places to explore nature in San Juan, Argentina

The new route connecting the Argentine city of San Juan to Santiago, Chile, is an excuse to visit some of the attractions in the region

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1. Wine route

San Juan is the second biggest wine-producing province in Argentina, after Mendoza. Fourteen bodegas – like Marale, Segisa, and Graffigna Yanzón – are scattered over a 323 miles [520 km] route, offering several itineraries and accommodation for visitors to learn about the production processes in a uniquely beautiful scenery.

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2. Teatro del Bicentenario

Teatro del Bicentenario is already an icon of San Juan thanks to its quality facilities and artistic offer. One good idea is to book a guided visit through their website to learn about its history and architecture.

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3. Sailing in La Pampa

The winds that blow every day between October and March on Pampa del Leoncito – roughly 12.5 miles [20 km] from Villa de Barreal and 124 miles [200 km] from the capital – are responsible for the sail-powered vehicles that glide over its loamy soil. This sport is known as “carrovelismo” and can be practiced in this flat, obstacle-free area that’s 7.5 miles [12 km] long and 3 miles [5 km] wide.

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4. Stellar experience

This region has one of the clearest skies in Argentina, a good reason to visit El Leoncito National Park – at an altitude of 8,200 feet [2,500 m], some 25 miles [40 km] from Barreal. It’s home to Complejo Astronómico El Leoncito, a center that offers day and night activities. You can also stay overnight without previous reservation.

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5. Valle de la Luna

Parque Natural Provincial Ischigualasto, a World Heritage Site, is roughly 185 miles [300 km] from San Juan, in the extreme north of the province. With an area of 62,000 hectares, it’s home to singular rock formations sculpted by the forces of nature over millions of years and moon-like landscapes. It takes around three hours to get there.

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6. Cuesta del viento

Approximately 120 miles [190 km] separate San Juan from a windsurfing and kitesurfing paradise. The dam Cuesta del Viento, whose waters are framed by the Andes, near the village of Rodeo, is the setting for international sporting events, like the KiteFest Argentina.

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