provincia (province), extreme northwestern Argentina, bordering Chile (west) and Bolivia (north). It comprises several cordilleras of the Andes Mountains-reaching elevations of 16,500 feet (5,000 metres) and separated by the eastern portion of a bleak tableland 11,500 feet (3,500 metres) high called the Atacama Plateau-that descend on the east to form sub-Andean ranges and valleys. The eastern Andean and sub-Andean ranges are drained by the U-shaped Rio Grande-San Francisco river system, which in its northeasternmost extension, below 1,000 feet (300 metres), is warm and humid. The Humahuaca Gorge, in the northwestern part of the system, is a scenic canyon running northward 100 miles (160 km) along the Rio Grande from the provincial capital, San Salvador de Jujuy. The gorge was historically important as a trade route up through the Atacama Plateau to Bolivia and Peru and was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2003
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