alter the itinerary as needed.
The names of the hotels and accommodation are given for information only and depending on availability, they may be modified without notice and replaced by another of a similar standard.
Snacks and drinks
Price doesn't include
Use of a Fishing guide
You ride in traditional "montura de monte" which are similar to old English army saddles with sheepskins thrown over the top. The riding style is similar to western and the horses are neck-reined.
Guide & local team
Minimum riding ability
Minimum riding ability
Rider weight limit: 95 kg / 15 st 210 lbs. Heavier riders please contact us.
Tacking ability and participation
Trip conditions and Requested experience
Meals are usually served in the dining room within the main house, where there is also a living room and terrace, or in the BBQ room or "quincho" with an open firepit perfect for asados.
Lunches are usually carried in the guachos saddle bags and include salads, quiche, pies etc.
Dinners are three courses and there is always plenty of meat. The estancia are proud of the beef that they produce and the Argentine culture traditionally includes plenty of beef. Asado bbq's are popular and you will likely experience at least one during the week.
Drinks are included and the local wines are good quality.
Spring and Autumn can be cooler but still not unpleasant temperatures on the whole.
It rarely rains and is a dry area, but you should still bring adequate rainwear as the weather is unpredictable and can change quickly. It is possible to experience all seasons in one day and it can always be windy!
- Equus Journeys strongly recommend that you wear a riding helmet and that you take your own to ensure a correct fit.
- Sunhat for when not riding
- Sunglasses - with a cord attached so they don't fly off when riding
- Buff or bandana for protecting your neck and face from the sun and dust
- Warm hat if visiting during the spring/autumn months
- Thermals in case of cold weather during the cooler months
- Long sleeved shirts provide protection from the sun
- Lightweight fleece or jumper
- Warm polar fleece or equivalent (plus a spare in case one gets wet)
- Waterproof jacket - rain can be difficult to predict and it's better to be prepared.
- Lightweight, comfortable riding trousers or jodhpurs - we recommend riding in them at home before taking them on holiday to ensure they don't rub
- Waterproof over trousers
- Casual clothes for the evenings (jeans or walking trousers)
- Thermals in case of cold weather
Hands and Feet
- Comfortable riding boots. We recommend short boots with half chaps but you may wish to take long chaps. We don't recommend taking your favourite long leather boots in case they get damaged
- Lightweight shoes or trainers for the evenings
- Several pairs of warm socks
- Gloves - your hands are particularly exposed to the sun, wind or rain whilst riding
- Backpacks cannot be worn whilst riding. We recommend a small bumbag or a coat with pockets so that you can carry small items with you during the day (camera, sunscreen, lipbalm etc)
- We recommend travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes in your hand luggage - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride!
- Keep a copy of your passport and travel documents in a separate place in case you lose the originals
- Please be aware that internal flights in Argentina may have a lower luggage allowance than your international flight and you should pack according to the lowest limit.
Other useful items
- Swimsuit - for swimming/bathing in rivers - particularly during the summer months (Nov-Mar)
- Camera and high capacity memory card. Spare battery
- Bumbag for carrying your camera and small items whilst riding
- Headtorch or small torch for moving around at night - bring spare batteries and bulbs
- Ear plugs (for light sleepers)
In your luggage
- Any liquids, such as shampoo, moisturiser, deodorant unless they are less than 100ml and all bottles can fit in a small, clear, plastic ziplock bag.
- Swiss army knife or equivalent
In your hand luggage
- Any valuables, such as your camera, ipod, ipad etc.
- Your riding hat
- Sunscreen and lip balm - should be high factor
- Insect repellent
- Any medication you regularly take
- Blister plasters in case of any rubs
- Antiseptic cream, plasters, aspirin, anti-histamine, insect-bite salve etc...
- Spare prescription glasses/contact lenses
- Eye drops
- Imodium or similar anti-diarrhoea medication
- Re-hydration sachets
- Antiseptic wipes
- Handwash gel
- Travel light. It's a little known fact, but the lighter you pack, the better for the environment as heavy bags will produce higher emissions (when flying a plane or driving a car!).
- Reduce plastic waste. Take your favorite reusable bottle with you. Avoid single-use bags, cups, or straws.
- Preserve nature. Always take your rubbish with you during the ride and recycle them. Leave all the flowers or plants as you found them, and never get too close when observing wildlife. Make sure to use eco-friendly products such as body wash or laundry detergent (if camping) to protect both your skin and the environment.
- Choose your experiences carefully. Respect animal life by not participating in any activities that abuse wild animals (shows, elephant rides, etc.).
- Support local populations. Buy local handicrafts, be respectful of customs, and learn about the culture of local communities.
- Share! Raise awareness among your family and friends about sustainable tourism.
Did you know?
Did you know?
Patagonia is generally considered to be the southernmost section of both Argentina and Chile, including the Andes mountains, deserts, steppes and grasslands. In Argentina the most northerly point is the Colorado and Barrancas rivers which run from the Andes to the Atlantic; in Chile the Reloncavi estuary is the northern limit. Both Tierra del Fuego and the Falkland Islands are considered to be part of Patagonia, which extends as far south as Cape Horn.
The name Patagonia orignates from the word Patagon, which Magellan used to describe the native people on his expedition in 1520. These locals were considered to be giants and it is now believed that they were Tehuelches Indians, who were taller than Europeans at that time.
On this riding holiday in Argentina you will get to experience the vast beauty of Patagonia as well as viewing evidence of ancient Tehuelches Indian settlements - there are cave drawings within riding distance and a lot of the local riding tack has been made by the local Indian communities.