Each spring in Argentina, gauchos gather in the small village of San Antonio de Areco. It’s the beginning of the 75th festival to show off their riding skills and enjoy life as it was.
This year, from November 1 until the 9th, La Bamba de Areco is giving tourists and travelers the opportunity to join in the celebration.
A 19th-century, working ranch, La Bamba de Areco boasts 11 rooms on 300 acres that is an easy 75 minute trip from Buenos Aires. The ranch will shuttle guests daily to the village for the “Gaucho Games.”
The estancia offers horseback excursions year-round. If a visitor isn’t comfortable on horseback, they can also travel by carriage or even mountain bike. For the tourist that doesn’t want to travel far from the bunkhouse, they can enjoy hot stone massages, an Olympic-size swimming pool or just simply grab a spot in the shade to settle in.
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Besides being a tourist destination, La Bamba de Areco also serves as the base for the international polo team that bears its name. The property includes two polo fields and the guest can also watch games during the season, with practice sessions and matches taking place almost daily. Although it is not intended to be a polo school, arrangements can be made on request for guests who are experienced polo players.
In addition to seeing bronco riding and a ring race, visitors will be able to enjoy folk music, dances and local craftwork including silver jewelry making.
The last two days of the festival makes up the highlight. Over 4,000 gauchos will parade through town on the last day as visitors to the ranch will enjoy a Argentine specialtieis along the parade route.
At the ranch itself, visitors will see daily demonstrations of horse-whispering and will also have the chance to learn to ride like a gaucho.
Guillermo Savino, the ranch’s general manager, makes sure that visitors will get an authentic experience. “The gauchos are an integral part of the culture here, and seeing their way of life is a unique way to get a sense of the country,” he said.