ultramarinus – beyond the sea

Northwest Argentina

DAY 46 (1 OF 3) – CARPE DIEM, SALTA, ARGENTINA

With mild weather, fabulous sunshine, and lovely colonial architecture, Salta is pleasing to both locals and foreign visitors.  Some decide to stay, including the Italian/ German couple who own Carpe Diem Bed and Breakfast.  Neat and airy with an European touch, Carpe Diem suited us well for our brief stay in the city. We had one of the best homemade breakfast there!
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Read other posts on Northwest Argentina in 2013 South America:

Day 43.1 – Garganta del Diablo, Tilcara
Day 43.2 – Pucara, Tilcara
Day 44.1 – Hills of Seven Colours, Purmamarca
Day 44.2 – Cemetery, Purmamarca
Day 45.1 – Antigua Gusthouse, Tilcara
Day 45.2 – Museums and Plaza, Salta
Day 46.1 – Carpe Diem, Salta
Day 46.2 – Helados Miranda, Cafayate
Day 46.3 – Bodega el Porvenir, Cafayate
Day 47.1 – Bodega Domingo Molina, Cafayate
Day 47.2 – Quebrada Las Conchas, Cafayate
Day 48.1 – Museo de Vino, Cafayate
Day 48.2 – El Hornito, Cafayate
Day 48.3 – Goodbye Northern Argentina, Salta

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South America 2013 – Our Destinations
Buenos Aires (Argentina), Iguazu Falls (Argentina/Brazil), Pantanal (Brazil), Brasilia (Brazil), Belo Horizonte & Inhotim (Brazil), Ouro Preto (Brazil), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Paraty (Brazil), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Samaipata & Santa Cruz (Bolivia), Sucre (Bolivia), Potosi (Bolivia), Southwest Circuit (Bolivia), Tilcara, Purmamarca, Salta (Argentina), Cafayate (Argentina), San Pedro de Atacama (Chile), Antofagasta & Paranal Observatory (Chile), Chiloe (Chile), Puerto Varas (Chile), Torres del Paine (Chile), Ushuaia (Argentina), El Chalten (Argentina), El Calafate (Argentina), Isla Magdalena (Argentina), Santiago (Chile), Valparaiso (Chile), Afterthought

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DAY 45 (2 OF 2) – MUSEUMS AND PLAZA, SALTA, ARGENTINA

Leaving Tilcara and the Quebrada de Humahuaca behind, we headed south to Salta, one of the most visited cities in Northern Argentina.  Renowned for its beautiful plaza and churches, Salta has in fact quite a small town feeling.  After a quick lunch, we made our way to the main plaza to visit the Museo de Arqueología de Alta Montaña (MAAM).  Small in scale, the MAAM is dedicated entirely to the three child mummies (aged from 6 to 15) found on the summit of Volcán Llullaillaco in 1999.  At over 6,700m, the burial site of the mummies is considered to be one of the highest archaeological sites in the world.  Although small, the collection, which includes the treasure trove of each mummy and the three mummies themselves, was quite impressive.  Due to conservation, only one of the three mummies would be on display at a time.  During our visit, we saw the “Lightening Girl”.  Aged about 6 years old when buried, the “Lightening Girl” was stuck by lightening sometime in the past centuries, leaving a burnt mark on her face and clothing.  From the English descriptions, we were able to obtain a brief understanding of the traditions of human sacrifices during the Inca period at about 500 years ago.
After MAAM, we decided to visit Pajcha Museo de Arte Etnico Americano, a small museum described by the Lonely Planet as “an eye-opening private museum” and “a must-see if you’re interested in indigenous art and culture”.   The small collection of masks, textiles, artifacts, and garments from a number of Latin American countries was interesting, especially the way how artifacts were being displayed along with contemporary art and crafts to provide a sense of cultural continuity, but the mandatory guide tour was a little pushy at times.  In the evening, we headed back to the plaza and ended up having fast food for dinner.
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Read other posts on Northwest Argentina in 2013 South America:

Day 43.1 – Garganta del Diablo, Tilcara
Day 43.2 – Pucara, Tilcara
Day 44.1 – Hills of Seven Colours, Purmamarca
Day 44.2 – Cemetery, Purmamarca
Day 45.1 – Antigua Gusthouse, Tilcara
Day 45.2 – Museums and Plaza, Salta
Day 46.1 – Carpe Diem, Salta
Day 46.2 – Helados Miranda, Cafayate
Day 46.3 – Bodega el Porvenir, Cafayate
Day 47.1 – Bodega Domingo Molina, Cafayate
Day 47.2 – Quebrada Las Conchas, Cafayate
Day 48.1 – Museo de Vino, Cafayate
Day 48.2 – El Hornito, Cafayate
Day 48.3 – Goodbye Northern Argentina, Salta

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South America 2013 – Our Destinations
Buenos Aires (Argentina), Iguazu Falls (Argentina/Brazil), Pantanal (Brazil), Brasilia (Brazil), Belo Horizonte & Inhotim (Brazil), Ouro Preto (Brazil), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Paraty (Brazil), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Samaipata & Santa Cruz (Bolivia), Sucre (Bolivia), Potosi (Bolivia), Southwest Circuit (Bolivia), Tilcara, Purmamarca, Salta (Argentina), Cafayate (Argentina), San Pedro de Atacama (Chile), Antofagasta & Paranal Observatory (Chile), Chiloe (Chile), Puerto Varas (Chile), Torres del Paine (Chile), Ushuaia (Argentina), El Chalten (Argentina), El Calafate (Argentina), Isla Magdalena (Argentina), Santiago (Chile), Valparaiso (Chile), Afterthought


DAY 45 (1 OF 2) – ANTIGUA GUESTHOUSE, TILCARA, ARGENTINA

Over the past two days, Antigua Guesthouse was our base in Tilcara.  The staff was friendly and knowledgeable.  We also loved the view from the dining hall.  Seeing the dog of Grandma Rose staying at Antigua during our last night there was a pleasant surprise. 

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Read other posts on Northwest Argentina in 2013 South America:

Day 43.1 – Garganta del Diablo, Tilcara
Day 43.2 – Pucara, Tilcara
Day 44.1 – Hills of Seven Colours, Purmamarca
Day 44.2 – Cemetery, Purmamarca
Day 45.1 – Antigua Gusthouse, Tilcara
Day 45.2 – Museums and Plaza, Salta
Day 46.1 – Carpe Diem, Salta
Day 46.2 – Helados Miranda, Cafayate
Day 46.3 – Bodega el Porvenir, Cafayate
Day 47.1 – Bodega Domingo Molina, Cafayate
Day 47.2 – Quebrada Las Conchas, Cafayate
Day 48.1 – Museo de Vino, Cafayate
Day 48.2 – El Hornito, Cafayate
Day 48.3 – Goodbye Northern Argentina, Salta

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South America 2013 – Our Destinations
Buenos Aires (Argentina), Iguazu Falls (Argentina/Brazil), Pantanal (Brazil), Brasilia (Brazil), Belo Horizonte & Inhotim (Brazil), Ouro Preto (Brazil), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Paraty (Brazil), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Samaipata & Santa Cruz (Bolivia), Sucre (Bolivia), Potosi (Bolivia), Southwest Circuit (Bolivia), Tilcara, Purmamarca, Salta (Argentina), Cafayate (Argentina), San Pedro de Atacama (Chile), Antofagasta & Paranal Observatory (Chile), Chiloe (Chile), Puerto Varas (Chile), Torres del Paine (Chile), Ushuaia (Argentina), El Chalten (Argentina), El Calafate (Argentina), Isla Magdalena (Argentina), Santiago (Chile), Valparaiso (Chile), Afterthought


DAY 44 (2 OF 2) – CEMETERY, PURMAMARCA, ARGENTINA

Hillside cemeteries with a picturesque setting are not uncommon in the Quebrada de Humahuaca. When we came to Purmamarca by bus, we passed by one at the village of Maimara. In Purmamarca, we also walked past its beautiful cemetery at the end of our hour-long hike.
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Read other posts on Northwest Argentina in 2013 South America:

Day 43.1 – Garganta del Diablo, Tilcara
Day 43.2 – Pucara, Tilcara
Day 44.1 – Hills of Seven Colours, Purmamarca
Day 44.2 – Cemetery, Purmamarca
Day 45.1 – Antigua Gusthouse, Tilcara
Day 45.2 – Museums and Plaza, Salta
Day 46.1 – Carpe Diem, Salta
Day 46.2 – Helados Miranda, Cafayate
Day 46.3 – Bodega el Porvenir, Cafayate
Day 47.1 – Bodega Domingo Molina, Cafayate
Day 47.2 – Quebrada Las Conchas, Cafayate
Day 48.1 – Museo de Vino, Cafayate
Day 48.2 – El Hornito, Cafayate
Day 48.3 – Goodbye Northern Argentina, Salta

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South America 2013 – Our Destinations
Buenos Aires (Argentina), Iguazu Falls (Argentina/Brazil), Pantanal (Brazil), Brasilia (Brazil), Belo Horizonte & Inhotim (Brazil), Ouro Preto (Brazil), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Paraty (Brazil), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Samaipata & Santa Cruz (Bolivia), Sucre (Bolivia), Potosi (Bolivia), Southwest Circuit (Bolivia), Tilcara, Purmamarca, Salta (Argentina), Cafayate (Argentina), San Pedro de Atacama (Chile), Antofagasta & Paranal Observatory (Chile), Chiloe (Chile), Puerto Varas (Chile), Torres del Paine (Chile), Ushuaia (Argentina), El Chalten (Argentina), El Calafate (Argentina), Isla Magdalena (Argentina), Santiago (Chile), Valparaiso (Chile), Afterthought


DAY 44 (1 OF 2) – HILLS OF SEVEN COLOURS, PURMAMARCA, ARGENTINA

The Quebrada de Humahuaca is renowned for its colourful hills.  Nowhere is more visible for this than the village of Purmamarca.  Defying the negative forecast on the Internet, today’s weather was sunny and clear.  From Tilcara, a 30-minute bus ride took us to Purmamarca.  As we walked into the town square, local vendors were busy setting up their souvenir stalls.  The market of Purmamarca is colourful but a little touristy.  We obtained a map from the tourist office and started our morning with a short walk up to a viewpoint that offered a good panorama of the  Cerro de los Siete Colores (Hills of Seven Colours) right behind the village.  Varied by the composition of minerals, the hills of Purmamarca really appeared to be distinct in colours under the morning sun, from dark green, orange, purple, to even pink.  Climbing back down from the lookout, we then embarked on an easy trail called Paseo de los Colorados.  The hour-long hike wrapped around the closest hill, passed through a crimson canyon, and returned to the village.  It allowed us to appreciate the colours of the hills as well as their interesting rock formations in a close distance.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADSC_1429DSC_1446DSC_1489DSC_1547OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

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Read other posts on Northwest Argentina in 2013 South America:

Day 43.1 – Garganta del Diablo, Tilcara
Day 43.2 – Pucara, Tilcara
Day 44.1 – Hills of Seven Colours, Purmamarca
Day 44.2 – Cemetery, Purmamarca
Day 45.1 – Antigua Gusthouse, Tilcara
Day 45.2 – Museums and Plaza, Salta
Day 46.1 – Carpe Diem, Salta
Day 46.2 – Helados Miranda, Cafayate
Day 46.3 – Bodega el Porvenir, Cafayate
Day 47.1 – Bodega Domingo Molina, Cafayate
Day 47.2 – Quebrada Las Conchas, Cafayate
Day 48.1 – Museo de Vino, Cafayate
Day 48.2 – El Hornito, Cafayate
Day 48.3 – Goodbye Northern Argentina, Salta

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South America 2013 – Our Destinations
Buenos Aires (Argentina), Iguazu Falls (Argentina/Brazil), Pantanal (Brazil), Brasilia (Brazil), Belo Horizonte & Inhotim (Brazil), Ouro Preto (Brazil), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Paraty (Brazil), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Samaipata & Santa Cruz (Bolivia), Sucre (Bolivia), Potosi (Bolivia), Southwest Circuit (Bolivia), Tilcara, Purmamarca, Salta (Argentina), Cafayate (Argentina), San Pedro de Atacama (Chile), Antofagasta & Paranal Observatory (Chile), Chiloe (Chile), Puerto Varas (Chile), Torres del Paine (Chile), Ushuaia (Argentina), El Chalten (Argentina), El Calafate (Argentina), Isla Magdalena (Argentina), Santiago (Chile), Valparaiso (Chile), Afterthought


DAY 43 (2 OF 2) – PUCARA, TILCARA, ARGENTINA

From Garganta del Diablo, the hike back to Tilcara was a pleasant downhill walk.  At the edge of Tilcara, instead of returning to the town centre, we crossed a bridge that led us to Pucara, the pre-Inca ruins overlooking the town on a hilltop.  Near the entrance of the ruins, we stopped by a café for lunch.  Recommended by Felipe, Grandma Rose at the café made some of the best vegetarian food in Tilcara.  Her dog at the café was really playful. He sat beside us and watched us eating, always looking for food under the table.  After the delicious meal, we made our way up to the ruins of Pucara, a partially reconstructed fortress.  From Pucara, the panoramic view of the surrounding mountains was gorgeous.  The wind was strong and the clouds were low.  The field of giant cacti in the middle of Pucara was interesting to stroll around, despite most cacti did not look too healthy.  Some of the taller cacti looked a little scary as they swayed in the strong wind, as if they could fall any moment.
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Read other posts on Northwest Argentina in 2013 South America:

Day 43.1 – Garganta del Diablo, Tilcara
Day 43.2 – Pucara, Tilcara
Day 44.1 – Hills of Seven Colours, Purmamarca
Day 44.2 – Cemetery, Purmamarca
Day 45.1 – Antigua Gusthouse, Tilcara
Day 45.2 – Museums and Plaza, Salta
Day 46.1 – Carpe Diem, Salta
Day 46.2 – Helados Miranda, Cafayate
Day 46.3 – Bodega el Porvenir, Cafayate
Day 47.1 – Bodega Domingo Molina, Cafayate
Day 47.2 – Quebrada Las Conchas, Cafayate
Day 48.1 – Museo de Vino, Cafayate
Day 48.2 – El Hornito, Cafayate
Day 48.3 – Goodbye Northern Argentina, Salta

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South America 2013 – Our Destinations
Buenos Aires (Argentina), Iguazu Falls (Argentina/Brazil), Pantanal (Brazil), Brasilia (Brazil), Belo Horizonte & Inhotim (Brazil), Ouro Preto (Brazil), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Paraty (Brazil), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Samaipata & Santa Cruz (Bolivia), Sucre (Bolivia), Potosi (Bolivia), Southwest Circuit (Bolivia), Tilcara, Purmamarca, Salta (Argentina), Cafayate (Argentina), San Pedro de Atacama (Chile), Antofagasta & Paranal Observatory (Chile), Chiloe (Chile), Puerto Varas (Chile), Torres del Paine (Chile), Ushuaia (Argentina), El Chalten (Argentina), El Calafate (Argentina), Isla Magdalena (Argentina), Santiago (Chile), Valparaiso (Chile), Afterthought


DAY 43 (1 OF 2) – GARGANTA DEL DIABLO, TILCARA, ARGENTINA

Located in the middle of Quebrada de Humahuaca, Tilcara is a popular base for foreign and local visitors to explore the UNESCO World Heritage listed valley.  We specifically chose Tilcara as our base to visit Quebrada de Humahuaca because of its better selection of accommodation and the town’s less touristy atmosphere.  Instructed by Felipe, one of the owners of Antigua Guesthouse, we decided to go for a half-day hike near Tilcara.  The entire hike took us about 5 hours including return, taking us to a canyon and a waterfall at a site called Garganta del Diablo (Devil’s Throat).  As we walked uphill to the trailhead, we could see the colourful hills at both sides of the valley.  The clouds were low, covering much of the distant mountains in shade.
The walk uphill to the entrance of Garganta del Diablo was pleasant, but could get quite windy at times.  It was quite a popular hike as we shared the route with dozens or so of Argentine tourists along the way.  Giant cacti dotted on layers of rocky slopes.  There were some similarities to the landscape of Tupiza in Bolivia, only we could see more greenery here than in Tupiza.  At Garganta del Diablo, we paid the entrance fee before descending down to the canyon.  At the bottom of the canyon, we followed the stream for about 20 minutes until we arrived at the waterfall, where local visitors enjoyed a dip in the water or a sandwich lunch.  Some kind locals offered us two cups of Argentine wine while we all took a good rest before the return journey.
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Previous Destination: Southwest Circuit, Bolivia, reading from post Day 36.2

Read other posts on Northwest Argentina in 2013 South America:

Day 43.1 – Garganta del Diablo, Tilcara
Day 43.2 – Pucara, Tilcara
Day 44.1 – Hills of Seven Colours, Purmamarca
Day 44.2 – Cemetery, Purmamarca
Day 45.1 – Antigua Gusthouse, Tilcara
Day 45.2 – Museums and Plaza, Salta
Day 46.1 – Carpe Diem, Salta
Day 46.2 – Helados Miranda, Cafayate
Day 46.3 – Bodega el Porvenir, Cafayate
Day 47.1 – Bodega Domingo Molina, Cafayate
Day 47.2 – Quebrada Las Conchas, Cafayate
Day 48.1 – Museo de Vino, Cafayate
Day 48.2 – El Hornito, Cafayate
Day 48.3 – Goodbye Northern Argentina, Salta

* * *

South America 2013 – Our Destinations
Buenos Aires (Argentina), Iguazu Falls (Argentina/Brazil), Pantanal (Brazil), Brasilia (Brazil), Belo Horizonte & Inhotim (Brazil), Ouro Preto (Brazil), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Paraty (Brazil), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Samaipata & Santa Cruz (Bolivia), Sucre (Bolivia), Potosi (Bolivia), Southwest Circuit (Bolivia), Tilcara, Purmamarca, Salta (Argentina), Cafayate (Argentina), San Pedro de Atacama (Chile), Antofagasta & Paranal Observatory (Chile), Chiloe (Chile), Puerto Varas (Chile), Torres del Paine (Chile), Ushuaia (Argentina), El Chalten (Argentina), El Calafate (Argentina), Isla Magdalena (Argentina), Santiago (Chile), Valparaiso (Chile), Afterthought