MotoGP ™ returned to Argentina in 2014 after a long 15-year break, with the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit in the northern province of Santiago del Estero becoming the host venue for the Gran Premio de la Republica Argentina - a race that had previously been held in Buenos Aires.
Indeed, the first ever Argentinean Grand Prix took place in 1961 close to Argentina's capital, and was the first time that a GP had been run outside Europe. In the modern era Termas de Rio Hondo continues the legacy of motorcycle racing in Argentina. The annual visit to the South American country creates a festival atmosphere, providing a spectacular show on and off track.
Blessed with vast areas of outstanding natural beauty, and with a capital city amongst the coolest in the world, Argentina is a superb place to visit.
The country is huge - stretching from the southernmost province of Tierra del Fuego to the Tropic of Capricorn in the north, and a wild Atlantic coastline in the east to the western plateau of the Andes - meaning it provides many epic adventures.
Go wild in Argentina and you will discover penguins, condors, flamingos, pumas, armadillos, and many more species as you explore mountains, lakes, lush groves, icebergs, waterfalls, jungles and forest in the wonderful network of parks and reserves.
Buenos Aires is great for fashion, shopping, its thriving nightlife, and diverse architecture, as well as some good old people-watching. Argentina’s other main cities are also worth checking out; such as Cordoba, Salta, Rosario, and Ushuaia, which is the world’s most southerly city and enjoys a beautiful waterfront vista.
Weather: MotoGP™ visits Termas de Rio Hondo in April and you can expect average daily maximum temperatures of 27°C (81°F) and average lows of 17°C (63°F), with some chance of light rain showers.
The town of Termas de Rio Hondo has a population of just under 30,000 people but supports a plethora of hotel options as the local natural spas are a popular attraction.
It is no surprise then, that much of the town’s tourist accommodation takes the form of Spa Hotels. Many of the local choices feature their own natural mineral baths - so you can´t help but enjoy a relaxing trip.
65km away the capital of the province is a city of the same name, Santiago del Estero, which offers a wider variety of places to stay. It has a population of over 240,000 inhabitants, making it the twelfth largest city in the country.
The local area around Termas de Rio Hondo and wider Province of Santiago del Estero has a great deal to offer if you feel like going exploring.
The Vicecomodoro Ángel de la Paz Aragones Airport connects Santiago del Estero to Buenos Aires - otherwise it is a 1000km-plus, 12 hour drive to and from the capital.
Once you are within the province you may wish to visit the capital city of Santiago del Estero, which is the oldest city in Argentina, founded in 1553, though showing little sign of its Spanish colonial past.
Santiago del Estero is a relaxed and warm-hearted city, known elsewhere in Argentina for its folk music and laid back ambience, the main focal point being the pleasant central plaza, home to Santiago's attractive cathedral. The city’s Parque Aguirre, an extensive eucalyptus-filled park on the riverside, is a good place for a stroll.
The town of Termas de Rio Hondo itself is an agreeable destination, with natural thermal baths, a man-made lake, hotels specialising in spa treatments and its many restaurants all catering for the streams of visitors who stop by each year.
Argentines are famous for their love of meat, especially beef cooked on the grill (parilla) and the locals in Termas de Rio Hondo are just as enthusiastic about steak as their compatriots elsewhere in this huge country.
The Argentine parrillada or asado is a barbecue of grilled meats cooked over an open fire, with beef, pork, ribs and sausages all on the menu, typically accompanied by the delicious chimichurri sauce and best served with a glass of Malbec wine.
Savory or sweet empanadas (pies or pasties), grilled Provoleta cheese and dulce de leche on your dessert add to the calorie count!
Yerba mate is a herbal-infusion - often drunk communally - and is another must-try on the Argentine menu.
You may hear Quechua being spoken in this part of the country; an indigenous Inca language used by about 100,000 local residents. Indeed this is the southernmost point which the Quechua language reaches and it is not known how or when the language arrived in this part of South America.