Not much happens in Cafayate in the afternoon. The scorching desert climate in these summer months makes it too hot to do just about anything — except rest, nap or take a dip in the pool. Or maybe just pedal your bicycle. But that’s appeal of Cafayate. It’s barely a dot on the map. And even as the wine tourism business slowly draws national and international attention to this sleepy and tranquil community, it doesn’t affect the residents. It’s just a small town.
But that’s its appeal. I was told that high profile people from entertainment, sports and politics find Cafayate the perfect place to chill and just blend into the landscape. I found it extremely easy to spend three days here. Under the squelching sun the town shuts its doors between 12:30 and 3 or 4pm. Siesta. Restaurants don’t open until 8:30 or 9pm and it seems everyone rides a bicycle. Cold beaded glasses of Torrontes, the white wine that for the most part grows here exclusively, are the perfect refresher for the hot summer days. Later when people wake from their siestas and naps it’s fun to explore the artisan markets, a museum dedicated to the wine history here and of course the local wineries.
Sure there are a few luxury hotels in town, the Sheraton for example shares its 5 stars with a high-profile bodega. But for Jeremiah and I, we decided on a tiny hostal that fortunately includes a nice pool on its premises. Tomorrow we’ll have to break are ties with seductive Cafayate and make our way south. I originally hoped to make it to Mendoza for my birthday, but Cafayate captured me.
Because perhaps this is the best way to real convey the vibe and tranquil setting of Cafayate,
I share with you a little photo essay on Cafayate bicycles: