Descending from the Altiplano to the Atacama Desert – the driest desert on earth- one encounters contradictory and unusual manifestations of water. Among the highlights, the oasis of San Pedro de Atacama is an absolute “must” to visit, it was in the centre of a Paleolithic culture that built impressive rock fortresses on the steep mountains encircling the green valley. It contrast with the eerily silent landscape of the nearby Moon Valley with its tiny but beautiful salt ponds against the backdrop of snow-capped volcanoes.
The below tour is fully flexible with departure dates and can be modified to your own personal travel preferences, please contact us for an obligation free enquiry.
|Day 1||Arrive in Calama, transfer to San Pedro de Atacama & Sunset Sightseeing Moon Valley|
|Day 2||Archaeological Toconao tour & Atacama Salt Lake sightseeing|
|Day 3||Full Day tour Geyser del Tatio & Machuca town|
|Day 4||Departure from San Pedro de Atacama to airport|
Day 1: Calama – San Pedro and the Moon Valley and the Moon Valley
After arriving at the airport you will be transported to the town of San Pedro de Atacama. This colorful village is located 2.440 m / 8.000 ft. above sea level in the middle of a green oasis. From here you will make your way to the Catarpe Valley located only a few kilometers north. There you will find the flowing San Pedro River giving life to lush green vegetation. A true contrast compared to the dry surrounding desert. Right around the corner also lays the Quebrado Del Diablo. This narrow canyon is located in the heart of the Sal Mountain Range and offers you a glimpse of true desert landscape. Later that day, in the afternoon you will adventure out to the mystifying Moon Valley boasting various stone and sand formations. There at sunset you will have the opportunity to view the beautiful fading light over the vast landscapes.
Day 2: San Pedro, Archaeological Tour Toconao and the Atacama Salt Lake
After breakfast you will explore the town of San Pedro de Atacama – the center of a Paleolithic civilization that built impressive rock fortresses on the nearby mountains encircling the green valley. From there you will take brief drive to reach the 3000 year old pre-Columbian village of Tulor. The archaeological remains that can be viewed here constitute the oldest evidence of human settlement of the valley. After your visit you will then continue the morning tour to the Pukara de Quitor a fortress, which has seen many battles. In the afternoon you will visit Toconao: a village where white volcanic stone sculptures are made by locals. Afterwards you will continue on to the Atacama Salt Lake; an inland sea formed millions of year ago and an impressive sight dominated by rock formations and crystalized salt.
Day 3: El Tatio and Machuca
Before dawn break you will depart from San Pedro and head north to the famous El Tatio Geysers; a geothermal field flanked by soaring peaks. El Tatio is situated at 4.300 m / 14.108 ft. above sea level on the Altiplano. It is the highest geothermal field in the world and boasts spectacular scenery. Make sure to bring warm clothes as temperatures at this altitude are considerably low this early in the morning. At dawn you will observe powerful spurts of steam that shoot out from various geyser blowholes and steaming ponds that are encrusted with brilliant salt crystals reflecting the metal-blue sky. After this nice visit to El Tatio you will drive to the village of Machuca known as the resting place for llama caravans that traveled the Inca Highway. Afterwards you will return to San Pedro de Atacama to enjoy the afternoon at leisure.
Day 4: San Pedra – Calama
After breakfast, a transfer will take you to the airport to board your departure flight.
- Arrival and departure transfer from Calama to San Pedro de Atacama
- 3 nights accommodation in San Pedro de Atacama
- Half Day tour Moon Valley
- Full Day Toconao & Atacama Salt Lake Tour
- Full day Geyser del Tatio hot springs & visit to Machuca town
- Breakfast daily
- Items of personal nature
- Drinks alcoholic and not alcoholic
- Meals not listed above
- Tours not listed above
- Transfers not listed above
- Tips to the drivers, guides & porters
Travel Just 4U has competitive South America Flights to get you to the starting point of your chosen Holiday. Contact one of our Travel Consultants for a full quotation including airfares, stopovers and any additional travel you wish to organize.