The city of La Rioja stands at the foot of the magnificent Sierra de Velasco. La Rioja is characterized by rugged terrain, presents a rare amalgam of mountains and plains, as well as hills and valleys which features ocher is tempered by the varied polychromatic their plantations. Presents its new buildings in the combination of old and new, with low buildings, narrow streets and well decorated spaces.
The mall is mostly active and coalesces around the main plaza. There are traditional celeberations like National Days of Chayay, San Nicolás and the Boy Mayor, the latter is an emotional popular religious ceremony whose origins date back to 1593.
Travel To Chilecito in La Rioja
It is the second largest department in the province of La Rioja. It's located at the foot of the imposing massif of Famatina, 6250 masl. Chilecito architecture is the result of the conjunction of the fin de siecle houses with modern buildings. Its central square features native plant species such as cactus, mesquite, tusca, gorse, visco, chañar, logging and retamo. On the street Govt. Jamin Ocampo, is the Molino de San Francisco - Museum of Chili, showing archaeological, historical, paleontological and artistic pieces.
Surrounding fields provide good crops of grapes and other fruits, vegetables and nuts, which further processing is performed by a modern plant. There are also regional wineries that produce wines of recognized quality. Chilecito acquired national significance as the most important mining center operating. Its current name is due to the great influence of Chilean miners arrived in the late nineteenth century to work in the gold wealth of the region.
It is located at the South Center of the Province of La Rioja. It is one of the natural museums, of harmonious folding, that summarize the geological history of the Earth. It treasures the great accumulations of Rust and trashes that the alluvions of the Permic and Triassic periods deposited in its slopes, giving them their peculiar reddish color. As you get into the steep mountain passes, the feeling of smallness increases as you face the colossal rocky walls of over 150 m and the diversity of the shapes that the water and wind capriciously eroded on them.
All along the canyon of the Talampaya River, there are millenarian carob tree woods, framed among rocky walls almost 100 meters high, which give a unique attractiveness to the landscape.It is also a shelter for Condors. Wide extensions of arum and brooms are inhabited by gray foxes, black-legged chuñas, ñandúes petisos, maras, and so on. Some endemic species of our country such as the Gallito Arena (Little sand rooster), find shelter there, too.
The reddish rocky walls of the Talampaya are covered by several manifestations of pre Hispanic cultures that inhabited the area about 1,000 years ago. A natural thirteen meter-long wall full of petroglyphs. There are also sedimentary deposits of the Permic and Triassic periods, that are rich in fossils, especially of great anphibia and reptiles. This fact makes the place internationally relevant, being, together with Ischigualasto, a few kilometers away, one of the most important deposits of its kind. The deep canyons, the valleys full of curious figures carved by erosion, the colorful sedimentary strata, all framed in a dessert landscape of immense beauty, give to Talampaya a unique scenic importance.
VALLE DE LA LUNACUYO
The Ischigualasto Natural Provincial Park, is 330 km North East from the capital of the province, in the Department of Valle Fértil. To the North it is bounded, by the Talampaya Provincial Park, in the province of La Rioja. It was created to preserve one of the most important paleontological deposits of vertebrates representatives of the Triassic period, in the American Continent, and in the world. The are has a semi dessert and desolate aspect, and that is why it is called Moon Valley or Painted Valley. In the past the area was covered by a lush forest of Acacias, Ginkos, and Palm Trees, and there also were some lakes and swamps. The apparition of the Andes, only 60 million years ago, changed completely the life conditions that existed in the previous 180 million years.
Today, that lush environment has been transformed into an arid region in which erosion carved peculiar shapes. Brick-red sands, spattered with isolated green and ocher blocks, with up to 200 meter-high rough slopes and reefs where you can easily distinguish the different strata, giant columns and thin obelisks, combined with gullies where streams and rivers run during the summer, form the landscape of the Park. The vegetation is formed by thickets of less than 3 meter-high bushes, the arum being the most representative species. The Guanaco and the mara are the biggest herbivores; among the carnivores the ferret, and the small gray fox, as well as several cats like the puma, are included. The most common bird is the ñandu, followed by the common heron, and birds of prey like the eagle and the carrion hawk.
The fields of Ischigualasto with its green, gray, black and red sediments, hide such an impressive quantity and variety of fossils, that constitutes one of the most important paleontological deposits in the world. The Ischigualasto Provincial Park is considered one of the richest paleontological deposits of Triassic terapside reptiles, those from which the mammals would later evolve. Almost all the area of the Ischigualasto is formed by lands of the Triassic period, characteristic for the absolute domain of the dinosaurs, which has contributed with a wide range of fossils and their study has enabled important advance in the knowledge of the history of life. Several fossils of herbivore, as well as carnivore reptiles have been found in the area. The most recent discovery, the one of the Coraptor, revolutionized science, and is the oldest dinosaur known (228 million years old).
Fossils of reptiles very similar to the current crocodiles and other species of great interest for the science, have also been found. Besides these fossils of reptiles, rests of great petrified trees have been found, and they can bee seen at a place called the "Petrified Wood", within the tourist circuit. The cultural testimonies are present in the inscriptions and drawings in the rocks, tops of arrows and other stone elements that have found in different places. Although this evidence has not been thoroughly studied, it is supposed that they are about 1,200 or 1,400 years old.
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