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Andean Northwest (Argentina)

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If you start your Argentine tour in Buenos Aires and think the rest of the country is either similar or uninhabited, you're in for a surprise. The northwestern provinces of Argentina, including Salta and Jujuy, are more like parts of Argentina's Andean neighbors Peru and Bolivia in terms of terrain, culture, and way of life. There tends to be more internal than external tourism to this part of Argentina. Due to this you may find many unexpected amenities (as well as transplanted porteños looking for renewal) in the small pueblos along the quebrada, or mountain chain, which is said to have "siete colores", which describes the stratified layers of minerals in the mountains which appear to be red, orange, pink, green, etc. The winters are dry, warm during the day and cool during the evening.

Be sure to try empanadas salteñas, pet a llama, stay in a small mountain pueblo, and enjoy the breathtaking scenery and the great view of the starry sky behind the silhouettes of the cactus.

Larger cities include: Salta, San Salvador de Jujuy. Medium-size towns: Humahuaca. Small pueblos frequented by Argentines: Pumamarca, Tilcara.

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