Skip is the biggest city to be situated in the northwest of Argentina. It has a population of half a million people, and much of its importance is due to the railwas as it controls its geographical location and links it with Bolivia and northern Chile. It is an important agricultural region, with corn, snuff, cereals, sugarcane and soybeans, from Salta and these goods are exported worldwide. It features some beautiful municipal gardens, and many colonial buildings which are a well preserved valuable addition to the cathedral basilica and the arcaded main square, which is a perfect place to enjoy a coffee on the terrace while catching up on the news by reading the Sunday morning newspaper.
Situated just a few meters away from the Cathedral, the Basilica and Convent of San Francisco, was declared a National Historic Landmark. It is without a doubt the most striking and beautiful temple to be found in the city of Salta. Its origin dates back to the year 1582, although the weakness of the first building and a terrible fire in the middle of the 18th Century meant that the church has been re-build or reformed several times. The present church, a striking neoclassical style, is from the eighteenth century and displays influences (especially in the domes) of the Spanish cathedrals of Zamora and Salamanca.
This is Salta's central square, surrounded by historic buildings with beautiful pastel colours. A highlight is the controversial Archaeological Museum, showing Incan objects that have been found throughout the Andes - but in fact, its most famous pieces are the mummified remains of three Incan girls sacrificed and buried alive in the top of a nearby volcano. In any case, the square is really a nice place to stroll under the trees when the heat is too high.
On top of a hill from where you can see the whole city, you get to San Bernardo hill by a winding, picturesque road, covered with flowers of various colours, yellow pansies, violets, pink and white, on very well kept lawns, and among those who are mixed bright and colorful lilies and petunias. This trail follows a Via Crucis and after traveling 10 kms on foot or in a vehicle you reach the top. It is 1454 ms above sea level and 269 meters from the city of Salta. There we found a Christ Redeemer and a crucifix, and the excellent view from the lookout point where you see not only the city, but also a good part of the Valle de Lerma. You can get to the top in the modern cable car that leaves from San Martin Park. A walk to recommend.
Across the square of July 9, and steps from the Cathedral and Church of San Francisco, this lovely building, symbol of the city of Salta, is the best preserved of Argentina. Constructed in the year 1780 in a colonial style, the building remains unchanged. Today, you there are two interesting museums: the Museo Histórico del Norte, and the Colonial Museum and Fine Arts. The schedule to visit the Cabildo are Tuesday to Sunday from 9.30 am to 13.30 pm and from Tuesday to Friday from 15.30 to 20.30 . Saturdays it is open from 16.30 to 20.30 hs.
The MAAM (Montaña Alta Archaeological Museum) is located in downtown Salta, near the Plaza 9 de Julio. Even if you're not a museum-lover, it's worth a trip because it's quite small and quick to get around. It allows visitors to understand what life was like in the old villages. The museum is best known for the three mummies of children, children of Llullaillaco, discovered in 1999, on the slopes of a volcano of over 6,000 m. The peculiarity of these mummies dating from the fifteenth century, is that they are so well-preserved. Inca children were allegedly killed in a human sacrifice, as offerings to the gods, but they look very peaceful, as if they're resting. Museum open Tuesday to Sunday - 9h-13h and 16h-21h
The Cloud Train leaving from the city´s train station in Salta to the Viaduct of Polvorilla takes you on a tour of an impressive work of 20th Century engineering achievement. The adrenaline and excitement are the sensations and feelings that it evokes in you. I advise that you do not eat anything before you leave, you have water handy and just ask coca tea or chewing coca because of the low air pressure and the low levels of oxygen. The train was perfectly equipped for it, with an great heating system, although these days in Salta we didn´t need a coat because it was very hot, we wore short-sleeved shirts, but when you go up to San Antonio, the temperature drops abruptly, there are places where you see the ice and the highest peaks snow-capped. The trip is very long but entertaining. You stop for landscapes and photos at each stop. Getting to San Antonio of the Coppers was quite a party and I felt a great feeling when we were so close to heaven and that immensity became our flag and we sang the national anthem. The train departs every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday at 7:05 pm. From Salta, and returns at 10.15 pm.
The Convento de San Bernardo is the oldest religious building in Salta, dating back to the late sixteenth or early seventeenth century. It's located on Calle Caseros and was built in honor of San Bernardo Abad, one of the patrons of the city. Its carved door (dating to 1762) is a real jewel of colonial art. It is not open to to the public as a Carmelite monastery has lived here since the mid-nineteenth century. It was declared a National Historical Monument in 1941
You have to be there to understand it correctly. Who was Guemes? Why does a town love him even though many years have passed by? Who were and are the gauchos? This is where we begin to understand this lovely history of love and fidelity ... Read more: http://bit.ly/M9ZSKS
A charming city, full of both tranquility and life ... calmer than any other I saw in Latin America. The best part has to be the parks, and my particular favourite was the San Martin Park. It was dedicated to the memory of the Argentines who died fighting for independence. A wonderful place to go to relax.
Over the years, tourism in Salta has grown by leaps and bounds with international visitors coming to enjoy all the great cultural and natural attractions in Salta and its surrounding area.
A visit to the Calchaqui Valleys should top your list of things to see in Salta. These beautiful valleys are located a short drive outside the city and are perfect for hiking and exploring. The mountains and caves of the Calchaqui Valleys also hide one of the most important Salta attractions: a series of ancient cave paintings and petroglyphs.
For foodies, one of the best Salta activities is the Torrontés wine route where you can discover the historic wineries which produce this sweet, fruity wine. Another of the best things to do in Salta is to buy a ticket on the "Tren a las Nubes" (Train to the Clouds) which takes you on an exciting journey through tunnels and aqueducts over 4000 meters high!
Obviously, there's tons of stuff to do in Salta and its beautiful natural surrounding, but don't forget that one of the most rewarding things to do during your trip is to simply explore the city and enjoy it's tranquil square and historic churches! For more ideas on what to do in Salta, check out all these tips and reviews from real travelers and discover all the best places to visit in Salta.