South America is one of the best places in the world for a road trip. The huge continent has it all; the most pristine and luscious rainforest in the world, postcard perfect beaches, wetlands the size of small countries, unspoiled natural wonders and spectacular mountains second only in height to the Himalayas. To go along with the landscape, the distinct and unique cultures as well as the wide variety of cuisine across the continent are also a great reason to take a journey to South America. Overall, there are a million reasons to take an expedition down south, but no road trip through South America is complete without spending a few weeks of your trip through the wine country in the heart of Argentina.
The best city to use as a base for exploring the Argentine wine country is Mendoza. The town is nestled against the eastern edge of the Andes Mountains, a few hours flight due west of the capital, Buenos Aires. The scenery around the beautiful countryside of Mendoza is absolutely stunning, with the Andes Mountains as a fantastic backdrop. The vineyards spread out over the area are responsible for producing over 80% of the grapes grown in Argentina and boasts over 395,000 acres of vineyards. Overall, there are approximately 1,500 independent vineyards spread out over the country; each producing a unique tasting wine. The vineyards range from small, independent wineries that have been producing wine for hundreds of years to huge, modern wineries that produce a mind-boggling amount of wine. Any vacationer here could easily spend a few months here without being able to see everything that is on offer.
By far the best way to visit the spread out vineyards around the Mendoza countryside is by rental car. Many tour companies that offer vineyard tours around the area do not spend enough time at each vineyard. Many complaints about these companies is that they’re not so much interested in your trip, but are more interested in making a commission off of sales of wine. By renting a car, you can explore the countryside at your leisure and pace without being pressured to buy wine from the tour guides. Don’t like one winery? Drive to the next one with stops along the way and explore at your own pace. Like a particular winery? Spend hours there really exploring the landscape.
Overall, any road trip or trip for that matter to South America is not complete without a trip to the Argentine wine country in the surrounding areas of Mendoza. Exploring the region by car is the best option as you can explore at your own pace and see what you want to see without any tour guide pushing you through.