The road north from here is 189 km to Salta is amazing on the RN 68.
It looks a lot like Utah with the red rocks.
We saw 4 tour busses pulled over on the side of the road so we checked it out. It was a very cool ancient waterfall from a now dry lake that created an amphitheatre.
It was so nice arriving in town to be greeted by Clive (my motorcycle overlander concierge). He had rented us a great fully set up apartment with underground secure parking and with a view of the cathedral for 22$. He also of course had wine, vodka, and food for us.
The evening we went on a walk of the area and to see the Cathedral.
Dan made friends with an empanada in the square.
We decided to do a day trip to the isolated mountain town of Cachi, since we had missed it on the way up to Salta. This is an awesome 159 km one -way ride that Google says takes 5 ½ hours, but Dan did it in 2 ½. He says this is in the top 5 roads of the trip so far.
From Salta you backtrack on the 68 about 30km on the pavement to the turn off.
The rest of the way is paved except a few small patches and about 30 km on the switchbacks up the mountain, but on very good gravel. You ride along the river on the valley floor to the end of the valley and then up.. up.. up to 3700m on the switchbacks.
The view from the end of the valley as we head up the mountainside.
The last 80 km is across the high plateau with stunning views.
The town itself is a tourist enclave, with shops restaurants’, and wineries. We stopped for lunch at the famous Oliver wine bar.
The locals grow a lot of peppers and dry them in the sun.