Just like in Asia, we used a variety of transportation methods to get us across South America. Where in Asia we relied mostly on buses and trains, in South America we mostly used flights and buses as the rail network is almost nonexistent. Also, because the countries we visited in South America are a bit further away from each other, we often opted to skip 24+hr bus rides and just take a short flight instead. This made the trip a little bit more expensive, but way more comfortable.
In February 2015, we visited only one new country: Chile, but we went back to Argentina for a few days. From Patagonia, we traveled to Easter Island, after returning to the mainland. We traveled by bus to Mendoza, to try out Argentinian wines in addition to the food we already tried. After returning to Santiago, and trying out lots of Chilean food, we flew north to San Pedro. From there, we crossed into Bolivia.
The region of Mendoza is known to produce some of the worlds finest wines. The drive from Santiago to Mendoza through the Andes mountains was quite scenic, however not recommended for those who get motion sickness due to the many hairpin turns made during the seven hour journey.
If there is any food item in particular Argentinians like, we would say it’s meat and dulce de leche (boiled condensed milk). A big downside was that Argentinian breakfast was rather lacking: it was mostly limited to sticky sweet croissants, bread with dulce de leech or jam, and coffee. For lunch, the lomita or choripán sandwiches and asado dinners were quite flavorful and filling, especially when it included the chimichuri sauce and a nice glass of malbec.
The recent economic crisis in Argentina has bankrupted the country and left it with extreme inflation rates. In an attempt to save their assets, locals are stocking up on the far more reliable and stable U.S. dollar. In Argentina, demand for the U.S. dollar is at an all-time high. The government seems unable to stop the Argentinian peso from becoming weaker and weaker, and as a consequence a black market developed where U.S. dollars are sold for more than what the government dictates they’re worth.
We, Mark & Herta, are currently backpacking through Europe, and eventually planning to settle in London. Beyond that? The possibilities are endless.Read Mark & Herta’s full story.