Other Useful Information


Restaurants in the Quebrada of Humahuaca

There are many restaurants opening in the Quebrada these days, to meet the demand of growing tourism. Each town has several nice places offering traditional food in addition to parrilla; you’ll find however that the food this far north is already moving away from the typical Argentine beef and potato diet. If you don’t get a chance to hop over to Bolivia and savor Andean cuisine, seize your chance and give it a try in the Quebrada! The staple grain quinoa, gaining popularity with vegetarians and health food eaters in the US and Europe as a high-protein grain, is the staple of the Andes. For the daring, give lama meet a try – you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

If you’re just making a pit stop at a cafe and want to try a typical beverage, you should order some coca tea. Made from coca leaves, it’ll help if you’re feeling woozy from the altitude, or just warm you up and give you some energy to keep going. You may find coca leaves on the market places, but it’s usually less common than in Bolivia. However you can buy coca tea bags in any store. Remember, coca leaves have nothing to do with cocaine – drinking their tea will probably have less energizing effect than a cup of coffee.

Going out in the Quebrada

Because it is a rural area, you won’t be running into boliches and bars everywhere. However, you can count on their being live music nearly every evening, particularly in Tilcara. Shows are usually in restaurants, but it’s ok to just sit down and have a drink while you’re listening. There are many artists who play local folklore, sometimes catered to tourists sometimes not; however if you’re lucky, you might run into a group of musician friends jamming together, playing anything from Carlos Gardel’s tangos to songs in Quechua around a bottle of wine.

Shopping in the the Quebrada of Humahuaca

In terms of shopping, what the Quebrada mainly has to offer are handicrafts. Each village has a market on either the main plaza or street, where you can find anything from alpaca sweaters to Bolivian blankets to jewelry to pottery. The prices are good, and you can find a nice souvenir for pretty much anyone. In Tilcara, there are also several stores that sell higher quality (and therefore more expensive) handicrafts; blankets, silver jewels, and pottery to name a few. Walking around town, you will be sure to run into some souvenirs to buy.

Entertainment and Cultural Activities

Although there are no movie theaters or theaters, there are cultural centers along the rural villages of the Quebrada that organize activities. There are also a variety of traditional festivals, like the Fiesta de la Pachamama in August, the weeklong Carnaval in Humahuaca at the end of February, and many other celebrations all year long. Attending one of these gives you a vivid idea of quebradeña traditions, and is endless fun. Make sure you ask at your hotel or tourism information office, to find out where the action is while you’re there.

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