Why mountain bike in the Argentine Lake District?

  • Get off-road to enjoy the lakeside views and mountains of one of Argentina’s most beautiful regions.
  • Biking trails for riders of all abilities from the Lake District hubs of Bariloche and San Martín de los Andes.
  • Multi-day rides along the back routes allow you to explore and camp in some of the Lake District’s hidden gems.
  • Just want a day exploring the scenery by bike? Add mountain biking into a multi-activity trip.

Day rides in the Argentine Lake District

Biking from Bariloche

Mountain biking in the Argentine Lake District

Day ride along the Manso River, Bariloche

Probably the best single track route in the Argentine Lake District is the Río Manso trail south from Bariloche along the Manso River valley. The 40km round trip starts at the Villega Bridge and tracks the river on both banks as you pedal through some of the loveliest scenery in the region, through forests and canyons and along the way, fording streams and stopping at the many beachy areas on the river banks and admiring the waterfalls that feed into the valley. The route is not steep, but requires a good level of general fitness for best enjoyment.

A paved route that’s perennially popular with even the most casual bike riders is Bariloche’s Circuito Chico. We can’t deny that it’s a little touristy, but the views on this 27km loop are stunning, as it follows the shore of Lake Nahuel Huapi and then climbs to the Cerro Capilla viewpoint. If you want to make a longer circuit, you can divert to the alpine village of Colonia Suiza or on the single track to Villa Tacul viewpoint. Those wanting to take it extra easy can simply stop off at one of the microbreweries along the route for a drink.

Biking from San Martín de los Andes

Mountain biking in the Argentine Lake District

There are a host of bike trails around San Martín de los Andes, but one of our favourites is following the old logging tracks around Laguna Rosales. This day ride has a series of short climbs and steady descents through wooded countryside and along streams to Paraje Trompul, on land owned by the Curruhinca Mapuche Community. Trails continue to thread their way to Lake Lacar, and a beach called La Islita where – season permitting – it’s possible to swim. This route is particularly lovely in spring for its wildflowers, or in late summer when the leaves start to turn gold.

In the summer, San Martín’s ski resort at Cerro Chapelco offers plenty of single track downhill options for mountain bikers. There are also great day rides around the lakeside village of Villa Traful, the descent through green valleys from the Cordoba Pass or the climb to Lake Filo Hua Hum, but if you have the time these work even better when linked together into a multi-day biking and camping tour.

Multi day rides in the Argentine Lake District

The Northern Lakes route

Cycling the Northern Lakes route, Argentinian Lake District, Argentina

Cycling the Northern Lakes route

In theory, a keen cyclist could tackle the classic Route of the Seven Lakes between Villa la Angostura and San Martín in a single day, but it would be far more enjoyable to take in the sweeping lake and mountain scenery over several days, camping en route.

For those looking to get off-road, the Northern Lakes route takes a more circuitous and adventurous road between the two towns. Bikers quickly cut in from the Route of the Seven Lakes to follow the trails to picturesque Lake Traful. On the second day, the trail leds past the confluence of the Traful and Limay rivers and over the Cordoba Pass to Lake Filo Hua Hum. After camping here, it’s possible to get really deep into the wilderness on the mountain tracks on a day-long circuit to Lakes Nuevo and Falkner. On the final day you descend through forest to reach San Martín.

Mountain biking in the Argentine Lake District FAQs

  • How do I choose the best trip for my experience level?

    We offer tours including single day bike tours to multi-day off-road adventures, so it’s worth considering what type of biking you enjoy.

    • Do you want a multi-day camping tour on gravel roads?
    • Are you a mountain biker looking for a bit of adrenaline, leaving vehicles behind? 
    • Is a day or two of biking enough to get you out and about, allowing you to include plenty of other options for the rest of the trip?

    Ask our specialists how to tailor your trip to make it perfect for you.

  • What types of biking are there?

    Road Biking

    Good quality paved roads means that the Argentine Lake District is one of the best places in the country to tour by bike, with several excellent lakeside routes from Bariloche, San Martín de los Andes and Villa la Angostura.

    Mountain Biking

    There are plenty of single track mountain bike trails waiting to be explored in the Argentine Lake District, whether on day trips from Bariloche or San Martín de los Andes, or exploring the back routes and old logging routes on a multi-day trip, camping on the shores of the area’s hidden lakes.

  • How much support will I have?

    A fully guided tour means a support vehicle to carry your luggage (and to give you a ride if the weather turns), and local guides who will be your best source of information about hidden trails, or secret views waiting to be discovered. If you just want to set out yourself on an impromptu trip during a free afternoon, there are plenty of opportunities to rent bikes in Bariloche, San Martín de los Andes and Villa la Angostura.

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