Aconcagua Mountain

Aconcagua Mountain

Photo by Sergio Schmiegelow (WIkimedia Commons)

Fantastic Roadtrips on Your Campervan Holiday

Photo by Gerard Prins (Wikimedia Commons)Tupungato Volcano Photo by Gerard Prins (Wikimedia Commons)

Visitors with motorhome rental or campervan hire vehicles to the Argentina will have the time of their lives on these two well-known routes.
Ruta 40

Ruta 40 is the Argentinean equivalent of Route 66, but it’s just a bit different.  This is definitely the open road, for one thing it’s very straight (in places), and quite some time can go by without you seeing another vehicle.  Its 5,028 Km of potholes, meandering bends, and fantastic scenery which links the high plains on the Bolivian border near la Quiaca to the Straits of Magellan in the south.  Much of the road is paved, especially in the province of Cuvo, but the more northerly sections can be a little…exciting.  The most beautiful section of the route is between El Calafate and Perito Moreno.

The scenery is incredible, to one side you have mountains and to the other beautiful lakes.  The route is through the third largest desert in the world, but there are still signs of life, unlike the Sahara and the Gobi.  A few animals have adapted to life here so on your travels expect to see armadillos, ostrich, and skunks, as well as the condors hovering overhead.  A word of warning: make sure you fill up with fuel and have plenty of provisions for the trip, and if you see somewhere to stop, stop, because you may not see anywhere else for hours!  

When you pass the Hotel La Leona, which looks like a ranch, stop here for one of their empanada, or stuffed pastries and a strong coffee, whilst you’re waiting take a look at the black and white pictures on the walls.  One of these is of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid who stopped here after robbing a bank, now that’s a different story to tell!

Back on the road with Route 68

Start at Salta and drive the 190 Km, on good roads to Cafayate.  If you’re interested in geology, stop at Quebrada de Cafayate with its incredible rock formations.  The bright red mountainous area is surrounded by cacti, just like a set from a western, walk into Garganta Del Diablo or the ‘Devils Throat’.  When you arrive in Cafayate find yourself somewhere for the night and then visit a bodega for some wine tasting.  When you’ve discovered all there is to see in Cafayate hit the road for Cachi.

The road to Cachi is gravel most of the way, with a few paved areas just for the fun of it.  You won’t notice the bumps because the scenery is jaw dropping, you will pass through small villages where you will see men on horseback rounding up their livestock.  When you reach Cachi take time to explore the small but very pretty town with its colonial buildings, the views of the mountains are wonderful.  Now its time, to head back to Salta, you can either go back the way you came, or if you like adventure take the road which takes you through La Cuesta del Obispo, with its craggy rocks, and then out onto the open for a wonderful panorama.

It’s difficult to tell whether these trips should appear here, or in off the beaten track, but whether you choose these suggestions, or prefer something a little less demanding, a motorhome rental or campervan hire in this part of the country is the best way of seeing the ‘real’ Argentina.

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