Puna: Visit Mars, Spaceship Not Required

Siéntete en Marte - Descubre Tu Naturaleza (Puna Argentina)

The new phase of the Feel Your Nature international campaign, which promotes tourism in Argentina, invites you to take a trip “out of this world”. Feel Like You’re on Mars, the campaign’s newest commercial, highlights the landscapes of the Puna Argentina, an arid highland region described in the video as “one of the environments most similar to Mars on planet Earth.”

The Puna Argentina, Mars on Earth

María Eugenia Farias, a research scientist of the National Council of Scientific and Technical Research (CONICET), narrates the captivating commercial that shows two “astronauts” crossing a surface of “reddish soil, arid landscape, apparent lacking life.” The environment is a desert and the air pressure here is low.”

An encounter “of the third kind” with the local fauna reveals the twtst: the explorers are actually traversing the Desierto del Diablo (Devil’s Desert) in Argentina’s Salta province. Farias then invites us to discover the “natural laboratory” of the Puna Argentina by ourselves.

Source: Secretaría de Turismo de la Nación Argentina / YouTube

Feel Argentina

Feel Like You’re on Mars is the most recent effort of the Tourism Board of the Nation of Argentina to position the country as an international destination through digital means. An earlier stage of the campaign highlighted three stories of foreign tourists filmed in Argentina’s Patagonia, inside Los Glaciares National Park in Santa Cruz. The general concept of the campaign is “Discover your nature”, a double entendre message that encourages to unveil the nature both of Argentina and of oneself.

Other Argentine destinations featured in Feel Your Nature were Iguazú National Park and the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires. In the case of Iguazú, former NBA basketball player Emanuel “Manu” Ginóbili invited American tourists to visit the falls in a commercial filmed at the imposing Garganta del Diablo. For Buenos Aires, six tourists from different countries participated in a 12-hour broadcast that documented the diversity of nightlife alternatives the city has for tourists.

Gustavo Santos, Argentina’s Secretary of Tourism, said that “through these actions we seek to increase the flow of foreign tourists using a promotional plan for markets and audiences that allows better dissemination. This positioning of our country as a travel destination in the world accompanies other measures to increase our tourism, such as reimbursing of value added tax (IVA) on accommodation, increasing air travel routes, facilitating visas, and eliminating reciprocity rates.”