The Andes, the world’s second greatest mountains dominate the skyline outside of Mendoza. You can be within these mountains with about an hours drive from the central part of Mendoza. There are many tourist agencies offering trekking trips ranging from 1 to 12+ days. In addition consider a high mountain driving trip which is less rigorous but still an invigorating way to see the Andes.
We used the following two companies for two different Andean trips.
Fenix de los Andes – this is a Spanish guiding company only (No English guides) but their prices are much lower than most of the other tourist companies. They were extremely friendly and very knowledgeable about the history, culture and mountain information. They offer the same trip that you will find at most of the other agencies. They drive you up route 7 into the Andes where you will stop for a light breakfast after about 2 hours. Then you will continue up the Andean highway towards the Chilean border where you will stop at the Mirador del Aconcagua.
This is an excellent place to gape in awe at the world’s highest mountain outside of the Himalayas. Next you will pass the border station and continue up to the Christ Redentor statue (unless the road is covered in snow and then you may only make it to the turnoff for this statue). On your way back you will stop at the Inca Point (Puente del Inca) to view a neat geological formation on site of now shut down thermal baths). The trip starts at about 7:30 in the morning and returns from 630 to 8pm. Fenix is located in a small shop downstairs at Paseo Sarmiento 127 in the Galeria San Marcos Local 11. Phone: 420-0779
Cordon del Plata – this company came highly recommended and after trekking with them we could see why. They are very professional and knowledgeable about trekking and climbing in the Andes. They offer many treks and climbs including of the Great Giant, Aconcagua. We drove 90 minutes from Mendoza to their San Antonio hostel and from here we started the hike up to a small mountain around 3200 meters.
We were here in mid Autumn and the area had just received its first major snow storm of the season so we hiked up to the top in snow the entire way. The entire trek takes about 5-6 hours (including both ways) and from the top you have tremendous views of the dominating jagged Andean peaks. We were lucky to have the clouds directly below us and the sharp peaks jutting into the clear dark blue sky that is so common on clear days in high mountains worldwide.