Bike travel, commuting and more


Argentina III: Tres Cruces-Humahuaca-Tilcara

Playing with Franco

Playing with Franco in Tres Cruces

World-Heritage Quebrada de Humahuaca

Today would be an easy one. We were leaving behind the altiplano, and losing altitude towards Humahuaca, which meant a mostly downhill day.

Leaving Tres Cruces
Leaving Tres Cruces

On the way we would pass the Quebrada de Humahuaca, a long valley famous for its colored mountains, due to the many different minerals that it contains.

Frozen waterfall
Frozen waterfall on the way, with magical powers we’ve been told

As we cycled along we would visit Humahuaca and Tilcara, two very touristic villages full of people that come to visit the Quebrada and the nearby “mountain of 7 colours” in Purmamarca.

Beginning of Quebrada de Humahuaca
Start of the Quebrada de Humahuaca, colored mountains in the background

The start of the day was easy, with little traffic and slightly going downhill. We would be cycling parallel to the old rail line, which made us sad as it would be a very scenic itinerary to make by train.

El Hornocal, Humahuaca
Hornocal, the coloured mountains

We have later been told they are going to restore and reopen the route, which should not be extremely expensive to do as most of the heavy infrastructure like bridges and tunnels are still there.

Cycling in Humahuaca
In Humahuaca

In Humahuaca we got a first taste of tourist prices, after the cheap living in Bolivia and first kilometers in Argentina. We were also treated like rock stars, everyone stopping us, taking pictures, and commenting on how brave we were traveling with kids.

Colorful mountains in the Quebrada de Humahuaca
More colorful mountains in the Quebrada

After a short stage next day we reached Tilcara, even more touristic, and therefore even pricier, but we managed to get a decent deal in a hostel since we are still in low season.

Craft shop in Humahuaca
Massive crafts shop on the way to Tilcara

The main attraction is the Pukará, an old tower to watch strangers and also hide in case of invasion. I was unlucky that, the day I wanted to visit, a Monday, it was closed.

Tropic of Capricorn
We crossed the Tropic of Capricorn on our way

Nearby is Purmamarca, a place famous all around Argentina because it hosts the “mountain of the 7 colours”, a very beautiful hill just by the village. Since it needed a climb and was not on our way, we decided to visit it with a bus from Tilcara.

7 Color mountain
The 7 color mountain is to the right

The place is very nice, and there are many other mountains nearby on very bright colors that contrast with the surrounding brown landscape.

Beautiful colors in Purmamarca
This was more beautiful but less crowded

We didn’t stay long as we had to take the bus back, so we avoided the many souvenir shops and expensive restaurants.

Central Square in Purmamarca
Central Square in Purmamarca

In the next days we will continue going downhill on our way to Jujuy, our first province capital in Argentina.

Family portrait in Purmamarca

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1 Comment

  1. Katherine

    Como siempre….Las postales familiares son una pasada. Que vengan mas!

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