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Quilmes Ruins

Quilmes Ruins

Ruins of Quilmes are located in 110 mi (177 km) Northwest of Tucuman, Tucumán Province in Argentina. It is famous for one of the largest settlements from pre- Columbian era. Quilmes archeological site was inhabited by Quilmes people and covered an area of about 30 hectares.



Location: 110 mi (177 km) Northwest of Tucuman, Tucumán Province   Map

Open: 8:30am- dusk daily

Area: 30 hectares




Description of Quilmes Ruins

Quilmes Ruins is a large archaeological site in the Calchaqui Valleys in the Tucuman Province of Argentina. It is the largest pre- Columbian Native American settlement in the country and the whole region. Apparent high density of its residence gave many historians right to call it "the first pre- Hispanic city of Argentina". Today it covers an area of roughly 30 hectares. It hey day was in the 9th century AD when Qulmes people inhabited this site. Historians believe it once housed over 5000 inhabitants.


The growth of the city was interrupted in 1667 when the Quilmes people suffered their most important military defeat at the hands of the Spaniards led by Alonso Mercado y Villacorta. Over 400 Spanish soldiers besieged Quilmes and prevent its residents to access the crops. Additionally they poisoned the source of water supply that flowed from the mountains. After a month of bitter fighting residents of besieged surrendered. They were allowed to keep their personal items, but they had to abandon Quilmes and move to a reservation on the La Plata river over a thousand miles away. Spaniards didn't bother to provide food or water for the Native population. It is estimated that out 2,600 survivors who started the march, only 400 people made it to the reservation. It is less than 10% of the original population of the town.


Quilmes Ruins was re- discovered in 1888 by Samuel Alejandro Lafone Quevedo. But first scientific exploration of the region was carried out in 1897 by the archaeologists Juan Bautista Ambrosetti.





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