Tilcara, Argentina


Route Salta, Argentina – Tilcara, Argentina (RN9)
Distance 175Km
Travel Time 3 hours (1.5 hour detour in S.S.d.Jujuy)
Road Conditions Good Tarmac, In repair near Tilcara
Weather Sunny, Cold
Terrain Mountainous
Food and Petrol Salta, Jujuy, Tilcara
Accommodation Club Hostal, Tilcara

A good leaving breakfast at a Salta cafe and we’re ready to go.


The ride to Tilcara is uphill on a good tar road, but just before Tilcara the road’s being repaired and for a few kilometres it’s grooved as hell.


We actually intended to stay in San Salvador de Jujuy but after driving around there for an hour trying to find a hostel we decided the place had even less to offer than Salta, and moved on. As we approach Tilcara the mountains about us become very colourful and we have to stop to take lots of pictures.



Comfortable, clean accommodation in Tilcara we find at at Club Hostal, 60/pp/n dorm + breakfast. And as an added bonus we have the whole dorm to ourselves – courtesy of the administrations’ favourable organizing skills. The bathrooms are shared but large and clean. And there’s a small common kitchen and a TV room. Outside there is a pool, a sitting area and a BBQ, which we unbelievably don’t make use of.

One night we meet a local petrol station manager called Carlos, a cooking enthusiast. He’s a friend of the hostel owners and comes around when he’s in town. He introduces us to Lama fillet. Watching him prepare the dish with his home made stock and native potatoes and other vegetables is an experience.




And the Lama steak? Wow! We’ve not had a more tender and tasty steak to date! Seriously, even softer than the succulent beef Down Under!


We spend a couple of days exploring the surrounding area by motorbike and we view some beautiful mountain scenery and waterfalls.




The bike has started to make a strange noise, just a bit. I don’t know what it is, sounds like it may be the exhaust manifold coming loose… but I check that (the hostel owner lets me borrow his ratchet) and it doesn’t seem to be the case. Must be the altitude. We’ve climbed to around 3000m here – could be altitude.