Driving the challenging 365 turns of Ruta del Año in the Andes
Ruta Provincial 52 is a challenging road located in the western part of Argentina near the Chilean border. It’s called Ruta del Año (Route of the Year) because it has 365 turns, most of them hairpins.
How long is Ruta del Año to Termas de Villavicencio?
Tucked away in the Las Heras department, in the northwest of Mendoza Province, the road is fully unpaved but navigable by most passenger vehicles. This curvy and unsealed mountainous track, which rarely permits speeds over 30 km/h, features some of the most dramatic scenery in the region. With 365 turns, the road is not for those prone to car sickness. The road is 93.7 km (58.22 miles) long, running from Uspallata to Mendoza.
Is the Argentinian Ruta Provincial 52 worth it?
Set high in the Andes, the road tops out at 2,960m (9,711ft) above sea level at Cruz de Paramillo. It’s very dangerous to drive on this road between July and October. The road leads to Villavicencio, an old resort spa located in an ecologically preserved area about 50 km north of Mendoza. Although the resort has been unused for the past 30 years, the grounds still have the famous thermal waters, several garden paths, and the old chapel.