La Rioja is the capital city of the Argentine province of La Rioja, located on the east of the province. The city has a population of almost 150,000 according to the 2001 census [INDEC].
La Rioja is located on the foot of the Velasco Sierras, 1,167 km (725 mi) from Buenos Aires, and 430 km (267 mi) from Córdoba. It is one of the most arid and least populated provinces of Argentina. The Capitán Vicente Almandos Almonacid Airport (IATA:IRJ, ICAO: SANL) at coordinates 29°23′21″S 66°48′09″W is 7 kilometres away from La Rioja, and serves regular flights to Buenos Aires and Catamarca.
Former president Isabel Martínez de Perón was born in La Rioja. Another former president, Carlos Menem, was born nearby