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TRANSFERS & HOW TO GET TO

CALAMA

CHILE

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CALAMA

TRANSFERS

In Calama there are several public transport companies offering their services along fixed itineraries and with reasonable ticket prices. There are also a good number of taxis moving around town, the price being set by the meter.

Another option is the radio-taxi company. In this case, the service is hired by phone and the fare is more expensive. These cars do not have a meter and the price is fixed beforehand, based on an estimation of the distance to be covered.

It is not possible to reach the tourism areas by means of public transport, so it is necessary to rent a car or go on a guided tour. Both options are feasible, because there are several car rental companies in Calama as well as travel agencies specializing in the arid desert itineraries.


HOW TO GET THERE

Arrivals and Departures

BY AIR

There are daily flights between Santiago and Calama, offered by Lan Chile and Sky Airlines. The distance of 1,225 kilometers that separates both cities is covered in approximately 70 minutes, or more if there are stopovers.
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    The El Loa airport in Calama, located 5 kilometers from the city center, also receives flights from Antofagasta, the regional capital located 215 kilometers away. The service is provided by both Lan Chile and Sky Airlines. The trip lasts 30 minutes approximately.

    BY LAND

    It is possible to get to Calama by road, from the following cities:

    Santiago (1,225 kilometers): the trip takes 16 hours average. Several transport companies cover this itinerary with comfortable sleeper and standard reclining seat services. For a better choice as regards timetables and prices, there are several land terminals in Santiago with buses leaving northward, such as Los Heroes, Alameda and San Borja. You may also contact:
    • Tur Bus
      Office in Santiago: Terminal Tur Bus
      Address: Avenida Libertador Bernardo O'Higgins 3750
      Phone: (02) 270-7500
      Office in Calama: Address: Topain 2125, Villa Caspana
      Phone: (55) 314-745
      Terminal Tur Bus
      Address: Balmaceda 1852
      Phone: (55) 316-699
      Web: www.turbus.com


    • Pullman
      Office in Santiago: Address: San Francisco de Borja 235 E. Central
      Phone: (2) 560-3700
      Office in Calama: Address: Balmaceda 4155
      Phone: (55) 319-665, (55) 330-832
      Web: www.pullman.cl

    Another alternative is renting a car. If you do so, you must take Route 5 from the Northern Panamericana. It is recommended to spend the night in Caldera or in Bahía Inglesa, and then continue up to Calama.
    These are some of the car rental companies:
    • Avis Rent a Car
      Office in Santiago: Address: San Pablo 990
      Phone: (56-2) 601-9747
      Office in Calama: Address: Pedro Leon Gallo 1883
      Phone: (55) 363-120
      El Loa Airport: Phone: (55) 349-503
      Web: www.avischile.cl


    • Alamo
      Central Office: Address: Av. Francisco Bilbao 2846, Providencia, Santiago
      Phone: (56-2) 3439-860, (56-2) 2234-117
      Office in Calama: Address: Felix Hoyos 2177
      Phone: (55) 364-539
      Web: www.alamochile.com


    • Budget
      Central Office: Address: Av. Francisco Bilbao 1439, Providencia, Santiago
      Phone: (56-2) 3623-200
      Calama: Phone: (55) 361-072
      El Loa Airport: Phone: (55) 346-868
      Web: www.budget.cl

    * More information in Car Rental in Santiago and Car Rental in Calama

    - Antofagasta. The regional capital is 215 kilometers from Calama. The trip takes almost 3 hours. The bus companies that cover this route are: Tur Bus, Pullman, Flota Barrios and Geminis.

    -San Pedro de Atacama. Located 103 kilometers from Calama, the trip lasts almost 2 hours. The bus companies that cover this route are: Tur Bus and Pullman.

    * International Route
    By land, Calama is connected with the city of Salta (Argentina). The trip lasts 12 hours and the road is paved and open all the year round. Buses leave twice a week (Wednesdays and Sundays). The trip is across Jama International Pass and Customs control is in San Pedro de Atacama.

    RAILWAY

    The main route is the one joining Calama and Uyuni (Bolivia). The trip lasts around 20 hours, although it can take longer due either to migration procedures in the town of Ollagüe, 207 kilometers from Calama, or to adverse weather conditions.
    The train, which leaves every Wednesday from the train station in Calama, does not offer much comfort because it is mainly used for freight transport.



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