12 Must-Do Experiences in Mendoza

Summer is great for mountain activities. Late summer and early fall is when the wine harvest festivities begin. And ski bums will love Las Leñas in the wintertime.

Ruta Provincial 82, Km 38, M5507 Luján de Cuyo, Mendoza, Argentina
If you’re looking for a day of grape-free respite in Mendoza, head off-the-grid to the hot springs of Cacheuta. The Terma Spa welcomes guests with an assemblage of thermal baths overlooking the scenic Mendoza River flowing downstream from the Andes. The indoor/outdoor thermal spa circuit winds through waters ranging in temperature from 73 to 105 degrees. Bubble beds, a water volcano and foot baths are strategically placed throughout the circuit to knead tense muscles. The Natural Solarium has a basin of therapeutic mud for slathering all over your body and baking on the pool deck. Scrub yourself clean in the bithermal hydrojet shower and kick back on the flowering Andaluz patio. Next, head underground to the vaporarium and detoxify in its natural steam. Relax in the verdant garden until you’re ready for an afternoon spa treatment or another convalescing soak in Cacheuta’s healing mineral waters.
Ruta Provincial 94, km 11, M5565, Mendoza, Argentina
American entrepreneur Michael Evans and Argentine winemaker Pablo Gimenez Riili joined forces to create an unparalleled viticultural paradise for wine lovers from around the world. Set on 1,500 pristine acres in the heart of the Uco Valley, the Vines Resort & Spa is a haven of laid-back luxury with a robust offering of culinary and wellness activities, winemaking endeavors, and outdoor adventures. Every aspect of the hotel is designed to share Mendoza’s natural beauty, superior wines, and Argentina’s warm culture through a tailored guest experience provided by the resort’s “Gauchos”—personal concierges and tour guides who curate one-of-a-kind itineraries for visitors.

The resort’s 22 spacious villas have ample indoor/outdoor living space, with wood-burning fireplaces, open-air fire pits, plunge pools, hot tubs, and private rooftop terraces with 360-degree views. Siete Fuegos, the resort’s signature restaurant, showcases open-flame grilling techniques mastered by Argentina’s acclaimed chef Francis Mallmann. The fitness center and yoga studio look out to the Andes, while three miles of running trails weave through the property’s vineyards. There’s never a dull moment at the Vines, with horseback riding, hiking, biking, cooking lessons, and winetasting at your fingertips—unless lounging is your preferred activity, in which case a cabana next to the 1,000-square-foot infinity pool will be calling your name.
Finca de Las Lechuzas specializes in horseback winery tours through the scenic vineyards of Agrelo in Lujan de Cuyo, Mendoza. You can choose a morning, afternoon, or evening ride with a gaucho guide. The tours take you through the stunning countryside visiting 2-3 wineries with tours and tastings in each. There is also an option of lingering for an afternoon winery lunch. Some of the wineries you can visit include Viña Cobos, Decero, Belasco de Baquedano, Septima, Ruca Malen, Melipal, Cruzat (sparkling wine), Norton, and Terraza de los Andes. You can also nibble on homemade goat cheese with a visit to the goat farm Casa Cortegoso. Ruta 7 and Costaflores, Agrelo, Lujan de Cuyo, Mendoza; +54 261 562-8223
Av. Arístides Villanueva, Capital, Mendoza, Argentina
Avenue Arístides Villanueva, simply known as Aristides by the locals, is Mendoza‘s main nightlife drag. Lined with bars, Irish pubs, restaurants, dance clubs and hostels, Aristides is where all the action happens. In warm weather months, crowds flock to the outdoor tables lining the sidewalk. It’s a great option for bar hopping and getting a dose of the late-night Mendocenan culture.
Ruta Provincial 86
A 75-minute drive south of downtown Mendoza lies the province’s burgeoning wine destination—the Uco Valley. Composed of three subregions—Tupungato, Tunuyan, and San Carlos—the Uco Valley is a 45-mile long strip of land sitting 3,000–5,000 feet above sea level at the foot of the Andes mountain range. The terroir of the Uco Valley is conducive to growing quality wine grapes, especially Mendoza’s flagship malbec grape, as well as merlot, cabernet sauvignon, torrontes, and chardonnay. Some of the world’s most significant winemakers have been lured to Uco Valley’s fertile soil. Over the past ten years, grape production has doubled in the Uco Valley thanks to international investment. State-of-the-art wineries, gourmet restaurants, luxury boutique hotels, and golf courses are popping up more frequently in the region as the wine tourism industry continues to grow. A visit to Mendoza would not be complete without a visit to several of Uco Valley’s distinctive wineries for wine tasting, dining, and soaking up the stunning landscape. Uncorking Argentina, Trout & Wine & Ampora Wine Tours can create personalized itineraries of Uco Valley’s top experiences.
Most locals will tell you that the best time to visit Mendoza is during La Fiesta Nacional de la Vendimia, Argentina’s biggest harvest festival, which takes place the first week of March. The festival is a week-long party packed with folkloric music and dancing, parades, and bacchanal wine consumption. The benediction of the fruit takes place the last weekend in February, and the first parade, Via Blanca de Las Reinas, is held on the first Friday evening in March, when allegoric chariots parade young women chosen as “queens” by their community to represent each of the 18 departments through the streets of Mendoza. On Saturday morning the queens participate in the Carrusel parade, where their floats are surrounded by men in traditional Argentine Cowboy or gaucho-style dress riding horses and followed by folkloric dancers. The Central Act takes place in Gen. San Martin Park’s Frank Romero Day Amphitheater with colorful performance from over 1,000 folkloric dancers. The evening concludes with the election of the Queen of the Vendimia and a fireworks display.
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