From the Andes Mountains to high desert shallows, these are the most effective points to do in San Pedro de Atacama. The Atacama Desert was our favored location to see in Chile. Located in north Chile, linking Bolivia and also Argentina in South America, the Atacama Desert is the driest non-polar desert on the planet and also numerous vacationers make their means to the community of San Pedro de Atacama to appreciate every one of the fantastic trips in this remarkable location. We went to the Atacama Desert with Exodus Travels and also uncovered all the highlights with the aid of our dependable overview, Alex.
Things to do in San Pedro de Atacama
The Atacama Desert is the highest possible and also dryest non-polar desert on the planet. It is recognized for its lunar landscape and also all-natural charm. With a range of surfaces consisting of salt apartments, hot springs, and also shallows, Salar de Atacama is just one of one of the most striking locations we have actually ever before gone to.
Tours and also journeys can be reserved to the desert from San Pedro de Atacama, and also while seeing this area of Chile, you will certainly additionally have the possibility to submerse in its society as it is a facility for native neighborhoods. The community is a prominent location for backpackers and also brave vacationers that have an interest in journey, nature, and also background, and also there are numerous points to do in the location. Here are some recommendations for points to do in San Pedro de Atacama.
Where is San Pedro de Atacama
The Atacama Desert lies in the north fifty percent of Chile in between the Pacific Ocean, to the west, and also the Andes Mountains, to the eastern. This 1,000-mile strip of desert, is the highest possible non-polar desert plateau on the planet. (Antarctica is the driest put on planet if you are asking yourself) and also San Pedro de Atacama is a town situated in the heart of it near the Bolivian Border. San Pedro de Atacama is where everybody makes a base to do desert trips and also this trendy community is a location in its very own right. With dining establishments, resorts, scenic tour firms, and also stores, it produces a great base to see every little thing in Salar de Atacama.
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1. Laguna Chaxa
Seeing the flamingoes of Chaxa Lagoon was the initial quit on our scenic tour and also it was a great one! As component of the Los Flamencos National Reserve, Chaxa Lagoon is the most effective location to see flamingoes. Three varieties of flamingoes regular the salt swimming pools to eat salt water shrimp. The setup is what makes this quit so remarkable.
Rocky courses weave with salt shallows bordered by layers of shades resulting in the Andes Mountains. Flamingoes fly from one swimming pool to one more and after that gradually roam in the still waters with their representations amazing in the background of the bordering volcanoes. From the white salt down payments to the pink colors of the desert, this is an area you’ll intend to take out your video camera.
There are 3 major shallows in Sector Soncor with the Chaxa shallows being the most effective location to place Andean and also Chilean Flamingoes. The shallows lie at a high altitude of 2300 meters (over 7500 feet)
Chaxa Lagoon is 2 hrs from San Pedro de Atacama and also you’ll invest at the very least a hr appreciating the strolling routes that weave with the shallows.
2. Visit the Valle de la Luna (Moon Valley)
The Valle de la Luna is a unique landscape that lies simply 13 kilometres (8 miles) beyond San Pedro de Atacama. It is called the Moon Valley due to its resemblance to the surface area of the moon however it actually looks even more like the surface area of Mars with its red rocks and also red dunes.
Also situated within the Los Flamencos National Reserve, this is just one of the leading locations to see in the Atacama to check out the Mars Valley. With its rough surface and also uncommon rock developments. In reality, NASA evaluated its Mars Rover in the Atacama due to its comparable landscape and also environment.
3. Hike Duna Mayor
The valley is a terrific location to go walking, and also there are a number of routes that lead with the location. You can additionally see the valley at sundown for some lovely sights of the bordering hills. Hiking Duna Mayor is an outstanding brief walking to extraordinary panoramas. The walking has to do with 20 mins out and also takes you along a slim route neglecting high dunes and also perfect rock developments.
The most outstanding view was the Moon Valley Amphitheatre. We had the clearest sight of it strolling back along the high flight on the Duna Mayor trek. It advised us a lot of Wilpena Pound in South Australia.
4. Mirador Lickan-Antai
There are a number of miradors to enjoy the sundown in Valle de La Luna and also we saw to it to stand out right into every one of them for the very best sights. With Exodus Travels we were ruined and also taken pleasure in a glass of white wine with cheese as we ignored the remarkable sights from Mirador Lickan Antai. This is a wonderful visit the side of the roadway if you are biking, self-driving or have actually worked with an overview. You can trek out for far better sights of the desert landscapes.
5. Las Tres Marias Valle de La Luna
If you are trying to find those pictures that record the Salar de Atacama, a quit at Las Tres Marías is where you’ll check out the renowned rock developments of the Atacama Desert. The salt apartment of the Atacama Desert is much various from the Bolivian Salt Flats. See what the salt apartments in Bolivia are everything about at A Bolivia Salt Flats Tour in Uyuni: Everything You Need to Know
Since it is such a completely dry desert (some locations just see rainfall every 100 years!) you don’t obtain the glass-like sights and also trick-of-the-eye pictures as you perform in Bolivia, however this is the location where you can have fun with range and also extent a bit. The route is a brief 15-minute stroll.
6. Sunset from Mirador de Kari Piedra del Coyote
One of the most effective points to do in San Pedro de Atacama is to enjoy the sundown from Mirador de Kari Piedra del Coyote. Located outdoors Valle de La Luna, this is the most effective location for sundown due to the fact that you require to be out of the valley by a specific time. Since you cannot remain in the Valle de la Luna after sundown, this mirador has the mass of visitors viewing the sunlight drop in the Atacama Desert.
It is a gorgeous sight with the sunlight producing darkness and also deepness on the rough valley flooring as the high hills shimmer with shade bordering the huge desert.
7. Visit the El Tatio hot springs
The El Tatio hot springs are a team of geothermal springtimes that are the highest possible geothermal location on the planet. A check out to the hot springs occurs at dawn, and also while it is a very early and also chilly scenic tour, this is one location in the Atacama Desert that you don’t intend to miss out on.
The El Tatio Geysers have to do with a two-hour drive from San Pedro de Atacama. We were gotten well prior to daybreak and also jumped in the van for a snooze prior to going out in the quick air. It was -13 levels Celcius at the hot springs so make certain to layer up with handwear covers and also a hat. The hot springs are most energetic at dawn when the water goes to its best (and also air at its chilliest), and also they generate vapor and also warm water that can get to temperature levels of as much as 100°C.
It takes regarding 90 mins to walk the hot springs along the marked rock courses and also while not fairly as outstanding at the Geysers of Yellowstone, these are the 3rd biggest geothermal locations in the world so they need to not be missed out on! Read a lot more regarding the Yellowstone Geysers at The Essential Guide to Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone
8. Lagunas Miscanti and also Miñiques
Have you ever before questioned what it resembled to stroll at high elevations however don’t intend to trek for days to arrive? Well, a see to the high-altitude lakes (The Lagunas Altiplanicas) of Miscanti and also Miñiques will certainly suffice. We drove straight to an altitude of over 4000 meters (13,000 feet) to stroll from the attractive lakes of Miscanti and also Miniques.
Usually, you would certainly require to hike for days to reach this altitude. The still deep blue waters stand out and also it is stunning to be standing at 4000 meters with both high volcanoes looming expenses. It was unsubstantiated that the Volcano right prior to our eyes was more than Mount Kilimanjaro. The 2 volcanoes that mount the shallows are (5,622 meters (18,445 feet)) and also Cerro Miñiques (5,910 meters (19,390 feet))
9. Spy on Vicuñas
The shallows are attached by a route of rocks and also you’ll have the ability to see wild vicunas strolling the landscape. These pets relate to the llama and also el paca family members and also are currently shielded. These vicunas are difficult to tame so to obtain their sought-after woollen, they round them as much as cut them just as soon as every 3 years.
10. Go stargazing
San Pedro de Atacama lies in a location with really little light air pollution or rainfall, that makes it a dreamland for daydreaming and also excursions can be reserved for around $50 to see the evening skies around San Pedro de Atacama. There are a number of firms that supply stargazing excursions in the location that you can reserve in San Pedro de Atacama. Our scenic tour was an add with Exodus Travels.
The clear, completely dry air of the Atacama Desert enables outstanding exposure of the celebrities, worlds, and also the Milky Way. Because of the reduced moisture, high elevation, and also reduced light air pollution, it is a location for astronomers to research the skies, and also numerous firms from all over the world have researchers examining its dark skies. San Pedro de Atacama is prominent for Astro-tourist and also you cannot miss out on doing this scenic tour. I actually didn’t believe I’d be pleased, however I liked paying attention to the tales of our overview as he mentioned constellations prior to having us consider the huge telescopes at Saturn, Mars, and also Pluto.
We browsed those huge telescopes at celebrities and also worlds up until the wee hrs of the early morning. Our overview was so gung ho that long after various other excursions left, we remained considering the evening up until 2 am!
No mobile phone or electronic cameras are enabled, however Dave went off on his very own to take some evening pictures and also the business we chose was kind adequate to provide pictures of our experience. This is just one of one of the most prominent trips in the Atacama Desert.
You can additionally see the ALMA Observatory, which lies regarding 50 kilometers beyond San Pedro de Atacama. The observatory is residence to the biggest variety of radio telescopes on the planet, and also
11. Stand on the Tropic of Capricorn
There is something unique regarding going across among the 5 significant circles of the planet. For instance, when taking a cruise ship, each traveler obtains a certification that they went across the equator. When checking out the Atacama Desert, we had the possibility to base on the Tropic of Capricorn. The Tropic of Capricorn has to do with 60 kilometres from San Pedro de Atacama. It’s a tiny and also brief quit, however really trendy to stand at the location that is one of the most south latitude where the sunlight can show up straight overhanging at midday. Cool eh?
12. Visit the Village of Tocanao
Besides San Pedro de Atacama, there are a couple of towns in the Atacama Desert. If you intend to do some buying, the town of Tocanao is a great quit. We purchased some fashion jewelry and also bags for simply a couple of bucks. Located 38 kilometres from San Pedro de Atacama, many excursions will certainly quit right here for at the very least thirty minutes to a hr to sustain the neighborhood neighborhood. The most significant structure in the town is the belfry which was integrated in 1750.
13. Church of Socaire
Socaire is one more drop in the Atacama Desert that is a great option for lunch. Our overview called in advance to purchase standard stew. The piece de resistance in this community is the Church of Socaire. This rustic church with a thatched roofing system lies in an attractive setup simply off the side of the roadway.
14. Explore the Salar de Tara
The Salar de Tara is a huge salt level situated within the Los Flamencos National Reserve of the Atacama Desert beside beside Piers Rojas (The Red Rocks). It is the 3rd biggest salt level on the planet, and also it is residence to a range of plant and also pet life. The Salar de Tara is a terrific location to opt for a drive, as there are a number of dust roadways that lead with the location. You can additionally see the salt apartments on a scenic tour, which will certainly take you to a few of the most effective places for digital photography and also sightseeing and tour. Read a lot more at: Salar de Tara an Extraordinary Trip in the Atacama Desert
15. Salar de Talar
Another salt level in the Atacama is the Salar de Talar. Located at 3900 meters, Salar de Talar is 46 square kilometres that you can check out heading to Laguna Miscanti. We didn’t see the salt level, however we did quit on the side of the roadway a number of times for sights of the valleys listed below. The wonderful aspect of taking an arranged scenic tour is that our neighborhood overview constantly understood where to quit to see the leading views of the Atacama Desert.
16. Valle de la Muerte (Death Valley or Mars Valley)
Valle de la Muerte is called so due to the fact that it is just one of the toughest areas in the world. In the previous those pets (and also people) that risked to go across died in the ruthless problems. No plants, pets or perhaps pests can endure in Death Valley.
Also referred to as Mars Valley, this is a terrific quit for backpackers or those seeking to check out by themselves. Located simply 2 kilometres from San Pedro de Atacama this is a great quit to see the rough landscape with desert dunes and also unusual developments offering a preference of that Mars surface that we discussed previously.
16. Rainbow Valley – Valle del Arcoiris
Throughout the Atacama Desert, the rainbow shades of the landscape are among one of the most outstanding websites. But there is in fact an area especially called Rainbow Valley. Valle del Arcoiris has to do with 90 mins from San Pedro de Atacama which can be reserved on a day scenic tour. It showcases the layers of shades reminiscent to Rainbow Mountain in Peru. While there you can see the 10,000-year-old petroglyphs of Yerbas Buenas.
17. San Pedro de Atacama
Well, this whole short article has to do with the trips from San Pedro de Atacama, so allow’s quit and also speak about this stretching desert community situated in north Chile. San Pedro de Atacama has that common backpacker ambiance with lots of dining establishments and also stores. There are a number of resorts in the area and also it is a terrific location for eating. You can reserve any type of field trip you prefer from community and also it has an amazing easygoing ambiance that makes it excellent for loosening up for a couple of days.
There are a number of points to do in San Pedro de Atacama without defaulting.
Meteorite Museum – While walking San Pedro de Atacama, make a quit at the Meteorite Museum which allows you in fact touch rocks from wonderful, R. P. Gustavo Le Paige Archaeological Museum – t is devoted to the archaeology and also background of the Atacama Desert. The gallery has a collection of artefacts and also shows that display the native societies of the area, consisting of the Atacamenian, Inca, and also Mapuche societies. Shopping – This is a great community for buying. The musician’s neighborhood of Pueblo de Artesanos is a great location to grab Andean keepsakes from coats to coverings.
How to Get to San Pedro de Atacama
By air: The local airport terminal to San Pedro de Atacama is the El Loa Airport, which lies in the city of Calama. The airport terminal is offered by a number of significant airline companies, consisting of LATAM and also Sky Airlines, and also there are trips to and also from Santiago in addition to various other cities in the area. From the airport terminal, you can take a taxi or a bus to San Pedro de Atacama, which has to do with a 45-minute drive from the airport terminal.
By bus: There are a number of bus firms that run normal solution to San Pedro de Atacama from significant cities in Chile. The bus trip from Santiago to San Pedro de Atacama takes regarding 23 hrs, and also there are a number of various courses of solution offered, consisting of semi-cama (semi-bed), cama (bed), and also VIP. The buses leave from Terminal Alameda in Santiago, and also tickets can be bought online or at the incurable.
By auto: If you choose to pass by auto, you can drive to San Pedro de Atacama from Santiago or various other cities in the area. The drive from Santiago to San Pedro de Atacama takes regarding 22 hrs, and also it is suggested to take a 4×4 lorry because of the harsh surface of the Atacama Desert. You can additionally lease a cars and truck in Santiago or Calama, and also there are a number of auto rental firms that run in the area. Check out auto leasing rates right here.
By scenic tour: If you choose to take a trip with an assisted scenic tour, there are a number of firms that supply excursions to San Pedro de Atacama from Santiago and also various other cities in Chile. The excursions normally consist of transport, lodging, and also tasks, and also they are a great alternative for vacationers that intend to view as much of the area as feasible.
No issue just how you select to reach San Pedro de Atacama, it is necessary to intend your journey ahead of time and also to be planned for the one-of-a-kind problems of the Atacama Desert. The community has a completely dry, dry environment so stockpile on water and also make certain to wear light-weight clothes that will certainly secure you from the sunlight and also warm. Oh, and also be prepared to be covered in sand. There is a great deal of sand.
Where to Stay in San Pedro de Atacama
San Pedro de Atacama is the major center to check out the Atacama Desert of Chile. There are a number of choices for lodgings. Here are some recommendations for where to remain in San Pedro de Atacama:
Hotels: San Pedro de Atacama has a range of resorts to select from, varying from budget plan to deluxe. We remained at Hotel Diego Del Almagro which has among the most effective areas in San Pedro de Atacama. The resort spaces are standard, however you can’t be the area. Located right in the facility of the city, it was within strolling range to every little thing. If you are driving, it has complimentary vehicle parking for visitors and also a pool. Some various other prominent choices consist of Hotel de Larache, Hotel Atacama, and also Hotel Casa de Don Tomas. These resorts supply a variety of features, consisting of swimming pools, dining establishments, and also health facilities, and also they lie in the facility of the community, near the major square and also the major traveler destinations. Hostels: If you are taking a trip on a spending plan, there are a number of hostels in San Pedro de Atacama that supply budget friendly lodging. Some prominent choices consist of Hostal La Casona, Hostal Atacama, and also Hostal El Descanso del Viajero. These hostels supply shared dormitories and also exclusive spaces, and also they normally have usual locations, such as cooking areas and also living spaces, where you can fraternize various other vacationers. Camping: If you choose an even more exterior experience, there are a number of campgrounds around San Pedro de Atacama. Popular choices consist of Camping San Pedro de Atacama, Camping La Duna, and also Camping El Molle. These campgrounds supply standard centers, such as commodes and also showers, and also they are a great alternative for vacationers that intend to be close to nature. Renting a villa: If you are taking a trip with a team or desire even more room and also personal privacy, you can think about renting out a villa in San Pedro de Atacama. There are a number of choices offered, varying from homes to residences, and also you can discover holiday leasings on Vrbo. Renting a villa can be a great alternative if you intend to have your very own kitchen area and also living room, and also it can additionally be a lot more affordable if you are taking a trip with a team.
No issue where you select to remain in San Pedro de Atacama, it is necessary to reserve your lodging ahead of time, particularly throughout the high period, which ranges from November to March. The community can obtain really hectic throughout this time around, and also it is best to reserve your lodging as very early as feasible to make certain that you belong to remain. It is additionally a great concept to investigate the area of your lodging, as some locations might be further from the facility of the community or the major traveler destinations.
From its extraordinary salt level to rolling desert dunes, San Pedro de Atacama is just one of the most effective locations to see in South America. When you most likely to Chile, make certain it is included in your plan. It’s a journey that will certainly produce memories to last a life time.