San Lorenzo, gateway to the rainforest
When arriving in San Lorenzo (or La Villa San Lorenzo as its official name is) from Salta city or the airport the scenery changes dramatically from a rather flat valley into a lush green area with lots of trees and flowers.
San Lorenzo calls itself “El Portal de las Yungas”.
The center of San Lorenzo has a small shopping area with a supermarket, an ATM, a petrol station, a pizzeria and Restaurant La Monumental. San Lorenzo offers quite a number of accommodations and really is an excellent alternative for staying nearby Salta.
San Lorenzo is situated at the eastern slopes of the Andes at 1.450 meters above sea level. Especially during summer it has a much nicer temperature than the heat of Salta. I think it is a real nice destination for a (half) day trip.
We stayed in San Lorenzo and loved it walking around along the leafy roads lined with trees covered by moss and creepers forming tunnels of green leaves. (Perhaps the most beautiful example is the road Mariano Moreno starting from the main road next to Restaurant la Monumental). We continued our walk along Juan C. Davalos which has some restaurants, tea rooms and a very nice gift shop to the Quebrada de San Lorenzo. Every now and then we passed ‘wild horses’ grazing in the verges.
This gorge (Quebrada) is the most - more or less only - real sight of San Lorenzo. After a coffee at a café/restaurant El Duende de la Quebrada we walked along the wild flowing stream of this gorge, with some horses grazing on a small island, which were walking in and out the water.
We intended to do the loop walk in the reserve, but unfortunately it was closed and we had to go back for 2 km’s to the center of town, passing lots of large villas surrounded by nice gardens.