After spending just over a week in Buenos Aires I decided to book some long distance buses and head off alone. It was a 15 hour drive to Mendoza, and when I got there the view of the mountains was stunning. On my first day I just had a little wander around the town, then the next day I headed off on a day excursion up into the mountains.
The views were breathtaking (I had more photos but they´ve annoyingly disappeared from my memory card!)
And here´s Aconcagua, the highest mountain in South America:
Next day I had a little wander to the park with two friends from my hostel. It was quite arid (keep forgetting it´s winter here) but they were filling up the lake with water when we got there.
So after a few days chilling in Mendoza, I caught a bus across the border to Chile. It was a 6 hour drive and the views of the Andes were stunning. Crossing the border was relatively easy, apart from getting pounced on by a sniffer dog for leaving an old apple at the bottom of my bag… sorry… luckily I didn´t get fined.
When I arrived in Santiago I had no idea that I´d arrived on probably the worst day of the year… riot vans raced past me as I left the bus station. As my taxi turned onto my hostel´s road, a gang of masked guys came out and blocked the road, throwing a bin at my taxi and setting fire to the rubbish in front of us. I was like argh what the hell?! My taxi swerves away and we get further down the road, and then I discover my hostel is literally metres from the gang. Reluctantly I get out and head inside my hostel.
It´s empty bar one couple and I find out that this is what´s going on: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/11/chile-coup-anniversary-clashes_n_3906079.html.
A peculiar Chilean specialty, ‘mote con huesillo’… sweetcorn with peaches in juice. Actually not too bad!
Took a couple of pictures of a protest outside my hostel the next night but it was tame compared the previous day.
I quickly hotfooted it to the bus station and booked a bus ticket back to Buenos Aires! 21 hours on a bus and I´m here 🙂