Estancia NIBEPO AIKE surprised us this April. I visited El Calafate recently and decided to do it this time somehow different , away from civilization and conventional tourist circuits. This time we really did it because our stay turned out to be an attraction in itself.
We arrived in the late afternoon to El Calafate and then took our rental car, we drove slowly by the ” old route of the Estancias” to the Lake Roca and Glacier National Park to finally arrive at the farm. The road is gravel and it got dark when we entered the route, so we respected with no doubt the maximum speed of 40 miles per hour. Arriving at the Estancia we were given a warm welcome and then settling into our room, we left our bags and enjoyed a homemade dinner of meat and vegetables with a delicious “flan” for dessert . The good news was that of the 10 rooms only one was occupied …andi it´s ours! We are not only staying in the middle of the countryside close to the famous Perito Moreno Glacier and the Patagonian steppe , but we are all to ourselves !
A little history … …
Nibepo Aike has a clear link with the history of Los Glaciares National Park. Its original founder , Santiago Peso, from Europe , more precisely traveling from Croatia, came to this land back in the early twentieth century. Installed here on public land formed a partnership for raising sheep and cattle in the area, with the intention of selling their wool production in Rio Gallegos. Santiago then married a young Croatian and also had three daughters , and the name of the Estancia is due to the initials of their names : NI -BE -PO. Today the Estancia is still in charge of the family.
The Estancia goes back to the ancient people who , escaping from a poor Europe , decided to venture into Patagonian lands , some coming from Buenos Aires , as was the case of Mary, and others from Chile, as was the case of the founder of Nibepo . I try to imagine , seeing the family photos in black and white and surrounded by heavy snow in the harsh winter , installed here in a place quite far from civilization and so different from their homelands ; How could have been their arrival in this region? How have endured the bleak and unfamiliar? I can not stop thinking about how did they finally succeed. However, the photos reflect a lively , young and happy couple unaccounted part of the HISTORY OF PATAGONIA embarked on a great adventure , resulting in the origin of a beautiful and brave family. Today Nibepo Aike continues its livestock and is equipped for visitors from all over the world.
Nibepo Aike invites us to experience a great combination of GLACIERS , HISTORY and NATURE .
On our first day we sailed Lake Argentino and the next day we headed to the trails of Perito Moreno. No doubt the origin of the name ” Glacier National Park ” as we dazzle them all, Upsala , Spegazzini , the Moreno …. At Estancia we enjoyed a walk to the lake Argentino and as we are located just behind the Glacier Perito Moreno , we heard a stunning roar of a detachment of the glacier. If it were raining I’m sure you would think of thunder, but this is just the perfect nature that surprises all our senses. The truth is, we did not expect to feel so close to the Perito Moreno on this trip ! What a thrill!
We continue to enjoy Nibepo Aike , their rides , shearing sheep , milking cows , a delicious grilled lamb and just sit in their cozy little living room in the fireplace to keep warm . I’m sure we will return to Nibepo ; They told us about the 3 day horseride that leaves from the Estancia and I can not wait to start a new adventure in Patagonia.
When to go?
Nibepo Aike can be visited between September and April. It is difficult to access in winter , so it is closed for visitors. However , you may visit the glaciers in El Calafate throughout the year , but staying in the city of El Calafate.
How to get there ?
By plane to El Calafate or overland from Chile ( Paine and Puerto Natales ) . The “Estancia” is approximately one hour from El Calafate and can be reached by car or own stay contract with a private service. The old route is gravel so the ride is a bit tiring and is best done during the day.