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Valle de Punilla

October 14, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

Using our pink cabana as a base we head up the Punilla Valley (Lake District meets Blackpool) in search of notable places/events to make us feel like we are getting to know the place. Like the wild animals, these highlights seem pretty sparse.




our simple but homely cabana's

view from the bedroom - it was very local!

After many miles, and numerous aborted stops, we drive up a dusty track to what purports to be something pretty special – Los Terrones. The guide book describes the area: “the weird and wonderful shapes makes it easy to see why this is Argentina’s favourite UFO sighting spot”. This is a little far fetched, and frankly, the Roaches (an escarpment in the Peaks) is just as dramatic. However, the Peaks cannot compare on the sheer number of things that can kill you.

most of the driving is pretty isolated in this massive country

we drove for quite a few hours to see these rocks

Apart from the Coral Snakes, Rattlesnakes and deadly spiders, wild Puma still hunt in these hills. We were only allowed in with enclosed shoes (snake protection) and with a guide. Speaking little English, most communication was done through rubbing leaves and a form of charades, acting out the benefits and cures for various ailments; lungs, stomach, liver (took a while to guess) and others we did not guess, until we got to one plant that we started rubbing sniffing and generally getting close to, eventually decoding his gestures into “eat that leaf and you are dead in 24 hours”. With strict instructions to the children not to lick fingers or pick noses, we continued, thoroughly enjoyed the walk and returned  to the car for some serious anti-bacterial wipes!

we could not work it out, but it was some sort of hanging crystal

Categories: Argentina Tags: , , ,
  1. niall wright
    October 20, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    Hi Alan – your cabanas look luxurious compared to our accomodation in Valdez. Not sure if you are planning to head that direction but the wildlife is extraodinary. Whale watching from boats at Puerta Pirimedes was just wonderful with 20+ whales seen many of which came right up to the boat. Make sure you also go to the beach at El Dorillo (sp?) where the whales are just 10m from the beach and you can sit and watch them role around in the water and play togehter while having a picnic. The drive around the Peninsula is exhausting and probably not worth doing with small kids. Punta Tomba is worth driving to though with 100,000 Magellin Penguins strolling around. We are down in El Calefate now with for a day at the Glaciers – its seriously cold down here and but El Calefate is a wonderful isolated town almost like an old fashioned frontier town from the wild west. Enjoy your travels. Niall

    • October 21, 2011 at 7:24 pm

      WOW sounds really amazing, I know what you mean about the towns, I think most of the towns have a sort of frontierland feel outside the big cities. I think we are not going to manage to get to the south this time, partly because we have virtually no warm clothes (one backpack for 5 people!), partly because of the cost of flights, and finally I dont fancy carrying a 2 year old on my back the whole time.

      We have promised ourselves that we will go when the kids are older, and your experiences sounds like it is unmissable.

      We are currently in the north, up north of Salta near the Bolivian border. The place is amazing too. Today we drove over to Salinas Grandes, the vast salt water flats. The drive up was over 13,000 feet and the scenery was out of this world, if a bit challenging for the kids. The air is pretty thin and the kids occasionally struggle with the altitude. Over the next few days we are driving around the moutains and then slowly heading to Mendoza to catch the bus over the Andes.

      I know your schedule is probably chocka, but Salta is a really great city and the landscape around here is worth seeing if you can fit it in. Are you keeping some kind of blog? It would be great to see the whale watching to whet the appetite.

      Take care, have a fantastic trip and enjoy teh waterfalls!

      All the best,


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