Days 1-2: Santiago
Arrive into Santiago and embrace two full days to explore Chile’s capital city and destinations nearby. A guided city tour offers interpretation and insight. Or, set out on your own on foot, bicycle, or subway to discover eateries, museums, shops in the Estacion Mapocho or Mercado Central, the Plaza de Armas, or the Cerro San Cristobal, a funicular that takes you to a vantage point for an overview of the city. On your second day, a private guide drives you through the Casablanca Valley, one of the country’s famous wine regions, and beyond to the west coast, to explore the iconic city of Valparaiso and neighboring resort town of Viña del Mar.
Days 3-4: Atacama Desert
Today, head north to the driest place on earth! The Atacama Desert is a truly wondrous region with a surprising variety of topography, geology, and biological life. Explore and have fun in the desert, hiking, mountain biking, mountaineering, sandboarding, stargazing, soaking in hot springs, and wildlife watching – flamingos, anyone?! Venture out further to visit Valle de la Luna (Moon Valley), a protected nature sanctuary, Dinosaur Valley, and the Valley of Death, the latter two offering impressive overlooks of the area. The small and intimate Altiplanico San Pedro de Atacama is a stunning accommodation, a true oasis, blending into the desert, surrounded by the quiet presence of the Andes in the shadow of Licancabur Volcano. With a combination of indigenous and Spanish-colonial architectural styles, the lodge offers exquisite accommodations, cuisine, and a plethora of active opportunities.
Days 5-7: Bolivian Crossing – The Altiplano Experience
Today, embark on a fascinating, guided, multi-day journey (three, four, or five days – you pick!) across the Chile-Bolivia border to the sweeping, high-elevation Bolivian Plateau. En route, take in remote dwellings, salt flats, small mud volcanoes, alpine lagoons, and opportunities to see large groups of flamingos, fox, vicuñas, chinchillas, alpacas, llamas, and more. Each evening, retreat to a remote lodge – one built entirely out of salt! – and a home-cooked meal. Prepare to be amazed!
Day 8: Return to San Pedro de Atacama
Today begins your journey home from northern Chile..
Day 9: Santiago
Fly from San Pedro de Atacama to Santiago for departures home.
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