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Recommendations on Itinerary for 5-day Stay in NW Argentina

Verona, Italy
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Recommendations on Itinerary for 5-day Stay in NW Argentina

Hi everybody,

I am turning to your expertise as I will be traveling to Argentina at the end of the month with a friend of mine and need your tips to plan this post-graduation trip in the best possible way.

After Buenos Aires and Iguazú, we will devote five full days to visiting the North-West of this beautiful country - landing in Salta on July 31st at 8 PM, and flying back to BA on August 6th at 8AM.

The idea is renting a car in Salta, driving up north, and visiting as much as possible. By reading similar threads, it seems that the following places are not to be missed: Cafayate, Purmamarca, Tilcara, Uquía, and Iruya.

Am I missing something? How would you structure the trip day by day, to make it feasible and enjoyable?

Also, the million-dollar question: it would be very important for us to go the extra mile, reach Uyuni and visit the Salar. What do you think? Is it really unfeasible or can we still dream about making it happen?

Muchas gracias for your precious help in advance,

Luca

8 replies to this topic
Argentina
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1. Re: Recommendations on Itinerary for 5-day Stay in NW Argentina

HI, Luca;

July 31; arrival driving to Purmamarca - Check in- drive to the salt flats at 4:30 p.m. to be there at sunset - returning for dinner.

Aug 1; Drive to Uquia - Humahuaca and after lunch drive to Iruya.

Aug 2; sightseeing... pictures...drive back to Tilcara - After lunch drive to Salta. sightseeing in Salta - pictures at night are amazing!!! MAAM, Cathedral, St Francisco Church

Aug 3; Salta - Drive to Cafayate Through National Park Los Cardones visiting the artisans (poncho makers) on the way,have lunch in MOlinos. Drive to Cafayate stopping on the rock formations.

Aug 4; Visiting wineries - a goat farm maybe... and driving back to Salta on route 68. you need at least hours to do it as there are many viewpoints.

Aug 5, you can do something in town as visiting some museums and taste some empanadas.

I hope this itinerary helps you, It includes the highlights of the whole area.

Warm regards,

Angie/Giena

Verona, Italy
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2. Re: Recommendations on Itinerary for 5-day Stay in NW Argentina

Dear Angie/Gena,

Thanks a million for your beautiful itinerary, it is extremely well structured, and as you said, it includes the highlights of the whole area.

The only thing is that we will be landing in Salta at night (8PM) on the 31st. Do you suggest to drive to Purmamarca right away and sleep there, or sleep in Salta and drive to Purmamarca the morning after?

Also, two quick questions:

1. The car rental I am in touch with said that driving to Iruya is quite complicated, and you need a 4x4. Is that true, yes?

2. Do you think driving up to Uyuni is not feasible? If the car rental does not allow us to cross the border, we are thinking of taking a bus from Tilcara to La Quiaca and then one to Uyuni. What do you think?

Argentina
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3. Re: Recommendations on Itinerary for 5-day Stay in NW Argentina

Uyuni is too far away, and you have no much time. The road to Iruya is a bit rough but, you can do it with a normal car unless from April to November...

I recommend to stay in Purmamarca over Tilcara or any other place. I love that little town.

The itinerary has no waste.

Warm regards,

Angie/Giena

London
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4. Re: Recommendations on Itinerary for 5-day Stay in NW Argentina

Angie has provided a pretty good itinerary which would be hard to improve upon.

Uyuni is a non starter. We have done that trip several times and it takes the major part of a day to get to from Salta to Tupiza in Bolivia from where you can get a train to Uyuni but only on certain days of the week. Otherwise the Salar de Uyuni is the last stop on a three night tour. The Bolivian altiplano is like on other place in teh world but save it for another trip. You can get a taster of what the Salar is like by visiting Salinas Grande on your trip some photos of what to expect there on our blog @ https:/… I also cover some of the other places you plan on visiting.

We drove all over the NW in small, 2WD cars and really didn’t feel the need for 4WD . Whichever rental company you choose, do check the car thoroughly, especially the tyres. Drive it around a little before leaving Salta. Things do change I know but we found Hertz, although not the cheapest, to be the best in terms of service, quality of car and, most importantly, the only one who offered zero excess CDW.

PS - we are currently in Bologna in the last week of a month long stay. Is, what looks like your home town of Verona worth a day trip?

Verona, Italy
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5. Re: Recommendations on Itinerary for 5-day Stay in NW Argentina

@Giena: We are actually driving to Iruya between April and November as we will be there in two weeks. Does this mean that you are suggesting NOT to drive there in a normal car, and take a 4x4 instead?

@Crellston: I see, so Bolivia is officially postponed to the next trip. Your pictures are amazing - I am trying to see as few pics as possible because I want to be shocked/surprised once on spot. Thanks for the heads-up on the zero excess CWD though, I will keep an eye out for it, those terms and conditions really give me a headache every time. As for Verona, it is definitely worth a day trip - if you want tips on what to do/see/eat, shoot me a message and I will be happy to help :)

Verona, Italy
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6. Re: Recommendations on Itinerary for 5-day Stay in NW Argentina

Also, do you suggest to book accommodation solutions in advance, or book it on spot, especially considering that the itinerary might be changed as we go? We are not looking for fancy options, hostels are more than okay.

Argentina
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7. Re: Recommendations on Itinerary for 5-day Stay in NW Argentina

Hi, again;

I said a 4x4 is not really necessary if you do not drive during the rainy season... well, to be honest, when it rains you can not get into those roads even with a powerful 4x4 ... In Purmamarca you can stay at El Viejo Algarrobo, I love ot as a simple, clean and comfortable place. You can show up and see the one you prefer. It will not be crowded as other times...

Regards,

Angie/Giena-

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8. Re: Recommendations on Itinerary for 5-day Stay in NW Argentina

Don't miss Cachi, Colomé, and Molinos

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