Getting Here and Around


Getting Here and Around

Air Travel. Aerolíneas Argentinas/Austral ( has direct flights from Buenos Aires to San Salvador de Jujuy, Salta, La Rioja, and Tucumán, but is plagued by delays and cancellations. LAN Chile ( and Andes ( fly from Buenos Aires to Salta. There are no connecting flights within the region, except for a few weeks in high season when it's possible to fly with Aerolíneas between Salta and Jujuy—though including check-in times, the trip is faster by bus. All flights between Buenos Aires and the Northwest use the capital's Aeroparque Jorge Newbery, about 15 minutes north of downtown.

Bus Travel. Buses are reliable, affordable, and well used, though certain routes require a little advance planning. Some companies offer roadside pickup; others have luxury double-decker buses offering overnight services. Tourist offices can advise which companies go where. In peak season, buy tickets a day or two in advance.

Car Travel. Traveling outside of cities is often easiest by car. However, picking up a car in one city and dropping it off in another incurs significant extra costs, so rent cars for only parts of your journey or commit to a round-trip. Roads are generally good and not very crowded, but be prepared for paved roads turning ripio (unpaved) for long stretches. Very few routes require a 4x4. A Volkswagen Gol costs about 180 pesos per day; 4x4s start at 400 pesos per day.

Two main roads cross the area: the legendary Ruta 40, winding its unpaved way through small towns nearly 3,000 mi to the country's southern tip, and Ruta 9, the ancient road of the Incas, which takes you from Bolivia through San Salvador de Jujuy, Salta, Tucumán, Santiago del Estero, and on toward Córdoba. Before you set out, visit an ACA ( office for maps and information, especially during the January–March rainy season.

Remis Travel. For short trips (e.g., Tucumán to Tafí del Valle or Salta to Cafayate), consider hiring a remis (fixed-price taxi). Some routes have shared services, where you split the cost with others making the same journey. You can find a remis at airports, bus stations, and on main plazas—or your hotel can call one for you.

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