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Northern Route 40

13 Days FROM USD 3,725



Northern Ruta 40 (Route 40) covers a vast array of landscapes, from the dry high altitude deserts and mountains of the Andes near the Bolivian border to the lush vineyards of Mendoza, every corner of this journey presents a jaw droppingly beautiful vista. It is also home to some of the oldest cultures in Argentina and many pre Columbian ruins such as Quilmes and the Pucara di Tilcara can be explored. But the countryside itself is without a doubt the main attraction. The National Parks of Talampaya and Ischigualasto offer some of the worlds most unusual geological and paleontological treasures and the multi coloured hillsides around Pumamarca have got to be seen to be believed.

This tour is also available in reverse from Mendoza, please contact us for more details.

Trip Code: ARTSSTM

Travel Style: Small Group Tour 

Location: Argentina

Flights: Internal flights included in itinerary. Ask us to help book your flights to/from South America.


  • Cover a vast array of landscapes from the dry deserts of the Andes to the lush vineyards of Mendoza. 

  • You will travel on one of the worlds longest routes, with an overall length of 5 000 km. 

  • Experience unique and authentic traditional experiences as you engage with traditional folklore shows and encounter indigenous villages. 

  • Sample some of the best cuisine and wine as you are taken through some of the best wineries in Argentina. 


Salta is the most beautiful city of northern Argentina. Home to stunning colonial architecture of Salta, Salta’s fascinating history can be seen through the age-old monuments and its extremely rich culture.

This tour is operated under our group travel brand, Viva Expeditions. Viva specialises in guided small group tours to Latin America.


Today we will visit Humahuaca, an ancient picturesque village. In the afternoon we head to the quaint yet beautiful village of Purmamarca where you will be taken aback by the vast and unspoiled terrain and the picturesque hill of seven colours.


This morning we will visit Salinas Grandes, a spectacular salt plain in a remote part of the puna. We will also visit Tilcara, where we visit the Archaeological Museum and the amazing indigenous ruins of Pucara. Tonight enjoy an evening savouring the typical dishes of Northwest Argentina and enjoying traditional folklore music.


This morning we will set off from our hotel on foot to see some of Salta’s must-see landmarks. Continuing, we will leave Salta we will cross through the lush Lerma Valley before entering the Quebrada (Gorge) – one of the world’s great drives. Here you will see spectacular natural formations like the amphitheatre, characterised by it's unique acoustics.


Today we will spend the day samplings wines is in some of the most unique and beautiful settings.


The Quilmes Ruins, located in the province of Tucumán, are the remains of the largest pre-Columbian settlement in Argentina, a once great city with high population density, complex sociocultural processes and highly developed irrigation mechanisms.


Relax and enjoy the view as we travel south along the famous Ruta 40, Argentinas longest road is one of the wildest and least-travelled roads on the planet. Visit the Shinkal Inca ruins enroute.

Villa Union

A day to discover Talampaya National Park, a UNESCO Natural Heritage site. Talampaya National Park is a gift of nature and home to treasures Triassic period, 250 million years ago. Surrounded by extensive white deserts, towering walls of red sandstone, valleys, ravines and whimsical stone shapes carved by nature we will discover at each step the traces of the ancient dinosaurs that inhabited these lands for thousands of years.

Villa Union

Ischigualasto Natural Park, also known as The Moon Valley, was declared in 2000 as a natural heritage for its high scientific value, since it preserves an important palaeontological reserve. The Park offers a strange landscape, where the scarcity of vegetation, the range of colours of its soils, also the unique geo formations provide an incredible back drop.


As we continue south along Ruta 40, the landscape will gradually evolve as we enter Argentina’s most famous wine growing region.


Today we head for the most important and interesting places in Mendoza city.

This afternoon sip wine and learn about Argentina’s winemaking practices on in the Maipú valley. We will go to Zuccardi Family winery, founded in 1963. Your tour around the winery will include tasting of magnificent wines followed by an amazing 9 course food/wine pairing meal in the beautiful vineyard.


Today is free to choose from a range of great activities on offer in Mendoza such as world class hiking, horse riding, biking and of course winery visits. These can all be organised locally with the assistance of your tour leader. This evening we will enjoy a lovely farewell dinner.


Transfer out.


This is a suggested itinerary. All Tailor-Made journeys can be customised to suit. Add in additional highlights, spend more time in areas of particular interest to you, or extend your journey to visit other regions of Latin America or Antarctica.


Pricing & date

Northern Route 40 from USD 3,725
Departing Ending Duration
07 Oct 2019 19 Oct 2019 13
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Important Information

  • Private airport transfers
    Accommodation with breakfast
    Tours as detailed in itinerary
    Other meals where stated


    Personal Expenses
    Visa and reciprocity fees (if applicable) 
    International flights
    Tips for guides and drivers
    Any items not mentioned as included

  • 3 (Some fitness required)
  • Available upon request, contact us for more details. 

  • Please note selected departure dates link with our Highlights of Argentina & Uruguay tour from Buenos Aires to Iguazu.  Excludes flight from Mendoza to Buenos Aires and vice versa.

    Option available to add on our pre or post tour of Highlights of Argentina & Uruguay Tour (14 Days) on selected dates.  Please ask for details.  

  • Season and availability


We believe that appropriate accommodation should add to the authentic travel experience, as well as providing utmost enjoyment. For that reason our accommodation is scrutinised by our staff on the ground frequently, ensuring the properties adhere to our high standards. This key will help you understand the levels of accommodation available on this tour.


Talk to one of our Destination Specialists to plan your South American adventure and turn your dream into a reality. With exceptional knowledge and first hand experience, our consultants will assist in every way possible to make your journey the most memorable it can be, matching not only the itinerary, but the accommodation and activities to suit your style of travel and budget.


Being environmentally accountable is a crucial part of our organisation. Chimu is currently striving towards using less paper, taking several initiatives to do so and tracking our progress along the way. Our goal: A paperless organisation. For this reason, all information given to you will be sent electronically. We encourage those who choose to travel with us to support our aspirations and actions and ask that you reconsider printing out documentation. To view these documents, you can download them to your iPad or portable computer before and during your trip.

Chimu is passionate and dedicated to sustainability measures and understands the crucial part sustainability plays within the tourism industry.

We use local guides and office staff to both maximise local employment opportunities and minimise carbon footprint. Local guides also ensure you benefit from the intimate knowledge, passion and culture of the country you’re visiting. Our guides are all highly qualified (most with university degrees) or equip with many years of experience and are paid above the standard wage. Whether it be our knowledgeable local guides, locally produced meals or the transport on tour, we do not use imported goods when local products are available. We aim to minimise our impact on the environment and give as much back as possible to the communities we work in.

While visiting the many national parks, heritage sites, museums and landmarks our travellers are encouraged to explore whilst remaining culturally aware and sensitive. We further encourage you to buy appropriate souvenirs and discourage the buying of anything wrongfully made or taken from the environment i.e. shells and endangered species products. Information on how you can be environmentally conscious, and travel responsibly will be made available in our Travellers Guides and provided during your travels by guides and staff.

For more information on our sustainability policies, including how we are striving towards being a paperless organisation, click HERE