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Aconcagua Provincial Park, Puente del Inca and Las Cuevas

Mendoza

With almost 7000 MSL, the Aconcagua Mountain is the highest peak in the Americas. It attracts climbers, mountaineers and hikers worldwide, as well as travellers who visit the mountain to admire its immensity. Very close to the mountain, you will find the Puente del Inca, and in Las Cuevas, the famous Cristo Redentor Viewpoint.

The Aconcagua Provincial Park is open from November to April. Entry fees apply. You can visit the Horcones Lake, Puente del Inca and Las Cuevas all year round.

What to see
Aconcagua Provincial Park

In the Andes Mountain Range, you will find peaks of over 6000 metres, but the star is the Aconcagua Mountain. With 6962 MSL, it is the highest mountain in the Americas and one of the most popular destinations in the world for mountaineering.

 

Apart from glaciers, rivers and meadows, the park also protects archaeological remains. The Aconcagua was an Inca site for sacred ritual and it was also part of the "Qhapaq Ñan" or Inca Road, considered a World Heritage Site.

 

It is open throughout the year to the general public, and it is located on National Route 7. There are self-guided trails, trekking routes and viewpoints to enjoy the mountain. To see the hanging glaciers on the south face of the Aconcagua Mountain, you can hike along a 2-kilometre trail to the Horcones Lake, which is part of a small wetland with 5 lakes.

Puente del Inca

This natural bridge on the Cuevas River was carved millions of years ago by thermal waters, colouring it in orange, yellow and ochre. The bridge is part of the Andean  "Qhapaq Ñan" road system or Inca Road, and it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is located 2 km from the Aconcagua Provincial Park.

Las Cuevas

About 11 km from the entrance to the Aconcagua Park, there is a road that winds up from Las Cuevas to the Cristo Redentor, a famous panoramic viewpoint on the border with Chile.

 

In Las Cuevas, you will find the buildings of Casuchas del Rey, which served as post offices of the Royal Mail and as a shelter for travellers during the 18th century, and that are now considered a National Historic Monument. From there, you can access the Matienzo Gorge on the border with Chile, where you will discover glaciers, wetlands and archaeological sites.

For professional mountain climbers

Mountain climbers have several areas where they can camp, both in the Normal Route and in the Polish Glacier Route: There are approach camps (between 2800 and 3800 MSL), base camps (between 4000 and 4200 MSL), and altitude camps (between 4930 and 6050 MSL). These types of expeditions require good planning and hiring certified guides.

How to get there and move around

To reach the Aconcagua Provincial Park and the rest of the attractions, take National Route 7 from Mendoza Capital City (185 km of paved road).

 

There are public transport services that reach the Aconcagua Park Ranger Station in Horcones. There are several tour operators that offer excursions form the city to the High Mountains, up to Las Cuevas and stopping by Puente del Inca and the Horcones Lake.

Where to stay

There are several camping sites in the Aconcagua Provincial Park. Las Cuevas has some accommodation options and restaurants. In Los Penitentes (21 km away) and Uspallata (83 km away), there are inns, hostels, cuisine, supermarkets and petrol stations.

 

Mendoza Capital City (193 km away) is a good place to use as a base to explore the area as it provides a wide variety of services, camping sites and accommodation of all types.

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