Towards Ischigualasto

The wind has done its job in this area of the planet for thousands of years and it has left its track for us to behold its amazingly unusual geographical features today.

As other tourist destinations in Argentina, several kilometers are to be traveled across a wild scene in order to reach Ischigualasto Natural Provincial Park, also known as the Valley of the Moon, setting out from Villa Unión.

We drove out early in the morning convinced that the road trip to our destination would probably be tedious. But it was not. Soon after leaving Villa Unión, we noticed that in spite of the dry land, the small sandy and rocky formations boasted varied shades as we moved on. Some bushes -like larrea and carob- used to the lack of water gave evidence of its presence on the horizon. This image encouraged our imagination and we deduced what kind of figures would be formed by the shade during the changing daylight within that environment.

As we got past the Districts of Pagancillo, first, and Los Baldecitos, later, we could observe the lifestyle of a region in the provinces of La Rioja and San Juan. They both have a simple pace marked by the great distance separating them from urban centers.

  • The wind has done its job

    The wind has done its job

  • Encouraged our imagination

    Encouraged our imagination

  • Bocce Court

    Bocce Court

  • A different and incredible geography

    A different and incredible geography

Nevertheless, they also have the charm of adobe houses in the same color as the ground, isolated from one another and showing its outdoor smoky cookers. The diners offer homemade food, including goat cooked in the grill or the casserole and desserts made with local fruit.

In a short while, we came close to Cerro Morado (Purple Hill), which we had studied in the maps and realized stood at the access of the dreamed-of Valley of the Moon. The visit to a strange circuit, dwelled by dinosaurs millions of years ago and deciphered by scientists for us tourists to enjoy and understand its paleontological value was standing in front of us.

Autor Mónica Pons Fotografo Secretaría de Turismo de la Nación

How to get hereHow to get here: Leave Villa Unión and drive along National Route 76. The total distance to be covered is 60 kilometers.
As visitors get past Los Baldecitos, they must head for Ischigualasto Provincial Park.
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