Argentina 2013: A Wonderful Hunt and Fantastic Vacation

by david on July 22, 2013

In late May and early June I took a hunting trip and vacation Argentina.  My hunting buddies were with me for the hunt and my wife and daughters joined me for the vacation.  I had the best of both worlds.  Before I get started with the description of the trip I want to give kudos to the two people that got me there in back

For those of you who have read about my past adventures you are already familiar with Rick Wilks.  Rick is an ex-marine and has become a friend rather than just a booking agent over the years.  Wilks Safaris will get you the information to decide where you want to hunt and then get you there and back.

Our family vacation to Argentina actually began as a hunting trip for my hunting buddies and me was still in the planning stages.  The family’s desire to go sightseeing in Argentina came up one night at the dinner table.  I was unsure exactly what they wanted to see, as I was only familiar with the legendary wing shooting in the northern part of the country and the big-game opportunities scattered around the country.  I soon discovered my education was sorely lacking.

My wife informed me she wanted to see four things while we were in-country.  She wanted to see the waterfalls of Iguazú, the Andes, the Perito Moreno, and penguins.  After a little research, we discovered the penguins had already migrated by the time my hunt was scheduled, but everything else was available even if it was the off season.  For the sightseeing aspect of the trip, I first went to the U.S. company that handled the airfare for my hunting group.  While they booked the airfare quite efficiently and economically, we just could not get together on the touring.  They seemed to want us to take their “vacation”, not ours.  The quoted prices also seemed unusually high.  We decided to find a company in Argentina.  Our logic was that someone on the ground in Argentina would have more firsthand knowledge of every aspect of our trip.  A little searching on the internet for the places we wanted to see sent us to the website of ( and into the very capable hands of Sylvia Zapiola.

We picked some preconfigured tours from the website and sent off a basic “hear is what we’re interested in” type of e-mail and waited for a response.  Her first response was made up of questions rather than just a “here is the cost of what you asked for” answer.  She wanted to know the ages of my daughters, what type of accommodations we were interested in, and so on.  I told her their ages and explained we did not plan on using the rooms for anything other than sleeping and a base from which to tour.  The accommodations needed to be centrally located (food, transportation, shopping, etc.), and safe.  After a few more question-and-answer sessions, she sent us an itinerary.  It was just about perfect and the price was much, much better than the one the other company sent.  A little fine tuning was suggested by my better half and things were all set.  We would be in Iguazú for two days at the falls, including one full day with a tour guide.  Next, it was off to the fabled wine region of Mendoza, and our tours would include a winery tour and a whole day up into the Andes.  Lastly, we would be heading south to El Calafate for two full days of touring the glacier.  A credit card secured our sightseeing trip and flights and all we had left to do was wait for the start date of the trip.  She even sent us a set of vouchers in case of a miscommunication somewhere down the road.

When my family arrived in Argentina, they were met at the airport by an English-speaking driver who delivered them safe and sound to the hotel, answering all of their questions along the way.  I met up with them later that evening after my hunt ended.  The whole trip went fabulously.  All of our drivers, tour guides, and hotel clerks spoke English and bent over backwards to help our trip go smoothly.  The accommodations were perfect and exactly what we had asked for.  The tours and flights went off without a hitch and we had a marvelous time.  I cannot say enough good things about Sylvia and Patagonia-Argentina.  They took great care of us, and I will not hesitate to use their services on my next trip to Argentina.

Tomorrow: The Hunt




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