If I told you there is a city that will give you a headache which causes slight dizziness, a place that leaves you (literally) gasping for air when climbing its many steps and that will also force you to risk life and limb (with said headache) running to cross its crazy streets. And in this same city you will have to be ultra-vigilant for scams aimed at tourists (yes, that means you and in this case, us!) you would probably say you would never want to visit that city.
Posts tagged ‘road’
The last day of the tour was surprisingly one of the most unspectacular, probably due in part to the large amounts of tourists that you have to face at 7 am on the small Isla de Pescado for the sunrise. This island is (unfortunately) where every tour company takes their group, so while you are all sleepy, groggy-eyed waiting for the sunrise, you have to weave through hordes of other tourists.
This morning we got to 'sleep late'. Probably my best birthday present! We were only up at 6 am and left by 7. Today was a special day because it was my 39th (yikes!) birthday! Also, due to my position in the southern hemisphere, it was the first time I celebrated the summer solstice (June 21) on the winter solstice!
5 am the next morning, the alarm was going off. 5 am!! Getting up in the freezing cold after a breathless nights sleep was not very fun (we slept at above 13,000 ft-4,100 m)-and one side effect of high altitude is breathless nights. You often find yourself waking up constantly in the middle of the night short of breath.
After 3 weeks of Spanish lessons, we were ready for a break. One of my very best friends decided to take a trip to Bolivia to visit us and it just so happened to be during my birthday week! This made me very happy-our first friend to come and visit us! It was hard deciding where to bring her but finally I thought it would be nice for her to see some of the altiplano (high altitude) Bolivian landscape (after all, she loves treeless, barren, beautiful landscapes as much as I do!). And so we booked a 4 day Jeep tour to the Salar de Uyuni, which just so happens to be the largest salt flats in the world.
Doesn't every country need it's own Switzerland? Snow capped alpine vistas surrounded by striking azure lakes and greenery, wooden chalets with wood burning stoves and delicious chocolate. Did we somehow fly to Europe? No, we are just in San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina. I have no idea why it looks like Switzerland here but it does. It's like you stepped into the fifth parallel or something.
1. Ruta 40 from Cachi to Cafayate
This easily takes the #1 spot. What Route 66 is to the USA, Route 40 is to Argentina. Stunning scenery, cool hippy history, biker dudes heading out into the open road. What more could you ask for out of a route?
Cachi is another unmissable spot in the Andean northwest of Argentina. Cachi is located in Salta province and is southwest of Salta city. Below is the church located in the plaza of Cachi:
The north of Argentina has one of the most beautiful landscapes in all of the country, if not all of South America. You can drive from thick jungle mountains to giant cactus filled deserts one day and on other days find yourself in cloudforests or standing in front of ancient Andean ruins. One of the biggest, if not the best, wine countries lie in this region, in Cafayate. Salta is the major city in this region and it's filled with animated peñas where you can hear the traditional music sung live, and visit beautiful churches decked out in colonial architecture.