[SALTA, ARGENTINA] — In the northwest province of Salta, you run into the famed Ruta 40 which runs 5,000 kilometers of Argentina, from tip to tail. At this section its more like a dirt road than the highway it is named. The road varies, from small pueblos and farms, through dusty stone wall-lined meandering passages,with hardly any traffic but the stray local Ford pickup. Feeling confident crossing the ruts and rocks, you test your limits (and your vehicle) as you ford streams and wonder at the incredible scenic beauty on every turn.
Here’s what it’s like to drive Ruta 40 from Cachi to Cafayete in Argentina’s wild and wooly northwest province of Salta.
I picked it up near the dusty Andean town of Cachi and drove for several hours south through various towns towards my destination, Molinos. Doing the Salta Loop, you hook up from the crazy Ruta 33 and head directly south.
Here’s the route we’ll be taking. We are heading from Cachi down to Molinos on this post. (IGNORE THE WE ARE HERE SIGN)
You’ve seen it in movies, like Star Wars. It’s an arduous but rewarding journey. “I rode Ruta 40”. Here’s a great article on driving through Salta from Travel & Leisure. Another story in Rough Guide. And from Dangerous Roads website. And Popular Mechanic’s Top 20 Best Driving Roads in the world.
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