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Home > Discover the wonders of La Puna in North Argentina

Discover the wonders of La Puna in North Argentina

You will hike in the North West region. You will start by Salta and you will explore la Puna. Trek and visit of Cachi, Molinos, Cafayate. Andes Mountains, salt desert, lagoon and volcanoes: many sensational landscapes are combined in a tour adapted for all.

Map

Itinerary

  • Day 1: Buenos Aires - City Tour Buenos Aires - Buenos Aires
  • Day 2: Buenos Aires - Salta - Buenos Aires - Salta Airport - Salta
  • Day 3: Salta - Cachi
  • Day 4: Cachi - Cafayate
  • Day 5: Cafayate
  • Day 6: Cafayate - El Penon
  • Day 7: El Penon
  • Day 8: El Penon - Antofagasta de la Sierra
  • Day 9: Antofagasta de la Sierra - Tolar Grande
  • Day 10: Tolar Grande - San Antonio de los Cobres
  • Day 11: San Antonio de los Cobres - Purmamarca
  • Day 12: Purmamarca
  • Day 13: Purmamarca - Salta
  • Day 14: Salta - Salta Airport - Salta - Buenos Aires
  • Day 15: Departure

TRAVEL BOOK

Day 1: Buenos Aires - City Tour Buenos Aires - Buenos Aires

Welcoming at Ezeiza International Airport and transfer to Buenos Aires in a private vehicle.

Transfer with an English-speaking guide.
Visit Buenos Aires (half day, private tour).

Buenos Aires, a cosmopolitan city with European features, is among the 10 most active cities in the world. City of arts, cultures, theaters, traditions ... The variety satisfies the most demanding visitor.
You visit the 9 de Julio Avenue, the widest in the world, dominated by the obelisk, a symbol of Buenos Aires. You will pass the Colon Theatre, one of the jewels of the Argentine architecture. Then you arrive to the famous or central Plaza de Mayo, next to buildings such as the Casa Rosada or Casa de Gobierno, the Cabildo and the Cathedral.

You end your day with the picturesque neighborhood of La Boca, and specifically the alley El Caminito, the spot for painters, tango dancers and singers.
Return to your hotel after the visit.
An English-speaking guide will acompany you during the city tour.
Night at the Art Hotel ***
Superior Room.
Included : transfer arrival, reception with english-speaking guide, english speaking guide, room & breakfast

Day 2: Buenos Aires - Salta Airport - Salta

Transfer from the hotel to the Buenos Aires Domestic Airport in a private vehicle
Half day (morning or afternoon) dedicated to the visit of the city with an english speaking guide in a private vehicle.

Welcoming at Salta's Airport and transfer to the hotel in private vehicle. In only few hours, the contrast is huge ! We arrive in the Northwest of Argentina.

Salta is the capital city of the province of the same name and it is located at 1,187 masl, at the foot of Mount San Bernardo. The city was founded on April 16th 1582 by Hernando de Lerma. Both colonial-style houses and modern buildings coexist harmoniously.
Out of all the historical buildings, you visit the cathedral, built in the nineteenth century, the San Bernardo convent and the Cabildo, which houses the picturesque historical museum of the northern region of Argentina.

Visit to the very recent and interesting MAAM museum (Museo Archeologia de Alta Montaña or High Mountain Archaeological Museum) which exhibits several mummies discovered at an altitude of over 6,000 meters.
Note: MAAM closed on mondays.

Night at Balcon de la Plaza hotel ***
Included : transfer departure, reception with english-speaking guide, entrance fees, room & breakfast

Day 3: Salta - Cachi


Departure to Cachi, located at 2200masl, at 157km from Salta.

We drive through spectacular landscapes such as those offered by the Piedra del Molino mountain pass at 3,600 meters, the Quebrada de Escoipe, a deep gorge where the green of the woods contrasts with the ochre of the soil on the bare mountains of “Cuesta del Obispo” and Los Cardones National Park composed of stark expanses scattered with candelabrum-shaped cacti…

Cachi is a tranquil Andean native village featuring low-whitewashed houses and the San José Church with its sculpted roof of cactus-wood dating back to the eighteenth century. We visit the small archaeological museum which has a wonderful collection of pre-Inca and Inca ceramics, especially those pertaining to the Santa María culture.

Night at El Cortijo hotel ***.
Superior Room
Included : entrance fees, room & breakfast

Day 4: Cachi - Cafayate


This morning you start your journey going to the Cuevas de Acsibi. We are greeted by Aban family that will be our guides; they will tell us their history and the one of the valley. We start our excursion in 4WD and then walking to the caves.

The wide and sandy bed of the Monte Nievas River narrows and capricious natural formations appear inside a reddish canyon. The name, of Diaguita origin means "Place of Fire" due to the colour on the rocks.

Picnic included with the trek.

You cross the majestic "Quebrada de las Flechas" surrounded by a mysterious moonscape. White dunes announce the nearness of Cafayate, the largest city in the valley of Calchaquies, whose economy relies on the wine industry. Wine tasting.

Night at Viñas de Cafayate hotel ****.
Room with view onto the vineyards.
Included : room & breakfast

Day 5: Cafayate


This morning, relax in Cafayate. Possibility to discover a wine testing in one of the several local bodegas (not included, please send a request).

After lunch, we travel through the “Quebrada de las Conchas” which undoubtedly offers the visitor one of the most spectacular landscapes in the Northwest of Argentina, with its imposing semi-desert mountains featuring multi-colored rock formations sculpted by erosion. A century-old sight conceived by nature for our benefit! Night at a hotel in Salta. Meals open. Note: a 191km (119mi) trip lasting approximately 2h20 minutes.

About 100 km to go and return.

Night at Viñas de Cafayate hotel ****.
Room with view onto the vineyards.
Included : room & breakfast

Day 6: Cafayate - El Penon


You leave early in the the morning to reach Cafayate by the mythical route 40. You are entering at the heart of the wild La Puna. First stop to the archaeological site of Quilmes, former fortified stronghold of the Inca era; in bygone times, it gave shelter to over 3,000 people resisting Spanish evangelization and military conquest. The town and its intricate structure were built by terracing the hill slopes. A tour of the site.

You continue on the road and head Hualfin and then Laguna Blanca, where you will explore many kind of local fauna such as vineyards, ñandous, etc.
It is a large area of 973.270ha. Its centre is a salt lake, surrounded by peaks higher than 5000masl.

Laguna Blanca was born as a provincial reserve in 1979 with the aim of protecting the vicuña of its imminent demise.
Currently the reserve is open to sustainable active tourism where ecotourism activities such as wildlife watching and photo safaris are provided.
Chaku is also practeiced here, consisting of legal and sustainable production of vicuña wool for the production of ponchos and blanket

You keep on driving and arrive to El Peñon where you spend the night. Breakfast included. 440 km including 175 of track roads. About 8 hour-itinerary

Night at El Peñon hotel ***.
Standard Room
Dinner included
Included : entrance fees, room & breakfast, dinner

Day 7: El Penon


You leave in the morning to head El Peñon for a spectacular day. You start with a road in the middle of the rock and abrasive desert to reach "Piedras Pòmez" site.

You will be able to explore the sand dunes and volcanoes. Picnic in the middle of the nature. After, you reach Carachi Pampa volcanoe. You cross the salar and observe Carachi Laguna, before going back to El Peñon to spend the night.

Night at El Peñon hotel ***.
Standard Room
Dinner included
Included : room & breakfast, dinner

Day 8: El Penon - Antofagasta de la Sierra


You leave El Peñon this morning to reach Galán Volcano, which has the world record for the planet's largest crater, with 40 km diameter.

Inside the crater is the spectacular Laguna Diamante, populated by flamingos; and further north there is a hot spring. You keep going on the road to reach Antofagasta de la Sierra to spend the night. Picnic included

Night at the Complejo Pucara **.
Included : room & breakfast

Day 9: Antofagasta de la Sierra - Tolar Grande


This morning, departure from Antofagasta de la Sierra to cross the quebradas refuge with an important wild fauna. You will reach Antofalla oasis located on the riverbank of salar d'Antofalla. It's time to discover Los Ojos de Campo, small lagoons with blue to red colors. Enjoy your lunch in the middle of these incredible landscapes.

You leave Catamarca province and its volcanoes to start Arizaro crossing, the biggest of Argentina. You can also observe Socompa and Llullaillaco volcanoes located at more than 6000 meters of altitude. Llullaillaco is famous of its Incas mummies. You arrive to "Cono de Arita", a kind of slag heap with an conical shape located in the middle of the white area... it is fantastic ! You keep on going and arrive to Tolar Grande to spend the night in this small village with only 200 inhabitants... lost in the middle of the desert. 315 km, about 9 hours

Night in Casa Andina Hotel **
Included : room & breakfast

Day 10: Tolar Grande - San Antonio de los Cobres


This morning, before leaving Tolar, you go and discover the Natural Park of Ojos de Mar, where there are several incredible lagoons with turquoise colors and crystalline water.

When you keep on going to reach San Antonio de los Cobres, you drive on the the track ride along Salar del Diablo and arrive in the 7 curvas. If the weather allows it, we can visit Salar de Pocitos before heading to Santa Rosa de los Pastos Grandes. We drive then to the Gallo Pass at 4630 meters. Stop in San Antonio de los Cobres to lunch.

This village surrounded by mountains and with low houses has no vegetation and is very windy. It is a good opportunity to go and see the Polvorilla viaduct, a famous bridge where the Tren de las Nubes is passing (the train of the clouds), located at 20 km away from San Antonio. Night at the hotel of San Antonio de los Cobres.

Picnic included.
Note, 194 of road, about 5h30 drive


Night at Las Nubes hotel **.
Standard Room
Included : room & breakfast

Day 11: San Antonio de los Cobres - Purmamarca


Departure from San Antonio de los Cobres by the legendary route 40. You arrive then to a wide white area contrasting with the pur blue sky. You are in the middle of one of the biggest salt desert of Argentina (1200 km2). After a few kilmeters to reach Lipan, you arrive to the last stop of your itinerary : Purmamarca, which means Holy Land in Aymara language. This small town is famous for its 7 coloros mountains "Cerro de los Siete Colores", a kind of mineral rainbow.

254 kilometers including 118km of track. About 5h30
Night at the hotel & Spa Casa de Adobe ***
Standard vista
Included : room & breakfast

Day 12: Purmamarca


Relaxing morning at Purmamarca. Go and explore the Cierro de los Siete Colores thanks to the numerous ways. You can also enjoy the historic village and walk in the lovely streets.

After lunch, you keep on going on your road to the Quebrada de Humahuaca, designated as UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is a good opportunity to have a nice walk in the Ocumazo valley and its surroundings. We will go until the Hornocal serrania to contemplate this gorgeous mountain.

100km about 1h30.

Night at the hotel & Spa Casa de Adobe ***
Standard vista
Included : room & breakfast

Day 13: Purmamarca - Salta


You leave the quebradas valleys to go back to Salta for a relaxation day. You spent the afternoon in the estancia.

Possibility to do a horse ridding or participate to an asado (traditional Argentinian barbecue).

Way back to San Salvador de Jujuy. 230 km about 3 hours


Half board at the Estancia El Bordo de las Lanzas **** - with Activities to discover the traditional lifestyle.

Included : room & breakfast, dinner

Day 14: Salta - Salta Airport - Soirée Tango - Buenos Aires


2 hours before your flight, transfer to Salta airport

Welcoming at Buenos Aires domestic airport. and transfer to the hotel in a private vehicle.
Transfer from the hotel to Café de los Angelitos (Little Angel’s Café) between 20h and 20:30h.

The Café de los Angelitos Tango is part of the “porteña” history. Los Angelitos is a living witness of over 100 years of local history. Countless celebrities came to this café.

In an intimate atmosphere, the show starts … 5 dancing couples, together with singers and an orchestra. The performance will take you to the history of Tango since the 20s all the way to Piazzolla, with some modern components.

It’s a dynamic and intense show that amazes the spectator in a very special environment.
Elegant suites, desired lightning effects are other components of a wild show. Enjoy the performance with the cuisine that honours the local meals lit by candles. Welcome to Angelitos!

Transfer to the hotel at the end of the show.

Round trip to the restaurant on pool service
Night at the Art Hotel ***
Superior Room.
Included : transfer arrival, entrance fees, dinner, shared transport, room & breakfast

Day 15: Departure

Transfer from the hotel to Ezeiza International Airport in a private vehicle
Included : transfer departure

TRAVEL BOOK

Day 2: Buenos Aires - Salta


Domestic flight Buenos Aires - Salta.

Included : domestic flight, airport tax

Day 14: Salta - Buenos Aires


Domestic flight Salta - Buenos Aires.
Included : domestic flight, airport tax

A Hotel   Buenos Aires

Level : 3*
Included : room & breakfast

Located in one of the most beautiful areas of Buenos Aires, Recoleta, the Art hotel has the splendor of a 100 yeas old building. The ground floor contains an art gallery and each room is decorated with drawings, paintings and sculptures from argentine's artists.

Option : upgrade room.

Included :
room & breakfast

Hotel Balcon de la Plaza   Salta

Level : 3*
Included : room & breakfast

Centrally located in Salta, Hotel Boutique Balcón de la Plaza offers accommodation with free WiFi access. Breakfast is included. Rooms at Hotel Boutique Balcón de la Plaza are equipped with air conditioning, a minibar and a flat-screen cable TV, as well as a private bathroom. The front desk is available for 24-hour assistance and daily housekeeping service is included.

Hotel El Cortijo   Cachi

Level : 3*
Included : room & breakfast

Enjoy a warm atmosphere, an exclusive Andean stile kitchen, an ideal site to contemplate art and nature and our personalized and kind service. The traditional family Bergesi´s villa became what today is a charming hotel, adding comfort and modern installations to the original building. The restaurant Catalino “chef author, wines and conserved food” is where the cook exhibits his style, adding to the regional kitchen his gourmet touch. The hotel rooms maintain the original architecture and materials like adobe, natural stones, wood and cane with old furnishing combined with regional paintings.

Option : Superior room

Hotel Viñas de Cafayate   Cafayate

Level : 4*
Included : room & breakfast

Visit us and discover a unique place to enjoy fine wines, magnificent landscapes, and the peace and quiet that only Viñas de Cafayate-Wine Resort can offer.

Option : Room with view on the vineyards

Hosteria El Peñon   

Level : 3*
Included : room & breakfast

Just close your eyes and feel the special Andean air brought by a breeze, here they are, in our place in the heart of the Andes; The hotel maintains the traditional architecture of the region and inside has been renovated to provide space, light and comfort of modern life. Our passion is to pay attention to the details, every object in the hotel, from the cups and glasses. We have opened the doors of this special site to welcome travelers from all sides, we also travel through their stories.

Option : Option

Complejo Pucara   Antofagasta de la Sierra

Level : 2*
Included : room & breakfast

Just a 15-minute drive from El Pucara archaeological site, this family-run lodge offers rustic-style décor and views of Antofagasta volcanoes and lake. Complejo Pucara features a rustic stone construction decorated with cave painting-inspired motifs. Antofagasta’s main square is 300 m away. Rooms at Pucara have wood furnishings and tiled floors. They are equipped with heating, and have private bathrooms with showers and hot running water.

Hotel Casa Andina   Tolar Grande

Level : 2*
Included : room & breakfast

It is the first quality inn in the heart of the Puna Salteña, entirely built with typical local materials (adobe, volcanic stone) and construction techniques that respect the architectural style of the wonderful town of Tolar Grande. Along with the Refugio, it provides category services to the visitors and is vital for the local economy, since it employs several tolareñas families.

Hotel Las Nubes   San Antonio de los Cobres

Level : 2*
Included : room & breakfast

Exotic and wild destination, De las Nubes is the perfect strategic center to explore this geographical region, rich in both culture and history. Its impeccable ambiance, the quality of its staff and its exquisite cuisine turn this hotel into an oasis in the middle of the Puna, a magnificent destination chosen only by those who truly love adventure.

Option : Option

Casa de Adobe Hotel & Spa   Purmamarca

Level : 3*
Included : room & breakfast

Featuring an outdoor pool and a spa and wellness centre, Casa de Adobe Hotel Spa offers rooms and holiday homes in Purmamarca. The property has free WiFi access and splendid panoramic views of the mountains. It is 400 m from the Bus Station. Accommodations at Casa de Adobe Hotel Spa are comfortably furnished. All of them include a flat-screen satellite TV. Houses also come with a fully-equipped kitchen, a cosy fireplace and a patio. Some rooms have air conditioning and a bathroom with a spa bath. This hotel also features a restaurant with splendid open views of the landscape, a garden and a sun terrace. Guests can relax with a massage treatment in the property's spa, after a visit to the sauna.

Option : Option

Hotel   Salta

Level : 4*
Included : room & breakfast, dinner

Located in the province of Salta, the Estancia is one of the oldest estates in the country. Its property deeds date as far back as 1609. The estate’s owners, the Arias Cornejo family, personally welcome visitors. Staying in the Estancia is an experience that allows travellers to really get to know Salta’s countryside, to share the authentic lifestyle of a working estate and to learn in detail the history of the north of Argentina, a region rich in traditions and the former battleground during the wars of independence. At El Bordo de las Lanzas, you will certainly find comfort, warmth, history, nature, outdoor activities, excellent attention and a variety of authentic meals prepared with natural ingredients.

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