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Backbone of the political and economic power of the Tawantisuyo -the Inca Empire-, the Qhapaq Ñan (in Quechua language "main road") comprised a network of roads with more than 18,600 miles that interconnected important production, administrative and religious centers. Its plotting was made even before the Inca Empire's flourishing and it is estimated to have about 2000 years of existence. It currently crosses six Andean countries: Peru being its starting point; towards the South it crosses the territories of Bolivia, Argentina and Chile; and towards the North, Ecuador and Columbia. In 2014, it was declared World Heritage by the UNESCO.
The Qhapaq Ñan enters Argentina coming from Bolivia at a small village called Calahoyo (at the Puna, at more than 13,100 f.a.s.l.) and it crosses desserts, valleys and mountains linking the territories of the current provinces of Jujuy, Salta, Tucumán, Catamarca, La Rioja, San Juan and Mendoza, to get finally lost in the Andean Mountain Range, heading towards Chile.
More to see
The Magic Inca’s Crown
One of the best kept secrets of the Argentine extended geography. At 18,000 ft above sea level, a crater surrounded by ice stalactites with an incredible turquoise water heart.
Ritual to the Mother Earth
At Laguna Blanca, in Catamarca, an ancestral thanksgiving ceremony to the Pachamama. A plentiful cultural experience that invites to the reunion of the different populations.
Inca footprints in the way to the Redeemer Christ
A one-day proposal to fill the soul with pure mountain air. To contemplate the beauty of the mountains laying on the blue sky. Pathways with history.
The Qhapaq Ñan: the Incas' Road
An old road system that, in Argentina, crosses mountains, valleys and desserts passing through seven provinces. A trip with amazing landscapes keeping the footprints of millenarian cultures.