Salta and Argentina – Part 4 of 5

6) A short stay in Salta, North Argentina – 12 to 16 hours on a public bus (with toilets on board) from Chile to Salta. The border crossing check routine roughly takes from 2 to 4 hours, depending on how many people are there and how fast border officials work.

The border – Be careful what food you buy when you are at a border crossing, where it can be very strict on what kind of things are brought into a country (when I arrived in Chile, all of our bags went through a scanner). No vegetables, fruit or animal products that are not processed – even cheese. Nuts, cookies and crisps are fine. So, eat before the border. We crossed the Andes mountain range, where the scenery is of course, beautiful, winding and high and it was our last day at high altitude.

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Food –  There are not so many restaurants for vegetarians that I could find, but for fish eaters trouts is a worthy option, if a little on the expensive side. Breakfasts are limited, many people choosing toast and marmalade, but far more popular locally are media lunas, a golden, flaky biscuit similar to a croissant but covered with a sweet, sticky glaze. We loved the ice cream shop Dipsydo’s, in the main square. 

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Poor head and tail but it tasted nice.

2016-03-23 16.42.15Activities –I have listed some optional activities. With only a day and a half, we decided to tour the city by foot and take a cable car to check out the city from above.

  1. Full Day Cafayate Gorge – a wine tasting tour, the drive is 4 hours. 
  2. Horseback riding with barbecue included. The horseback ride is about 2.30 hours followed by a real Argentinian BBQ, the price is the same for vegetarians.
  3. Rafting with barbecue included – (more river floating than rafting). 

Buildings – There are churches amidst orange and red buildings. We appreciating the colonial architecture that the town has preserved with buildings dating back to the 16th century. It is bit further right on the main square so don’t miss it!

Iglesia San Francisco’s church and tower stands 177’ high and has history since 1625. It has been rebuilt several times to retain its impressive aesthetic form and bold contrasting colors of Italian-influenced architecture.

Iglesia Nuestra Senora de La Candelaria de La Vina church – another colorful church south of the main square.

Inca Mummies small museum – There is a museum with mummies found in the top of a volcano (2 hours more or less away). The story goes that the mummies and children were frozen 500 years ago, 6,739m high up in the Llullaillaco volcano in Argentina. I didn’t realise this was in Salta! Plaza 9 de Julio, the main square, is by the Museo de Arqueología de Alta Montaña, a museum which exhibits the 3 Inca children found frozen at the peak of Mount Llullaillaco.

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Considering the history of Inca tradition, the display is a bit unsettling when you realise this was a very real child who was murdered. There are some displays of clothing, dolls, and other items used in the daily life of the indigenous people.

The museum said they take visitors feeling towards the exhibition of human bodies into consideration, and the museum offers the option of watching these children.

The Plaza is wonderful for seeing everybody just sit around in the evening and watch or have a bite to eat in, surrounded by bars and historical places.


7) We left Salta after 4am for a 2 hour flight to Buenos Aires. The capital in the south of Argentina is known for its European atmosphere, passionate tango tradition and vibrant nightlife. Its centre is the 16th-century Plaza de Mayo, lined with stately buildings including the Casa Rosada, the iconic presidential palace. Its meaning is the ‘pink house’, whereas the US has the ‘white house’.

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Florida Street is the main shopping thoroughfare, leading to Plaza San Martín, a busy park that was once the site of a bullfighting arena. It is an interesting shopping area, they have a modern mall with lots of shops.

Calle_Florida,_Buenos_Aires

Galerías Pacífico is a pretty shopping mall which has murals around, and its decoration blew me away. It has 12 frescos (mural painting on wet lime plaster) by artists decorated in 1946. The huge foundations in the middle are my favourite views when I come into the entrance.

galerias-pacifico

The shops are expensive, and I noticed some international chains. Most of the stores are independent but you can also find some stores of Argentinian arts and craft. There is a food court hall and a vegan cafe called Green &Company. I highly recommend Cocina Patagonica shop for its chocolate gifts, and Patagonian ice cream – I kept came back for more. I recommend the pear flavor.

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Hop on hop off bus – Like most cities there is a hop on hop off bus, a dandy option to explore historical and cultural landmarks for a day around in the city in 24 stops.

La Boca is not to be missed, colourful houses and all – there are lots of tourists and people everywhere trying to make you pay for a picture, etc. There are plenty of outdoor cafes to eat at & watch tango. Most tango dancers offer quick dance lessons and pose for pictures for a charge (like £3).  

20160324_121119.jpgEva Peron – You can’t miss the line drawing of Eva Peron on the side of one of the buildings, a giant tribute to Argentina’s most famous first lady. She is still adored by millions of people and fresh flowers are placed at her tomb everyday. She was from a poor town and became first lady. On the side of the building facing south, the picture on the building is talking to the people, she was loved by the poor, on the other side is just her face, the rich hated her. Her story is interesting, you might have seen this film, starring Madonna and Antonio Banderas.

The style of the neighbourhood is rather like in Paris, home to the Recoleta cemetery where Evita was buried. Her body was stolen and then restored as a display next to her husband who died later. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18616380

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Teatro Colón (Colón Theater) This is one of the world’s top five opera theatres – breathtaking in size, with a grand central chandelier with 700 lights! I was not prepared to see an opera or ballet like this one, which seats 3,000. Highly recommended.

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International sign language – I love to meet other Deaf people during my travels, their different sign language inspires me to learn. Most countries have their own language just like a spoken language, and some use international sign languages which is useful: here is the International Sign Definition.I met these lovely people and they signed Argentine Sign Language, at first we struggled to understand each other so we gestured and used google translation from Spanish language. Saira

Random facts: The standard greeting in Argentina is a kiss on one cheek.

Celebrate Day – Most countries celebrate Mother’s or Father’s Day, and was surprised that they introduced Friend’s Day, a day dedicated entirely to friendships. In the early 1970s, an Argentinian scholar founded Dia del Amigo – he  said that he felt connected to everyone on Earth when Apollo 11 landed on the moon. Friend’s Day is an official holiday in Buenos Aires, although it is not a national public holiday. Friends gather, parties are held, and everyone gets together late at night to celebrate friendship on July 20th of every year.

Black heart (cards)This is the penultimate post – the last one will be on Brazil Black heart (cards)  

 

23cfca1dccdba76e72000b46b83b37f8 - Copy (8)Travel to Salta, North Argentia – It was a long travel day which is 12 to 16 hours on a public bus with toilets on board from Chile to Salta. The border crossing check routine roughly take from 2 to 4 hours, depending on how many people are there and how fast border officials want to work!

The border – We have to be careful what food we buy as border crossing are very strict on what kind of things we can bring into a country (just like i remember when arriving in Chile, all of our bags will go through a scanner). Things we can’t bring such as vegetable, fruit or animal products that are not processed even cheese, sometimes they have taken it away. Nuts, cookies, chips are fine.  If you buy fruit, you need to eat before the border! We crossed the Andes mountain range, the scenery are so beautiful to view while on road. It was winding and high, i glad to say it is our last day of high altitude! 

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Food –  It is bit hard to find restaurants as we are vegetation, these trouts can be expensive but worth it. Breakfasts are limited there, many people choose toast and marmalade as an accompaniment but far more popular are media lunas, a golden, flaky biscuit similar to a croissant but covered with a sweet, sticky glaze. Also this city have best ice cream cream shop called Dipsydo’s, right in main square. 

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Waiter said head and tail can’t be remove i asked. *gulp* but it tasted nice.

2016-03-23 16.42.15Activities – These are the optional activities that you might like to try these activities. As myself and my friend only have a day and half, we decided to tour the city by foot and there is also a cable car to check out the city from above and museums.

  1. Full Day Cafayate Gorge – this is a wine tasting tour, the drive is 4 hours. 
  2. Horseback riding with barbecue included. The horseback ride is about 2.30 hours followed by a real Argentinian BBQ, the price is the same for vegetarians.
  3. Rafting with barbecue included – it is more river floating than rafting. 

Buildings – among churches, orangey /red shade buildings and cool architecture. We spent a day and half there, when we walked we appreciated the colonial architecture that the town has preserved with buildings dating back to the 16th century. It is bit further right on the main square so don’t miss it!20160323_15405713062258_10153537053346288_2187588125948950510_nsalta_034

Inca Mummies small museum – There is a museum with mummies found in the top of a volcano (2 hour more or less, some explanation in English, not all on the walls to read). i heard about mummies and children were frozen 500 years ago and they were 6,739m high Llullaillaco volcano in Argentina announced on BBC news. I don’t realize it is in Salta, gosh how i remember that was in 1993 beside me! You can find it from Plaza 9 de Julio, it is the main square. It own in particular to the Museo de Arqueología de Alta Montaña which exhibit the 3 Inca children found frozen at the peak of Mount Llullaillaco.                                                 el_museo01_org.jpg                                      History about inca tradition, the display is a bit unsettling when you realize this was a very real child who was murdered. There are some displays of clothing, dolls, and other items used in the day life of the indigenous people.

The museum said they taking consideration the visitor’s feeling towards the exhibition of human bodies, the museum offers the option of watching these children, who represent the Inca World or finishing the circuit beforehand.

The crowds in this plaza seemed quite festive on the day we were there and it is a nice place to sit and people-watch or have a bite to eat. You must go to the Plaza and just sit there in the evening, everybody does, it is the center of the city. It is a lovely place. There are bars and historical places surrounding it.

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We left Salta after 4am for a 2 hour flight to Buenos Aires. Arrival in Buenos Aires, it is our last day with tour group before departure next day, we chose to add another day there on our own (3 nights). 

Buenos Aires, South Argentina is big capital, known for its European atmosphere, passionate tango and vibrant nightlife. Its center is the 16th-century Plaza de Mayo, lined with stately buildings including Casa Rosada, the iconic balconied presidential palace.

20160326_134449.jpgIn Microcentro, Florida Street is the main shopping thoroughfare, leading to Plaza San Martín, a busy park that was once the site of a bullfighting arena. Interesting shopping area, they have a modern mall with lots of shops.Calle_Florida,_Buenos_AiresGalerías Pacífico, Mural-filled shopping mall grand building blow me away, though expensive shops but lovely food court hall there, so many food you can chose! There is one vegan cafe and ice cream are heaven! The surround, decoration are so beautiful and huge foundation in middle are my fave view when i came into entrance!

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Hop on hop off bus – It is easy to get here on the hop on hop off bus, which is perfect option to explore all icon historical and cultural landmarks for a day around in Buneos Aires by 24 stops.

La Boca’ is not to be missed, if you like colorful houses, this is definitely worth the stop. However, it is definitely catered to tourists and there are people everywhere trying to make you pay for a picture, etc. Don’t need much time though and plenty of outdoor cafes to eat at & watch tango. Most tango dancers persuaded for a dance lesson and posed for picture at charge fee (like £3). I thought to do tango dance lesson for fun but be wise, they do demand some more money. 

20160324_121119.jpgEva Peron – You can’t miss the line drawing of Eva Peron on the side of one of the buildings, a giant tribute to Argentina’s most famous first lady. She is still adored by millions people and fresh flowers appear at her tomb everyday. She was from a poor town and she became first lady. On the side of the building facing south the picture on the building is talking to the people, she was loved by the poor people, on the other side is just her face, the rich people hated her. Her story is interesting, you might seen this film, picture at left?

Parisian style architecture lines this pristine neighborhood, most visitors to the city will pass through here at some point as it is home to the Recoleta cemetery where Evita Peron’s body was buried. It is strange her body was stolen then restored as display next to her husband who died later. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18616380

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Teatro Colón (Colón Theater) a place among the world’s top five opera theaters.breathtaking in size, and has a grand central chandelier with 700 lights to illuminate the 3,000 mere mortals in its red-velvet seats!I was not prepare seeing an opera or ballet like that. Highly recommend.

20160327_130905.jpg

International Sign Language – I love to meet 20160325_204336.jpgDeaf people during my travels, their different sign language inspired me to learn. i met these lovely people and they signed Argentine Sign Language, at first we were bit struggle to understand each other so we gestured and used google translation from Spanish language. Most counties have their own language just like a spoken language. . Most counties used international sign languages useful when travelling and socializing. International Sign Definition.

Deaf people are used to trying to communicate with people who do not speak their signed language,  there is other ways of communicating non-verbally.  When two such deaf persons get together, then, yes, they can find common ground far more quickly than two hearing people speaking different languages.

Random facts: The standard greeting in Argentina is a kiss on one cheek; men kiss women and vice versa, women kiss women, and men kiss men, whether meeting for the very first time or having already seen one another several times in the same day. Note that failing to greet each person in a group with a kiss is considered rude.

Celebrate Day – Most countries celebrate the Mother’s Day, Father’s Day etc, i was surprised they introduced Friend’s Day, a day dedicated entirely to friendships. In the early 1970s, an Argentinian scholar founded Dia del Amigo after he felt connected to everyone on Earth when Apollo 11 landed on the moon. Friend’s Day is an official holiday in Buenos Aires, although it is not a national public holiday. Friends gather, parties are held, and everyone gets together late at night to celebrate friendship on July 20th of every year.

Buenos Aires is one of the most exciting places to be on the planet right now, so pack your dancing shoes and get ready for an adventure!

Black heart (cards)Next will be last post on Brazil Black heart (cards)  

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