What to do in Purmamarca, Jujuy?

What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad

The village of Purmamarca is located between multicolored mountains and meter high cactus in the North-West region of Argentina, and will make you doubt whether you have actually crossed the border to another country. But no, you are still in Argentina!

Here are some tips on how to spend your time in Purmamarca, which is usually the first stop for travelers heading to explore this mountain- and llama-filled corner of Argentina.

Okay, let me admit from a start… maybe not that llama-filled after all! At least, I was extremely discontent with the number of real-life llamas that I saw during my time there. However, there are plenty of options for buying a llama souvenir with you home or trying local llama cuisine… Thus, back on track!

Let’s talk about what there is to do in Purmamarca:

What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
Take pictures of Cerro de Siete Colores

This is an obligatory activity when in Purmamarca! Cerro de Siete Colores or “the mountain of seven colors” is properly the most famous part in Purmamarca. This piece of the mountain is said to have up to seven distinct color tones in it. However, it does depend on how the sun lights on the mountain how many of them you will be able to see.

I want to be frank with you, and say that I was not that impressed with this seven-colored darling – and even less after seen its big brother of 14 colors in Humahuaca more north (but more about that next time). However, they did do their marketing course with excellence and have managed to promote the seven-colored mountain amazingly well.

What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
The local handcraft market of Purmamarca

By the main square of Purmamarca, Plaza 9 de Julio, there is every day a market with all kind of local handcraft. My favorite one was, without doubt, these llamas!

What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
The Cemetery of Purmamarca

The cemetery is located in the outskirts of Purmamarca, and is properly not a place you would normally find on a list of activities to do. However, the cemetery was spectacularly beautiful and well-decorated (see for yourself below).

Thus, if you head there remember to show respect to the people there – both alive and dead! Be silent and respectful.

What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
Paseo de los Colorados

Behind the cemetery, the street turns into a path called Paseo de los Colorados which is a spectacular walk through the mountains surrounding Purmamarca.

Follow the path until the end, and you will be back in “downtown” Purmamarca.

What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
Viewpoint over Purmamarca and Cerro de Siete Colores

Where Paseo de los Colorados ends and just before some small stone stairs lead down to Florida-street and further on to the handcraft market, there is a little grumpy-looking elderly woman blocking the way to a gate. The path behind the gate leads to a small mountain-hill which has an amazing view over Purmamarca.

The lady was fortunate to have a mountain in her backyard, and made it a viewpoint… At least, it seems so. She will charge you 5 pesos argentinos at (the moment of writing) for “climbing” her backyard-mountain – thus, the effort (not hardcore climbing at all) and the money is worth it! From the viewpoint you can see over the roofs of Purmamarca, and the surrounding mountains; most importantly, of course, the Cerro de Siete Colores.

What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
Visit the salt flats of Salinas Grandes

Lastly, Purmamarca is known for being the starting point for visits to the salt flats, Salinas Grandes, of the Jujuy province. The salt flats are located around an-hour-and-a-half drive through Ruta Regional 52’s crazy mountain roads. However, the scenery through the mountains (including llamas – if you are lucky) and the salt flats are worth the effort.

What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad

A group of aboriginal runs tours on the salt flats from the parking lot by the edge of the salt flats. The tour costs between 200 and 300 pesos (in moment of writing), and takes around 40 minutes to an hour. You can read more about them here.

What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad
Are you heading to Purmamarca and the Northern part of Argentina? Or have you maybe already been there? Please feel free to share your thoughts and experiences in the comments below!
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What to do in Purmamarca? Tips on how to get the most out of your stay in the North of Argentina - Becci Abroad

5 comments

  1. Jesper, The Biveros Effect

    Would be nice to return to Argentina to explore more one day. I’m probably one of many that have never heard about Purmamarca previously, but it really looks like a beautiful place in your photos. Must be really nice to have so many places to explore around you. 🙂
    Jesper, The Biveros Effect recently posted…Sights in Bratislava – Primate’s PalaceMy Profile

    Reply

    1. Rebecca

      Thanks for dropping by, Jesper! Yes, the North part of Argentina is definitely not as well know as many other parts of Argentina. Thus, it is for sure worth a visit.
      True, there are many places to visit around here but also huge distances – nothing compared to the closeness of most things in Europe 😉

      Reply

  2. OnTrip.dk

    WOW en tur og hvor ser der bare smukt ud Purmamarca. Der vil jeg gerne til en dag. At få lov at opleve de farvede bjerge, kirkegården, de smukke kaktusser for slet ikke at tale om saltsøen. Jeg er solgt og tog gerne afsted i morgen. Tusinde tak for fed inspiration og lækre billeder.

    /Annette

    Reply

    1. Rebecca

      Tusind tak for besøget og din søde kommentar, Annette! Ja, Purmamarca var virkelig et interessant og anderledes sted at besøge her i Argentina – du må pitche deres turistkontor for en tur! 😉

      God weekend!

      Reply

      1. OnTrip.dk

        Uhh ja det kunne være en god ide 🙂

        Tak i lige måde 🙂

        / Rebecca

        Reply

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