Our first fishing field was near the town of Esquina, in the south-western corner of the Corrientes county. It was some 600kms, or one night bus ride from B.A. The 2nd spot was near Mercedes, further north in the heart of the county. We traveled the 200kms again in a bus.
On this trip I flew first up north to Corrientes, and then back stepped
south with a fishing stop along the way. The flight from BA to Corrientes
cost $160. Not cheap, but the bus fare has also become quite expensive
by now, around $120.
In cities you can easily find people who speaks English, but in countryside
especially on the waterfront, Spanish (apart from the indigenous language
Guarani) often is the only means of communication. Not only in arranging
the trip from home but more during your stay, you'd appreciate even a humble
command of Spanish.
Spanish is a phonetical language where, unlike English, each alphabet represents
just one sound. Every noun has a gender but quite easy to tell. And most
of all, it is a fun language to learn and to make silly mistakes with.
To make the holiday enjoyable, doing some Spanish drill at home is a good
The field of Dorado fishing lies in the great plains to the north. Rainfall is richest from November to January, raising the water levels creating temporary lakes.
Fishing can be enjoyed throughout the year, but flyfishing is more enjoyable
when the water is relatively lower i.e. in early summer Oct-Now, and again
in early autumn Mar-April..
Sunblock cream, insect repellent, and a bottle of antiseptic. These are
the three things you should never forget when venturing out in the tropics.
The sun is strong, and the heat on the boat is intense. Hats, polarizing
glasses and breezy clothes are also musts. Sandals are quite handy, but
be sure to wear socks at all times. Against the sun during the day, and
against the bugs after dark.
Small items we were glad to have included torch lights and a pair of pliers.
You never know what's there in the river bank as you walk back in the dark.
While fishing you often have to tie & cut the wire leaders. Put a string
on the pliers and hang it around your neck.
The national food is beaf. You can practically live on steaks if you so
wish, munching on the famous fresh Argentinean beef a whole week. Filet,
Ribs, or T-bones , , with a glass of full-bodied red wine you are the gourmet
king of the world!
The lodges will of course serve you wide variety of dishses, deserts and
beverages. And everything tasted excellent. No chance to lose weight.
Currency is Peso, often confusingly written as $. (When referring to US
dollar, the symbol comes always with 'US' i.e. US$). The exchange rate
was once fixed at 1to 1 with US$, but after the economic crisis in 2001,
the rate is floating at around 3 pesos to US$1. Credit cards are widely
accepted, but what comes most handy is US cash. Even in rural villages
where no banks are around, you can pay in US$ and receive changes in peso.
Along with the next door neighbor Chile, Argentine was once rated as the
most expensive country to travel in. This situation has changed in the
last couple of years, with a dollar to 3 peso ex rate. One exception in
fact is fishing - they generally charge 3 times more on foreigners. Sometimes
feel odd to pay 300dollars, when local guests receiving the same service
for 300pesos. But once you think about how much you'd have to pay for the
quality experience back home, we shouldn't feel much grief.
The situation had again changed a lot since. Peso got much weaker, trading
at 16 pesos to a US$1. But meanshile prices had gone up even more, especially
in urban areas. Oh well, quality experience for a price!
To get around
Buses are the most popular transportation everywhere in S. America and
the locals don't seem to mind spending days on long-haul trips. So long
as you have time and a sense of humour, buses make reasonable, fun traveling
options. Particularly here in Argentine you can pay for a seat of your
choice, which can be even luxurious, complete with courtesy soft drinks.
Many buses are double deckers and offer interesting views of the life along
To visit Argentine
Argentine is arguably the safest, and the most accommodating travel destination
of South America. Visa is not required for the citizens of western nations,
so long as the duration of the stay is less than 3 months. Popular jump-off points from Europe include Paris and Madrid. Many of the
flights depart European cities late in the evening, fly over the Atlantic
during the night and arrive in B.A. early next morning, allowing you to
make the best use of your vacation Day1.