Become an active member of a horse ranch in Argentina, in the midst of the breathtaking Andes, and experience an adventure you will never forget. Surrounded by pure nature you will get to know a self-sufficient lifestyle and acquire valuable skills in horse riding and handling, agriculture of fruits and vegetables as well as daily ranch work. Since the ranch regularly hosts guests you will also develop relevant qualities demanded for good guest service. Experienced service staff will support and share their knowledge with you. Travel to South America with NATUCATE and spend eight weeks in Argentina’s unique wilderness.
The ranch with its visitor’s lodge is a spectacular place in the unique landscape of Patagonia. You will have the chance to experience the life on a farm and to develop a feeling of unlimited freedom. Living and working in a community, far away from civilization, will merge challenges, fun and personal benefit. Widen your horizon and get ready for a unique off-the-grid-adventure in the Patagonian Andes.
Participants must be at least 18 years old and have certain knowledge of English to understand the working instructions. You should be in good physical condition since working on the ranch and horse-riding can be very exhausting, especially at high temperatures. Therefore we need a medical certificate as well as a certificate of vaccination from you. Stamina and flexibility is a must, as the working hours can diverge. If you are interested in agricultural approaches and motivated to work on an interdisciplinary ranch in a beautiful environment, this internship is going to be a personal benefit for you.
You will fly to Argentina’s capital Buenos Aires. From there you will travel by bus or by plane to Neuquen Province. A driver from the ranch will pick you up (surcharge $65-$85) and bring you to the village Buta Mallin, from where you will make a three-hour horse-ride to the horse ranch.
Interns participate in all aspects of daily life on the ranch – helping with the horses, milking the cows, cooking and cleaning, digging in the garden, and chopping firewood. Due to frequent ranch visitors you will also learn to appropriately welcome guests and provide a pleasant stay by assisting in guest service activities from time to time.
The ranch team does not operate on a fixed schedule; workdays fluctuate with the comings and goings of guest groups and the various happenings around the ranch. The team works long days, but follows the tradition of the siesta, often breaking for several hours during the hottest part of the day. Ranch activities sometimes dictate that you’ll begin your work in the very early morning, or work beyond nightfall. You’ll often put in a long string of workdays and then get several days off. Other times you may have a period of relatively less work. Care is taken to ensure that everyone is getting the time off they need. Your host will make sure that everyone has opportunities to get out on horseback rides, and occasionally mountain pack trips.
The ranch is a great place to learn a wide variety of country living skills and gain solid ranch experience. During the two months participants learn:
The ranch is a remote, 100,000-acre guest lodge and working cattle ranch nestled in the foothills of the Patagonian Andes. It is a vast expanse of land, stretching across leagues of high steppes, river valleys, golden grasslands, and jagged cliffs into the heart of the Argentine cordillera. Staff housing is communal – most rooms are bunkhouse style, with a shared kitchen and bathroom. The buildings are rustic but comfortable. Couples can get a private room, but will still share a bathroom. Hot water for showers is heated in wood-fired hot water heaters. For a shower, wood must be gathered and chopped and a fire started – it takes about 45 minutes to get a full tank of hot water. There is power supplied by small hydroelectric turbines. Small loads like lights, laptops, and speakers work fine, but the system doesn’t support higher draw items like hair dryers. There is a washing machine available at the staff house.
There are several kitchens in the staff/intern housing area. Each is rustic but functional. They do have propane stoves. Propane is a challenge to bring in so the team tries to reduce the use of it by cooking over fires and wood stoves as much as possible. There is no refrigeration on the ranch.
A cook will prepare meals for the staff. For this purpose he will use mostly local products from the ranch such as fruits, vegetables from the farmland, milk products and fresh meat.
There is satellite Internet at the lodge, albeit notoriously slow and with limited bandwidth. There is a computer available in the office for staff and intern use during specific windows of time each day. Do not plan to download/upload large documents, including photos and videos onto Facebook/Instagram/Email, or stream anything (video Skype, YouTube videos, etc.) – this type of use slows the connection to the point of being barely useable. Please save these types of activities for town trips where there are stronger connections. The Internet is used as a tool rather than as recreation while at the ranch.
Everybody interested in internships abroad should be able to adjust to entirely unfamiliar standards of living in their future host country. Therefore, we would like to point out the importance of being flexible and adaptable regarding the accommodation and sanitary facilities provided by the project. Those are very basic and – depending on the project – cannot be compared to European standards. The equipment and furnishings are limited to a minimum; air conditioning is not available. Depending on your host country occasional power blackouts or water outages are quite common. Please contact us if you have further questions about your accommodation. We are pleased to provide you with comprehensive information since we would like you to feel entirely prepared for your time abroad.
Usually all participants get one day off per week. Meanwhile they can follow their hobbies and individual activities. During their time on the ranch they will have several opportunities to make a horse-ride in the Patagonian Andes and get to know the breathtaking landscape of Argentina.