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TOUR
ARICA, IQUIQUE, SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA AND CALAMA

CHILE

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Tour: NORTH OF CHILE, ALTIPLANO AND THE DESERT

Tour to Arica, Iquique, San Pedro de Atacama and Calama


Tour
Description
Tour
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Tour Details
Duration : 9 days / 8 nights
Type / activities : Archaeology, culture and nature.
Price from : US$ 1 178
Reservation : 1 month in advance.
Places Visited : Arica, Iquique, San Pedro de Atacama and Calama.

Tour Description

DAY 01: ARICA: City Tour
Arrival, reception and transfer to chosen hotel.
Panoramic of Arica In the afternoon city tour in Arica. Set off toward Plaza Colon, visiting San Marcos Cathedral and the House of Culture, built at Gustavo Eiffel’s workshop. Visit to the Hill of Arica and panoramic view of the city. On our way to the Valley of Azapa we will see ancient petroglyphs of nomad tribes that dwelled in the desert. Arrival in the San Miguel Archaeological Museum, where the Chinchorro Mummies are exhibited; valuable vestiges of mysterious groups of fishermen that developed the oldest mummification process dating 5.000 years BC, "Mummies of Complicated Preparation". The mummified bodies and the fragile remains of their material culture were superbly preserved by the sands of the desert.
Lodging.

DAY 02: ARICA: Tour Lauca National Park
Guanacos of Lauca National Park Breakfast. Early departure from Arica, going across the Valley of Lluta, the desert and the pre cordillera until reaching the altiplano, where the Lauca National Park is located; there we will appreciate a great variety of native flora and fauna within an environment of natural beauty revered and respected by the local Aymara people as a sacred place. The Lake of Chungara, one of the highest in the world (4.517 metros of altitude) declared Biosphere Reserve, along with the beautiful “Payachatas” (Parinacota and Pomerape Volcanoes), which are Mallkus (divinities) for the Aymara culture. Nearby the lake, numerous lagoons and wetlands allow life in the altiplano. Aymara settlements, herds of llamas and alpacas join the native fauna of vicuñas, guanacos, vizcachas and birds. We will visit: the Valley of Lluta, Cacti Creek, the Pucara (fortress) of Copaquilla, Inca Tambos (inns) of Zapahuira, Parinacota and Putre. Breakfast and box lunch on the route.

DAY 03: ARICA – IQUIQUE
Breakfast. In due time transfer to the bus terminal or airport in Arica to make a connection to the City of Iquique. Reception and transfer to your hotel. (See optional land transportation with tour).

DAY 04: IQUIQUE: City Tour
Plaza Artuto Prat Breakfast. Visit to a city known in old times as the great port of saltpeter and which today combines modern constructions and tourism with architectonic relics of American Georgian style.
The tour begins along the extensive coastal sector, the Cavancha Peninsula and beautiful beaches, in order to advance toward the historic center with the architectonic beauty of its avenues built in the late XIX century, dressed with glossy Oregon pine; its majestic and imposing Municipal Theater stand out, the Astoreca Palace, a museum that hosts the Casa de la Cultura (House of Culture). Visit to the exotic building of the Spanish Center, of Moor-like style, with stuccos and polychrome woods. Continuation toward the port sector and the monument to “The Unknown Seaman” in the famous cove of Iquique, in memoriam to Captain Arturo Prat, national hero killed in this place during the War of the Pacific. Return to the hotel.
Lodging.

DAY 05: IQUIQUE: Excursion Saltpeter Offices, Salt Deposit of Pintados and Oasis of Pica
Cerro dragón Excursion to the abandoned salt deposits in the Desert of Atacama, to the petroglyphs of the salt deposit of Pintados and to the Oasis of Pica. Early departure crossing the cordillera from the coast toward the inner desert of Iquique, on the ascension we will be able to appreciate a spectacular panoramic view of the City of Iquique near the ocean and its beautiful beaches, where the gigantic and sharpened dune Cerro Dragon stands out. We will continue through the arid plain that presents us with its immensity and beautiful contrasts in colors. We will stop at the former offices of the Santa Laura and Humberstone saltpeter mines, declared National Monument, where we will discover the splendorous past of saltpeter. Its architecture stands out for its boilers, chimneys, church, store, hotel and theater. We will leave behind the ghost towns bound for the petroglyphs of Pintados, one of Chile’s most important archeological patrimonies, more than 400 figures drawn along the slopes of the mountains in panels or theme groups. They were made with mosaic, scratched and mix techniques by the nomad tribes who inhabited the zone. We will continue toward the Oasis of Pica with its church from the XVII century. Lunch and/or time off to enjoy the thermal baths in the lagoon. Visit to the Oasis of Matilla nearby and to the sanctuary and Town of Tirana. Return to Iquique.
Lodging

DAY 06: IQUIQUE – SAN PEDRO: Visit to the Valle de la Luna
Valley of the Moon Breakfast. In due time transfer to the bus terminal or the airport in Iquique. (See optional land transportation with tour to San Pedro de Atacama).
Arrival in Calama, reception and transfer to San Pedro de Atacama, a small town located at 98 Km from Calama at the foot of the Andean Cordillera and beside the great salt deposit of Atacama.
In the afternoon visit to the mythical Valle de la Luna, a landscape of curious geological formations dyed in white by the salt, which gives it a moonlike aspect. On the way we will stop to take pictures of the salt cordillera. In Valle de la Luna we will take a hike across different sectors, we will visit the statues of salt called “Las Tres Marias”, the mine and caverns of salt, finishing at the great Central Dune, from where we will watch the sunset and a panoramic view of the valley and cordillera surrounding San Pedro. Return to your hotel.
Lodging.

DAY 07: SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA: Archaeological Tour and Salt Deposit of Atacama
Salt Deposit of Atacama Breakfast. In the morning we will visit the Padre Le Paige Museum and the archaeological ruins located in the surroundings of San Pedro, through which we can appreciate the genesis and development of the Atacama Culture. We will visit the Pucara de Quitor, a fortress built in the XII century of our time, where the local culture stood to face the Spanish conquest. We will visit the ruins of the Village of Tulor, the first cultural remains in the zone dating back 2.800 years. Return to San Pedro through the Ayllu (Incan social and administrative center) of Sequitor.
In the afternoon we will visit the Salt Deposit of Atacama, which is the largest salt deposit in Chile and the second largest in South America, after that of Uyuni (Bolivia).
Church of Toconao On the way we will stop in the Town of Toconao, a traditional town built of liparite rocks, of volcanic origins. On the streets we can appreciate typical handicraft from the zone of Atacama (made of wool of llama, alpaca, wood of cactus and volcanic rock), besides the Tower of San Lucas (National Monument and symbol of the town). Later we will visit the quarries of liparite rock and the Valley of Jerez.

We continue towards the salt deposit, at 2,305 meters above sea level; an endless white, rough mantle of salt, stained by the fine dust of the desert, under which there is a large lake that emerges to the surface in the form of small lagoons that contain an interesting variety of wildlife, with the pink flamingoes, one of the three species of these birds who have their habitat in the high cordillera, standing out.. We will watch the sunset at the side of the Chaxa Lagoon to then return to San Pedro de Atacama.
Lodging.

DAY 08: SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA: Visit Geysers of Tatio
Geysers of Tatio At dawn, (04:00 AM) we will set off toward the Geysers of Tatio, a spectacular geothermic field located at 4,320 meters above sea level, with cracks that expel thick columns of steam with temperatures reaching 85° C. At dawn, when temperatures drop below zero, the landscape becomes yet more amazing and the jets can reach up to 7-meter heights. The phenomenon is produced by the cold subterranean river getting in contact with the magma of the Tatio Volcano. Breakfast in the place and the chance of taking a bath in a pool of thermal waters. Then we will visit the Community of Machuca, located approx. 50 kilometers northeast of San Pedro de Atacama and at a height of 4.000 meters. Its adobe houses as well as its church of traditional construction have been refurbished. This town in Atacama bases its economy on pasturing and traditional agriculture. Return to San Pedro de Atacama at noon.
Afternoon off for optional excursions.
Lodging.

DAY 09: SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA - CALAMA
Breakfast. In due time transfer to the airport of Calama to take your returning flight.


End of our services




Tour Rates

Price per person in US dollars
Prices not valid for residents of Chile


Referential Prices 2008

SERVICES ON REGULAR BASIS
Spanish - English speaking guides
  Superior Tourist Superior Tourist
Single room 1 904 1 650 1 497
Double room 1 405 1 267 1 178
Triple room 1 336 1 166 1 080



SERVICES ON PRIVATE BASIS
Spanish speaking guides
  Superior Tourist Superior Tourist
Single room 3 082 2 828 2 675
Double room 1 859 1 721 1 632
Triple room 1 633 1 463 1 378

SERVICES ON PRIVATE BASIS
English speaking guides
  Superior Tourist Superior Tourist
Single room 3 261 3 007 2 854
Double room 1 962 1 824 1 734
Triple room 1 709 1 539 1 454




Referential Prices Only. May be modified without previous notice depending on US Dollar exchange rate with local currency.

Note 1: Prices valid until December 15th, 2008
Note 2: These Prices subject to change without previous advice, as in the Case of Easter Week, May 1st, Christmas, New Years etc.
Note 3: Prices in Regular Tours based on a minimum of 2 persons, inclusive for the prices based on single supplements. Private Tour based on a minimum of 1 person
Note 4: Ask for special rates for groups from 4 persons up that travel together and for a single person travelling alone in a regular tour.


Domestic local flight are not included




Hotel Options for the Tour (or Equivalent)

City Superior Superior Tourist Tourist
Arica Arica 4*
Superior Room
El Paso 4*
Standard Room
Azapa Inn 4*
Standard Room
Iquique Terrado Suites 5 *
Standard Room
Terrado Club 4*
Ejecutiva Room
Terrado Club 4*
Ejecutiva Room
San Pedro de Atacama La Aldea 3*
Standard Room
Tulor 3*
Standard Room
La Casa de Don Tomas 3*
Standard Room




Tour Inclusions

INCLUDED:
  • 02 Lodging nights in en Arica with breakfast
  • 03 Lodging nights in Iquique with breakfast.
  • 03 Lodging nights in San Pedro de Atacama with breakfast.
  • City tour in Arica, museum tickets.
  • Full-day tour to Lauca National Park with lunch.
  • City tour in Iquique.
  • Full-day tour to saltpeter industries, salt deposit of Pintados and Oasis of Pica, in Iquique, with lunch.
  • Half-day regular tour to Valle de la Luna, tickets. (For Private Tour you visit the Valley of the Moon and Valley of the death)
  • Half-day regular archaeological tour in San Pedro, tickets.
  • Half-day regular tour to salt deposit in Atacama, tickets.
  • Regular tour to Geysers of Tatio and Machuca, tickets and breakfast. (For Private Tour you visit Geysers of Tatio and Thermal Waters of Puritama)
  • Transfers airport – hotel – airport at each destination.
  • All tours with bilingual guide English / Spanish.

NOT INCLUDED:
  • International and/or domestic air and land tickets, transfer Arica/Iquique and Iquique/Calama.
  • Airport taxes and others similar.
  • Extra meals not contemplated in the program.
  • Optional tours.
  • Others not mentioned in the itinerary.
Domestic flights not included




Additional Tours

Departing Place Tour Name Duration Prices from
 
Putre Salt Deposit of Surire 1 day  
 
Arica Iquique, The Route of the Geoglyphs 1 day
 
Iquique Isluga National Park and Geyser of Puchuldiza 1 day
 
Iquique Land transfer Iquique – San Pedro de Atacama 1 day
 
San Pedro Visit to Thermal Waters of Puritana Half day
 
San Pedro Tatio and Towns of the Altiplano Full day
 
San Pedro Lagoons on the Altiplano and Salt deposit Full day
 
San Pedro Salt Deposits of Tara and Pakana Full day
 




Useful Information

WEATHER
A coast desert weather predominates in this region, with high cloudiness high and little daily thermal oscillation; above 3000 meters predominates a normal desert, or marginal high desert, with great atmospheric dryness and high daily thermal oscillation, registering a drop in temperature and precipitations in summer (Bolivian winter).

WHAT TO PACK
it is recommended to carry very light clothes for the daytime, since temperatures are extremely high in summer: light cotton t-shirts, short pants, bathing suit, shades, sunscreen and caps for the scorching hours, as well as coats, long pants, cap and gloves, among others warming garments, if you intend to visit the altiplano.

WATER
There is fresh water in almost the entire territory, although for those unused to tap water and in rural areas, it is advisable to drink bottled water.

HEALTH
Arica, Iquqique and Calama have an ample network of hospitals and clinics to respond to all sorts of emergency. San Pedro de Atacama has neither hospitals nor clinics, there is just a medic post located in the plaza, which is equipped to respond to basic needs only. Therefore, you would have to go to the City of Calama in case of a major emergency for it is fully equipped.

It is advisable to take precautions when visiting the altiplano, Lauca National Park and the Geysers of Tatio, since they are above 3.500 meters; drink a lot of water during your ascension, and avoid eating heavy meals though feed properly.

CHILEAN GASTRONOMY
Chilean cuisine is very diverse. Among its typical dishes we have: Empanada de Pino (dough stuffed with onion, meat, raisins and olives), Pastel de Choclo (made mainly of corn with meat, eggs and olives), Porotos Granados (tender potatoes cooked with gourd and corn), Cazuela de Ave o Vacuno (clear soup of chicken or beef with boiled vegetables), besides those typical of each region. Lastly, you can not fail to taste the exquisite Mote con Huesillos, a dessert elaborated from a boiled fruit and mote wheat.

Restaurants in San Pedro de Atacama

IMPORTANT: Enjoy Corporation keeps the right to make changes in the order of the excursions or trips without previous notice due to weather conditions, level of the rivers, arriving and departing hours of planes or buses, or for any other relevant reason, which will ensure and guarantee a better outcome for your trip.







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