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Calchaquíes Valleys in Tucumán


West of San Miguel de Tucumán, Provincial Route 307 connects the Yunga forest with the Calchquíes Valleys and National Route 40. Villages such as Tafí del Valle, Amaicha del Valle, El Mollar or Colalao del Valle are the basis of the region, a magnet for adventure, trekking and the discovery of protected natural areas. 

Open to visit all year round. From December to March, the weather in the gorges area is hot, and from May to September it may get very cold in areas above 3,000 m.a.s.l.

What to see
Scenic Provincial Route 307

It begins 50 km away from Tucumán capital city and it is an attraction in itself. The first part is a winding road along the gorge in Los Sosa Reserve, a portion of intense and overwhelming Yunga forest with viewpoints and stops to enjoy the landscape. After Tafí del Valle, the road reaches over 3,000 m.a.s.l. in Abra del Infiernillo, from where it crosses to the Calchaquíes Valleys. It is an ideal destination for bird-watchers.


Tafí del Valle

It is the best-known city in the area and stands out for its nice weather. It is ideal to stay and then travel to places like La Quebradita or traditional estates, where visitors can stay and learn about the manufacturing process of regional products.

There is also the Artisans Route, Vuelta al Valle (from where you can watch El Pelao hill and the slopes of the Muñoz hills with Los Alisos, Ñuñorco and Mala Mala cascades) and La Angostura dam (where you can practise kayaking and canoeing).


Between Amaicha and Tafi del Valle you can visit the Ruta del Artesano, a circuit to discover fabrics, yarns, ceramics and jewelry from the area's ancestral cultures. Throughout this walk you can enjoy the landscapes of the Calchaquíes valleys, with their characteristic cardones and carob trees. It is an opportunity to visit homes and artisan workshops and share their stories and knowledge with the local culture.
Useful information: the circuit is marked with a signage system that allows you to reach the workshops, which are on dirt roads. The visit to the workshops is free and it is recommended to bring cash to contribute through the purchase to the family economy.

Walking tours

There are several walking tours in Tafí del Valle, such as the tours that reach Los Alisos cascade or El Pelao hill. 

For those seeking adventure, Sendero de Largo Recorrido, which links the gorges of the Calchaquíes Valleys with the Yungas, is a must-see. This is a 5-day trekking tour (with a mountain guide) that crosses Sierra San Javier and ends in Yerba Buena. 


Cumbres Calchaquíes Provincial Park

Located in Abra del Infiernillo, 22 km away from Tafí del Valle, it comprises several peaks that exceed 3,000 metres. You can take a physically demanding walking tour of the summits, and the most visited sector is Negrito hill and the high Huaca Huasi lagoons. There are numerous Andean-Puna and mountain scrub bird species, several of which are endangered and endemic.


Amaicha del Valle

Located 164 km away from San Miguel de Tucumán and 54 km away from Tafí del Valle. It is part of the Artisans Route and the starting point of tours to Tiu Punco desert (a petrified forest with native fauna). You can also visit Los Zazos dam, the Amaicha river and the Remate cascades. 


Astronomic tourism

Ampimpa lies 10 km away from Amaicha del Valle; around 100 families, descendants of diaguitas-calchaquíes indigenous peoples, live there. There is an astronomical observatory that welcomes guided tours.


Ciudad Sagrada de Quilmes

Along National Route 40, 17 km away from Amaicha del Valle is the impressive Ciudad Sagrada de Quilmes. Nearly 2,000 metres high, it is one of the most important pre-Hispanic settlements of the Calchaquíes peoples.

How to get there and move around

You can access the Calchaquíes Valleys in Tucumán through Provincial Route 307, from San Miguel de Tucumán, National Route 40 from Cafayate (Salta) or from the valley of Santa María (Catamarca).

Public transport is available and connects San Miguel de Tucumán with El Mollar, Tafí del Valle, Amaicha del Valle and Colalao del Valle. 

You will need to book a tour or get a vehicle to move around the villages and access the attractions.

Where to stay

The villages in the area offer accommodation in hotels, cabins and camping sites. Tafí del Valle is the main tourist centre but lodging and services can also be found in Amaicha del Valle, Santa María and Colalao del Valle.

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