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VALLEYS CIRCUIT

SALTA

ARGENTINA

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SALTA

VALLEYS CIRCUIT

With a 200 kilometres length and covering an extension of a little over 17000 square kilometres, the Valle Calchaquí Valley is in the west area of the Province of Salta. It forms a fringe running from north to south along the homonymous river, at the foot of the sub-Andean sierras, and constitutes the so-called puna (highlands) border.

If travellers choose to undertake this circuit, they should know that the valley has a 70 kilometres average width, and does not keep the same north-south steepness along all of its course. From 3000 meters high (La Poma), it descends down to 1600 at Cafayate, which stands beside the Valle de Santa María Valley, in the Catamarca zone.

The Calchaquí valleys are as a geographical unit characterized by the geological depression, which extends through the Salta, Catamarca and Tucumán Provinces. The circuit includes the La Poma, Cachi, Molinos, San Carlos and Cafayate Departments as well.

Numerous rivers of variable flows feed the Río Calchaquí River. They are tributaries that form small transversal valleys throughout its course; among them are the Angastaco, Amaicha, Luracatao, Brealitos, Cachi, Palermo, Salado, and the Peñas Blancas, etc.

Crystalline streams are also frequent in this valley, meandering down from the western hills to add up to the Calchaquí's flow, which joins the Santa María River south of Cafayate to continue through the Guachipas Gorge or Las Conchas, from which point it takes this name to end up flowing into the General Belgrano's dam (Cabra Corral), in the Pasaje or Juramento River. And then, after a 3000-kilometre journey, it finally arrives in the Atlantic Ocean.

The weather at the Valles Calchaquíes Valleys is that of a semi-deserted zone, with a high solar radiation index and scarce rains (200 to 400 mm a year), with snow precipitations at the higher summits. Temperatures are differentiated according to the altitude and the latitude, and usually oscillate between 20 and 25º C, with maximums of 35º C during the southern hemisphere's summer and minimums of 5º C for the south; these measurements are lower towards the north of the valley.

SPANISH VERSION
SALTA - ARGENTINA
Salta Argentina
Salta Pictures
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Subdestinations in Salta
* Northeast Circuit
* West Andean
Circuit

* Southeast Circuit
* Valleys Circuit
- Angastaco
- Animana
- Cachi
- Cafayate
- Chicoana
- Coronel Moldes
- Dique de
Cabra Corral

- La Poma
- Brealitos Lake
- Molinos
- Los Cardones
National Park

- San Carlos
- Seclantas
The temperature contrast between days and nights, offers the valley the privileged and profound luminosity of its sky and the clarity of its atmosphere. This fresh and healthy environment is rich in ultraviolet irradiations?. The winds are dry and intense, predominantly coming from the west or northwest, and the moisture evaporating from the Calchaquí River only interrupts the dryness of the ambiance.

Travellers can start the circuit from the City of Salta, going south through the Ruta Nacional Nº 68 National Route that runs across diverse towns of the Valle de Lerma Valley, to finally arrive at the Cabra Corral dam.

Further ahead, the Las Conchas Gorge unfolds a series of clay-coloured and capricious geological formations. This road leads to Cafayate, the main town in the valleys.

Going through the Ruta Nº 40, the journey continues across the towns of Animaná, San Carlos, Angastaco, Molinos and Seclantás, before getting to Cachi.

The circuit is completed when taking the Ruta Nº 33, that crosses the Cuesta del Obispo (Bishop's Slope) and the Escoipe Gorge, where travellers can find landscapes of imposing beauty.

At El Carril, travellers take the Ruta Nº 68 to return to the City of Salta. This traditional circuit, located in the middle of the Province of Salta, offers multiple attractions so much for its different sceneries as for the architecture of its towns.

It is a beautiful sierra region with incredible natural attractions, that displays amid its fertile and warm valleys, an unmatchable sequence of nature, customs and history.

 


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