Category Archives: Kallpa Fly & Drive

Andean Experiences Self Drive Discovery

Visit the most emblematic sights in the North of Argentina on this journey through valleys, hills, rivers and gorges where tradition, culture, regional cuisine and relax await.


Get to know the northern culture taking part everyday in different and unique experiences of your choice where local people open their doors to share their hospitality and lifestyle. A cultural exchange where each person you meet will teach you and let you take a part of their daily activity.
On the way, stay and rest in charming boutique hotels specially selected for this trip. With typical Andean architecture and details, these hotels are built with regional materials and combine avant-garde design with woven items, craftsmanship and paintings by local artists.

Castellanos

Day one will take you on the first drive of the trip from Salta City to Castellanos, a town 15 km away, nearby Villa San Lorenzo. This is one of the most exclusive areas of Salta, surrounded by lush vegetation and majestic mountains.
Once in Castellanos, the choice of activity for the day will be between a visit to a local woman’s home to learn and participate in the artisanal making of homemade regional specialties such as quesillo salteño, tamales and humitas; or meeting the students of a local country school to learn about their agricultural activities.
In the evening you may relax at the enchanting Hotel Amalinas.

After a 3 to 4 hours drive from Castellanos, the next morning will bring you to San Antonio de los Cobres. This is a typical town in the Puna and the second highest urban center in Argentina. Its plateau is over 3000 meters above sea level and is an enchanting place for its unique characteristics: the aridity of the soil, the salt flats, the high peaks of strong colors due to the rich variety of minerals and its flora and fauna which can survive under such extreme weather conditions.
One of the experience options to select here is a walk with llamas, where a shepherd will tell you everything about this ancestral camelid -once a working tool for the salteños ancestors-  and you will be able to pick your own llama to join you for a walk around town, recreating the former local custom when these animals were used to transport merchandise up on these heights.

Anatolio-San Antonio de los Cobres

Or you may want to visit Turu Maky (which means mud hands in quechua language) a ceramic workshop where you will see the complete artisanal process of the clay with ancestral techniques and also you will be able to do a piece on your own to take back home with you.
The night will be spent at Hotel de las Nubes.

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The third day of this cultural adventure takes place approximately 160 km away from San Antonio. Purmamarca is located  in the province of Jujuy, in the Quebrada de Humahuaca gorge, declared World Heritage site by UNESCO. Purmamarca is an originally pre-Hispanic village from the early XVII century, located 65 km away from the capital city of Jujuy. Its name means Pueblo de la Tierra Virgen (Virgin Land Town) in aimará language. The main attraction here is the Cerro de los Siete Colores (Seven Colors Hill), which gives an impressive and colorful contrast to the town. The buildings are made of adobe and roofs of cardón and mud, all of them constructed around the main church from 1648 -Santa Rosa de Lima- nowadays a National Monument. At the main square you will find the handicraft market where it is possible to get regional items such as ceramic pots, woven carpets and blankets, ponchos, musical instruments and typical garments of the region.

La Comarca
Here you will be able to take an easy walk down Los Colorados. It is advisable to do it early in the morning, when the light is better and the temperature is cooler. The path is winding and flat and goes behind the famous Cerro de los Siete Colores. The hike offers perfect views of the red mountains. You will discover many shades of red on them and different mineral layers as well. The rustic rocky formations are the result of many years of erosion and sediment stack.
At the end of this active day you will find relax at Hotel La Comarca.

Woman on the trek around the Hill of Seven Colours (Cerro de los Siete Colores), Quebrada de Purmamarca, Jujuy Province, North Argentina

Already on the second half of the journey, the next day you will drive to Iruya where you will stay two nights. A location known for its geographic beauty and fantasy-like town with stone streets that go up and down, in Iruya the aboriginal culture mixes with the Hispanic. The name of the town has many meanings, but the most common one comes from the quechua or aymará languages from the word iruyoc, which means: iru -hay- and yoc -abundance-, so: abundante paja, which means many hay.
Today you may take a walk to San Isidro town, which is almost 8 km away from Iruya and would take you between 2.5 or 3 hs. San Isidro is another high-up village -located literally on a rock- that seems frozen in time with stone and adobe houses. The path to trek is by the riverbed of Iruya until the union of rivers San Isidro and La Cueva. The hike is interesting because of the colors of the mountains and the chances of seeing local inhabitants with their donkeys and also guanacos, llamas and condors in the wild.

Iruya Landscape

The next day you may relax at the hotel but also enjoy the daily experience. You will visit a local lady’s home for a regional cooking class. She will teach you how to cook empanadas salteñas -recipe secrets and all- and you may collaborate too. After the lesson, you will taste the delicious meal prepared by you.
On this location you will rest at the delightful Hotel Iruya.

Day 6 will take you back to Castellanos along the Quebrada de Humahuaca gorge, driving from 5 to 6 hours. On the way we recommend a stop at Maimará to admire the Paletas del Pintor (Paintor´s Palettes) which are magnificent geographic accidents and its many colors are better appreciated with the afternoon light.
You will spend the night again at Hotel Amalinas, where you will enjoy the facilities and relax at the gallery or garden. If the weather allows it, you may use the swimming pool too.

Amalinas Hotel

After a good night sleep and a week full of cultural experiences, the journey comes to an end with a final drive to Salta Airport

Hospitality, culture and imposing landscapes merge on this peerless Andean voyage that will give you memorable experiences to tell back home. Please contact your Kallpa Account Executive for more details and rates.


GENERAL INFORMATION

  • Daily experiences may vary depending on local people availability and regional festivities.
  • Program not valid for Carnival and Easter Week.
  • All experiences are provided in Spanish. English speaking assistance for the daily experiences upon request, subject to availability and with extra cost.

SERVICES INCLUDED

  • One daily experience of choice at every destination as detailed with mentioned services.
  • Pre-loaded GPS
  • Private arrival transfer from Salta airport to Car rental Office.
  • 6 nights accommodation including breakfast at mentioned Hotels.

SERVICES NOT INCLUDED

  • International/domestic flights.
  • Car rental (see rated detailed below).
  • Travel insurance.
  • Personal expenses.
  • Tips and gratuities.
  • Meals not detailed in the program.

OPTIONALS UPON REQUEST

  • Half-board at hotels.
  • English assistance for daily experiences upon request.

 

Ibera wetlands and mocona waterfalls

Driving your car along these roads surrounded by Ibera wetlands and mocona waterfalls is a trip that will keep coming back into our minds.


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The reason for this is that the Fly & drive Iberá wetlands and Moconá Tour will get you closer to the most beautiful destinations in Argentina.

Everything starts when we arrive at our first destination Posadas, where we are given a GPS with all the roads that we should take already loaded. We begin our trip along  a route  that will take us to the San Ignacio Ruins before arriving in Puerto Valle where we’ll put up for the first three nights.

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San Ignacio Ruins are some of the best preserved ruins,among others,in a territory today known as Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. And the most visited because they are within easy reach. Built in the middle of a dense vegetation,the remains of these “Guaraní Baroque Style Construction” were discovered in 1897,although the restoration didn´t begin until 1940.

The public square was surrounded by the Church, the Cabildo(former town hall),the Cemetery,the Monastery and a bunch of houses. The magnificent Church was built by the Italian priest Juan Brasanelli,who used in the construction local red sandstone. The walls 70 meters tall and 24 meters wide are still standing after more than two centuries.

In 1984 the UNESCO declared the ruins as a “World Heritage Site”. Today the ruins hold the “Museo Jesuitico San Ignacio Miní”. After driving for over  120 kilometers we´ll get to Iberá Wetlands and stay in Puerto Valle.

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Iberá Wetlands are the second largest in South America. These “Esteros” are a mixture of swamps,bogs,stagnant lakes and lagoons. Natural wet areas(sloughs) and courses of water of fluvial origins cover an area of 15.000 to 20.000 square kilometers.

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The Natural Reserve is host to a large biodiversity,including four species of animals that have been declared “Provincial Natural Monuments”: the neotropical otter, the maned-wolf, the Pampas deer and the marsh deer. It is also home to two Argentinian species of alligator: the yacaré caiman(or black yacaré) and the broad-snouted caiman(or yacare overo), as well as the capybara(world´s largest rodent)and about 350 species of birds.

There are a lot of activities to be done in Puerto Valle, such as visiting a caymans´farm,going for a ride on a boat made of plastic bottles or going for a horseback ride or a bike ride to stay in touch with nature.

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We go on our trip driving towards El Soberbio in Oberá(Misiones Province) very close to the Moconá waterfalls. Because of its near location a visit to this place is highly recommended, besides the activities in the Lodge.

The waterfalls,10 meters in height,interrupt for about 3 kilometers the course of the Uruguay River,southwest of San Pedro county,in Misiones Province.

A peculiar characteristic about these waterfalls is that they fall perpendicularly and not transversally to the course of the waters. The canal where the water falls is a geological fault and in some places reaches the height of 170 meters. Not every season is good for visiting them. They are at their best when the volume of water is low. A curious fact: the guaraní word Moconá means: “it swallows everything”.ibera-wetlands-and-mocona-waterfalls-6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



FACT SHEET

Minimun pax requirements: 1

Prices include:

  • 2 nights in Esteros del Iberá.
  • 2 nights in El Soberbio área.
  • Special fly & drive kit with road maps & tourist information.

Not included:

  • Flights & airport taxes.
  • Optional excursions.
  • Early check-in & late check-out at hotels.
  • Tips & personal expenses.
  • Drinks and meals except when mentioned.
  • Medical insurance.

Andean peaks and jurassic discovery

Andean peaks and Jurassic Discovery… the name we decided to give to the SELF DRIVE program through Mendoza, San Juan and La Rioja. We´ll get aquainted with the Cuyo region that in native language means:”Country of deserts”.


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This is a region where the high peaks,the snowed volcanoes and the roads that meander through the Andes pre-mountain range and the steppes stand out. A place where nature lives in parks and natural reserves and where the condor flies over as a lookout and guardian.

Our trip starts in Mendoza where we´ll spend the first night. Amongst grape leaves,country houses and wineries we travel back in history around one of the most important wine-making regions in Argentina. In this place we get in touch with our local tour guide and we take the car we´ll ride on during our journey.

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We take the well-trodden 40th route and we head towards Uspallata,but first we´ll take a detour to get to know the highest mountain in South America:The Aconcagua with its 6908 meters above sea-level. After checking in and paying the admission fee to the Aconcagua Provincial Park we´ll have the chance of going for a 40 minutes walk to the vantage point where we´ll come across one of the most spectacular views from this mountain.

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Then we´ll move on towards Barreal. On this spot we can visit the Astronomical Complex El Leoncito not without a previous booking(the demand to visit it is usually very high). The Visitors time- table is: from April the 01st to September the 30th from 10AM to 12PM and from 02:30PM to 05PM.And from October the 01st to March the 31st from 10AM to 12PM and from 03PM to 05:30PM.

We have been travelling for four days now and we find ourselves at the Agricultural Valley of Calingasta crisscrossed by the Rio de los Patos. Here we´ll find plantations of pumpkins and lavender and where we´ll be able to see some of Aconcaguas´highest peaks such as the Mount Mercedario.

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During the next days and after having left behind us Barreal we´ll drive along the newly opened RN150 that takes us straight to the Parque Provincial Ischigualasto,a real voyage into the dinosaurs era. Ischigualasto or “Valley of the moon” with the amazing shapes and colours of a landscape carved by erosion, is one of the most important Paleonthological Sites in the world.

We go on towards San Agustin del Valle Fertil where we´ll spend two nights and where we´ll visit the National Park Talampaya.

Andean-peaks-and-jurassic-discovery-2Talampaya National Park was a project that was born to protect important achaelogical and paleonthological sites in the region and is among the seven “World Heritages”,declared as such by the Unesco in Argentina. The great beauty of its landscape was the result of tectonic movements helped by the erosion of the waters and the winds in a desertic area, with big differences in climate,intense heat during the day and low temperatures at night. It is possible to do some trekking too throughout the park to be able to appreciate the wonderful views it has to offer.

On our last day,”to close the circle” we´ll start on our trip back to the city of Mendoza driving through San Juan with its modern architectural styles,surrounded by rivers,hills and valleys,where amazing sights come to life while practicing high-risk sports and while taking exciting journeys.

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At this versatile city we´ll have the chance to visit historical,religious,scientific and cultural places related to Argentina´s history

This itinerary offers the possibility of visiting many atractive places in Mendoza,observe the highest peak in America and taste some of the best wines


Included:

  • Hotels including breakfast.
  • Arrival transfer with English speaking local guide.
  • Welcome   letter   with   the   day   by   day   itinerary, information about   the   route and highlights and phone contacts  of booked hotels  (Pls, check foreseen accommodation list below).

Not included:

  • Car rental  (quoted separately).
  • Meals   or   drinks,  except    if   mentioned  in   the itinerary.
  • Flights.
  • Entrance  Fees  to  National  and   Provincial  Parks (only   payable  in situ),   to    CASLEO (Astronomic Observatory in Pampa El Leoncito).

NOTE:  

If  a  stopover in  Buenos  Aires  is  foreseen previous to  the  arrival in  Mendoza, a  Fly  & Drive  kit  can  be  included for  an  additional cost:  it  includes customized GPS with preloaded routes, a road map,  a pencil and more complete travelling information.

Accommodation:

  • 1 night in Mendoza
  • 1 night in Uspallata
  • 1 night in Barreal
  • 1 night in Rodeo
  • 2 night in San Agustín de Valle Fértil

Whales and lakes district fly and drive

Whales and lakes district fly and drive takes you to visit the two extremes of the Argentine Patagonia is a unique and worthy experience for those travelers who love culture and landscapes of the destinations they visit, as it is our case. During this trip we venture to cross the Patagonia from Valdés Peninsula up to San Martín de los Andes, in the lake region and we designed this original Self Drive journey.

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When we arrived to the City of Trelew we were received by our guide who came with us to the car rental to pick up our car and we started our journey to Peninsula Valdés, one of the most relevant natural destinations of the Patagonian Coast. Our stay there took two nights. From that location we could go whale-watching in a semi-submersible boat to observe these species from a different perspective or to venture on a kayak trip to be closer to the whales. We also visited the town of Gaiman, which stands out for keeping customs and traditions of the Welsh settlers and where it is possible to treat yourself to a tea with delicious cakes.

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Our next destination was the city of Esquel in the Andean Patagonia. After leaving very early in the morning we drove approximately 599 km on a paved road through several landscapes. One of the most important attractions of this destination is the “Parque Nacional los Alerces” (National Park of Larch Trees) created for protecting the wood forest of Larches -one of the trees with the longest longevity of the planet- that reached the danger of extinction.

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Our journey took us to the north of the province of Río Negro. 286-km paved road heading the city of Bariloche, located by the impressive Nahuel Huapi Lake. We have profited the opportunity in our trip to visit el “Parque Nacional Lago Puelo” (Puelo Lake National Park) and the town of Bolson. These are two must-see attractions that have left their footprint in the culture of the region. It is our suggestion to stay for at least three nights in Bariloche since the destination has many different activities to offer. For example, one of the options is visiting the “Cerro Catedral”, with a trekking for half a day or a whole day to enjoy the impressive regional landscapes or even to go to “Puerto Pañuelo” and embark and visit Victoria Island and the Myrtle wood forest “Arrayanes”. Our next destination: Villa la Angostura.

We continued our trip to the north in order to reach that villa surrounded by wood forests and snowy peaks. We stayed there for two nights. We have profited from the second day to visit the Arrayanes National Park (Myrtle. It is possible to visit this attractive wood forest following a 12-km path from Villa La Angostura or in an excursion by boat.

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The Villa La Angostura is the starting point of the Road of the Seven Lakes, which is now part of the 40 Road, which connects the Villa with San Martín de los Andes. We have initiated our journey to this Mountain Villa in the Province of Neuquén not without crossing through Villa Traful and enjoying the impressive views offered.

The Road of the Seven Lakes offers a variety of incredible landscapes. The people who had the chance of visiting it on the different seasons have been amazed by a variety of colors offered by the forests contrasting the intense colors of their lakes.

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San Martín de los Andes also hosted us for two nights. From this location we could visit different places. The journey may continue towards the Huilo Huilo natural reserve or visit Villa Pehuenia. On the second day there we visited the Lanín National Park which was created in 1937, where the majestic Lanín Volcano is located. The latter dominates the horizon and attracts the looks of all visitors with its astounding beauty. We have also visited, another must-see of the area, the Huechulafquen lake.

During the whole trip we have counted with the assistance of the Self Drive map and kit with a GPS supplied by Kallpa. This is a journey that undoubtedly fascinates travelers no matter where they are from.