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Lihué Calel National Park

La Pampa

Lying in the heart of La Pampa, this national park invites you to explore the hill ranges of Lihué Calel (of volcanic origin), discover cave paintings and follow the Chenque trail, travelling back in time through the vestiges of the native peoples that inhabited this area.

It can be visited all year round. Admission is free.

What to see
Visitors’ Centre and Cerro de la Sociedad Científica

The Likan Mapu Interpretation Centre is housed in a stone building that dates back to 1890. Through maps and posters, it allows visitors to learn about the nature and history of the region. 

The Visitors’ Centre is the starting point to the Valle de Namuncurá trail (300 metres long, low difficulty), which leads up the top of Cerro de la Sociedad Científica, 590 metres above sea level. Offering breathtaking panoramic views, this is the highest point in the park. To get there requires a 2-hour return hike (medium difficulty).

Cave paintings  

One of the trails leads to a rock shelter in Valle de las Pinturas (Valley of the Paintings), where you can see geometric cave paintings and red and black symbols. According to scientific studies, they date back to about 1300 years. 

Along the way, you can see the stone and sun-dried brick ruins of the homestead of Santa María estate of Lihué Calel.

Piedra Movediza

Piedra Movediza (15.4 km long, 2 hours return) is a medium-difficulty trail that leads to an elevated area in the main hill range. You can only go there with an authorized guide.

How to get there and move around

The park is 230 km away from Santa Rosa, 121 km from General Acha and 35 km from Puelches. The best option is to go there by car (as the distances to be travelled are long, it is convenient to refuel in General Acha or in Puelches). Excursions can also be hired. 

Where to stay

Lihué Calel has a campsite and a caravan area with bathrooms, showers and recreational areas. To stay the night, it is necessary to book in advance (for more information, check the park’s social media). No drinking water so carry enough water with you. General Acha and Puelches offer some accommodation options.

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