We got up early, “cooked” porridge for breakfast and went to the bus terminal to catch our bus at 7:30 (Cootra Ltda, 17000 Chilean pesos per person, tickets bought at the bus terminal one day in advance). Our seats were downstairs.
The way to the border is quite short and soon we got off the bus to get an exit stamp from Chilean border. Straight after leaving the migrations office, our driver gave us a customs declaration form for Argentina (the same one as you get on a plane to Argentina). We filled the form in during the way to the Argentinian border and there we got an enter stamp into our passport. Then we waited about 1.5 hours. Someone lost their passport or had an issue with their passport and we were waiting (the whole bus) to get it resolved. After the 90 minutes (around 11am) we finally left (without that person).
At 3pm we reached El Calafate and asked for a map of the town and then walked from the bus terminal to the centre to book Perito Moreno Glaciar trip. We asked in two first agencies we met on our way and both had all reserved for tomorrow, so we continued to the main tour operator called Hielo & Aventura on the main street. The only available spots were for Thursday (the day after tomorrow). Price 3300 Argentinian pesos per person, payment by card, includes pickup at our hotel (we don’t have yet), transportation, viewpoint, short trekking on the glacier.
Then we went to ask how much is a room in one of hostels we passed on the way from the bus terminal to the town centre. Hostel Las Carretas. There was an old man (the owner), he showed us a dormitory room (the only available) and told us 500 pesos per night fir the whole room with 4 bunk beds. Also Denisa noticed (from the registration book) that our Austrian travel friends we met in Ushuaia stayed in the same place :) . We liked it and paid all the three nights in pesos.
Next thing to do was to get our stuff washed, so we put all the dirty clothes to bags and walked to one and of the laundry services around the centre. In the first one, they asked for 120 pesos per washing and drying of everything and they didn’t have an option to do cheaper washing without drying, so it would cost us 240 pesos. So we went to another laundry service called Suavecito Lavandería. The lady inside was nice (and no English) and the service is per kg, so she weighed our stuff (3kg) and marked what is for drying and what not (we had two bags) and she said it will be tomorrow at 10am and price 150 pesos in total.
Job done and time for a drought beer. We asked in one burger place we liked from outside and they don’t have drought beer and sent us to La Zorra taproom nearby. There we caught happy hour and had two 0.5L beers for 65 pesos each. And we also ordered bbq ribs (230 pesos). Ordering at the bar, music and food put this place to a UK-style of a pub.
After relax in the pub, we did shopping in La Anónima supermarket, bough one more beer and some snack and went for a walk towards the lake, thinking we can drink and eat there while waiting for the sunset. But when we reached the part of the town we chose, it didn’t look pleasant for drinking by the lake and also there were quite a few mosquitos, so we went back to the hostel and had the beer outside in the court.