Truly spectacular. 4WD the ONLY way to go. Rocky mars-esque mountain terrain, snowy capped peaks, Inca roads and big blue skies. Dusty tracks, spindly cacti, artesans and fields of red pimientos baking in the sunshine.
Taking to the rutas of the Province of Salta, Northern Argentina, with our driver and guide, David and Belen, together we battled through herds of goat, tickled llamas’ furry chins, got neck ache thanks to circling condor and eye ache from all the beautiful scenes we’ve passed. Towering mountains, twisting mountain roads…red rivers, cactus-studded mountains, vineyard filled valleys and colonial architecture filled and surrounded the land and the pueblos and pueblitos we devoured en route.
The town of Cafayate I can highly recommend as a place to stop and watch the world go by, drink a coffee plaza-side, hire a bike and roam around the bodegas, sampling wine as you go. Get up before 9am like I did to ‘catch the light’ and early morning scenes and you’ll find yourself pretty much alone in this place; lazy life in the mountains.
We guzzled our coffees and gobbled our media lunas and we were off to the nearest bodega. Easy does it – it’s not even 11am…a sip of a blanco here, a sip of a tinto there. The not so sweet rose we sampled hardly worth a mention…but it’s all there fer a tastin’.
The route up toward Cachi
And not to be missed in this beautiful province is the beautiful pueblo of Cachi and the stunning scenery en route – at 2210m it’s quite a climb. Oh, and watch out for the donkey…