Last Updated on April 5, 2014 by Daniel Noll
Some places are best suited to road trips. They speak: move at your own pace, get lost, stop off in small towns, have the flexibility to enjoy whatever experiences might come your way.
The area around Salta and Jujuy in northwest Argentina is one such chunk of perfect road trip territory. Listen and watch the audio slideshow below to find out why.
Audio Slideshow: Road Trip in Northwest Argentina
A special shout out goes to Jason and Aracely. We set off renting a car with them for three days. In the end, our trip lasted seven days, a reflection of both the quality of their company and some rather stunning scenery and culture.
Road Trip Itinerary: Salta – Cachi – Las Arcas – Cafayate – Quilmes – Cafayate – Campo Quijano – La Polvorilla Viaduct – San Antonio de los Cobres – Salinas Grandes – Purmamarca – Humahuaca – Tilcara – Jujuy – Salta
Practical Details for Planning a Road Trip Around Salta
- Renting a Car in Salta: Buenos Aires Street in Salta is chock full of rental car companies. Just take a walk down the street and pop your head into different shops to get a feel for prices and vehicles available. Negotiation is perfectly acceptable. If you are more than two people, we recommend getting a four-door car. We paid around 200 pesos ($55) per day for a four-door sedan. The tourist office will give you a list of “recommended” rental car companies and maps of the region to help you get started.
- Accommodation: We made absolutely no hotel reservations prior to hitting the road. We either stopped at the tourist offices for lists of accommodation options or asked people on the street for places to stay. Don't expect a lot of luxury. We stayed in simple guest houses and hostels that cost around 80-140 pesos ($20-$35) for a double room (usually including breakfast). Higher-end places (above our budget) are also available.
- Food: Local food (locro, empanadas, asado) is pretty tasty and relatively inexpensive throughout the region. Wine, both in shops and restaurants, is also plentiful and inexpensive. Dining options between towns are slim, so consider packing sandwiches or stocking up on empanadas before you take off for another long stretch of road.