Health and Safety

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Health and Safety

Be mindful of soroche, or altitude sickness, which results in shortness of breath and headaches. Walk slowly, eat carbohydrates, and drink plenty of fluids (but avoid alcohol). Locals swear by the coqueando remedy: sucking on coca leaves (sold at corner groceries and street vendors). Tear off the stems and stuff some leaves into the space between your teeth and cheek; leave them in for an hour or more, neither chewing nor spitting, but swallowing when you salivate.

Aside from being sold an overpriced tour (recommended rates are listed in Salta's tour office), you're unlikely to encounter crime. Many hotels pride themselves on not needing safety deposit boxes.

The many roadside shrines marking car accidents, especially on winding mountain routes, are a reminder to check your speed. Also take care on the many unpaved roads. And do wear your seat belt.

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