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Paul & Luiza´s World Tour

Argentina - Corrientes and Salta

ARGENTINA | Saturday, 5 April 2014 | Views [420]

Salta

Salta

Argentina - Corrientes and Salta – All I care about is the air that I breathe…

 

We cross the border into Argentina and drive all day through the Pampas, Gaucho region and late in the afternoon we reach the very nice city of Corrientes. It is a colonial riverside city with lovely architecture and very friendly people. We go out for a meal, walk around a bit and again go back to the room as we know we have another long driving day tomorrow.

We get up early and face another long day on the road, this time towards Salta, wine region, as we’ve heard so much about the place. We arrive late in the afternoon and find a nice hotel for the night to relax before beginning to explore the place. Salta turns out to be a very nice colonial town. There is a cable car, lots of churches and interesting architecture and of course, lots of restaurants, Parilla, here we come! We walk around and take a taxi to the crafts market, which is a bit touristy for us, where we have some local fresh empanadas, savoury pastry filled with chicken or minced meat and cool drinks. On the way back, in the taxi, we spot another local market, this time, seriously local, so, we leave the taxi and start to see a bit of the local colour. It’s time for more empanadas and cool drinks. Last stop on our first day, La Oficina de Turismo (Tourist Office) where we get plenty of information to plan our way around the other places to see in this region. There are many tour agencies selling day trips but we ask around and decide to take our car instead. Paul is already feeling the symptoms of the altitude sickness and we make our way to a pharmacy where we buy some medication to help in keeping it under control. We both had the same problems on a previous trip to Bolivia, Peru, Colombia and Ecuador and also on our last trip in North India, Nepal and Tibet. Even though we are familiar with both the symptoms and the medication we still worry a bit as it is a very weird set of symptoms and they can strike you at any time. If you’ve been above 2000 metres high you might know what I’m talking about, but now we are talking about 4,000 to 5,000 metres.

 

Next morning we drive to Cafayate and go across a very long beautiful stretch of desert and canyons on our way to reach the wine region. The journey is through a long stretch of desert and some interesting canyons. It is long and dry but the wineries are top class and of course we buy a few bottles for the road. We get back to the hotel and negotiate to leave the car behind for a week. The car being secure, the plan is to make a quick dash to Peru - Cusco, to visit Machhu Pichu, our 7th and last wonder of the world. Yeah, Pyramids, check, the Great Walls of China, check, Christ the Redeemer, Taj Mahal, Angkor Wat, Petra, check, check, check, check, only Machu Pichu to go. We’ve been to Peru before but it was high season and there were way too many tourists around. But I digress... firstly, we were going to drive in spite of our proven altitude sickness symptoms, then, after a lot of thinking, we decide to leave the car behind and brave a 48 hour bus ride, yeah you heard it right, 48 freaking hours. It needs to be said that the buses are full on beds or semi-beds and the roads, in general, are fabulous, we also change buses 4 times and they are all good.

 

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