Bariloche - or San Carlos de Bariloche, to give the town its proper name - is situated in the province of Río Negro, Argentina, in the foothills of the Andes, surrounded by lakes and mountains. It is famous for skiing but also known for sight-seeing, water sports, trekking, and climbing. Cerro Catedral is one of the most important ski centers in South America.
Tourism, both domestic and international, is the main economic activity of Bariloche, all year around. During the summer, beautiful beaches such as Playa Bonita (as well as more secluded ones on Victoria Island) welcome sun bathers and lake swimmers. The fishing season is another great attraction. Bariloche is the biggest city of a huge Lakes District, and serves as a base for many excursions in the region. Trekking in the mountains, almost completely wild and uninhabited with the exception of a few high-mountain huts, is also a popular activity.
Located beautifully between the towering Andes and the plains of Patagonia, Bariloche is also a paradise for chocoholics! The alpine atmosphere attracted Swiss, German, and Austrian settlers at the end of the 19th century and this still influences the town, set on shores of Lake Nahuel Huapi, today. Take a stroll around the small town, visiting the beautiful church, the lakeside, and the many chocolate shops.
Some hotels will let you use their facilities (gym, spa, pool, beach, etc.) for a reduced day pass. This can be great for layovers!