Top things to do

Top Choice Mountain in Western Catamarca

Los Seismiles

West of Fiambalá, the paved road winds through the high desert, past picturesque red rock escarpments known as the Quebrada Angosturas, and into some serious altitude, topping out at the Chilean border. It's a stunn…
Top Choice National Park in Parque Nacional Talampaya

Parque Nacional Talampaya

The spectacular rock formations and canyons of this dusty desert national park are evidence of the erosive creativity of water. The sandstone cliffs are amazing, as are the distant surrounding mountainscapes. You mu…
Top Choice Museum in Chilecito

Museo del Cablecarril

This old cable-car station documents the extraordinary engineering and mining project that created modern Chilecito at the beginning of the 20th century. Yes, this town, like many in cowboy country the world over, w…
Top Choice Ruins in Londres & El Shincal

El Shincal

The Inca ruins of El Shincal are located 7km west of Londres. Founded in 1471, the town occupied a commanding position in the foothills of the mountains, surveying the vast valley to the south. The setting is specta…
Top Choice Italian in Catamarca

Sopra Tutto

Excellent homemade pasta plates, beautifully presented and flavorsome, are produced in this warm, cozy corner trattoria that doubles as a pasta shop. Family owned and operated, it stuffs delicate cannelloni with cho…
Top Choice Cathedral in Catamarca

Catedral Basílica de Nuestra Señora del Valle

This 19th-century cathedral shelters the Virgen del Valle, patron saint of Catamarca and one of northern Argentina’s most venerated images. Her back is to the church: you can get a look at her face by ascending to t…
Top Choice Argentine in Belén

1900

Beyond-the-call service is the key to this wood-paneled local steak house, a block down from the plaza. It’s very popular, but it hates to turn people away, so a Tetris-like reshuffling of tables is a constant featu…
Top Choice Bar in Chilecito

Yops

Simple but atmospheric, this bohemian spot is Chilecito’s best cafe, serving fine coffee, cold beer and decent mixed drinks. Expect epic chess battles between locals by day, and live music some weekends, when the ba…
Top Choice Museum in Catamarca

Museo Arqueológico Adán Quiroga

This fine archaeological museum displays a superb collection of pre-Columbian ceramics from several different cultures and eras. Some pieces – particularly the black Aguada ceramics with their incised, stylized anim…
Top Choice Argentine in Chilecito

El Rancho de Ferrito

A block west and seven north of Chilecito's plaza, this inviting local restaurant is worth every step. You’ve seen the menu before – except for house specialties such as cazuela de gallina (chicken stew – yum) and l…