Sunday, May 04, 2008

valle de la luna ( moon valley)- visit on 3 May 2008

They call this as the valle de la luna ( moon valley ) because it looks like the lunar surface. It is 300 km from San Juan city in the province of San Juan. This 63000 hectare park has been declared as a world heritage site by UNESCO.

The moon valley has fossils from the Triasic period, which lasted for 45 million years from 228 million and 187 million years back. They have found fossils of the first reptiles/dinosaurs of the world. Paleontologists from all over the world do research at this site in their quest to understand and reconstruct prehistorical evolutions.

The landscape of the valley is a natural beauty. The wind and the rain have worked out some incredible sculptures on the rocks.

Here is a spinx-like rock





Here is a picture of the rocks formed like balls. They keep coming out of the surface like pumpkins. The outer surface is formed by manganese.

The rock formation below is called as Submarino..since it resembles a submarine
More fotos...in my foto gallery http://picasaweb.google.com/viswanathanifs

The valley is surrounded by hills which shine reddish in the sun due to iron content in their rocks. The valley attracted 70,000 tourists last year. The park arranges moon light trips every month. They say it is magical.
Although it was not in my original programme of the visit to San Juan, last week, it became possible thanks to the offer of the helicopter by the Governor Jose Luis Gioga. It took us one hour by helicopter from San Juan city and at the valley we spent an hour touring the valley with a guide, who is passionate about the valley.
San Juan is one of the most dynamic and progressive provinces of Argentina. Although it is small with a population of 800,000 and 97 percent of the area is arid and mountainous, the hardworking San Juaninos have made the province as the second largest wine producer in the country. Syra is the signature wine of the province. The province´s agro exports include wine, table grapes, olives and fruit concentrates. There is also a thriving and growing mining industry in the areas of gold, silver, copper etc. And , of course, it has the Amancay Golf club , where I played nine holes before rushing to the airport.

1 comment:

Pablo said...

Dear Viswanathan

Very nice comments about this magnific place of San Juan Province, in Argentina.
I have never been there!!! And I have been in India 7 times. Well, I hope to be in Valle de la Luna soon.
Congratulations.

Pablo C├ęsar