I am not exactly a fan of planning too far in advance. So, when last week I realized that the US financial markets (my line of work) had a long weekend right ahead, I said: "let's go to Salta".
A phone call to my travel agent got me two round trip tickets on Aerolíneas for about 250 dollars each. I don't know about the cost for foreigners, but the subject has been covered extensively here and the answer seems to be: use a local travel agent.
The flight was uneventful except for the fact the the Argentina/Germany soccer game was going on during the flight and the pilot let us hear about the game on the intercom. However, someone complained and it was turned off, then on again, but too low to hear properly, etc. The people's mood changed significantly for the worse when Germany tied, not too long before the end.
A car was waiting for us at the airport, but that was a mistake. It was part of an arrangement with people I know in Salta and I should have checked before accepting the package. The cost of being driven into Salta should not be much above 6 dollars. I told them I would not take the same transfer out, hiring my own transportation.
I had chosen the Papyrus Hotel, on advice from this forum. Cost: about 100 dollars a day, including taxes and breakfast for a nice room, overlooking the city of Salta. Maybe I'll comment more on this later.
That evening, we had dinner at a place called "Las Leñitas", a sort of "parrilla" or local steakhouse. We had a good meal, including a bottle of good wine and a great "bife de chorizo", for a little over 30 dollars.
The next chapters will include: María Livia (Saturday), Cafayate wine country, not to be confused with Calafate, in our South (today), Cachi (tomorrow) and I don't know what else. We just had a good dinner for 9 bucks, BTW!!!!
Tomorrow, we are going to be toured to Cachi by forum member and unofficial Salta local expert GIENA!!! We'll see just how good she is!!!