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San Juan Province (Argentina)

San Juan is a province of Argentina, located in the western part of the country. Neighbouring provinces are, moving clockwise from the north, La Rioja, San Luis and Mendoza. It borders Chile on the west.


Huarpes, Diaguitas, Capazanes, Olongastas and Yacampis, with influences of the Inca empire, inhabited the area before the arrival of the Spanish conquistadores.

The city of San Juan de la Frontera was founded by Juan Jufre y Montesa in 1562 and relocated 2 kilometres south in 1593 due to the frequent flooding of the San Juan River.

In 1776, the year in which San Juan passed to the Viceroyalty of the Rio de la Plata, an earthquake almost completely destroyed the city.

The town was a great supporter of Jose de San Martin's expedition to cross the Andes, supplying gold, men and mules.

In 1944 a moderate, yet highly destructive earthquake near the capital destroyed most of the city and killed 10,000 people. A fundraiser to benefit the victims of the quake was instrumental in the meeting of Colonel Juan Peron and his eventual wife and political companion Eva Duarte.

Geography and climate

The province is part of the continental semi-desert Cuyo region. The arid plains on the east, with a few low sierras (hills), swiftly turn into 6,000-meter-high mountain peaks towards the west. Both areas are subject to the dry hot Zonda (a kind of Fohn wind). Most of the precipitations take place during the summer, often as storms.

The hot wind has modeled the clay-rich red soil into Pampa del Leoncito (Reserva Natural Estricta El Leoncito) and Valle de la Luna (Parque Provincial Ischigualasto) 200 million year old geological formations.

The Jachal and San Juan rivers, both part of Desaguadero River system, are the source of fertile valleys and centre of the province's economy. The San Juan River finishes in the Huanacache lagoons (sometimes called Guanacache), on the southeast.


Traditionally, the economy is based on agriculture, especially the growing of vines. As the second producer of Argentine Wine

The vine reaches San Juan between the years 1569 and 1589 at the hands of Spanish conquistadors. Favored by optimal weather conditions and soil, the winemaking largely expressed and accelerated development in the province. AI beginning occurred in small volume, limited to meet the needs of small communities in the colony. We faced several difficulties on the one hand the arid climate forced to build dams and irrigation systems artificial (channels) and on the other hand the jurisdiction of products from Europe higher quality [4].

Viticulture is the main crop of the province's economy, with some 500 km (56% of the productive area), and the later wine production from 90% of the crop. San Juan is the second Argentine wine producer after the Mendoza Province. Other plantations include tomato, maize, potato, fig, peach and many others.

After year 1980, there was an industrial expansion that now includes, in addition to the wineries, food processing plants and chemical factories, plastics, iron, auto parts and textiles.

Also important is the mining industry of very different materials, from gold and lead to graphite and clay. Other industries include food industry and conserves, textiles and mineral processing

In the early 2000 the province came into mineral development, and the Veladero project the most important of which at least 1 year old are drawn more than 11,000 ounces of gold. But highlights this more projects including the Easter Lama, with the particularity that it is shared with neighbouring Chile. [7].

Also beginning in the year 2006, began the search for oil, more precisely north of the province in the department Jachal [8].

Energy production is mainly hydroelectrical, produced by a few dams such as Quebrada de Ullum, La Roza, San Emiliano and El Pinar Station, which also help regulate water the level for irrigation of the arid lands. Electricity is also produced, in a lesser proportion, by thermal power stations.

As throughout Argentina, San Juan is beginning to have considerable income from tourism natural Ischigualasto Provincial Park being the main tourist attraction, where tourists come from all over the world mainly from Europe, also underscores ecotourism with the National Park San Guillermo and adventure tourism, with stairs to the hill Mercedario. Also beginning in 2005, started the operation of a tourism theme vasado in the wine industry, creating the so-called "Wine Routes"

The tourism is not very developed in the province and consist mainly of local visitors. Its main attractions are the city of San Juan (and birth house of Sarmiento) the Ischigualasto Provincial Park, the Ullum Dam, the Pismanta hot springs, and the pagan Difunta Correa shrine.

Political division

The province is divided into 19 departments .

Department (Capital)

Albardon (General San Martin)

Angaco (Villa del Salvador)

Calingasta (Tamberias)

Capital (San Juan)

Caucete (Caucete)

Chimbas (Paula Alabarracin de Sarmiento)

Iglesia (Rodeo)

Jachal (San Jose de Jachal)

Nueve de Julio (9 de Julio)

Pocito (Villa Alberastain)

Rawson (Villa Krause)

Rivadavia (Rivadavia)

San Martin (San Isidro)

Santa Lucia (Santa Lucia)

Sarmiento (Media Agua)

Ullum (Ibanez)

Valle Fertil (San Agustin)

Veinticinco de Mayo (Santa Rosa)

Zonda (Basilio Nievas)


The Province of San Juan has many attractions, including the Ischigualasto Provincial Park, as the main attraction, the area also northwest, department Iglesia in the town Rodeo: where it is possible to appreciate its green mountains with great streams of melting of the mountain or Cuesta Wind Reservoir, where you can practice departes water. Calingasta, with its majestic mountains and rivers, is also one of the most visited areas: * highlighting Leoncito The Astronomical Complex, which houses the largest reflecting telescope in the country, with a diameter of 2,215 cm, which was used by the entire international scientific community It can contemplate heaven sanjuanino, the National Park Leoncito to practice or carrovelismo, Cerro Mercedario, was elected as a tourist destination for people from the most diverse origins of the world for climbing and also can be seen doing Route sanmartiniana Pass by the Ducks. Jachal, located north offers a different alternative to a more thematic tourism vasado in tradition and history museums in the town of San Jose de Jachal and in the environs around ancient flour mills, which reflect and show economic activity in that area egg amediados of 1700, can also be performed adventure sports like climbing mountains or on their raftin Jachal in the river. Valle Fertil, characterized by its majestic scenery of green mountains with the presence of rivers and streams, and being forced to step tourists who want to visit the Valley of the Moon, becomes the most visited area of the province, has attractive as Reservoir St. Augustine, the town of San Agustin del Valle Fertile with the presence of hotels, lodges and several campsites and even the Tumana River, turned into one of the largest resorts in the area.

Tulum Valley, has attractive as Ullum Dam, for the practice of various water sports, the Gorge Zonda, with the presence of spas, camping and the Speedway Zonda Eduardo Copello known nationally, La Laja, here are waters Applications therapeutic classified the group of hipotermales, Sulphurous clorosulfatadas, aciduladas, which are 700 meters above sea level, is recommended for rheumatism, skin diseases and respiratory tract. And incorporate a thematic tourism vasado in production and winemaking olivicola with creation of the so-called Wine Routes and Routes of the Olive. The City of San Juan, is characterized as one of the most modern cities in the country, and is known as the city as a haven for by lush vegetation on its streets, squares and parks, also has numerous museums highlighting the Native Home Domingo Faustino Sarmiento. It also has a strong presence in hotel capacity of all types and are a lot of dance clubs for all tastes and ages.

Moreover develop several civic holidays that celebrate the different economic activities and natural attractions with some recognized musicians local, national and international, typical food and sales of regional products, especially as the main National Day of the Sun, is feast is the most popular in the province since the entire province meets them, starts with a property exhibition in the capital dominated artistic performances and a fair gastronomic then also becomes the ride of the queens carousel through the principal streets of San Juan and concludes with a spectacle of dancers artistic scenery and fireworks, there is the choice of queen and virreina Sun delivering the respective awards. The National Day of Saint Lucia, the Provincial Tradition in Jachal, and the Apple Seed Church, the Mining in Los Berros, the Melon and Watermelon in Sarmiento, the muscat grape in Albardo

See also

1894 San Juan earthquake

1952 San Juan earthquake

1977 San Juan earthquake

External links

Official page (Spanish)

Tourist office (Spanish)

Universidad Nacional de San Juan (Spanish)

Diario de Cuyo (Newspaper - Spanish)

San Juan Tourist Guide (English - Spanish - German)

San Juan Events Guide (Spanish)

CuyoNoticias (digital newspaper - Spanish-English)

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