Mountain Travel

Cerro Catedral: South America’s Biggest Ski Area

pine trees, mountains covered in snow

If you are in Argentina and you’re looking for ski resorts with incredibly lovely views of the mountains covered in a white sheet and the clear blue lakes sitting at the foot of the mountain, then Cerro Catedral is just for you.

Cerro Catedral, also known as Catedral Alta Patagonia, located 20 kilometers from the City of Bariloche in Río Negro, Patagonia, Argentina, is a skiable mountain known for being the biggest ski area in South America and the whole Southern Hemisphere. It has a top elevation of 2,179 meters, a bottom height of 1,132 meters, and 1,047 meters of vertical range. Cerro Catedral has 1,199 hectares of skiable area best for intermediate or advanced skiers. There are 50 trails in the mountain with 31 to 120 km of ski runs, 20% in the easy level, 60% or half of the trail is at an intermediate level, and the remaining 20% is for the advanced and expert level. Cerro Catedral has a total of 39 lift systems (2 gondolas, 17 chair lifts, 20 surface lifts), which has a lift capacity of 35,000 people per hour.

The climate in this mountain at a high altitude is categorized as an alpine climate; however, the cold Mediterranean climate sits right on the lower altitude. The mountain slopes can sometimes be wet, especially in lower elevations but rest assured that the higher elevation’s ski areas receive a good amount and good quality of snow. Cerro Catedral is known to have the most numbered days of snowfalls in Argentina, with an average of 98 days yearly.

Cerro Catedral Lodging

Cerro Catedral provides numerous lodging areas like hotels, apartments, cabanas, and houses in the village. Here are some accommodations in the mountain.

Pire Hue Lodge     

This is the only hotel in the village that provides ski-in and ski-out accommodations to the guests. It is located near the ski lift, so skiers who stay in this hotel have a great advantage. Pire Hue Lodge also offers a wide range of amenities like restaurants, swimming pools, and an excellent spa after a rough ski day.

pire hue lodge, snowy pathway

Hotel Punta Condor

Hotel Punta Condor is a three-star hotel that offers different facilities and services like a restaurant, bar, gym, sauna, and a heated pool. It is located 100 meters from the lifts. The excellent view of the Cerro Catedral is evident in every part of this hotel. Most of the visitors say that the tranquility of the area and the staff’s hospitality are very remarkable. Additional points to the sumptuous breakfast this hotel has to offer.

Hotel Knapp

This hotel is located 50 meters from the lifts, nearer than the Hotel Punta Condor. It is in the very base of Cerro Catedral and is within reach of everything in the village. Hotel Knapp offers different services, including an on-site restaurant, modern rooms, a lounge, and free WiFi.

Posadas Aurelio 

This self-catering apartment is located 100 meters from the ski lifts. It has a capacity of 4 to 6 guests. The apartments offer a kitchen facility, a flat-screen TV, and free WiFi. Each room includes balconies that provide wonderful panoramic views of the mountains. Posadas Aurelio also has an on-site restaurant that serves international and local dishes. They also offer ski and snowboarding equipment rentals.

Soft Catedral

Soft Catedral is a three-star self-catering apartment located 250 meters from the lifts, right at the base of Cerro Catedral. The apartment units of Soft Catedral include seating areas, bathroom facilities, a satellite TV, and a small kitchenette. This apartment has a capacity of up to 7 guests per unit. Ski equipment rentals are also available in Soft Catedral, and it also offers bookings for ski lessons. Free WiFi can be accessed in public areas of this apartment.

Cerro Catedral Restaurants and Bars

This ski resort consists of many day-time eateries that offer different varieties of breakfast foods like waffles, sandwiches, hamburgers, a good cup of hot chocolate drink, and many other quick meals. The village also has many restaurants available if you like to have a fancy evening dining with your family and friends.

The nightlife and after-ski (also known as après ski) in Cerro Catedral is often very festive and vibrant. Numerous bars are open, and they offer cheap drinks partnered with good music, perfect for dancing and vibing in the village at night.

Skiing Season in Cerro Catedral

Argentina starts its winter season from June until August. If you want to ski in Cerro Catedral, August and early September are the ideal months to visit the village. Remember that during these months, the ski areas can be bustling and are crowded with skiers. Pro-tip, long queues, and steep prices are expected with winter crowds.

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