Crossing Borders in Bus – San Pedro to Salta

The bus ride from San Pedro de Atacama, Chile to Salta in Argentina lasted from 10.30am in the morning until 11pm that night, travelling over the Andes ranges during the day. Most of the sights were the same that I had seen during my tour of the Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia, but some parts of it was very different.

the road out of chile
The road to the left leads out of Chile and over the Andes mountains.

The person seated next to me was a teacher from Cusco, Peru. He taught in the San Franciscan school and was with a group of other teachers who were heading for Cordoba, Argentina for a teaching conference that was very important to them.

We chatted for a large part of the journey, about what each of us did and many of the structures that we faced each day and how they helped us or hindered us. Movies, a book in Spanish, and a tourist booklet that was handed out on the bus also made the time pass quickly. Moving into Argentina added another hour to our journey because of the summertime differences between Argentina and Chile/Bolivia.

chile customs
Passing through customs in Chile only required patience.

As we got nearer to Salta, I suddenly knew the road. Even though I had travelled along these roads without any lights that fateful night, I knew where we were going and what was coming up. It really amazed me at how quickly you can learn a road if you are driving down it compared to only travelling along it. I decided at that point that I really do like riding my bike around the country.

Once we arrived in Salta, I knew my way around that city from the last few times, so within minutes I was back at Isaac’s home with a warm bed and good friends. As much as I like to travel, there is nothing better than having a good place to return to.

Argentine customs
Passing through customs in Argentina also required the most thorough bag check that I have ever been through.

bag searches
The bag searches were very detailed.

A small stream flows next to the road for a while.

switchback in road
Looking down over the road that we are about to travel.

high level lake
A small lake on the high plains area.

salt lake
A small salt lake on the high plains.

typical landscape
A typical sight while on the high plains.

straight road
The road changed a lot from very straight and long to lots of winding corners.

salt lake
We pass another salt lake after entering into Jujuy, Argentina.

While still deep in the mountains and yet to descend, the sun set and all of our amazing views were finished.

cloud level
The last thing that I saw before everything became completely dark was that we were just about to enter into these clouds.