Get to know Quebrada de Humahuaca: its history, places, and inhabitants

In the province of Jujuy, we find one of our most precious jewels: Quebrada de Humahuaca. A unique place where incredible landscapes are concentrated traces witness of human evolution through millenniums, festivities, music, very rich and varied gastronomy, and the most important thing: the warmth of its inhabitants. That is why UNESCO declared it a World Cultural and Natural Heritage Site in July 2003, because it is a combination of wonderful landscapes, the numerous farmhouses, towns, and cities that preserve many pre-Columbian and colonial vestiges, as well as its millenary Omaguaca culture.
 
La Quebrada starts 39 kilometers from San Salvador de Jujuy, on route 9, and covers some 170 kilometers of valleys and mountains arranged from south to north. The mountain ranges present different tonalities according to the minerals that make them up. This landscape is between 2000 and 4000 meters above sea level and has a 13-kilometer wide strip watered, in times of thaw, by the Rio Grande.
 


The Quebrada de Humahuaca combines a series of natural, cultural, and historical attractions, which makes the province very popular with tourists. It starts 39 kilometers from San Salvador de Jujuy, on route 9, and covers about 170 kilometers of valleys and mountains drawn from south to north. The mountain ranges present different tonalities according to the minerals that make them up. This landscape is between 2000 and 4000 meters above sea level, and has a 13-kilometer wide strip of land irrigated, in times of thaw, by the fresh and abundant Rio Grande.
 
Volcán is the first small town in the Quebrada, from San Salvador de Jujuy. Further on is Kumbaya, at 2094 meters above sea level, with its 18th-century chapel and spring where, according to legend, San Francisco Solano drank. The craft fair of Purmamarca, the national history museum built-in 1772 in Posta de Hornillos, and the carnivals of Maimará are other attractions of this place. In Tilcara, the aboriginal tradition is revived, with the presence of the Viltipoco fortress, the last chieftain of the Omaguaca tribe, who offered tenacious resistance to the Spanish colonization. In Huacalera, a monolith indicates the crossing of the Tropic of Capricorn and then the town of Humahuaca appears before the traveler's eyes, with its adobe houses, narrow, cobbled streets, and the church with its paintings from the school of Cuzco, Peru. Among its cultural attractions is the Pucará de Tilcara, a fortification that the aborigines built on the top of a mountain, from where you can see the valley and the access roads.