Tag Archives: experience

CLAY AND LIVING CULTURE IN THE NORTH

Learn about the secrets of artisanal pottery and get your hands dirty with the red-colored clay of this enchanting northern town.


Placed in the north-west and almost in the middle of Jujuy province, we find the colorful town of Purmamarca, embraced by the well-known Hill of the Seven Colors. In one of its many mud houses lives Maby, a local artisan that invites us to learn her pottery techniques.

Maby has been a clay artisan for many years and knows a lot about modeling and decoration with local pigments and materials. She is happy to share not only her craft knowledge but also her culture; believing that there is nothing more moving and rewarding than creating something with our own hands.

She warmly welcomes us to her home and workshop to teach us the whole artisanal pottery process, which -according to her- requires enthusiasm and patience.

First, we learn every step to prepare the material that we need to model with, from mud to clay. Then, Maby shows and helps us with the modeling technique to create a small original pottery piece by ourselves, such as bowls, plates, cups or decoration items. Once we’re done, she will take care of the final touches to dry and bake the piece for us.

You can take a piece of art that has been made by someone else and that is already finished. Yours will stay in Purmamarca until the whole process is complete and will be taken by another person that visits Maby some other time after you.

It is not a simple workshop, but the experience of sharing stories, knowledge and techniques of an art that has been alive from our cultural roots. In Maby’s own words: “you will take an indelible memory of my Purma; a space of living culture!”  


GENERAL INFORMATION

  • Difficulty: intermediate. No previous experience required.
  • Duration: 2 hours.
  • Min. 2 pax required.
  • Indoor activity. No smoking allowed.
  • Includes materials, apron to protect your clothes, a piece made by someone else as a souvenir of this experience and a snack.
  • Recommendations: bring hands cream, comfortable clothes and shoes.

 

Rural tourism in the Calchaquí Valley

In Kallpa we would like to foster rural community tourism; a different, accessible and responsible way to travel, where the traveller finds himself within authentic cultural scenarios that leave a deep trace.


More and more travellers are looking for a different kind of trip, to go beyond only observing and to be able to take part of something, to learn by experimenting on their own. Knowing places, sharing activities, knowledge and lifestyles with rural and native communities is becoming the new way of travelling.

That is why responsible rural tourism has been growing so much in the last years in Argentina, triggered by the cultural exchange and mutual respect between local people and visitors, providing also a local growth and development opportunity.

Since 2011, Salta is the pioneer province in Argentina to embrace the rural community tourism. Twelve local communities from the Calchaquí Valley are involved in a cooperative organization self-managed by low resources families of farmers and artisans, opening their doors to share different activities and experiences with visitors from all around the world.

On their own words, not only they offer regional artisanal products but also community rural tourism services, a real country life experience. “We practice and promote fair trade, a tourism that respects everyone´s culture and that is responsible with our society and friendly with our Mother Earth and the land that we live in”.

The cooperatives proposal main goals are the cultural exchange and the enjoyment of the landscape. To join the communities on their everyday lives and activities, to share the farming and artisan professions, to sit and chat generating an enriching interchange. Their infrastructure is their own family and communal habitat. Homes, roads and places that belong to their communities, families and local scenery, which they gladly share with visitors.

Travellers willing to visit any of these communities and to experience rural tourism in the Calchaquí Valley may expect to take part of daily farming activities, visiting artisans, and cultural and outdoor strolls or rides. They may learn to cook regional dishes and using a mud oven, knowing about local traditions, taking care of a flock of goats, learning about grapevine and artisanal wine making, visiting archaeological sites, trekking among the hills, learning craftworks like pottery or using a loom, sharing a religious festivity, among others. Trekking and horseback riding activities are on short and easy circuits guided by local people. These last almost 3 hs.  

Regional gastronomy is an important character of this experience, specially for the half day activity with lunch. Visitors will be able to taste and also elaborate along the local families typical dishes such as empanadas, locro (meat and vegetable stew), tamales or humitas. Also desserts like anchi (a sugary corn and lemon cream), cayote pies and homemade cheese with sugar cane honey. Wine tasting is also available in certain communities.

Communities involved in the cooperative organization open their doors to visitors willing to experience unforgettable moments shared with ancient cultures in natural and beautiful scenarios. A one in a lifetime experience and a knowledge and lifestyles true interchange.

Contact your Kallpa executive for more information about the communities and to book a half day experience, including an activity and lunch with one of these hardworking communities.


NOTE

  • Available options: Half day experience, including an activity and lunch with local family. Full day experience including overnight at a local family home, full board and activities.
  • Communities are assigned to travellers depending on their availability and the activity that the visitors would like to take part in.
  • It is important to book the experience in advance, so that the community families can be prepared for the visit, and also for the visitor to read the Ethical Code of Conduct that will be provided.