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YAVI

JUJUY

ARGENTINA

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JUJUY

YAVI

Only 16 kilometres east of La Quiaca, on a paved road, the traveller can pay a visit to one of the villages which lovers of this area call a perfect example of a village under Spanish Royal Grant rule, a so called "Encomienda", and the birthplace of many generations of farmer-soldiers who, from here dominated and administered vast territories located on both sides of what today is the Argentinean Bolivian border.

The historic village of Yavi is today but a shade of its former importance with only 339 inhabitants remaining that live in adobe wall houses with typical roofs made out of reed, clay and straw, adequate shelter for the cold Puna highland nights.

Located beside the Río San Francisco River, in a small valley in the midst of the vast, windy and dry highland plateau. However, Yavi is like an oasis in the region. It was founded in the year 1667, when the Spanish Crown gave to the first Marquis of Tojo the lands belonging to this shire.

At 3440 m.a.s.l. the village of Yavi re enacts the suffering on the cross by Christ every Easter. Its church, of simple and harmonious architectural lines was built in 1690 by the family of the Marquis of Campero and the Marquise of Ovando, who represented one of the richest and most important feudal possessions on the South American continent.

Special mention should be made of its artistic altarpieces covered in plate gold, the statues and paintings of the famed Escuela Cuzqueña Cuzco School, as well as the admirable statues of Our Lady of the Rosary - Nuestra Señora del Rosario and of San Francisco. This church, together with the mansion of the Marquis of Tojo, of ample walls and big courtyards made this place into a National Historical Monument.

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JUJUY - ARGENTINA
Jujuy Argentina
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Puna
- Abra Pampa
- Casabindo
- Casira
- Cochinoca
- La Quiaca
- Pozuelos Lake
- Rinconada
- Santa Catalina
- Santa Victoria
- Susques
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- Yavi
The region in which the village of Yavi is located in the northeastern part of the Jujuy Province and corresponds to the Puna highland plateau and thus the climate is dry and cold. The landscape is like a plain with many mountain chains and rivers of no big importance. There is little flora and fauna, although you will find species like cacti, queñoa and churqui, and animals such as foxes, guanacos, vicuñas and vizcachas.

In the area there are still many mineral deposits that are yet not exploited. The archaeological site of Laguna Colorada has yielded a big site of rock carvings and many stone tools belonging to ancient hunters.

ATTRACTIONS
The San Francisco Chapel
The building of this chapel was finished in the year 1690, and today we can admire it as it was at that time, apart from small modifications done over the years. Its architectural lines are of a great simplicity and beauty.

The pulpit, the altars and the altarpieces are covered by gold plate. It contains paintings and notable wood sculptures of, amongst others, San Francisco, John the Baptist - San Juan Bautista, San José, Santa Ana and San Joaquín, which were brought from Cuzco.

According to an old description "it has eleven windows, ten of which measure more than a metre and a half tall and 85 centimetres wide, which, instead of glass panes, use white onyx pieces more than four fingers thick, transparent like crystal, brought at great cost from more than leagues away, and which give a great clarity inside the whole church."

Av. Campero.
Visiting Hours: Every day from 2 PM till 9 PM.

Marquisate of Yavi and Tojo
In 1708, the son in law and successor of Pablo Bernárdez de Ovando, the local landowner, is titled Marquis of the valley of Tojo by the Spanish Crown, a hereditary title of nobility, " in consideration for his services and great quality of nobleness and blood". Thus a line of marquis come into being which gave their name to the family seat, which, conserved and converted into museums today can be visited by the traveller. The last of the line joined the forces of Independence and was captured by the royalists and sent to Jamaica where he eventually passed away.

The mansion of the hacienda, in colonial style, with thick adobe walls and brick and mud roofs, has an interior courtyard with stone floor, around which the 12 rooms are distributed in a ring. Today, a library, a museum and an exhibit of local wares for sale occupy them.

Av. Campero.
Visiting Hours: Mondays through Fridays between 9:00 AM and Noon and from 2:00 Pm till 5:00 PM. Saturdays from 9:00 AM till Noon.

The Terraza Alta Archaeological site
It is an area of granite conglomerate with sand and clay sediments with various quartz deposits in the top layer. It is found at the other side of Yavi, with access through a small footpath. It can be visited throughout the whole year, although in the southern hemisphere summer, rains may make the access more difficult.

The Yavi Chico Archaeological site
The remnants of this complex are made up of dwellings, as well as cultivation and contention terraces. The dwellings seem to have been of a shared type, with communicating and associated rooms.
It is located in the northern part of the Department of Yavi, on the Bolivian border, where the stream of Yavi Chico meets the Yavi River. Only four kilometres from Yavi. It can be reached by a dirt road.

The Cerro Colorado Rock Paintings
Located five kilometres south of Yavi, and at the foot of the Siete Hermanos Mountains, you will find the Laguna Colorada Lake and the most notable rock paintings anywhere in the Puna highlands. They stretch over an area of approximately 300 metres. These invaluable paintings are open to the sky and you can see images done by the primitive inhabitants such as human figures, llamas and spirals, etc. as well as pictures of their activities and customs. It is a totally protected area.

Yavi Chico
Close to the border with Bolivia, nearly 15 kilometres from a place called "El Angosto", you will find Yavi Chico, where there are interesting rock formations with paintings. Here you will find the Museo del Antigal Museum, which holds archaeological pieces that the people living there today have collected and donated to the museum. This idea was born within the community in order to avoid that the archaeologists that visit the Antigal do not steal the pieces found there.

 


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