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The last chaladura of Argentina: winter games ... in summer?


There are, even today, people in Spain who open their eyes inordinately and throw the question: "But how is that, is it cold there now?" Yes, on ca the coexist in August the ca

There are, even today, people in Spain who open their eyes inordinately and throw the question: "But how is that, is it cold there now?" Yes, the heat of the beaches of Ibiza, Malaga or Asturias coexist in August with the cold of the southern hemisphere. If it's summer in Spain, it's winter in Argentina. It is cold, and when it is cold, it is very cold, enough to consider changing the Spanish beach bar, the Greek islands or the adventure in Southeast Asia for a great summer skiing .

A great summer skiing at the end of the world and, depending on the site you choose, at much lower prices than in Europe. When it comes to the end of the world, it is literal, not figurative, because Argentina has a ski center in Tierra del Fuego, the southernmost province of the country , the one in which if you look further south, the only thing You will find is Antarctica.

This is Cerro Castor, a complex of just 20 years in which you can ski between June and October. Located 26 kilometers from Ushuaia, the capital of Tierra del Fuego and the southernmost city in the world, Cerro Castor has been growing as a new option in a country that wants to become a reference in winter sports : the country's president, Mauricio Macri , he heads every so often a "ski table" in which everyone involved in the industry meets to discuss how to make it more competitive and attract more foreign tourists, one of the presidential obsessions.

So Bariloche, the mecca of Argentine skiing , is reaching a record high this year, with thousands and thousands of tourists from abroad, mostly Brazilians, who are launching on the slopes of Cerro Catedral. Less than 200 kilometers away is another of the great Argentine ski centers, Chapelco, near the charming alpine village of San Martín de los Andes. The third great pole of attraction for skiing is Las Leñas, in Mendoza, an imposing place, in high mountains, that offers tracks of all sizes, from beginners to very high difficulty and the increasingly popular off-piste. In those tracks it is not strange to cross Benicio and Titian, children of the Valeria Mazza model and great promises of Argentine skiing.

Cerro Perito Moreno is one of the most thriving stations among young people.REED PURVIS

But Cerro Catedral, Chapelco and Las Leñas are expensive places, with prices close to those paid in Europe, although the infrastructure is more outdated. They have, in their favor, three very important factors : skiing in Latin America, among Argentines, Brazilians, Mexicans, Paraguayans, Chileans or Colombians, a different experience than in Europe; skiing when in Europe it is impossible to do it and skiing in an imposing landscape in the Andes, the highest mountain range in the world after the Himalayas.

And also skiing in Europe, although it seems a contradiction: the huge number of European immigrants who settled in Argentina determine that in any town or city in the ski area of ​​the country eat or drink as in the old world . There are fondue and raclette , of course, there are German cakes, there are exceptional wines. And there is Patagonian lamb, one of the great specialties. The experience, thus, is complete.

The ski of the end of the world, however, does not end in Catedral, Las Leñas or Chapelco. The rising star of the south is Cerro Perito Moreno, a young ski center that insists on highlighting two virtues: it is "wild and cheap". Staying in a cabin or apartment ranges between 30 and 70 euros a day , a ski pass for three days is achieved at 85. The center is growing - just spent 11 to 23 kilometers of ski slopes - and in addition to skiing and Snowboarding offers a track for sleds, touring virgin areas in vehicles specially adapted for snow and, for the boldest, the possibility of launching in a two-seater paraglider.

There are more options to enjoy skiing in Argentina . Caviahue, Cerro Bayo, La Hoya and Penitentes are centers with cheaper prices than the three main ones, in general with a more familiar and less crowded environment, because Latin American tourists rarely arrive there. There they ski, mainly, the locals.

And while the Argentine ski centers continue to be filled with Latin Americans and adding more and more Europeans who do not want to wait half a year until they step on the snow again, a plan is discreetly developed: the Olympic Winter Games . The cold version of the five ring event never crossed Ecuador, it was always held in the northern hemisphere. The Argentine Olympic Committee (COA) wonders why not try to change history, starting with the youth version of the Games. And the most seductive place is Cerro Castor. The plan is to propose to the Olympic world, sooner or later, the Games of the end of the world.

According to the criteria of The Trust Project

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  • tourism
  • Travels
  • Argentina
  • Winter sports
  • winter Olympic Games
  • Transportation and Tourism
  • Plans
  • Winter
  • Summer

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