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Región de Atacama Travel Answers

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · April 13, 2012
Hotel and tours for on budget couple in San Pedro  (2 Answers)

I'll be staying for 8 days with my girlfriend in Chile.

We'll be arriving at Santiago November the 13rd and will be taking a plane to Calama the 16th by the morning. From there we'll be going to San Pedro where we expect to stay until the 20th.

I'm trying to plan our stay in San Pedro but I'm finding it very dificult

First thing: would you guys recommend us an hotel?

We're a little bit on a budget, but anything around US$100/day would be fine. Only things I want is private room and shower and it to be as close to the village as possible.

About the tours: should I look for any agency in particular?

Thanks a lot guys

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · March 09, 2012
Busing from La Paz to Iquique  (3 Answers)

I am trying to find a bus from La Paz Bolivia to Iquique CHile but I am having lots of troubles, does anybody know of any?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · March 03, 2012
Atacama  (3 Answers)

What areas of the Atacama would be of most interest to a backpacker with seven to ten days to spend in the Atacama and Patagonia? Will not have a car.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · January 10, 2011
Sculpture of a big hand in the desert  (3 Answers)

Who can tell me more about the sculpture of the big hand in Atacama desert.
For instance who has made it, when was it placed there. Size?, etc.
May be a link to local website with more information or a nice picture.

Thanks and kind regards, Joop

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · October 22, 2009
Planning 5 unforgettable weeks through South America  (5 Answers)

Hola ,

I’ll be in South America in November and have drafted an impossible itinerary and now I can use all of your help to get it right. I do travel at a fast pace and take countries by storm instead of smelling the roses but transport limits anybody’s options

This is/was my initial plan
7/nov Flight Bxl - Rio
8/nov Rio
9/nov Rio
10/nov Iguazu BR
11/nov Iguazu AR
12/nov Buenos Aires
13/nov Buenos Aires
14/nov BA to PM
15/nov Perito Moreno
16/nov Perito Moreno
17/nov Travel to Atacama
18/nov Atacama Laguna Miscanti y Miniques & Valle de la luna
19/nov Atacama Chuquicamata & El Tatio Geyser
20/nov Atacama Buffer day
21/nov Chile - Bolivia
22/nov Uyuni
23/nov Uyuni
24/nov Uyuni
25/nov Uyuni or La Paz
26/nov La Paz
27/nov Coroico
28/nov Fly La Paz - Rurrenabaque
29/nov Rurrenabaque
30/nov Rurrenabaque
1/dec Rurrenabaque
2/dec Lago Titicaca
3/dec Copacabana & Isla del Sol
4/dec Arequipa
5/dec Colca Canyon
6/dec Colca Canyon
7/dec Cuzco
8/dec Machu Picchu sunset
9/dec Machu Picchu sunrise - fly Cuzco to Lima
10/dec Lima
11/dec Flight Lima - Atlanta
12/dec Atlanta
Flight Atlanta - Brussel
13/dec Back Home

My draft plan is indeed too tightly scheduled as I find out while booking flights/buses/tours..
My original plan was to fly between these destinations :
Rio - Iguazu - Buenos Aires - Perito Moreno - Calama/San Pedro de Atacama
But Perito Moreno is indeed too remote and takes a lot of time and money to reach, then also difficult to continue to Calama as this seems to be a small airport. Besides I prefer nature to cities and as I only planned to spend 2 days in Buenos Aires that is an expensive flight from Iguazu. So in case I skip BA and PM I can continue from Iguazu to Calama, unless the flight from Rio is a lot cheaper but then I should book an all in tour from Rio to Iguazu (return flight + park entrance + hostel).
Do you know by chance if there are any interesting offers ? I did some research on the internet but most sites are in Portuguese, difficult for me.
I'll land in Rio on November 8th , where I will spend 1 or 2 days so I can book a tour to Iguazu starting from November 9th or 10th to spend 2days there as I want to see both the Brazilian as the Argentinian side of the falls and preferably also go as close as possible by boat.
Do you also know which airline proposes a good connection from Rio (or Iguazu) to Calama (Chile) ?

If rio-iguazu-rio is not worthwhile then I might still fly to BA and continue by bus through North Argentina towards Atacama. How many days should I foresee for this, with stops in Mendoza and Salta? Can I include nightbuses to win some time?
Which option would you recommend? 1. Rio - Atacama or 2. Iguazu-BA-Mendoza-Salta-Atacama

I've been told about corrupt customs agents on the CL-BO border, now you tell me it's AR-CL.... it's all part of the fun I guess

Do tour operators offer to visit the nice places in Atacama and also drop you off at Uyuni? Do you have a website or email of the tour operator that can do all this?
Can I book the Salar de Uyuni tour towards La Paz, starting from Uyuni ?
So far I found there are only 2 buses a week from Atacama to Uyuni , but hope that is not true

Should I also include a buffer day to cross the Bolivia-Peru border?

Is it true that the Salar de Uyuni is flooded by rain in nov-dec? Does that not spoil the scenery? Hopefully I can get to see it at sunrise, the best moment of the day to enjoy nature's beauty.

Can I book an all-in tour from La Paz to Rurrenabaque(flight, safari, accomodation, .. booze?)

Re Machu Picchu I understood so far that the entrance to the site is unlimited, but they only allow 500p/day on the Inca Trail, which I'm not doing due to lack of time. On the other hand I should be very early there to get a ticket for the Huaynu Picchu on the other side so I can enjoy the sunrise from there. Is all this correct?

Sorry for this huge bunch of questions, but I'm looking forward to go to South America for the first time and really want to make the best out of it

feel free to contact me directly on [email] as I read those emails a few times a day

Muchas gracias para ayudarme
hasta luego,

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · October 10, 2007
Chacabuco Ghost Town from Calama?


What's the easiest way to get to the Chacabuco Ghost town from Calama? How far is it by taxi? Is there a bus that will take me there?


Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · July 08, 2007
How many days for Atacama?  (3 Answers)


We are a group of friends visiting Peru, Bolivia and Chile (Atacama) in April 2008. We still don't know if we will have to visit Atacama but we we want to try. We will be doing a 3 day tour in the Uyuni region in Bolivia and if we have time we will head for Atacama. How many days do you recommend for someone visiting the Atacama desert? Is there a lot to see? Is it very different from the Uyuni Region?

Thanks id advance!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · May 19, 2006
Salta to San Pedro de Atamaca  (2 Answers)

Hello everyone,
I saw in an earlier forum that there is a bus from Salta to San Pedro de Atamaca, and I was just wondering around how long the trip takes?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · November 15, 2004
Overland travel between Calama & Salta  (2 Answers)

In mid February, 2005 I would like to travel overland between Calama & Salta, or Salta to Calama. How is that done? bus, guided tour, etc?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · September 12, 2004
Atacama  (3 Answers)

Does anyone recommend a tour operator in this region?

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