Chatting to B, the super friendly manager of Estancia Los Potreros, she told me she had first come as a guest and within half an hour of setting out into the Argentinian countryside on horseback, she knew she had to quit her highly paid successful London Career and come and work here. This may seem like a crazy move to some however It’s easy to see how life here can be really addictive. It’s also clear to see how genuinely happy this career move has made her and I was excited to have my own estancia experience – which turned out to be one of the highlights of my 9 week road trip through South America!
Estancia Los Potreros is 6000 acres of working cattle ranch that has remained in the same anglo-argentine family for 4 generations keeping that small friendly family business feel. It’s nestled in the Sierras Chicas mountain range situated between the pampas and the andes in the stunning region of Cordoba. 17 years ago, they decided to set up a luxury lodge as a base for horse riding holidays and to give guests the real estancia experience. They then expanded also offering a more rustic camping experience for those travelling with dragoman – an off-roading tour company offering no frills adventure trips across South America. Whichever style of trip you are taking at Estancia Los Potreros, you are sure to have an amazing time, get immersed in the rural Argentinian lifestyle all whilst being looked after like royalty by the friendly staff. Maybe you will also be so reluctant to leave that you’ll end up coming back!
The luxury holidays are fully catered ( the food delicious and certainly not in short supply!) The accommodation is a stunning countryside lodge – I have to admit I was a little envious looking back at the dragoman tents! There is even a swimming pool overlooking the beautiful countryside which you will no doubt appreciate after long hot rides on horseback.
Every day will involve a horseback ride if you want it to – into the hills, the forests or even to a little swimming hole to cool off. If you prefer to explore on foot, there are plenty of walking trails to explore as well. There are also options to take longer trail rides over several days staying at other estancias or camping along the way. If there is anything special happening at the ranch, guests are encouraged to get involved. Apparently in the next few days some of the cows will be having IVF treatment and the guests will be invited to help herd the cows and observe what happens. There is even the opportunity to learn and play horse polo!
In your downtime you may be wine tatsting ( Kevin who owns the estancia also owns a share in a local boutique winery and is extremely generous with his supply of delicious wine!) There may be opportunities to see some local musicians perform some gaucho music and you can even get involved in the kitchens and have a cooking lesson to learn how to make the perfect empanadas! And for the real cowboy experience, there will be an opportunity to taste a delicious BBQ and whilst it’s being cooked, try your hand at lassooing … a barrel!! This is trickier than it looks but for a moment, I felt like a real cowgirl!
I can’t recommend Estancia Los Potreros enough. I absolutely loved my stay and would definitely consider going back for a longer stay at some point in the future – next time it’ll be the luxury lodges for me! So if a luxury stay in a beautiful lodge riding horses in the countryside each day sounds like your type of R&R, then I suggest visiting www.estancialospotreros.com and booking your trip now! You won’t regret it!