We sailed Lake Nahuel Huapi on the “Luz de Luna” sailing boat. A different proposal to see the village and the beautiful natural environment around it. We listened to the amusing story of the skipper and his special bond with the moon.It was two years since I had last visited La Villa. It was amazing to walk along its streets and see how the place preserved the aspect of a mountain village in spite of the tourist growth. Nestled on the slopes of Mounts Bayo, Inacayal and Belvedere, Villa La Angostura shows off a varied range of accommodation and gastronomy, from the most economical to the most sophisticate offers. At present, it has more than 1,500 beds including hotels, inns, cabins and aparts which, as a result of their architectural features, give it a distinctive style in the entire area. I remember that the last time I visited the village, the weather had played a dirty trick on me, shattering my wish to sail in front of the Quetrihué Peninsula and the Kraft, Cumelén and Manzano Bays, located on the large Mansa Bay. “Fortunately, there is always time for a return match” I thought, and in this opportunity, I was not going to let the opportunity run through my fingers.
I stayed at “Posta de los Colonos”, a warm inn built with stones and solid logs which makes guests feel comfortable providing a space where assistance and good taste are mingled in each of their details. The sunny day and a soft breeze indicated that I was almost certain to accomplish my goal: sailing the waters of the Nahuel Huapi. After finding out about operators, prices and services, I resolved that the best option was to embark on Jorge Rovella’s “Luz de Luna” -Spanish for “moonlight”- sailing boat. Our meeting point would be the Angostura port, on the Mansa Bay. As hours passed, the breeze became stronger, which made me happy as, although I am not an expert navigator, I know that the wind is necessary in order to spread out the sails. Very punctually, the “Luz de Luna” was expecting me, along with Jorge, her skipper. After receiving due authorization to get on board, I relaxed and enjoyed the environment only Villa La Angostura and its matchless beauty can offer.
The “Luz de Luna” is an ocean sailing boat measuring 7 meters of length and weighing 3 tones, which provides the necessary stability and safety in the water. Designed by Germán Frers, and assembled and equipped by its present owner with the latest technology, it has been crossing Lake Nahuel Huapi for a year already, where it renders services for rides, voyages and navigation courses authorized by the Argentinian Naval Prefecture and National Parks and it is the only one to perform this activity all through the year. We set sail. The wind, already stronger, made us spread the main sail just a little. Jorge, a professional with a capital “P”, taught me the ABC of sail navigation, and he also transmitted the mysticism of meeting Aeolos, the god of the winds. In love both with the activity and with the moon, all the crafts he has owned before the “Luz del Luna” were named after the natural satellite that inspired so many poets and guided so many sailors across rivers and oceans. During his 25-year-old career, he sailed the waters of the River Plate, Punta del Este and Mar del Plata, participating in boat races and doing courses to enhance his skill. “Sailing in the moonlight is an unforgettable experience” he assures. And he is such a fanatic that he became a founding partner of the Cruceros de la Luna Llena (Full Moon Cruises) Club. “From the Buenos Aires port, we would cross the River Plate up to Colonia, only under the glow of the earth’s natural satellite” he told me with melancholy. Navigating the surroundings of Villa La Angostura is a matchless show. We quickly got away from the shore, as the wind always blows from the port.
From the sailing boat, we watched the evergreen forest. Coihues, cypresses, radales, palos santos, ñires and pataguas seemed to multiply along the Kraft and Cumelén Bays. We relaxed our sight on the water and, in silence, we let ourselves be carried away by the whims of the wind. Afterwards, we passed by the Manzano Bay, which is surrounded by mountains isolated by the icy winds of the mountain range, creating a micro-climate unique in the area, with ever quiet waters and a higher temperature than in its surroundings.
From the sailing boat, I could appreciate the Bahía Manzano vacation resort private club, located on the shore. Built in complete harmony with the environment, it offers the possibility of staying at the ensuite apartments and enjoying its conditioned pools, saunas, massage rooms, tennis courts, paddle courts and the new adventure area with a climbing wall, a hanging footbridge and Tyrolese ropes, to mention a few attractions. One of the most ancient ports of the village was built in this area. Goods and provisions from San Carlos de Bariloche would be received through it. Soon, it was time for the mates with cookies. Once again, we practiced the Argentinian ritual, which made us feel like going on sailing across the huge lake, listening to the sounds of nature and the romantic story of Jorge and the Moon.