The Best of El Bolsón: A Weekend Getaway from Bariloche

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Summary of El Bolsón

El Bolsón is a small town located in the Patagonia region of Argentina, known for its stunning natural beauty, vibrant culture, and sustainable way of life. Situated in the heart of the Andes mountains, El Bolsón is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, with opportunities for hiking, fishing, and skiing in the nearby mountains. The town is also home to a thriving artisanal community, where visitors can find handcrafted goods such as pottery, woodwork, and textiles. The local food scene is also a highlight, with a focus on organic and locally sourced ingredients. Visitors to El Bolsón will not only be able to enjoy all the outdoor activities and culture, but also experience a sustainable way of life. Naturally, this area attracts people who are interested in sustainability and a more “hippie” lifestyle.

Click here to see my Bariloche guide in Thatch, and visit my blog post about activities in Bariloche.

Where to stay in El Bolsón

The Earthship Eco Hostel

El Bolsón is not a large town, but there are several options for places to stay. It is near the start of many amazing hikes around the area, so the town has enough lodging to cover that.

I stayed in the Earthship Patagonia Eco Hostel. It is run by volunteers who are also travelers. There is a fantastic community vegan meal every evening for a very affordable price. There are hammocks in the beautiful gardens in front. They have private rooms as well as shared rooms in a yurt.

Another hostel option is the Hostel Ankatu, which is a short walk into the city center. The lodging is very rustic and has a great balcony.

If you’re looking for something right in the center of town, check out the Las Tejuelas Hotel. It’s just steps from the lake and market in town. Includes breakfast.

Just outside of the main town center, you can find the Entre Verdes, which is a great private apartment. Modern and new. Easy walk to the center.

What to do in El Bolsón

Feria El Bolson

Feria El Bolsón

The Feria Regional de El Bolsón is a popular outdoor market located in the Andes Mountains of Argentina. The market features handmade crafts, local produce, and traditional Argentine food. The Feria is known for its relaxed, bohemian atmosphere and attracts both tourists and locals seeking unique souvenirs and a taste of Argentine culture. You can find the market on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. However, the best days are on the weekend as you can also find food trucks and live music.

The Raspberry beer

Try the Craft Beer

El Bolsón’s craft beer scene has grown significantly in recent years, with several local breweries producing high-quality, artisanal beer. The region’s pure mountain water and natural ingredients lend themselves to creating unique and flavorful brews. Visitors can enjoy a variety of beer styles, from traditional lagers to experimental IPAs, at local bars and breweries. I had the raspberry beer since the area is famous for raspberries, and it was absolutely delicious.

Stroll the Streets

The center of El Bolsón is a bustling area with a variety of shops, restaurants, and cafes. The town’s main square, Plaza Pagano, is a popular gathering spot for locals and visitors alike, hosting outdoor markets and cultural events. The surrounding streets are lined with colorful buildings and street art, giving the area a vibrant and bohemian feel. You can also see a ton of different bird species wondering the streets.

Where to eat in El Bolsón

Because of the laid back vibes of the city, the food service also tends to be quite slow unfortunately. But that doesn’t mean the food and beer aren’t fantastic. I had some good meals here:


Av. San Martín 2867, R8430 El Bolsón, Río Negro, Argentina

The service was quite slow, but the food was great. They also have a great ice cream shop within the restaurant. Try the raspberry.

What to do just outside of El Bolsón

Mystic Fog Brewery

Cajón del Azul

The Cajón del Azul is a stunning natural area located just outside of El Bolsón. The region is known for its crystal-clear blue waters, dramatic rock formations, and lush forests. Visitors can hike, swim, and explore the area’s stunning natural beauty. The Cajón del Azul is a must-visit for nature lovers visiting El Bolsón. If you have a car, you can drive to the base easily, about 15 minutes outside of El Bolsón. If not, you can also take the Wharton bus from the town center to the base of the hike. There are two refugios along the which which you can spend the night in.

Try a craft beer at Mystic Fog Brewery

Mystic Fog Brewing is a popular craft brewery located just outside of El Bolsón, right at the start of the Cajón del Azul hike. The brewery produces a variety of unique and flavorful beers, ranging from classic ales to experimental brews. Visitors can enjoy Mystic Fog’s beers at the brewery’s taproom, and enjoy your brews at the picnic tables overlooking the river. The owners are originally from Los Angeles but have been in the area for decades, therefore, it is easy to ask about various flavors in both English and Spanish.

El Bolsón is a small town, but it’s also a great place to base yourself to check out the surrounding area. I highly suggest spending a couple days here to see what a small hippie town in the Argentine Patagonia is like.

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