NW Argentina, LOVE IT!!
"San Miguel, whree my friend Carlos lives"
What a great city. My friend Carlos ( foriegn exchange student who lived with my family in the early 80's) lives there with his family. they took me in like a family member. We stayed with Carlos in his house in Yerba Buena. Several things that were noticable compared to Buenas Aries,..much more poverty, WARMER,,..and nice people. We spent most of our time (7 days) outside of the city int he mountains, but the restaurants were good and very affordable with the exchange rate. I paid for a dinner that included 6 adults, 3 children, several bottles of wine, full steak meals and dessert,...$35-40 american! The city is in the state of Tuceman, which is the "Garden State" of Argentina. It is on the foothills of the andes, of which we went up to several times. Our trip included Horseback riding, hang gliding, fishing and family fun.
"Tour through the mountains, Raco and San Javier"
We took a run up the mountains and discovered a "Cooler" locatin as well as what the mountains are really like. it was very vegitative on the San Miguel side and as we went further into the mountains, became more arid. But, Raco and San Javier where beautiful. We ate at a restaurant that was called "Nothing to do" and the steak was outstanding,..but the best was the tapenade or whatever it was that you spread on the bred,...OUTSTANDING!!!! It was made with eggplant I think. The views of "Cristo" (Jesus statue) and of the city of San Miguel were incrediable.
"Day trip to Valle de Taffi y Valle de Cafeyete"
We spent one day traveling to to the Valle de Taffi and than up to the ruins of Quilmess and the city to the NE of there. I had never thought that Sagaro Cactus were found anywhere but the SW of the US and NW Mexico. But there it was. It is a very arid and beautiful county with vineyards here and there. In fact Cafeyete is an area that where people with extreme illness and allergies go to, the valley gets so little rain and the clouds literaly go around this valley. we visited in Valle de Tafi and got a chunk of proscuitto, bread and wine ($8 american total!) and proceded to a vista above the city. The trip through the pass was breathtaking, especially when crossing over the summit. we stopped at a Etchart vineyard (Great Malbec) and an Inca museum, we saw the ruins of Quilmes (last stronghold of the incas) and just plain took in the vistas and little communities that we stopped in.