The Atacama Region spreads up to the far north of Chile. This land, trapped between the Pacific Ocean and the highest plateaus of the Andes, will surprise you during your trip in Chile.

Atacama Region and the Far North of Chile

The menu: Vineyards, alpacas, pink flamingos, salt deserts such as those of Surire and Coipasa, Atacama, volcanoes, natural parks like the Lauca Park, thermal water and small villages out of time.

Far North of Chile

I am very fond of the Far North of Chile. I like the landscape and the strong emotional encounters that we can do in the small Altiplano’s villages.

I am bewitched every time I go there. This region starts at the Peruvian border and goes across the Atacama desert, which is the driest place on Earth (on a large proportion of this desert, it never rains and only an occasional fog provide a bit of water to the soil). Apart from the cities in the seaside, only a few oasis are inhabited.

The Azapa archeological museum in San Miguel houses a collection of 8000 years old mummies. The road to Altiplano is marked with huge geoglyphs and arrives to a giant plain at 4,000 m of altitude. This is where the Aymaras Native Americans live since the beginning of time and grow alpacas and llamas.

Some of the most fantastic panoramas are waiting for you in the Parque Nacional Lauca, declared a world heritage site for biosphere. In this park, you will be blown away by the highest lake in the world with the purest water and the beautiful volcanoes. This area is also rich with a typical nature and wildlife. We found some pink flamingos from Chile, wild ducks and also some species from the llama family such as vicunas or guanacos. Once we pass thought the little lonely village of Parinacota, we enter the gigantic plain of Salar de Surire.

There are also lots of local products from Altiplano to taste such as olives, goat cheese, quinoa (the “Aymaras Pop Corn”), mango and “guayaba” juice, and many other specialties.

This place in Chile will make you feel like you are on the roof of the world!

San Pedro de Atacama

The main attractions in this area are the salt deserts of Atacama and Tara, the geysers of El Tatio, lagoons and the valleys of the Moon and Death.

Such a beautiful region deserves a host of choice during your stay in this part of Chile. I keep my secret but you will be blown away!… San Pedro de Atacama and the surroundings is a region that always surprises me every time I come to Chile by the beauty of the landscape and the very rich culture and traditions.

The war of the Pacific (1879 – 1884) allocated this region to Chile. San Pedro is one of the world’s richest copper fields and copper mining is the main economic activity in this area. The largest open air copper mine is located in Chuquicamata, near Calama. Other economic activities include fish powder transformation, transport, and tourism at a small scale.

The oasis village of San Pedro de Atacama is the starting point to discover the natural jewels sculpted in the Atacama Desert and the top of the Cordillère des Andes. This village is typical with its small streets and typical houses. One of the region’s sites, the Valley of the Moon, scattered with sand dunes and corroded salt crystals will transport you to the moon, just like the gigantic Salar de Atacama with white and rough salt crusts.

At dawn, the Tatio geysers offer a great show. Located 4300 m high, in the heart of a landscape sculpted by the Cordillera of the Andes, some steam water streams burst from boiling natural pools. As the scene goes by, the traveler will encounter some vicunas and vizcachas who live in this large landscape of Altiplano. Will discover amazing landscapes filled with magnificent emerald lakes and snow covered volcanoes. Will also discover historic sites and relic from the Pre-colonial age.