Julie Argentina 8 Comments

How much time is the perfect amount to spend in Mendoza, Argentina? That depends on what you want to do. If you travel here only to tour the wine regions, a few days is all you need. If you want to add in adventure activities and day trips outside of Mendoza, more time is needed. Check out our Mendoza itinerary to plan your perfect trip.

Mendoza in April

5 Day Mendoza Itinerary

Mendoza, Argentina deserves two days at the bare minimum. With two days, you can sample the best of the wine regions and explore the city of Mendoza.

Below, we list a 5 day Mendoza itinerary. The first two days cover what we think are the most important things to do in Mendoza, which is wine tasting and spending some time in town. Days 3 through 5 adds on more adventure activities and takes you off the beaten path. 

Day 1:  Tour the Maipu wine region, explore the city of Mendoza, and end the day with a sunset horseback ride and asado beef dinner with Los Pingos Horse Riding.

Day 2: Explore one of two wine regions:  Lujan de Cuyo with a five course meal at Ruca Malen or a day trip to Uco Valley, our favorite wine region in Mendoza.

With more time, you can delve deeper into the Mendoza wineries or add in adventure/outdoor activities around Mendoza. With three days, you can explore all three wine regions.

Day 3:  Explore the wine region you missed in days 1 and 2 or add some adventure to your trip. Ideas include white water rafting in Potrerillos, rock climbing in Mendoza, or taking a road trip out to the Chile border.

On your own (if you have a rental car) or with a tour, you can take a day trip to the Chilean border. The drive through the Andes Mountains is spectacular, with mountain scenery and ever-changing views. Along the way you can see Mt Aconcagua (the highest mountain in the western and southern hemispheres), Puente del Inca, and Christ Redeemer of the Andes.

We drove across the Argentina – Chile border twice and didn’t have the best experience. However, if you don’t plan to cross the border into Chile (and you don’t have to, not to see Aconcagua and Puente del Inca) you won’t encounter our same bad luck.

Get an idea of what it’s like in our article: Driving from Santiago to Mendoza. Should You Do It? 

Driving Mendoza

If you are an avid hiker, you can hike to Mt. Aconcagua base camp, a stunning hike through the Andes Mountains. The hike starts just a few kilometers from the border with Chile and is one of the best hikes to do in the area.

Hiking Mendoza

Day 4:  Mendoza, Argentina is a great place to visit for outdoor enthusiasts. Today, you have the option to go whitewater rafting in Potrerillos or go rock climbing near Mendoza.

Day 5: With five days, you have enough time to tour the wine regions at your leisure as well as enjoy some of Mendoza’s best adventure activities.

Whitewater rafting mendoza

What We Did: Our 5 Day Mendoza Itinerary

Day 1:   We toured Maipu Valley wine region in the morning and Lujan de Cuyo in the afternoon, ending with a very late lunch at Ruca Malen. We were able to tour both Maipu and Lujan de Cuyo in one day since we only did one tour and tasting and a quick drive through the Lujan de Cuyo wine region. Read our post on How to Visit the Mendoza Wine Regions so you don’t make the same mistakes we did.

Day 2:  Rock climbing in Potrerillos with Andes Vertical.

Day 3:  Whitewater rafting with Potrerillos Explorer Rafting in the morning, sunset horseback ride and dinner with Los Pingos.

Day 4:  Uco Valley wine region

Day 5:  Drive to the border with Chile, hike to Mt. Aconcagua base camp, continue on to Santiago, Chile.

Mendoza Itinerary

Mendoza with Kids

For our family, the five day itinerary was perfect. We were able to tour the wine regions of Mendoza (the main reason why we traveled here), breaking up the wine tours with adventure sports to keep our two kids happy. Tyler and Kara loved rock climbing, whitewater rafting, and horseback riding. It’s no surprise that kids get very bored at wineries. Wine tasting is great for the adults but a big old boring event for kids. It is important to add enough activities into your itinerary to keep your kids happy.

Keep the wine tours and tastings to a minimum, visiting no more that four wineries per day. Both Tyler and Kara loved the five course meals we had at Ruca Malen and Bodega La Azul. Kids get discounted prices so bringing them along does not break the budget.

Where We Stayed

We stayed at El Encuentro en Chacras de Coria in Chacras de Coria, Mendoza. This small, boutique hotel has a great location just outside of the main bustle of Mendoza. The staff is extremely helpful and can assist you with scheduling wine tours and activities. If you do not get enough wine during your tours and five course meals, the hotel has a wine cellar and a fantastic common area to relax in at the end of the day.

If you have any questions about this Mendoza itinerary, let us know in the comment section below.

More Information for Your Trip to Mendoza

ARGENTINA & CHILE: Find out how we combined Santiago and Mendoza into an awesome 12 day trip.

DRIVING SANTIAGO TO MENDOZA: Find out what it is like to drive from Santiago, Chile to Mendoza, Argentina and if it is worth it. We also have a guide on how to drive to Cristo Redentor, a white knuckle but beautiful drive on dirt roads that cross the Andes.

CHILE: Learn more about how to tour the wine regions in Chile, see photographs from Valparaiso, and how we spent our time in Santiago.

DESTINATIONS AROUND THE WORLD: For more places to visit around the world, check out our Destinations page.

TRAVEL ITINERARIES: For more travel itineraries for destinations around the world, take a look at our Travel Itineraries page.


Planning a trip to Argentina? Read all of our articles in our Argentina Travel Guide.


Mendoza Argentina Itinerary


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Comments 8

  1. Avatar for sheri bowland
    sheri bowland

    Hello, we are looking at all your blogs trying to put together a trip. The posts are so wonderful! Thank you for all the work you put into them! We would be spending time in south America, likely Chile from December until Feb. Or March, where we would then cruise from Brazil (Rio or San paulo) to Europe. We are trying to figure out where to explore and how much we could travel easily, without flying, in south America. Do you have any suggestions? Would a month in like 2 different spots be enough? Would it be better to stay in 2 week increments and move more? Would you just stay in Chile or could you see other countries? Not sure if renting a car would be feasible
    Any advice is welcomed!!

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      If it were me, I would hop around. Santiago and Mendoza are nice and at that time of year, and spending several weeks in Patagonia would be amazing. However, it’s a long drive from Santiago, like driving across the USA. Another option is to drive north to Salta, Argentina and the Atacama Desert in Chile. You could even keep going into Bolivia. With 2 to 3 months, you can turn this into an epic road trip, since you have lots of time. I wish I had more experience in South America to give you better recommendations, but Patagonia and the Atacama Desert are still (very high) on our bucket list. In Europe, it can be cheaper to buy a car if you need one for 6 weeks or longer (you sell it back at the end of your trip). I don’t know if or how this works in South America but it’s worth at least a quick Google search. Cheers, Julie

  2. Avatar for Patricia Jaegerman
    1. Avatar for Julie Post
  3. Avatar for Lara
    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      We did visit Puente del Inca on the drive from Santiago to Mendoza. Yes, it’s a pretty spot, but if someone has limited time in Mendoza, this (at least in my opinion) may not be worth the time of getting there. This is something that I struggle with: what to recommend and what to skip. Thank you for your input. It’s always nice getting recommendations from other people. Cheers, Julie

  4. Avatar for Martin Wasserman
    1. Avatar for Julie Post

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