Argentina is a country in South America. The capital is Buenos Aires. It has borders to Chile, Bolivia, Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay. It is the eighth-largest country in the world, so there's lots of distance to cover.
Argentina is made up of 22 provinces (provincias) and one autonomous city, Buenos Aires.
- Ciudad de Buenos Aires (Distrito Federal) ⇒ Buenos Aires
- Buenos Aires ⇒ Bahia Blanca — La Plata — Sierra de la Ventana
- Catamarca Province ⇒ Catamarca
- Chaco ⇒ Resistencia
- Chubut ⇒ Puerto Madryn — Trelew — Comodoro Rivadavia — Rawson — Esquel
- Cordoba Province ⇒ Cordoba — Alta Gracia — Carlos Paz — San Marcos Sierras — Villa Maria
- Corrientes Province ⇒ Corrientes
- Entre Rios ⇒ Gualeguay — Gualeguaychu — Victoria — Colon — Larroque
- Formosa Province ⇒ Formosa
- Jujuy Province ⇒ San Salvador de Jujuy
- La Pampa ⇒ Santa Rosa
- La Rioja Province ⇒ La Rioja
- Mendoza ⇒ Mendoza — Uspallata
- Misiones ⇒ Posadas
- Neuquen ⇒ Neuquen — Zapala
- Rio Negro ⇒ Bariloche — Cipolletti — El Bolsón
- Salta ⇒ Salta
- San Juan Province ⇒ San Juan — Barreal — Calingasta — Rodeo — Las Flores — Jachal — Encon
- San Luis ⇒ Quines — San Luis
- Santa Cruz ⇒ El Calafate — El Chaltén — Rio Gallegos — Caleta Olivia — Bajo Caracoles
- Santa Fe Province ⇒ Rosario — Santa Fe
- Santiago del Estero Province ⇒ Santiago del Estero
- Tierra del Fuego ⇒ Ushuaia
- Tucuman ⇒ San Miguel de Tucuman
- Trains are super cheap but only serve limited routes. They are an excellent way to see the countryside and come in contact with a different segment of the population than you'd encounter on a 1st class bus. Highly recommendable. [www.sateliteferroviario.com.ar Train information] (they don't sell online)
- Buses are expensive but unbelievable nice. Fully reclining seat and food provided. If you take a bus, treat it as a hotel and save a night's hotel fees. get bus tickets online
In cities, buses usually require the use of cards (tarjetas)- you cannot pay the driver directly. Some, like in Rosario, have vending machines on the bus, but only accept coins (save your peso coins!). But usually you can ask nicely to use someone else´s card, either waiting for the bus or once you get on. Offer them 5pesoes, though they will often flash you on without accepting your money.
guaka slept next to a gas station once, without a tent, without being bothered by anything but mosquitos.
In 2010 themodernnomad squatted in an empty shipping container behind a gas station in Ushuaia for 45 days. He also has squatted up service stations from Bariloche all the way to Salta, with just a ratty sleeping bag and body odor. He would sometimes get free sandwiches from staff/passerby, and the occasional shower when he started to be mistaken for garbage.
In 2013 sebastienhh was hosted in the churches of San Martin de los Andes and Bariloche (a small franciscan church close to the entrance) and also found a family to host him asking for a place to sleep at the church of Zapala after their reunion.
Some villages have free municipal camping (sometimes with swimming pool)
As a vegan you're down to fruits and veggies from the markets. No restaurant will serve anything vegan. As a vegetarian you're down to pizzas.
While Argentina is quite famous for it's meaty cuisine, Mind of a Hitchhiker strongly disagrees with the above statement. In major cities like Buenos Aires, Rosario and Cordoba, there's little Chinese buffet places that only serve vegetarian and vegan food. They weigh your food and it costs about 50 pesos (January 2017) for one person to get full - like really rolling out the door full. They're often in the downtown areas of larger cities. For vegetarians, empanadas are the most reliable source of food, country wide. They're sold at bakeries, pizzerias and their own special shops. If you have your own cooking equipment, you have loads of freedom to make nice food. You can get a half kilo pack of polenta (corn porridge) for cheap and buy some (already spiced) tomato sauce with it and prepare it with water whenever you like. Add cheese to change it from vegan to vegetarian or add more veggies when you're feeling elaborate. Argentina's supermarkets have a large soup section too. They're vegan. Get the delicious zapallo (pumpkin) soup and a bag of egg-less letter pasta (it's both fun and space-optimized) to make the soup filling. Buen provecho, you crazy vegan.
Gas stations are plentiful and as of 2017, almost all of them offer free WiFi! Sometimes open networks, sometimes you have to ask for the password.
- Autostop Argentina (in Spanish)
Argentina has open land/sea borders with its surrounding nations clockwise: Chile, Bolivia, Paraguay, Brazil and Uruguay. Some of the borders might not have their immigration (immigracion) at the border itself, but in the nearest town before the official line. Therefore, the no man's land might be walkable or not, depending on the location. Check on a map where you need to stamp in/out before you go to avoid backtracking.
Visitors of most countries still need to apply for a tourist visa before traveling to Argentina. However, for many Europeans the visa is a small stamp that can be obtained at the border for no charge - just like most countries in South America.
- Passport valid for six months required by all except nationals of Brazil, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay who, for journeys that do not go beyond Argentina and these five countries, may use their national ID cards.
- Required by all except the following:
(a) nationals of the countries shown in the section above for stays of up to 90 days;
(b) nationals of Andorra, Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Dominican Republic, East Timor, Ecuador, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Iceland, Israel, Korea (Rep), Liechtenstein, (Former Yugoslav Republic of) Macedonia, Mexico, Monaco, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, St Lucia, St Vincent & Grenadines, San Marino, Serbia & Montenegro, Singapore, South Africa, Switzerland, Trinidad & Tobago, Turkey, Uruguay, Vatican City and Venezuela for stays of up to 90 days;
(c) nationals of Jamaica and Malaysia for stays of up to 30 days; (d) transit passengers holding confirmed onward or return tickets for travel provided continuing their journey within six hours and not leaving the airport.
Note: Visa exemptions mentioned above are for tourist purposes only.
Types of visa and cost
- The cost of visas changes monthly with exchange rates; further details can be obtained from the Consulate or Embassy
- Tourist Visa: If you are coming to Argentina on a holiday to explore the country, then, tourist visa is for you.
- Business Visa: For a business related trip, you need to apply for the business visa.
- Student Visa: For study purpose in Argentina is the student visa.
The visa costs approximately $100, plus around $50 for additional paperwork fees (processed in approximately a week). For a working visa , you can either get your prospective company to approach immigration in Argentina with the contract and arrange for an entrance permit to be sent to your respective consulate, or take your work contract, authorized by an Argentinian public notary, to the consulate yourself and the consulate will obtain the work permit from Buenos Aires. Expect the process to take at least a month. Work permits cost $200, and the visa itself another $100. Both student and working visas can be extended only in the Dirección de Migraciones.
Dirección de Migraciones
Av. Antártida Argentina 1350
Retiro, Buenos Aires
(tel 011/4312 3288 or 4311 4118).
Argentina Embassies and/or Consulates
Embassy of Argentina in Canberra, Australia
John McEwen House
Level 2, 7 National Circuit
Barton, ACT 2600
P.O. Box 4835
Kingston ACT 2604, Australia
Phone: (+61) 2 6273-9111
Fax: (+61) 2 6273-0500
Web Site: http://www.argentina.org.au/index.htm
Email: mailto:[email protected]
Office Hours: 9.00 a.m. - 5.00 p.m.
Embassy of Argentina in Ottawa, Canada
81 Metcalfe Street
K1P 6K7, Canada
Phone: 1 (613) 236 2351
Fax: 1 (613) 235 2659
Web Site: http://www.argentina-canada.net/
Email: mailto:[email protected]
Embassy of Argentina in Beijing, China
11 Dong Wu Jie
San Li Tun
Phone: (+86) 10 6532-2142 / 1406 or 6532-2090 / 1852
Fax: (+86) 10 6532-2319
Email: mailto:[email protected],mailto:[email protected]
- United States
Argentine Embassy in Washington D.C.
1600 New Hampshire Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20009-2512
City: Washington D.C.
Phone: (202) 238-6464
Fax: (202) 332-3171
Email: mailto:[email protected]
Office Hours: Monday to Friday 9:00 - 17:00
Crossing the border
People may be very cautious in picking you up. You have to cross the Puente Internacional General Artigas, the impressive bridge that crosses between the two countries. The stamp in/out is on the Uruguayan side of the river, so there's no no man's land in between the countries. When leaving Uruguay from Paysandu, Mind of a Hitchhiker only got an entry stamp to Argentina and no exit stamp in her EU passport. Upon further inquiry, this was deemed not necessary at this border by immigration officials. It's safe to assume that when you enter Uruguay from Argentina at this border, you'll also not receive an exit stamp from Argentina, but will receive an entry stamp from Uruguay.
When going to Paysandu, you'll have to follow the road that loops back under the bridge and then continues to Paysandu town and the Ruta 3 of Uruguay, which leads all the way to Montevideo.
There's a little tax free shop at the border. Nothing special
Argentinian border crossings are pretty laid back. guaka crossed 4 times in 2006 and doesn't have clear memories about it (meaning it's not that a big deal). You better avoid changing money at the border crossings though. See the currency section above.
United States citizens must pay a $160 recipricocity fee to enter the country from any border. They are quite strict about this. Pay it here - As of March 2016, Americans no longer have to pay if staying less than 90 days and visiting for tourism.
Canadian citizens need to pay a US$92 reciprocity fee as well. Can be paid on the same website as US citizens.
For a list of checkpoints see Argentina/Checkpoints
In many hospitals around the country anyone can get FREE vaccinations such as ones for yellow fever, etc.
Don´t change your money at a bank or casa de cambio- they will give you the official rate set by the government, about 10pesos/USD. Better do it on the black market where the rate is about 15pesos/USD. You can see the exact unofficial rate at http://dolarblue.net/ so you don´t get ripped off. In Buenos Aires you can change your money by going up to anyone yelling "cambio" on the street La Florida. Check the money carefully to be sure you aren´t buying counterfeits! In other major cities, walk down the main pedestrian road in the center and maybe you will find an "arbolito" ("little tree") who will change it. Otherwise, ask your host or friends if they want to buy your dollars.
Update: as of December 2015 the new government removed the official USD rate control. The "blue dollar" is within 0.50 pesos of the official rate now. And the only way to get the "blue dollar" rate is with perfect condition $100 bills. As at early February 2016 the blue rate was 15.4 pesos, the official rate was 15.2 pesos, and the rate for an average condition US$20 bill was 13.5 pesos.