Río Aluminé - Photo: Jorge González
On the right bank of the Aluminé River, in the western central area of the Province of Neuquén, lies this prized nook of the Andes Mountain Range, 50 km from the Icalma International Pass.
Aluminé means “glittering well” in the language of the mapuche people, native settlers in the area. Officially founded in the year 1915, its economy is based on sheep and cattle, forest exploitation and tourist activities. It is the main urban center in Pehuenia, an area of predominant native vegetation with mountains upholstered in ñires, cañas colihue, oaks and mainly monkey-puzzle trees, species from Patagonia and sacred tree for the mapuche culture.
Its environment, incredibly beautiful, offers multiple activities to be practiced in contact with nature: paragliding, hang-gliding, 4x4 riding, hiking or horse-riding.
The area has various tourist circuits that lead to Ruca Choroi, Carri Lil, Lonco Luan, Villa Pehuenia, Lake Moquehue and Villa La Angostura, the Quillahue River, Ñorquinco, Quillén, Pulmarí, Lake Hui Hui and the Malaco Ravine, and protected areas such as Chañy and Batea Mahuida.
In the blue lakes, rivers and cascades that populate Aluminé, perch and trout sport fishing is practiced as well as nautical sports such as canoeing, kayaking and rafting. Navigable during the whole year, the Aluminé River torrent is the scenery of the Argentinian Kayaking Championship and the Tourist Rafting Championship.
Of the sport hunting modalities, the best known is high red deer and wild boar hunting.
Witness of its cultural tradition, Aluminé celebrates the Monkey-Puzzle Provincial Festival during the first fortnight of March, with various popular shows in which well-known local and national artists take part.
Its weather is template and humid, typical of this Andean area, with fresh summers and some winter snowfalls on the mountains.