Salta and Jujuy, Argentina

Through the Highlands of Deep Argentina

very coarse salt
Workers load blocks of salt onto a truck in Salinas Grandes.
salty life
Saline foreman displays a handful of the raw material he keeps for days on end.
Remote Faith
Small chapel lost in the immensity of the Puna, the vast Andean plateau of the provinces of Salta and Jujuy.
Crossing muds
Traffic sign warns of crossing camelids on a road in the high interior of Jujuy.
geological sculpture
One of the many "cerros de las siete colores" that adorn the Andean plateau in northwestern Argentina.
The village of Purmamarca is set against one of the hills of Siete Colores in northwestern Argentina.
In honor of the deceased
Roadside sanctuary in honor of Defunta Correa, a religious character adored by Argentines.
In the Solitude of the Hills
Pastora in traditional dress, on her way to La Quiaca.
night jump
Geometric pattern of Salta marked by the city's night lighting.
Faith Garrida
The church of São Francisco, highlighted by its bright façade, in the post-colonial city of Salta.
on the way into the night
Passengers arrive in a cabin on the San Bernardo cable car in Salta.
"La Aunt Dominga"
Road bar-restaurant in the interior of the province of Salta.
Steep grazing
Pastora leads sheep on a parched hillside next to provincial road 40.
western argentine
Ocher backdrop of the Quebrada de Cafayate.
of alert
A lama intrigued in the highlands of the Andean Puna.
Provincial Route 40
Landmark away on the edge of a mountain road on the way to Santa Victoria.
salt floor
Soil pattern of Salinas Grandes, in the high interior of the province of Salta.
desert but little
Cactuses and vineyards in a semi-desert area near Cafayate.
Hidden Valley
One of the greenest scenery in the Valles Calchaquies, on the way to Cachi.
A tour through the provinces of Salta and Jujuy takes us to discover a country with no sign of the pampas. Vanished in the Andean vastness, these ends of the Northwest of Argentina have also been lost in time.

“Wonderful, don't you think? It's no coincidence that they call it "La Linda!"

Roberto – a native who leads guided tours of the historic center of Salta – brags like this when he realizes that we photograph every corner with renewed interest. “Buenos Aires could be the capital, Córdoba has all its old Missions, but you can't find a South American Andalusia there like we have here”.

A simple walk through the historic center reveals the building of the council (the old building), the cathedral and several houses from the time of the viceroys, with their majestic facades and balconies.

In the streets, one can feel the weight of the religiosity imposed by the churches. From time to time, groups of nuns pass by on their way to the convents.

Faith Garrida

>São Francisco church, highlighted by its bright façade, in the post-colonial city of Salta.

Beyond the homonymous capital, the province of Salta is a patchwork of landscape. It comprises a panoply of environments, reliefs and climates difficult to find in other parts of Argentina.

from the savanna chaco (the area closest to Paraguay) to the Andean plateaus, deserts and oases, mountains covered by lush jungle and arid mountain ranges succeed one another.

As in the neighboring southern province, Mendoza, in the extreme west of the region, the remote snowy peaks exceed 6.000 meters in altitude.

National Argentina 68 In. From Salta to Cafayate

From Salta towards the south, the national 68 winds through increasingly dry and reddish valleys and gorges.

They remind us of the scenarios of Indian West and US Cowboy. As soon as we arrived in Cafayate, colonial Argentina claims and regains its leading role.

western argentine

Ocher backdrop of the Quebrada de Cafayate.

These days, Cafayate is home to a dedicated population of silver, fabric and fur artisans but is best known for its reputable production of torrontés, a fruity white wine that is said to accompany, in perfection, the beloved empanadas in Salta.

We found them from time to time in bars lost in the vast road that we continued to travel.

Aunt Dominga

Road bar-restaurant in the interior of the province of Salta.

National Route 40. Valles Calchaquies towards the Quebrada del Toro

The next morning, we left for Ruta Nacional 40. Gradually, we got closer to the Andes. The Valles Calchaquíes open onto the gravel road in Chicoana and extend along the Cuesta del Obispo.

Unveiled alienated rural hamlets surrounded by hillside pastures where cattle feed in a dizzying way.

And through deep agricultural fields, filled with small farms painted in shades of green and yellow.

Hidden Valley

One of the greenest scenery in the Valles Calchaquies, on the way to Cachi.

Shortly thereafter, we passed through Cachi. Always gaining altitude, we enter Los Cardones National Park.

We can see their thresholds clearly demarcated by a profusion of cacti with different shapes that the native population is used to imagining as guards of hills, herds of vicuñas, guanacos, pumas, wild cats and other species with eccentric local names.

of alert

A lama intrigued in the highlands of the Andean Puna.

To the north, the even wider Quebrada del Toro dominates the map. According to the prevailing belief, the ex-libris of the province of Salta received its name for having been, for many years, a route for muleteers heading for Chile.

And because the cowboys used these low, green areas of the valley to fatten up the animals they were driving.

But the theory is contested by a minority faction that defends that the word toro has an indigenous origin (probably Aymara) and means “muddy water”.

On the Train Route to Las Nubes

Whatever the correct explanation, the most popular way to discover the region is to hop aboard the Tren a Las Nubes. As we explored these stops, however, the train remained disabled for an urgent renovation.

when everything goes on rails, the composition departs from Gare General Belgrano, in Salta. It advances along 217km, along a winding path that penetrates the mountains and visits some more small ones people Andeans with great historical significance.

After reaching the Saltine plateau, the Tren de las Nubes stops at San Antonio de los Cobres. Even by car, this village appears to us as a surreal vision of adobe and tin lost in the inhospitable immensity.

San Antonio de los Cobres grew up as an outpost on the mule caravan circuits that linked Peru to Argentina. And, later, the country from the pampas to Chile's nitrate mines, the same chemical compound that fertilized Portuguese agricultural soil for decades.

These days, San Antonio is the penultimate station before the La Polvorilla viaduct, which we find at an altitude of 4220 meters.

salt floor

Soil pattern of Salinas Grandes, in the high interior of the province of Salta.

The Endless Salt Flats of the Andean Highlands

From there, we continue along the makeshift dirt, gravel and sand roads of the Andean puña, alongside herds of wild mules, chased by gusts of wind and other barometric whims.

After a few dozen more kilometers, we glimpse the real mirage of Salinas Grandes. Confirm a set of salt pans flat and visually endless in which only the distant activity of some workers loading a truck seems to break the white uniformity of the scenery.

very coarse salt

Workers load blocks of salt onto a truck in Salinas Grandes.

We left the demarcated trail. On a crunchy surface, we reach its surroundings just as the truck is about to depart. We stayed in conversation with the indigenous farm guard.

He soon confesses to us the loneliness his job has voted him into: “Friends, weeks go by when I see nothing but salt… From time to time, desperate coyotes appear around, attracted by the smell of that I'm cooking. Sometimes, not even that…"

salty life

Saline foreman displays a handful of the raw material he keeps for days on end.

Finally, in Lands of Jujuy. The Quebrada de Humahuaca

With the Chilean border announcing itself one last time, we reversed to the east. When we enter Jujuy territory, we are ordered to stop two law enforcement officers waiting by the roadside. “We have an urgent case to solve in Humahuaca, we need them to take us there”, shoots guard Rodriguez uncomfortably.

We start by hesitating. Surrendered to the sympathetic expression of the second policeman and the lack of viable alternatives, we ended up giving in without resistance.


The village of Purmamarca is set against one of the hills of Siete Colores in northwestern Argentina.

The distrust having been overcome, for more than two hours, the conversation unfolded happily. It touches on diverse themes with obvious highlights for Argentine and Portuguese football and for the often problematic state of finances in both nations.

As it flows, the dialogue also allows us to realize that that forced ride was actually due to the long Argentine crisis. In particular, the lack of funds from the police stations in the north of the country to ensure transport for their agents.

Still on the way to the Bolivian border, we started to explore the Pampa Azul. There, for their almost urban dimension, Abra Pampa, Trés Cruces, Casabindo and La Quiaca stand out.

In honor of the deceased

Roadside sanctuary in honor of Defunta Correa, a religious character adored by Argentines.

La Quiaca. Argentina's Northwest Threshold

We pay minimal attention to the first three. Argentina's northern boundary status and the suspected profile of Quiaca arouses our curiosity.

There we explore the local market, installed, for convenience, just a few hundred meters from customs.

Until nightfall, we watched with delight the smuggling and dubious deals of Bolivian and Argentinean visitors. Between casual conversations, we turn down irresistible profit offers.

The next day, we return to National Route 9 back to Jujuy and Salta, always through the Andean ends of South America.

night jump

Geometric pattern of Salta marked by the city's night lighting.

Altitude Sickness: the Grievances of Getting Mountain Sick

When traveling, it happens that we find ourselves confronted with the lack of time to explore a place as unmissable as it is high. Medicine and previous experiences with Altitude Evil dictate that we should not risk ascending in a hurry.
unmissable roads

Great Routes, Great Trips

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Mendoza, Argentina

Journey through Mendoza, the Great Argentine Winemaking Province

In the XNUMXth century, Spanish missionaries realized that the area was designed for the production of the “Blood of Christ”. Today, the province of Mendoza is at the center of the largest winemaking region in Latin America.
Atacama Desert, Chile

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Ushuaia, Argentina

The Last of the Southern Cities

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Beagle Channel, Argentina

Darwin and the Beagle Channel: on the Theory of the Evolution Route

In 1833, Charles Darwin sailed aboard the "Beagle" through the channels of Tierra del Fuego. His passage through these southern confines shaped the revolutionary theory he formulated of the Earth and its species
San Ignacio Mini, Argentina

The Impossible Jesuit Missions of San Ignacio Mini

In the century. In the XNUMXth century, the Jesuits expanded a religious domain in the heart of South America by converting the Guarani Indians into Jesuit missions. But the Iberian Crowns ruined the tropical utopia of the Society of Jesus.
Perito Moreno Glacier, Argentina

The Resisting Glacier

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El Chalten, Argentina

The Granite Appeal of Patagonia

Two stone mountains have created a border dispute between Argentina and Chile. But these countries are not the only suitors. The Fitz Roy and Torre hills have long attracted die-hard climbers
Colónia Pellegrini, Argentina

When the Meat is Weak

The unmistakable flavor of Argentine beef is well known. But this wealth is more vulnerable than you think. The threat of foot-and-mouth disease, in particular, keeps authorities and growers afloat.
Mendoza, Argentina

From One Side to the Other of the Andes

Departing from Mendoza city, the N7 route gets lost in vineyards, rises to the foot of Mount Aconcagua and crosses the Andes to Chile. Few cross-border stretches reveal the magnificence of this forced ascent
savuti, botswana, elephant-eating lions
Savuti, Botswana

Savuti's Elephant-Eating Lions

A patch of the Kalahari Desert dries up or is irrigated depending on the region's tectonic whims. In Savuti, lions have become used to depending on themselves and prey on the largest animals in the savannah.
Thorong La, Annapurna Circuit, Nepal, photo for posterity
Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit 13th: High camp - Thorong La - Muktinath, Nepal

At the height of the Annapurnas Circuit

At 5416m of altitude, the Thorong La Gorge is the great challenge and the main cause of anxiety on the itinerary. After having killed 2014 climbers in October 29, crossing it safely generates a relief worthy of double celebration.
Sculptural Garden, Edward James, Xilitla, Huasteca Potosina, San Luis Potosi, Mexico, Cobra dos Pecados
Architecture & Design
Xilitla, San Luis Potosí, Mexico

Edward James' Mexican Delirium

In the rainforest of Xilitla, the restless mind of poet Edward James has twinned an eccentric home garden. Today, Xilitla is lauded as an Eden of the Surreal.
Boats on ice, Hailuoto Island, Finland.
Hailuoto, Finland

A Refuge in the Gulf of Bothnia

During winter, the island of Hailuoto is connected to the rest of Finland by the country's longest ice road. Most of its 986 inhabitants esteem, above all, the distance that the island grants them.
Burning prayers, Ohitaki Festival, fushimi temple, kyoto, japan
Ceremonies and Festivities
Kyoto, Japan

A Combustible Faith

During the Shinto celebration of Ohitaki, prayers inscribed on tablets by the Japanese faithful are gathered at the Fushimi temple. There, while being consumed by huge bonfires, her belief is renewed.
Melbourne, Australia

An "Asienated" Australia

Cultural capital aussie, Melbourne is also frequently voted the best quality of life city in the world. Nearly a million eastern emigrants took advantage of this immaculate welcome.
Tsukiji fish market, Tokyo, Japan
Tokyo, Japan

The Fish Market That Lost its Freshness

In a year, each Japanese eats more than their weight in fish and shellfish. Since 1935, a considerable part was processed and sold in the largest fish market in the world. Tsukiji was terminated in October 2018, and replaced by Toyosu's.
Bride gets in car, traditional wedding, Meiji temple, Tokyo, Japan
Tokyo, Japan

A Matchmaking Sanctuary

Tokyo's Meiji Temple was erected to honor the deified spirits of one of the most influential couples in Japanese history. Over time, it specialized in celebrating traditional weddings.
4th of July Fireworks-Seward, Alaska, United States
Seward, Alaska

The Longest 4th of July

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Braga or Braka or Brakra in Nepal
Annapurna Circuit: 6th – Braga, Nepal

The Ancient Nepal of Braga

Four days of walking later, we slept at 3.519 meters from Braga (Braka). Upon arrival, only the name is familiar to us. Faced with the mystical charm of the town, arranged around one of the oldest and most revered Buddhist monasteries on the Annapurna circuit, we continued our journey there. acclimatization with ascent to Ice Lake (4620m).
Coin return
Dawki, India

Dawki, Dawki, Bangladesh on sight

We descended from the high and mountainous lands of Meghalaya to the flats to the south and below. There, the translucent and green stream of the Dawki forms the border between India and Bangladesh. In a damp heat that we haven't felt for a long time, the river also attracts hundreds of Indians and Bangladeshis in a picturesque escape.
sunlight photography, sun, lights
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio
Natural Light (Part 2)

One Sun, So Many Lights

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Vittoriosa, Birgu, Malta, Waterfront, Marina
Birgu, Malta

To the Conquest of the Victorious City

Vittoriosa is the oldest of the Three Cities of Malta, headquarters of the Knights Hospitaller and, from 1530 to 1571, its capital. The resistance he offered to the Ottomans in the Great Siege of Malta kept the island Christian. Even if, later, Valletta took over the administrative and political role, the old Birgu shines with historic glory.
Jumping forward, Pentecost Naghol, Bungee Jumping, Vanuatu
Pentecost Island, Vanuatu

Pentecost Naghol: Bungee Jumping for Real Men

In 1995, the people of Pentecostes threatened to sue extreme sports companies for stealing the Naghol ritual. In terms of audacity, the elastic imitation falls far short of the original.
Passengers on the frozen surface of the Gulf of Bothnia, at the base of the "Sampo" icebreaker, Finland
Winter White
Kemi, Finland

It's No "Love Boat". Breaks the Ice since 1961

Built to maintain waterways through the most extreme arctic winter, the icebreaker Sampo” fulfilled its mission between Finland and Sweden for 30 years. In 1988, he reformed and dedicated himself to shorter trips that allow passengers to float in a newly opened channel in the Gulf of Bothnia, in clothes that, more than special, seem spacey.
View from the top of Mount Vaea and the tomb, Vailima village, Robert Louis Stevenson, Upolu, Samoa
Upolu, Samoa

Stevenson's Treasure Island

At age 30, the Scottish writer began looking for a place to save him from his cursed body. In Upolu and the Samoans, he found a welcoming refuge to which he gave his heart and soul.
Dark day

Lake Cocibolca, Nicaragua

sea, sweet sea

Indigenous Nicaraguans treated the largest lake in Central America as Cocibolca. On the volcanic island of Ometepe, we realized why the term the Spaniards converted to Mar Dulce made perfect sense.

Mother Armenia Statue, Yerevan, Armenia
Yerevan, Armenia

A Capital between East and West

Heiress of the Soviet civilization, aligned with the great Russia, Armenia allows itself to be seduced by the most democratic and sophisticated ways of Western Europe. In recent times, the two worlds have collided in the streets of your capital. From popular and political dispute, Yerevan will dictate the new course of the nation.
Incandescent Mouth, Big Island Hawaii, Volcanoes National Park, Lava Rivers
Natural Parks
Big Island, Hawaii

Searching for Rivers of Lava

There are five volcanoes that make the big island of Hawaii grow day by day. Kilauea, the most active on Earth, is constantly releasing lava. Despite this, we live a kind of epic to envision it.
North Island, New Zealand, Maori, Surfing time
UNESCO World Heritage
North Island, New Zealand

Journey along the Path of Maority

New Zealand is one of the countries where the descendants of settlers and natives most respect each other. As we explored its northern island, we became aware of the interethnic maturation of this very old nation. Commonwealth as Maori and Polynesia.
In elevator kimono, Osaka, Japan
Osaka, Japan

In the Company of Mayu

Japanese nightlife is a multi-faceted, multi-billion business. In Osaka, an enigmatic couchsurfing hostess welcomes us, somewhere between the geisha and the luxury escort.
Mangrove between Ibo and Quirimba Island-Mozambique
Ibo Island a Quirimba IslandMozambique

Ibo to Quirimba with the Tide

For centuries, the natives have traveled in and out of the mangrove between the island of Ibo and Quirimba, in the time that the overwhelming return trip from the Indian Ocean grants them. Discovering the region, intrigued by the eccentricity of the route, we follow its amphibious steps.
One against all, Sera Monastery, Sacred Debate, Tibet
Lhasa, Tibet

Sera, the Monastery of the Sacred Debate

In few places in the world a dialect is used as vehemently as in the monastery of Sera. There, hundreds of monks, in Tibetan, engage in intense and raucous debates about the teachings of the Buddha.
Train Kuranda train, Cairns, Queensland, Australia
On Rails
Cairns-Kuranda, Australia

Train to the Middle of the Jungle

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Sentosa Island, Singapore, Family on Sentosa Artificial Beach
Sentosa, Singapore

Singapore's Fun Island

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Saksun, Faroe Islands, Streymoy, warning
Daily life
Saksun, StreymoyFaroe Islands

The Faroese Village That Doesn't Want to be Disneyland

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Amboseli National Park, Mount Kilimanjaro, Normatior Hill
Amboseli National Park, Kenya

A Gift from the Kilimanjaro

The first European to venture into these Masai haunts was stunned by what he found. And even today, large herds of elephants and other herbivores roam the pastures irrigated by the snow of Africa's biggest mountain.
Full Dog Mushing
Scenic Flights
Seward, Alaska

The Alaskan Dog Mushing Summer

It's almost 30 degrees and the glaciers are melting. In Alaska, entrepreneurs have little time to get rich. Until the end of August, dog mushing cannot stop.