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Lago Posadas

Not many travelers venture this far off the road to Lago Posadas. (Even though the town’s name was officially changed to Hipólito Yrigoyen, it seems everyone prefers this former name. Perhaps because it’s a bit more poetic.) A village, really, it isn’t. Lago Posadas is more a hamlet of fewer than 200 souls. Its mere four streets by five streets are sketched on the north bank of Arroyo El Indio, at the foot of El Águila plateau (100 m / 328 ft). Some might question why anyone would head into these boonies.

In the 1920s, Lago Posadas was a way station for wagon trains venturing through Paso Raballos, on their way between Cochrane, Chile, and Argentina’s Atlantic ports. It began as an estancia that slowly grew into a hamlet. Today, it is now a stop for travelers who want to get away from the gawking crowds of tourists and into pure, unblemished nature. From Lago Posadas, Patagonia’s lesser known jewels may be explored.

On the northeast corner of the settlement is a path leading to Mirador del Tarde, a perfect place to watch the sunset alpenglow on the western mountains. Three kilometers (1.9 mi) southeast is Cerro de los Indios, a rock overhang painted by pre-AĂłnikenk peoples. These pinturas rupestres of guanacos, hunters, felines and a stunning spiral labyrinth were created 1000-3800 BC.

Lago Posadas is named for the lake seven kilometers (4.4 mi) to the west. In its center is a curious, solitary rock formation, several-hundred meters long, with an arch near one end. Locals say it’s a feeding dinosaur. A thin, 200-meter isthmus separates Lago Posadas’ tranquil, turquoise waters from the deep-blue, wind-roughened waters of Lago Puerreydón. On the spit of land is Estancia Suyai, which provides lodging, camping and excursions (Tel: 02963-49-0242, URL: info@suyaipatagonia.com.ar, URL: suyaipatagonia.com.ar).

Lagos Posadas and Puerreydón are celebrated for their trout, salmon and perch fishing. They are also paradises for birdwatchers, with Ashy-headed and Magellanic geese, Buff-necked Ibis, Chilean Flamingo, Black-necked Swan and several types of ducks, among dozens of other species. Lago Pueyrredón, one of Patagonia’s four binational lakes, is called Lago Cochrane in Chile. Between the lake and Monte Zeballos to the north is Paso Roballos, a frontier crossing with no border facilities.

The two lakes are fed by runoff from glacier-draped Cerro San Lorenzo, Argentine Patagonia’s highest peak (3,706 m /12,159 ft). Tour operators in Lago Posadas village plan multi-day climbs of this mountain and of Monte Zeballos (2,708 m / 8,885 ft). Travelers not quite up for scaling heights can opt for treks or horseback rides through the Andean foothill country. Excursions to Cueva de las Manos (110 km / 68 mi east) and Parque Nacional Perito Moreno (260 km / 162 mi south) may also be arranged from Lago Posadas.

(Altitude: 183 m / 600 ft, Population: 171, Phone Code: 02963)

Services

Lago Posadas’ Dirección de Turismo is eager to help tourists know its beautiful region (Av. San Martín and El Amancay, Tel: 49-0225, E-mail: turismo@lagoposadas.com www.lagoposadas.com, URL: www.lagoposadas.com). Other services are police, phone, Internet and health post. Note: Lago Posadas has no bank or ATM.

ArtesanĂ­a



La Posada (Tel: 49-0250, E-mail: susanalaposada@yahoo.com.ar)—artisan liqueurs, sweets



Tours



Las Loicas (Las Lengas and Cóndor Andino, Tel: 49-0272, E-mail: info@lasloicas.com / lasloicas@yahoo.com.ar, URL: www.lasloicas.com)—excursions in Lago Posadas area, Parque Nacional Perito Moreno; trekking to San Lorenzo mountain; bilingual guides El Javito (Las Calandrias, between Las Lengas and Los Calafates, Tel: 49-0227)—horseback ridingGuía de sitio Luciana Fortuny (Tel: 49-0255, E-mail: sololu2003@yahoo.com.ar)—local guide



Hotels



A few campgrounds operate in Lago Posadas, e.g. Camping El Tío (Tel: 49-0241, URL: www.eltiocamping.com.ar; also cabañas).



Hospedaje Los Pioneros (Amancay s/n, Tel: 49-0229, E-mail: hospedajelospioneros@yahoo.com.ar)—single $23, double $46 Hospedaje El Santacruceño (Tel: 49-0227, E-mail: gueletrofe@yahoo.com.ar)La Posada del Posadas (Tel: 49-0250, E-mail: susanalaposada@yahoo.com.ar, URL: www.delposadas.com.ar)—single $43-53, double $63-77



Restaurants



Lago Posadas has few restaurants. Several general stores (ramas generales) sell groceries.



RotiserĂ­a El CoirĂłn (Tel: 49-0277)



RotiserĂ­a Don Thomas (Tel: 49-0281)



Bar Pool TĂ­o Milton (Tel: 49-0279)

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Other places nearby Lago Posadas: El Calafate, Los Antiguos , Cueva De Las Manos , El Chaltén, Gobernador Gregores, Perito Moreno, Rio Turbio and Parque Nacional Perito Moreno .







By Lorraine Caputo

Upon re-declaring her independence at age 29, Lorraine Caputo packed her trusty Rocinante (so her knapsack's called) and began...

04 Oct 2010

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