Argentina - Provincia de San Juan

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San Juan is a province of Argentina, located in the westen part of the country. Neighbouring provinces are, moving clockwise from the north, La Rioja, San Luis and Mendoza. To the west limits with Chile.


* 1 History
* 2 Geography and climate
* 3 Economy


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 Jufré 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 Río de la Plata, an earthquake almost completely destroyed the city.

The town was a great supporter of the San Martín expedition to cross the Andes, supplying gold, men and mules.

In 1944 a moderate, yet highly destructive earthquake tore down 80% of the city killing 10,000 people. A fundraiser to benefit the victims of the quake was instrumental in the meeting of Colonel Juan Perón and his eventual wife and political companion Eva Duarte.

Geography and climate

The province is part of the continental semi-desert Cuyo region. In it, the arid plains on the East, with a few low Sierras, swiftly turn into over 6,000 meter high mountain peaks on the West, both victims of the dry hot Zonda wind. Most of the precipitations take place during the summers, often as storms.

The hot wind 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 Jáchal and San Juan Rivers, both of the system of the Desaguadero River, 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.


Viticulture is the main crop of the province's economy traditionally linked to agriculture, with some 500 km2 (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.

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.

Energy production is mainly centred on a few dams such as Embalse Ullum, Dique de la Roza, Dique 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 percentage, by hydrocarbons.

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, Represa de Ullum, Pismanta hot baths, and the pagan Difunta Correa shrine.



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