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San Rafael, a magical place in Mendoza

San Rafael, a village with streets lined with sycamore and poplars, cafes, canals and charming squares. An ideal destination for all ages.


With a relaxed charm and a history of wine traditions brought here from Europe, in  San Rafael  the visitor will find   vineyards  , olive groves and fruit trees backed by the snow-capped Andes. Walking or cycling you can tour the wineries and establishments dedicated to the olive tree, many of them familiar. It is also advisable to explore the picturesque surroundings of San Rafael such as Atuel Canyon and Valle Hermoso. If you're looking for excitement, the city offers mountain biking, trekking, climbing, rappelling, horseback riding, rafting or a peaceful camping night under the stars.

Atuel Canyon and Valle Grande Dike

Just 75 kilometres west of the city, you can reach the unexpected  Atuel Canyon  and its breathtaking landscapes for driving. The natural sculptures found on the canyon walls surprise, stopping to contemplate the painted mountains and taking a look at the dike is a must for the visitor.

The bright blue water contained by  Valle Grande Dike  is perfect for water sports such as kayaking and also  fishing . Sitting to contemplate them from the beach or floating inside a boat is something indescribable. Camping is also an alternative for complete silence, clear skies and bright stars that fall on one at night.


Labyrinth of Borges

Whether you have children or not, this huge green maze dedicated to   Jorge Luis Borges   is a great place to spend an afternoon. Before you start exploring, you need to know the history of Finca Los Alamos and the creation of this maze in the property's mini museum. Finding all the hidden symbology in it will help to interpret it.

Then the challenge is to get lost and try to find the way out, for whom frustration is at hand, there is an option. Climb to the 18-meter tower and try to see your desperate friends in the maze. At the end of the restaurant you can enjoy a tea and cakes. Or for those who arrive at the time of salty taste some empanadas and have a glass of wine that is made there.


Beautiful Valley

The road is not easy for those who are not used to the  mountain route. In order to enjoy it in full, it is advisable to do it with a hired tour in the city. The beautiful valley between two mountain ranges can be seen in its entirety.

You can also discover trails, ponds, hot springs, lagoons and petroglyphs created by ancient villages.

Learn everything about olives and olive oil

Among all the  vineyards  and   wineries   surrounding San Rafael, one should not forget the olive grove plantations and oil factories along the “Olivo Route”, because it would be a shame. Ideally, take a tour, take a tasting to understand how these family businesses produce olive oil.

Yancanelo, founded in 1943, is the oldest and largest producer in the area. It offers visitors the opportunity to collect their own olives (during harvest) and tour the processing plant to see how precious extra virgin olive oil is bottled. It is important to book the view in advance.


The Nihuil

A favorite place for  fishermen , nature lovers and adventure sports enthusiasts, El  Nihuil is a tourist village with dam and reservoir where you can spend the day doing a variety of activities.

In addition to relaxing on the beach, you can practice kitesurfing, windsurfing and water skiing on the lake created by the dam. It is rumored that everyone who proposes it in El Nihuil fishing pejerreyes or trout, but if that's not his thing, there are many hikes and places for mountain biking around the small village and its reservoir.

San Rafael-Atuel

Euca Air Forest

For those who are looking for a non-traditional and outdoor activity the place is the  Euca Air Forest . This unique place describes itself as a “high-tension forest adventure” near the Atuel Canyon.

It is the best way to fight the fear of heights while facing more than 30 games hung between trees using bridges, stairs, corridors and tunnels, plus 13 zip lines. Safety is guaranteed because there is a briefing, harnesses and instructors present at all times.

Las Tinajas Archaeological Park

 Las Tinajas  is an excellent example of the natural beauty of San Rafael. This park contains over 100 hectares of land preserved for its natural and archaeological importance, an ideal place to spend all day here   walking through   forests, caves and mountains.

Two trails were created to teach visitors about wildlife and native cultures of the province of Mendoza before the arrival of Europeans. The first road leads you to observe the local flora and fauna and then to natural caves to see ancient paintings of native peoples. The second road is a self-guided hike that leads uphill to various rock formations.

Publication Date: 22/02/2020

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