Friday, March 18, 2011

Win This Book: a Calafate Contest!

Today’s entry includes a contest to give away two copies of the latest edition of my Argentina guidebook, and a link to an interview on Buenos Aires.

The Strangest Street in El Calafate: a Contest

On a hilltop east of downtown El Calafate, in a neighborhood where a handful of hotels have opened and private homes are slowly filling in half-hectare plots among the low scrub and bunch grasses, Avenida Gunther Plüschow is a paved six-lane road that extends nearly two km but gets very little traffic. At this exposed site, the wind blows ferociously and can become tiresome, but its few residents put up with it for the views, and for the relatively low land prices.

In fact, my cousin María Elisa Rodríguez and her husband Sebastián Brina live at the north end of this road, just a short distance from the Design Suites Hotel (pictured above), which overlooks the glacial trough of Lago Argentino. The question, though, is why this avenue, with the width of a freeway, is so overbuilt built when nearly all the other nearby roads are gravel - with one exception. That exception is the perpendicular Avenida Jorge Newbery which, though neither so wide nor so long as the other, is still big enough for a drag race (fortunately, that doesn’t happen here, or so my cousin tells me).

In any event, I will award copies of the new edition of Moon Handbooks Argentina to the first two readers who can explain why these two roads are so overbuilt. This may require a little research, but it shouldn’t be all that difficult to decipher with references to the links above; please send your entries to my email southerncone@mac.com; do NOT send them to the comments box of my Southern Cone Travel blog.

If you’ve won before, feel free to enter again, unless you’ve already won the book in question. Those in need of more cartographic clues might consult the Google map of El Calafate, and blow it up to the desired level of detail.

Buenos Aires Q&A

In conjunction with the release of the new fourth edition of Moon Handbooks Buenos Aires, I recently completed a ten-question interview on “Exploring Buenos Aires” that has gone live on Moon’s web page. If you have any further questions on the Argentine capital and its surroundings, feel free to ask them at the email address above.

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