Sustainable trip planning | Argentina 🇦🇷

It is official – my husband and I are going to Argentina in March 2023! 🇬🇹

As we are planning this trip, I would like to share some tips and tricks about how we plan to practice sustainability while we are in a new (to us) continent.

Pack light

Selfie of Sammy
This outfit is always in my travel bag: NRS 50-SPF sunshirt, Patagonia ultra-light down, Mountain Hardware quick dry pants, and beanie.

This may seem like a no-brainer, but a lot of people way overpack for trips. I learned the importance of packing light early on. When I was a child, my family lived in Europe for several months traveling through London Heathrow, the Underground, on trains, and in taxis with our HUGE bags and a toddler. I can’t recall how many times we were rushing to get on transit and left behind the stroller or souvenirs we had bought. It was too much to keep track of, and frankly, we didn’t need it all.

We are going to Argentina for ten days – we will each bring five days worth of outfits (not including cold gear), and we have booked a local apartment so that we have access to laundry halfway through. We can fit all of this in one overhead carry-on size bag, and we will each bring a backpack.

Some benefits of packing light include:

  • Not paying or waiting for checked bags
  • The ease of keeping track of all of our items
  • The ease of boarding public transit quickly
  • Being intentional about what we truly need
  • Saving room in our baggage for souvenirs
  • Feeling good about having less!

Talk to locals

What’s App is a great way to connect with locals at your destination. I use it to contact hotels and hostels ahead of time to ask about local activities and recommendations before our trip. Lodge owners sometimes have pro-deals with local guide companies, so the rates for activities are cheaper, and the funds go directly to the company without all the third-party fees.

Kerry cliffs landscape shot
Our favorite day in Killarney, Ireland 2019 🇮🇪 | We sang and danced with locals in the pub all night long.

Another way to connect with locals, go to a local watering hole. Ryan and I love to hit up a pub when we arrive in a new place. People are usually so friendly and offer suggestions of things do that all the books and all the apps don’t. When we reflect on our trips, more often than not, our favorite experiences end up being unplanned.

We will be spending a lot of time sampling Argentine Malbec and doing as the locals do. We may even take a tango lesson. 💃🏼

Use public transit

I’ve said it in a previous blog, and I feel compelled to reiterate – use public transit! We plan to spend three days in Buenos Aires and will rely solely on public transit. Buses, trains, and underground stations can be daunting because most cities in America do not have reliable infrastructure, but on my international travels, public transit is often the way to go.

Not only is it affordable, but it’s better for the environment than millions of individuals in driving gas-powered vehicles. And, you can read, have a latte or even a pint on the way to your destination.

While in Patagonia, we will have to rent a car to cover some ground. But, all of our accommodations are in towns, so we will navigate to as many activities as we can on foot.

Do some research

I am a jeans and t-shirt (or flannel) kind of woman. But, when I am going to a new place, I like to research how locals typically dress, what time they eat meals, how their work weeks are typically structured, and, in the case of South America, what season it will be when we arrive.

Colorful houses in Innsbruck, Austria
Innsbruck Austria 🇦🇹 | March 2022

I’ve read a lot about Argentine fashion, and I can tell you right now they will definitely peg me as American right out of the gate. 😂 But, I am glad I did some research because I learned that no one wears shorts in the city unless they are an athlete, bright colors are welcome, and people really take pride in their appearance.

I also learned that when we get to Argentine Patagonia, the weather can vary up to 70 degrees in one day. That tidbit will help us in our quest to pack light.

While I recommend taking time to learn before you go to a new place, don’t forget to learn while you’re there too. We all have biases, assumptions, expectations, and sometimes just observing the world around you is the best thing you can do.

What’s next

For now, we are brushing up on our Spanish, keeping ourselves fit for some high alpine activities, drooling over food photos – and we cannot wait to experience all Argentina has to offer!

If you have recommendations in the following cities, please contact Sammy!

  • Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • El Chalten, Argentina
  • El Calafate, Argentina

Thanks for checking in to Sammy Sees – I am so happy you’re here. Cheers!

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