In the northern end of Salta, as if it were giving its back to the province, isolated by mountain chains and protected by long, narrow and winding roads, like a gem set on the rock, rises Iruya, a mountain town with an elusive beauty.
During the 17th and 18th centuries, Iruya was a little parcel within the two million hectares owned by the marquis of Tojo. Located 2713 meters above sea level, it now has the appearance of a fortified city. Men have placed rocks where nature failed to do so. The streets' paving constitutes a shell that protects them from rains.
Travelers who discover IRUYA are overwhelmed by its beauty and silence. Local novelist Francisco Zamora wrote: “Seen from the beach, many meters bellow it, the town looks like a crooked shelf the limed walls of which shine with an immaculate light. No other town resembles it, and no other town is so beautiful”. Narrow valleys and steep slopes force locals to grow crops that hang from an incredible height, surrounded by pircas. Water reaches the crops by means of small channels that where planned and built with the craftsmanship of an engineer.