Tuesday 2nd Oct - Another early start for our tour heading south in the Province of Salta to Cafayate. From leaving Salta the country side is much different than yesterday, more farming with the main produce being vegetables and tobacco crops. After leaving farming land we travelled 75km through gorge country of the Parana River that runs down to the Delta that we cruised on in Buenos Aires. There where places we stopped to look at natural phenomenon's in the gorges, first place was "Devil's Throat" and the second place was a natural amphitheatre with amazing acoustics, there was a guy playing Spanish guitar. Coming to the end of the gorge once again we are led into flat plain country which expands for more that 350km. Heading into Cafayate it is vineyard country and one of the largest wine regions in Argentina, supporting more than 60 vineyards.. We stopped at a winery for some tasting - all the explanations were in Spanish so we just walked around looking. We arrived in Cafayate town which was founded in 1840 and located at the central zone of the Valley Calchaquíes. Again after a nice lunch we wondered around the town for a couple of hours before getting on the bus to head back to Salta. Our tour guide was the same guy a yesterday so once again we would get "Australiah are you having a good time!"
The Cafayates were a South American Indian tribe of the Diaguita-Calchaquí group now extinct, which, together with the related Tolombón, inhabited the valleys of North Argentina prior to the arrival of the Spanish Conquorers.Their language was known as Cacán also now exstinct. Like other Diaguita tribes, fell under the influence of the Incas. The name Cafayate is from the indigenous language spoken by the Quechua peoples, primarily living in the Andes and highlands of South America, the meaning is disputed. Some say it means "Box of Water", Capac-Yac ("Great Lake") or Capac-Yaco ("Great Chief" or "Wealthy People"). Another Cacán version understands it as "Grave of Sorrows". So I guess we will never be sure.
Arriving back in Salta a little earlier this evening we had time for a shower then out to dinner. I was getting over a sinus infection and feeling better so after dinner I strolled out to the square to get some night time shots of the town.