I honestly don’t know how to begin this post! We have just had THE MOST incredible experience at the wonderful Estancia El Bordo de Las Lanzas.
Travelling by bus (as usual!), we were met by Agustin, our host, at the bus station in General Guemes. After just a few minutes ride, we pulled into the estancia’s welcoming drive, lined with huge trees and far-reaching lawns. Despite the overcast day, the place shone.
Greeted by the excellent team of staff, we were instantly made to feel at home as we were shown to our luxuriously-decorated flower-filled suite. Consisting of two bedrooms and two bathrooms, the space we were occupying wouldn’t seem out of place in a grand French chateau! The royal Tamlyns ha ha!!
With only a couple of hours until darkness fell, we were ready for our first horse ride! After all, this is what we had come for: riding with gauchos in rural Argentina. Agustin and Jose, our gaucho guide, were to accompany us.
Getting to know the horses, saddling up and putting chaps on!
This girl is super happy to be back on a horse!
And we’re off!
The expansive landscape allowed us to relax and appreciate the nature surrounding us, whilst feeling a heightened sense of awe at its beauty. Riding through fields blanketed with wild yellow flowers, the colour seemed particularly vibrant and the detail of each delicate petal stood out.
Jose is one of the gentlest kindest guys you could meet; he’s a true gentleman who cares deeply about his horses. We felt such shame at our level of Spanish and vowed to continue learning once we return home.
We loved that we rode through ‘trickier-to-navigate’ paths, where sugar cane leaves tickled our faces!!
Exhilarated, we returned home to the salivating smell of barbecuing food. An asado (Argentine BBQ) awaited us! The photo isn’t clear enough to show that there are about 10 different cuts of meat sizzling on the grill!!
This family know how to spoil a person!
A feast appeared, as if by magic, before our eyes. A long table, covered with a colourful array of salads and accompaniments, had us drooling!
Even our table, draped in white cloth and set up in the cobbled courtyard, was inviting us to have the meal of our lives!
Sophia, the super-smiley accomplished chef, took one cut off the asado at a time, carved it into tender strips and served us a couple of slices at a time.
This way, we realised, it was possible to fully appreciate the wafting scents of delicious food, savour the fantastic flavours and enjoy the way it melted in our mouths. Apologies to any vegetarians reading, but it was delicious!!
What a splendid banquet! We rolled into bed, full to the brim, and slept so soundly.
Up bright and early the next morning, we were excited about our longest horse ride to date: 6-7 hours!! Yippee!!
Riding through fields of crops…
…along dusty paths…
…to lakes, looking for caimans (but it was too cold for them to appear and bask on the bank), but finding butterflies…
…and alongside beautifully bright flowers, which have the freedom to grow tall and wild (a bit of a metaphor for us at the moment!)…
…was just the most perfect morning!
As we negotiated branches, bowing down to greet us through a tangled web of trees, we came across a clearing. To our utter surprise and delight, there were Sophia and Rosa from the estancia, sweating over a forest fire!
This gorgeous pair of lovelies were, it seemed, preparing us a picnic lunch in the middle of nowehere! How did they get here? It was as if by magic, our fairy godmothers looking out for us!
Check out the table they’d even set up for us, totally totally amazing!!
Even Jose’s mouth was drooling!
The return ride was just as tranquil as the morning.
Having seen no one else all morning, we were intrigued a team at work in a field.
There were so many birds singing to us as we rode, impossible to catch on camera. Perhaps most enthralling was watching the majestic birds of prey encircling the area. Although, the venue of vultures devouring a dead cow was perhaps slightly gross!
That evening, still replete from our lunch and a little weary, we savoured home-cooked empanadas and stew in the cosy dining room.
Our final morning had to include a last horse ride! Whilst Jake went for a run, Tash, Lola and Albie saddled up once more.
Before we left for an overnight bus on to Corrientes, Sophia and Rosa dished up a huge paella for our lunch!
The team here: Agustin, Maria and their children, Sophia and Rosa, and Jose are such a kind and caring band, all singing from the same hymn sheet.
We could have stayed cosseted in their cocoon for much longer, and Lola and Albie are already talking about how they hope to return one day as young adults.
We’re so happy that Lola and Albie gained so much more confidence with horses and riding. As a result, they both want to continue riding wherever we go, and when we get back to the UK.
This was a very unexpected and special stay for us, one that will stay in our hearts forever as a highlight of our travelling adventure.
Feeling thoroughly spoilt, laden with special memories, conversing a little better in Spanish and refuelled for our next adventure in this incredible country, we sadly left El Bordo behind.