Bike travel, commuting and more


Argentina XV: Belen-Londres-Shincal


Londres, Catamarca, Argentina

Back on the bikes, back on the Ruta 40

It was good to be back on the bikes! The weather was indeed sunny and not as cold as when we left a month earlier. Our route today was a tricky one. We could either ride just 15 km to Londres, a bit too short, or face the nothingness afterwards for about 75 more km until the next town.

Picking bikes in Belen
Picking the bikes from our hostel owner

We decided to ride to Londres first and then decide. There was no rush and for sure our fitness was not the same after a month sitting in buses.

Alfajores breakfast
Alfajores breakfast!

We had a special birthday breakfast with alfajores, and then got moving. The route was easy and nearly flat. In this area headwinds coming from the south are common, but they usually start after midday or later.

Once in Londres we took a break while the kids played in the playground of the main square. We then met Emmanuel, a guy from La Rioja who delivers pharmacy products along this road. He told us he meets a lot of travelers and likes to help and talk to them. He gave us some juice and biscuits for the kids.

Everyone told us we should visit El Shincal, a former Inca settlement and one of the most southern traces from their civilization. We were undecided, as to get there we had an easy but steady climb for 5 km, but in the end we went for it.

El Shincal
Meeting Andrea at El Shincal

Glad that we did. The ruins were nice even if nothing special. But we met there Nico, an Argentinian from Buenos Aires we had met earlier in the hostel in Belen. And we also met Andrea, a Colombian cycletourist going in our same direction.

Sun pyramid in El Shincal
On top of the sun pyramid, the other in the background

Shincal has two small hills working as pyramids for sun and moon, plus the remains of many buildings of what seemed to be just a farmer village. Our kids made friends with the son of some other tourists so they enjoyed the visit too.

Camping in El Shincal
Kids had no problems to go from one month of hotels back to camping

In the end, we managed to camp with Andrea behind the cafeteria by the ruins so we didn’t have to go back to Londres. There, we enjoyed some empanadas and wine to finish my birthday celebrations.

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1 Comment

  1. Katherine

    Empanadas y alfajores…..manjares de los dioses!! Asi yo tambien quisiera celebrar mi cumple 🙂 :p

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