ATACAMA

We chose the Atacama Desert as our destination because we found it, original, surprising and even romantic. We felt it as a  place seldom had visited. So, Obviously our adventurer's soul lead us to the north of Chile.

What did we think of it? That it was/is absolutely a place worth visiting at least once in a lifetime; For us it turned out to be one of the best destinations in the world. 

(We are still looking forward to Salta in Argentina, the Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia and of course...Machu Picchu in Peru).

 

This private tour was guided by our  expert in everything Atacama: Thalia Moder.  Be prepared for adventure with Thalia!! She is ready to adapt to your particular needs or interests.

 Ideally take a flight out of Santiago directly to Calama.  Latam has a  2-hour flight, 4 times a day. It costs around US$ 200.

We suggest the morning flights to make the most out of the day.

You may also consider traveling by bus, but it's a long. 1000 miles away from Santiago.

This is our suggested itinerary:

 

DAY 1

Upon arrival at the airport in Calama, we will be waiting to take you in your private transfer to San Pedro de Atacama, once a town of adventurers and few tourists but today, hyper populated with travelers of all kinds.

It is 60 miles to destination.

 

 

Direct transfer to the hotel. We recommend NOI CASA ATACAMA. We stayed at the charming Noi Suite. We found the price a good deal and opted for having freedom on meals instead of the all-meals plan.

Depending on your budget,  you can stay at Awasi or at  Explora. Amazing experience in either one.

 

Lunch

Lunch will be served at a local house in Lickan Antay. You will experience native food: Llamo or Guanaco (a camelid native to South America), a drink called Yali pod made out of a yogurt, and rooster's bread.

Afternoon

 

Bike riding along the Ayllus. Ayllus are communities typical of the Andes where extended families live in houses close to each other.

Finally we end the day admiring a sunset from the Cordillera de la Sal sharing the famous "pisco sour de rikarika" (rikarika is a fragrant and medicinal plant) that  we'll teach you how to prepare!

 

 

DAY 2

Early morning

We'll take you to the Valley of the Moon. Morning is definitely a less congested hour.

Walk through the salt caves, that you may find a little claustrophobic (it was for me, because it is long, narrow and dark)  Then continue the walk  to a large dune. You'll feel as if the desert is alive!!

Lunch

On the way back we will have lunch in a local restaurant at the village of Toconao. We will stop to a visit an Ayllu vineyard and  perhaps take home a bottle of wine produced from Petit Verdot grapes grown in the highlands of these altiplanic lands.

Afternoon

 

Visit the Miscanti -Miñiques Altiplanic Lagoons. Get ready...they are at 11,000 ft above sea level.

 

Visit the small town of Socaire and finally, watch the flamingos and the sunset at Laguna Chaxa in the Salar de Atacama. A thousand times stunning!!!

Evening

The town is filled with restaurants for you to choose from. No need to make reservatons ahead but your hotel will gladly call and book a table for you, but don't miss the Barbecue Evening at the Noi Atacama!

 

 

DAY 3

 

Morning

Early breakfast to take advantage of the day ahead. Vist the Tatio and White Geysers, and the Putana Wetland for bird watching, then on to Pueblito de Machuca for a  walk among cactus, flowers and rocks following the warm Puritama River to its origin in the Puritama Hot Springs. Bathing in the hot springs!!!

Lunch

 

Outdoor lunch at the hot springs.

Evening

 

In the evening departure for the Astronomical Tour that takes place in the salt mountain range, away from the light pollution of the town. It includes archaeoastronomy with  a native guide, and observation of stars, planets, clusters and nebulae through a 16-inch Newtonian telescope. You will be able to use and calibrate the telescope and search for your own astronomical objects! You can also have an "astroretrato", a photograph of you and the starry sky of the Atacama (check ours below).

Includes: hot drinks (hot chocolate and ‘navegado’wine).

DAY 4

Transfer back to the airport. We suggest an afternoon flight so that you get the chance to enjoy a bit of a stroll around San Pedro, visit the church and buy souvenirs.

If you happen to travel to Atacama on a weekend, don't hesitate about going to the ALMA Astronomical Observatory. It's the most complex astronomical observatory ever built on Earth.

Open for public visits on Saturdays and sundays.

Hemos elegido el Desierto de Atacama porque nos parece un destino diferente, original, sorprendente y hasta romántico. Algo que vale la pena visitar al menos una vez en la vida; pero no nos limitamos al norte de Chile cuando pensamos que es uno de los mejores destinos del mundo, queremos incluir a Salta en Argentina, al Salar de Uyuní en Bolivia y por supuesto…Machu Picchu en Perú.

 

Este es el itinerario que les proponemos y que podemos adaptar  a sus necesidades o intereses particulares.

 

Nosotros recomendamos volar de Santiago a Calama. Un vuelo que hace Latam 4 veces al día y que dura apenas dos horas. Cuesta alrededor de US$ 200.

Sugerimos los vuelos de la mañana para aprovechar el día.

 

DIA 1

Al llegar al aeropuerto en Calama, los estaremos esperando para llevarlos en un traslado privado hasta San Pedro de Atacama, otrora un pueblo de aventureros y escasos turistas pero hoy hiper poblado de viajeros de todo tipo.

Son 100 kms hasta el destino.

 

 

Traslado directo al Hotel. Recomendamos NOI ATACAMA.

 

Almuerzo con Experiencia local (Lickan Antay) y comida típica (carnes de Llamo o

Guanaco, bebida de vaina de Yali  y pan de gallo).

 

Bicicletada por los Ayllus.

 

Finalmente acabamos el día observando una puesta de sol en la Cordillera de la Sal

compartiendo el célebre “pisco sour de rika rika” (un arbusto fragante y medicinal)

que ustedes aprenderán a preparar!

 

 

DIA 2

 

Valle de la Luna en la mañana (hora de menor congestión), caminata

por las cavernas de sal y mirador duna mayor.

Caminata y almuerzo en el pueblito

de Toconao. Con visita al viñedo Ayllú y quizás llevarte alguna botella de vino producido con las uvas Petit Verdot cultivadas en el altiplano.

 

Lagunas Altiplánicas Miscanti -Miñiques. Prepárense…son a 4000 mts

 

De regreso, parada en el pueblito de Socaire y. finalmente, observación de flamencos y puesta de sol en Laguna Chaxa en el Salar de Atacama.

 

 

DIA 3

 

Salida muy temprano a los Geysers del Tatio y Geyser blanco, y al Humedal de Putana para observación de aves, Pueblito de Machuca y una caminata entre cactáceas, flores y roquedales siguiendo el cálido río Puritama hasta su origen en las Termas de Puritama. Baño en las termas.

 

Almuerzo outdoors en las termas.

 

En la noche salida para realizar el Tour Astronómico que se realiza en la cordillera de la sal, alejados de la contaminación lumínica del pueblo. Incluye arqueoastronomia con guía nativo, y observación de estrellas, planetas, cúmulos y nebulosas a través de un telescopio newtoneano de 16 pulgadas. Podrán usar y calibrar el telescopio y buscar sus propios objetos astronómicos! Además podrán tener un “astroretrato”, una fotografía de ustedes y el cielo estrellado de Atacama.

Incluye: bebidas calientes (Chocolate caliente y vino navegado)

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My name is Ana Bazo. I'm traveler and a tourist. Planning a trip seduces me. I love visiting far away solitary places. During my travels I write and take pictures... So, one day I put all that  together and The Undercover Pilot was born.

 

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