Taking it slow in Tilcara

Trip Start Oct 16, 2008
Trip End Apr 16, 2009

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Where I stayed
Hostel Malka

Flag of Argentina  , Northern Argentina,
Sunday, November 30, 2008

Tilcara, in Jujuy province, is a very nice town in the north of Argentina.  Its in a beautiful valley surrounded by soaring multi-coloured peaks, their shape resembling the Rockies but in every other way completely different (there are no cacti in the Rockies!).  The town has a nice quiet rhythm, full of mud-brick houses, a very lively crafts market, some pre-Inca ruins (the pukara) and not a lot else.  We have been taking it very easy after a full-on week in Salta Province.  We arrived here on Thursday and are still here today, Sunday.  The hostel we are staying in is fantastic, we have our own little cottage of sorts made out of stone and adobe with a stone patio, lots of comfy furniture and a hammock, full use of a kitchen next door, and we are pretty much the only people around.  The place is very quiet and we are woken each morning by the sound of the roosters crowing across the valley.  The grounds are lovingly landscaped and include some great eucalyptus trees and plenty of shade, birds are always chirping, and we have even seen a couple of thunderstorms (the first rain for the season actually arrived with us on Thursday).  Breakfast is on site with great coffee and views of the mountains.  Blair and I have read a book each and he has done his fair share of sleeping.  Patrick has been playing with the dogs that live on the property, giving them all rhyming names of course, and he has enjoyed being in one spot for a while.  Blair is trying to shake a bout of bad belly, so Patrick and I went out on a date together last night, we had a nice dinner in a local restaurant with live Andean music - he just loves the panpipes.

We are set to head to the border tomorrow and spend two days there getting used to being 4000m above sea level.  We will cross into Bolivia on Wednesday and take a train to Uyuni in the Altiplano.  Im not too sure about chewing coca leaves for the altitude but Ill try anything once I suppose.  It will be hard to leave here, but we are so relaxed and rejuvenated after spending four days doing virtually nothing that we ready to take on the next phase of the adventure .... the largest and highest salt flat in the world!
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