Argentina, officially the Argentine Republic (Spanish: República Argentina, pronounced: [reˈpuβlika arxenˈtina]), is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires.
Argentina’s continental area is between the Andes mountain range in the west and the Atlantic Ocean in the east. It borders Paraguay and Bolivia to the north, Brazil and Uruguay to the northeast, and Chile to the west and south. Argentine claims over Antarctica, as well as overlapping claims made by Chile and the United Kingdom, are suspended by the Antarctic Treaty of 1961. Argentina also claims the Falkland Islands (Spanish: Islas Malvinas) and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, which are administered by the United Kingdom as British Overseas Territories.
Argentina is derived from the poetic Spanish argento (“silver”). The first use of Argentina can be traced to the 1602 poem La Argentina y conquista del Río de la Plata (Argentina and the conquest of the silver river) by Martín del Barco Centenera.
Argentina is composed of twenty-three provinces (Spanish: provincias, singular provincia) and one autonomous city (Ciudad autónoma de Buenos Aires). The city and the provinces have their own constitutions, but exist under a federal system. The administrative divisions of the Provinces are the departments (Spanish: departamentos, singular departamento), and the municipalities (Spanish: municipios or intendencias), except for Buenos Aires Province, which is divided into partidos. The City of Buenos Aires is divided into communes.
Buenos Aires Province
The Province of Buenos Aires (English: Fair Winds) takes the name from the city of Buenos Aires.
Located in the northwest of the country, the capital is San Fernando del Valle de Catamarca, usually shortened to Catamarca.
Chaco is a Quechua word for “hunting,” which was the main source of food for the aboriginal people prior to the Spanish colonisation of the Americas.
The province’s name derives from the Tehuelche word chupat, meaning “transparent,” their description of the Chubut River.
The main feature of the province is the presence of an extensive plain covering the eastern two thirds of the province, and the existence of three major mountain ranges which, combined, are known as Sierras de Córdoba.
Part of the subtropical area of Mesopotamia, tourist destinations in the Corrientes Province include the Iberá Wetlands and the Mburucuyá National Park.
Two national parks are located within the province: El Palmar National Park and Predelta National Park. There are also hot springs in several locations.
The name comes from the archaic Spanish word fermosa (currently hermosa) meaning “beautiful”.
Apart from the fantastic contrast of land colours and formations, tourists are attracted also by the strong aboriginal roots in the culture of Jujuy.
Tourism is underdeveloped, however, visitors may start at Santa Rosa and reach Lihué Calel National Park, Parque Luro Provincial Reserve or visit one of the many estancias, some of which are dedicated to agritourism.
Besides the Talampaya National Park, tourists visiting La Rioja usually go also to the Chilecito town, Cerro de La Cruz, Termas de Santa Teresita hot springs and the village of Villa Sanagasta.
The main attractions are the Las Leñas ski centre, the Aconcagua mountain, and the provincial parks of the Atuel Canyon, Puente del Inca, Guaymallén and others. Wine tourism has also become very popular.
The province is embraced by three big rivers including the Paraná, Uruguay and Iguazú. Iguazu Falls are spectacular waterfalls on the Iguazú River in the northwest corner of the province.
Attractions, include San Martín de los Andes, Villa La Angostura, Camino de los Siete Lagos, Los Arrayanes National Park, Lanín National Park, Nahuel Huapí National Park, Laguna Blanca National Park, the Copahue hot baths and several ski resorts in winter.
There are two main areas of tourism in the province; the Andes and the Atlantic coast offering a variety of activities for visitors.
The Salta Province is home to a number of natural, social and historic attractions. There are three national parks in Salta: El Rey National Park in the Yungas jungle, Baritú National Park and Los Cardones National Park.
San Juan, known as The Land of the Sun, offers mountains, valleys and turbulent rivers of melting glacier water from the Andes.
Destinations include the capital city, the Sierra de las Quijadas National Park, Valle del Conlara, Lake Potrero de los Funes, Papagayos, Carpintería, La Carolina, El Volcán, La Toma, El Trapiche, and the artificial lake of the La Florida dam.
Santa Cruz’s most visited destination is Los Glaciares National Park and a number of glaciers of which the Perito Moreno Glacier is the most famous.
Most of the province consists of green flatlands, part of the humid Pampas, bordering to the north with the Gran Chaco region.
Santiago del Estero
Tourists visit Santiago del Estero and its historical buildings and museums, Termas de Río Hondo and the Río Hondo hot springs with its 200 hotels, and the Frontal dam.
Tierra del Fuego, Antártida e Islas del Atlántico Surc
The most visited destinations include Ushuaia, the Tierra del Fuego National Park and the Tren del Fin del Mundo, Fagnano Lake, the Museum of the End of the World, the Beagle Channel, the Les Eclaireurs lighthouse, the old jail, and South Staten Island.
The most visited destinations of the Province are the Campo de los Alisos National Park, Valles Calchaquíes, Tafí del Valle, Ruins of Quilmes, the Diaguita community of Amaicha del Valle, and the city of San Miguel de Tucumán.
The generally temperate climate ranges from subtropical in the north to subpolar in the far south. The north is characterized by very hot, humid summers with mild drier winters, and is subject to periodic droughts. Central Argentina has hot summers with thunderstorms (western Argentina produces some of the world’s largest hail), and cool winters. The southern regions have warm summers and cold winters with heavy snowfall, especially in mountainous zones. Higher elevations at all latitudes experience cooler conditions.
Other places and informational links for Argentina:
Latin American Network Information Center from the University of Texas at Austin.
Argentine culture has significant European influences. Buenos Aires, its cultural capital, is largely characterized by both the prevalence of people of European descent, and of conscious imitation of European styles in architecture. The other big influence is the gauchos and their traditional country lifestyle of self-reliance. Finally, indigenous American traditions (like yerba mate infusions) have been absorbed into the general cultural milieu.
Transport in Argentina is mainly based on a complex network of routes, crossed by relatively inexpensive long-distance buses. The country also has a number of national and international airports. Within the urban areas, the main transportation system is by the bus or colectivo. Buenos Aires additionally has an underground, the only one in the country, and Greater Buenos Aires is serviced by a system of suburban trains.
Argentine long distance buses are fast, affordable and comfortable; they have become the primary means of long-distance travel since railway privatizations in the early 1990s greatly downsized Argentina’s formerly ubiquitous passenger rail service.
April Fools' Day or All Fools' Day is celebrated on April 1st as a day for practical jokes, pranks and hoaxes. This light-hearted humor has become a popular tradition between not only friends and family, but media sources as well. Watch out on April Fools Day! Are you being hoaxed?
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