The sleepy pueblo of Purmamarca is home to one of Argentina’s oldest and prettiest churches, the centuries-old Iglesia de Santa Rosa de Lima, which was constructed from adobe and thistle wood and dates back to 1648. The town also serves as a popular base for exploring some of the region’s other natural attractions, including the spectacular Salinas Grandes salt flat and the Quebrada de Humahuaca valley.
Visitors with limited time can visit the town and the Cerro de los Siete Colores together on a day trip from Jujuy or Salta. If you have time to spend a night in the pueblo, you can take advantage of the dry air and high altitude to do some stargazing.
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Things to Know Before You Go
Don’t forget to wear sunscreen and drink plenty of water; the climate here is hot and dry.
If you’re already planning a trip to the Salinas Grandes from Salta, do yourself a favor and stay the night in Purmamarca on the way there or back.
Wear comfortable shoes suitable for walking over uneven surfaces, especially if you want to hike around the colorful hills.
One of the largest handicraft markets in Northern Argentina sets up in the city’s main plaza during the day.
How to Get There
Buses to Purmamarca depart from Jujuy nearly every hour throughout the day; the trip takes a little over an hour. The most convenient way to visit from Salta is to join a guided day trip.
When to Get There
The weather in Purmamarca ranges from 90°F (32°C) in the summer (Oct–Feb) to 70°F (21°C) in winter (May–August), and the town is pleasant to visit all year round. In the summer, head out for a hike in the early morning or evening when the Cerro de los Siete Colores is illuminated in the golden hour glow and the weather isn’t too hot.
What to Eat in Purmamarca
Foodies won’t want to leave Purmamarca without sampling some of the town’s hearty regional cuisine. Restaurants range from rustic to upscale, and most highlight regional ingredients (like corn, llama, and quinoa) and local dishes (like empanadas, tamales, and locro stew). Whatever you order, you can wash your food down with some local Argentine wine from the surrounding regions.
- Humahuaca Ravine (Quebrada de Humahuaca)
- San Salvador de Jujuy
- Great Salt Flats (Salinas Grandes)
- San Antonio de los Cobres
- Tin Tin Straight Line (Recta de Tin Tin)
- San Lorenzo
- Toro Gorge (Quebrada del Toro)
- San Bernardo Convent
- Cathedral of Salta
- Cultural Center of the Americas (Centro Cultural America)
- Historical Museum of the North (Museo Historico del Norte)
- San Francisco Church
- Train to the Clouds (Tren a las Nubes)
- San Bernardo Hill (Cerro San Bernardo)