The top destinations in San Pedro de Atacama are among the best places one can visit in Chile. This northern Chilean town is among the three chief locations in the country, alongside the Torres Del Paine natural preservation and Easter Island.
One of the main reasons why Chileans recommend visiting this town has a lot to do with good bargains. The bars and restaurants in particular make the high-end pubs and bistros in the capital city of Santiago look like rip-offs.
The town of San Pedro de Atacama itself is nothing out of the ordinary. What really draws visitors into this part of Chile are its surrounding outdoor attractions.
Going for outdoor adventures in San Pedro de Atacama is the most preferable way to enjoy one’s vacation in this region. There are a number of places that are highly recommended for exploration and these are the following venues worth remembering:
1. Valle de Luna
This place literally mean “moon valley” in English translation and it is interesting to know that its namesake originates from its very literal description. Of all the top destinations in San Pedro de Atacama, Valle de Luna proved to be one of the world’s most outlandish terrains.
It is the one place on earth that can easily be mistaken for a lunar topography at first look. It may be a breath-taking view for some, but this terrain also suffers the extremes of its everyday climate. Daytime, especially around midday, can be extremely hot while from sunset throughout the night time can reach near freezing temperatures.
2. Geysers del Tatio
The Geysers del Tatio is especially noted for its location. Being situated at 4,200 meters above sea level, it is easily recognized as one of the highest geysers in the world. It fall third place in the worldwide record in terms of its overall coverage, with over 80 of them still highly active.
One may find this place teeming with life since this location was used as a sanctuary for the wild vicuna. These creatures are distant relatives of camels and llamas who were on the verge of extinction 30 years ago. They are already accustomed to the presence of visitors, but they can be spooked when curious people approach less than twenty meters of distance. Furthermore, tour guides may react violently if one tries to go near these wild vicunas.
3. Salar de Tara
Of all the top destinations in San Pedro de Atacama, Salar de Tara proved to be one of local tourism’s latest novelties. Its uniqueness has a lot to do with its location.
Getting into the tourist attractions, such as the Monjes de Pacana, is not without its several inconveniences. Apart from the extreme altitude, it also has a difficult terrain for driving. The value of getting around Salar de Tara is more of successfully passing a crucible than anything else.
*Image of Atacama Desert with Flamingos, Chile via Shutterstock
*Image of volcanoes Licancabur and Juriques, Moon Valley, Atacama via Shutterstock