Eventually we decided to go and see something outside Mendoza. We randomly ended up going to Villavicencio. The trip took us up what was the main road between Chile and Argentina until the 1970s, and I felt carsick just thinking about how horrible the journey must have been. Now the road was pretty much empty, and we trundled up into the mountains to the Hotel Villavicencio.
People used to break their journey across the cordillera here, but the hotel closed in 1978 when the new road was opened. It was being restored with a view to opening again as some kind of luxury resort, but all was still quiet when we were there. We headed on up to some viewpoints more than 2000m above sea level and looked out over the road winding crazily up into the hills.