Three reasons to stay at Estancia Cristina in Argentina
Photography by Will Warr
Estancia Cristina, in Argentinian Patagonia, is without question one of my favourite places I have ever stayed, and below, you will find three good reasons why:
1. The location
The estancia lies at the end of the Cristina Channel on the north-west coast of Lago Argentino on a far-flung corner of Los Glaciares National Park. Only reachable by boat, its location is truly remote and you really get a sense that there is no one else around for miles.
Its seclusion means that the landscapes are incredible – in fact, some of the most spectacular I have ever seen. It is surrounded by snow-capped mountains and lakes, with a backdrop of the very striking Upsala Glacier.
A highlight of my stay at Estancia Cristina was a full-day trek over Fossil Canyon, where there are many astounding marine fossils. We would definitely recommend this breathtaking expedition to all our clients – the scenery wasn’t just beautiful but felt completely otherworldly.
2. The history
Estancia Cristina has a fascinating history, which, for me, makes it even more special. The pioneering Masters family moved to this isolated corner of the world in 1913. They initially lived in tented shelters before building houses out of stone and mud. The estancia grew bit by bit to eventually cover 220sq km and house 12,000 sheep, 30 cattle and 50 horses.
Cristina, the daughter of Joseph Masters and his wife Jessie, very much enjoyed getting involved on the farm. Tragically, she died of pneumonia in 1924, aged 20, after catching a bad cold while helping her father on a day of heavy rain. The property was then renamed Estancia Cristina in memory of the family’s only daughter. The story continues, but there is an excellent museum there that tells it much better than I can!
3. The guiding
My guides at Estancia Cristina were some of the best I had in Argentina. Their enthusiasm, knowledge and pure love for Patagonia is remarkable and I really feel that they helped me get the most out of my stay at this amazing estancia.
A stay here is for those who really wish to get off the beaten track and experience some of Argentinian Patagonia’s wildest and most dramatic landscapes. We can design countless journeys that include this incredible destination, but we often suggest combining it with the picturesque Torres del Paine National Park in Chilean Patagonia.