Driving distance: 500 km. Duration: 12 hours. Departure from the city of Mendoza.
We’ll take Freeway N° 40 to the north across deserted Jocoli area and San Carlos until we reach the Municipality of Media Agua. A bit farther, and after visiting the 1944 earthquake memorial, we’ll arrive in the province of San Juan’s capital city.
Still going north across Zonda Valley, we’ll start driving up toward Calingasta Valley, which-together with Uspallata Valley- make up the largest valley in the Andes region. Beautiful views of the mountain await visitors at El Barreal, a typical Andean town on Los Patos riverbank. Every corner of this town is shaded by poplars and the smell of mint grown there fills up the air.
After having traditional local dishes for lunch, we´ll drive amidst the mountains to get to Pampa del Leoncito National Park, which has hosted many wind car world championships. East of it is Sierra del Tontal.
Visitors are likely to see Guanacos and birds of prey such as black-chested buzzard-eagle, red-backed hawk, and duck hawks that are the fastest living being.
We’ll drive across Uspallata and Potrerillos valleys on our way back to the city of Mendoza.
On its long, slow flowing amidst the depths of the Andes, the mountains give thermal water the minerals that make it such a special kind of water.
In 2001, the Natural Resources Authority declared the area around the hotel a Protected Natural Area. This 70,000-hectare reserve is protected due to its biological diversity and historical, cultural and archeological relevance.