holiday in argentina

Riding in the Yungas forest

The Calchaquí valleys stretch up along the foothills of the Andes in the northwest of Argentina and Cafayate, situated roughly half way up, is their best known town. The valleys are home to a variety of habitats that change dramatically as you travel along the quiet, dusty roads. In just a few days you’ll pass deserts dotted with Cacti, bleak mountain plateaus, lush grasslands, thick semi-tropical forests, moon-scapes and mars-scapes amongst others.
holiday in argentina

The red rock of Las Conchas valley

The landscapes are not the only contrast. The valleys are part of the region where the Spanish Conquistadores first entered what is today Argentina and yet it is also a region with proud and strong indigenous roots. The people of the area fought so valiantly the Spanish very nearly gave up trying to control them until in a bizarre and cruel twist of fate a Spanish conman, Pedro Bohórquez, inexplicably managed to persuade them he was the descendent of the Inca king and eventually led them on a suicidal rebellion.
Today the picturesque towns, dotted throughout the region, are home to some of Argentina’s best examples of Spanish colonial architecture and on the sides of the winding roads you’ll see poncho makers weaving in much the same way they have done for hundreds of years.
holiday in argentina

Poncho maker on the road from Seclantas to Cachi

Cafayate is also the center of the northern wine lands which, though they only have a tiny production compared to Mendoza, have an exceptionally good reputation – particularly for their white wines from the Torrontes grape.
Holiday in Argentina

Vineyards near Cafayate