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Red Hot Chile - Trekking the Atacama Desert

Starts: Calama, Chile
Finishes: Calama Airport, Chile

Visit: Calama, San Pedro de Atacama, Higuerita, Tocotocare, Chaxas, Calama Airport

Tour Type: Small Group

Accommodation: Moderate

Activity: Trekking

Overview

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As one of the most beautiful regions on the planet, the Atacama Desert is home to the incredible volcano of Licancabur (5920m), a holy mountain of the Atacameno people and the explosive highlight of this fantastic South American trekking holiday in Chile and Bolivia. Nestled between the Andes and the Pacific, the Atacama is a magnificent landscape of salt lakes, flamingo filled lagoons, geysers and towering volcanic peaks. Starting in the colourful town of San Pedro with towering views of Licancabur, we’ll begin our acclimatisation visiting San Pedro’s highlights. From the flamingos on Chaxa Lagoon to the Valley of the Moon we’ll explore this incredible lunar landscape before trekking through river gorges and remote communities to the edge of the Altiplano. Next it's an acclimatisation circuit of Copa Coya (4500m) before soaking in hot springs and visiting the geysers of El Tatio.

Finally we head to Bolivia, home to flamingos and the beautiful lagoons of Blanca and Verde. As we stand on Licancabur’s summit at 5920m we’ll have the Atacama Desert and the world’s highest lake at our feet, whilst dramatic volcanoes and the Andes surround us. They have combined one of the world’s most magnificent environments, ancient cultures, and the opportunity to stand on the summit of one of the world’s most incredible volcanoes.

Highlights

    • Summit Licancabur (5920m) one of the world's most incredible volcanoes
    • Enjoy San Pedro before an excellent acclimatisation trek through the Atacama
    • The flamingos of Laguna Blanca, explore Laguna Verde and the Tatio Geysers
    • Experience sunsets over the Valley of the Moon, hot springs and Chaxa Lagoon

Trip Details

The Trip

Product Code: 145779
Tour Type: Small Group
Accommodation: Moderate
Transport: Private##Private
Guide Language: Engligh

Starts: Calama, Chile
Finishes: Calama Airport, Chile
Duration: 11 days
Physical rating: Basic

Includes

  • An experienced English-speaking local leader
  • An extra climbing guide in Bolivia
  • Single timed airport transfers
  • All accommodation as described
  • Meals as outlined in the Meal Plan
  • Once on trek a full service including food and all equipment (excluding personal equipment)
  • All land transport involved in the itinerary

Excludes

Price

Price person (sharing double) $3,690 ($335/day)

Deposit:

$300 per person for bookings made 56 days or more prior to departure

Full Amount for bookings made less than 56 days prior to departure

Cancellation: Strict

Trip Notes

Price does not include airfare (to the Trip start & from the end location)

Trip Price generally includes accommodation, transport/transfer, activities, services of a professional guide & more. (Please refer to the include/excludes section for details)

Tour packages spare you the hassles of trip planning, a la carte booking, organizing and managing the logistics at a foreign location.

Itinerary

Personalize itinerary with your departure date

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See
Bolivia, Chile Calama, San Pedro, Valle De Marte, Corniza Trail, Chaxa Lagoon, Valle De La Luna, San Bartolo, Rio Grande, Machuca, Geysers Del Tatio, Cerro Soquete, Laguna Blanca, Licancabur
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Trekking

Availability

Reviews

Overall Rating

 

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Ian  

Our Chilean trek was a wonderful experience. Our guide Yasu was well organised and very knowledgeable on all aspects of the area. The Atacama Desert has a very unique feel to it. Most of the trip involves magnificent day walks through hidden valleys all whilst preparing you for your ascent of Licancabur Volcano, a challenging seven to eight hour climb to approx. 6000mt. Its a cold climb in the early morning so be prepared with warm gear. The preparation walks gets more challenging as the final ascent day draws near. Don't worry if you find these days quite exhausting as the whole week is slowly building up your chances of making to the top on the last day. The weather can be hot days and cold nights. You will need warm gear! Also a good sturdy set of ankle high walking boots as for most of the week and especially in Bolivia the footing is loose stone and the chances of a sideways spill is a possibility. One down side was a couple of poor choices for campsites which was a little disappointing given the abundance of magnificent campsite opportunities, however with early nights and an early start this was only a minor complaint I would recommend this trek.

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William  

I enjoyed the holiday, especially getting to the top of Licancabur, and although we were a large group everybody was fit and got on well. The walking was limited in scope by the (unsurprising) lack of water and I feel that the trip should be regarded as a collection of places visited rather than a genuine trekking holiday. For obvious reasons it is not an area suitable for continuous days of walking.

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Elspeth  

Lots of variety on this trek in terms of activities, overnight accommodation and landscape. Don't expect a linear trek off the beaten track in the Peruvian or Indian style, rather a menu of days chosen for interest with day or half day walks for acclimatisation, plus pockets of free time to relax or explore San Pedro. Make sure you are fit before you go! The heat and number of ascents take their toll but the effort is worth it. The wildlife is exceptional; yes flamingos really are that photogenic.

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Ian  

The scenery is spectacular, primarily the multi-coloured desert but also watching the flamingos close up in Laguna Blanca at 16,000 ft. I found the high altitude desert hiking exhausting, one eight hour, 15 mile day (longer than advertised due to re-routing caused by rain several weeks earlier) without shade being especially challenging. 11 out of 15 strong hikers got up Licancabur, the rest of us chilled out with the flamingos.

Tour Operator

KE Adventure Travel

KE is your number one choice for classic treks such as Everest Basecamp in Nepal, Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Mount Toubkal in Morocco or the Tour du Mont Blanc in the European Alps. Our record is also second-to-none on climbing expeditions to peaks as diverse as Mera Peak in Nepal, Mount Khuiten in Mongolia and Monte Rosa in Switzerland

In Business Since 1984

Operator Rating:   

http://www.keadventure.com

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