Argentina is a sizeable country in South America with a geography that comprises five regions: rainforest zones along its border with Brazil, the expansive Chico plain, the lush grasslands of the central Pampas, the long Patagonia plateau that reaches Tierra del Fuego, and the Andes Mountains, bordering the country of Chile.
Argentina has a temperate climate, but there are dramatic variations owing to its size. The central Pampas are pleasantly cool, Patagonia’s glacial areas are icy cold, with the northern regions are sizzling hot. January is the warmest month in Argentina in general, and June and July are the coolest. In Buenos Aires, the country’s capital, summer has an average temperature of 25ºC and winter, a lovely 12ºC. The rainiest month in Buenos Aires is January.
Argentina is famous for housing some of the most awe-inspiring natural sites in the world. Patagonia, for instance, boasts massive forests, lush mountain valleys and serenely beautiful lakes. The Andes, meanwhile, are home to the dazzling Perito Moreno glacier and to Cerro Aconcagua (the tallest mountain in South America). One of the most photographed natural wonders in the country is Iguazu Falls, comprising over 275 cascades that fall from heights of 80 metres. The falls are enveloped by a verdant subtropical rainforest and numerous species of rare animals, including the Vinaceous-breasted Amazon (a wild parrot), which is sadly under danger of extinction. There are also many serene rivers to behold in Argentina, including the Paraguay, Salado and Negro. Argentina is famed for more than its landscapes, of course; it is also known as the birthplace of tango and of revolutionary icon, Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara.
In the early 16th century, explorer, Juan Díaz de Solís discovered Rio de la Plata, prompting Spain to claim it as its own. In the late 18th century, the Spanish established a sizeable colony which included Argentina, Uruguay, Southern Bolivia and Paraguay. In 1810, the citizens of Buenos Aires expelled the Spanish and established their own government. The country eventually gained its independence, establishing itself as a major exporter of goods. In 1943, a military coup put an end to the government of Ramón Castillo, and in 1946, Juan Perón was elected president. His wife, Evita, was in charge of labour matters and she became a powerful political figure. In 1982, the Falklands War, fought between Argentina and Britain, resulted in the downfall of the military government. In 2009, Argentina lay claim to a vast area of land which included islands under British control. Britain did not enter into negotiations regarding Argentina’s claims.
Argentina is home to verdant grasslands, evergreen beeches and the Paraná pine. Yerba mate, meanwhile is used to prepare the national drink. The forests and marshes of Argentina house many animal species, including the tuco tuco, armadillo, nutria, and opossum. Turtles, snakes and caimans can also be found, as well as birds such as the ostrich, crested screamer, tinamou, and ovenbird. Fish species include the brown trout, steelhead, king salmon, and brook trout, to name just a few.
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