A picture says a thousand words – in this case, about just how awe-inspiring and beautiful the highest desert on Earth is.

Hone and enhance your photography skills with the aid of two professional photographers on this world-class tour, taking you through the stunning landscapes of the Atacama Desert, full of amazing vistas just ready to be captured on camera. 

 

Highlights:

  • Local guide as well as professional photographer
  • Salt flats, volcano & other spectacular geological sites
  • Opportunity to photograph vicuñas, flamingos and a wide variety of other birds
  • Incredible sunrises & sunsets
  • Evening ‘Photoshop’ workshops

     

Brief Itinerary:

Day 1: Morning arrival, in the evening witness the sunset in Moon Valley and the Salt Mountain Range.

Day 2: Full day at Tara salt flats, an area boasting impressive rock formations and wildlife.

Day 3: Sunrise at Tatio Geyser & sunset accompanied by flamingoes at Chaxa Lagoon in the Atacama salt flats.

​Day 4: Sunrise at Guatin Gorge, where you may photograph giant cacti and yet more outrageous landscapes. Transfer back to Calama in the afternoon. 

Day 1, Morning Arrival, afternoon trip to Moon Valley & Salt Mountain Range

Atacama Desert, Chile

After arriving in San Pedro de Atacama, you will have time to eat lunch and settle at the hotel. In the afternoon, we’ll dust off our lenses and head out for an afternoon visiting one of Atacama’s best-loved corners, the Valle de la Luna. Here, great photo opportunities wait for you amongst the Valley’s mountain landscapes and bizarre moon-like geological formations. We’ll explore the area from a number of vantage points along the Cordillera de la Sal, taking our time to capture its ethereal beauty as seen from lookouts, the Tres Marías, and the Valley’s main sand dune and central crater. Later, we’ll frame the Valle de la Muerte’s many sand dunes, posing for us with the Andes mountain range and its volcanoes in the background. In the evening, we’ll enjoy a welcome dinner – the perfect chance to get to know each other and compare the day’s snaps.

  • Overnight at hotel Altiplanico.

Day 2, Monjes de la Pacana, Salar de Tara, Salar de Pujsa, Salar de Atacama

Atacama Desert, Chile.

Today, landscapes, angular rock formations, lagoons, volcanoes, and varied wildlife will be our focus. Early in the morning we set off east along the Paso Jama route. Along the way, keep your eyes peeled for the bird-life: vicuñas, flamingos, and ducks which call the Río Quepiaco home. Soon, views of nearby volcanoes come into play; particularly the powerful Licancabur, thought of as the protector of the Atacamenian people. Our route continues towards the heavens until we reach 4,700m above sea level, a point at which the multicolored earth is home to a variety of subjects – bird-life, salt flats, and textured “bofedal” wetlands all vying for our lens’ attention. The paved road ends at another of today’s prizes: the Monjes de la Pacana rock formations, which we’ll capture before heading overland to the dream-like Salar de Tara. Here, we’ll stop to have lunch. But don’t stow your camera just yet: our afternoon continues on via the Salar de Atacama, along with the opportunity to capture close ups of Volcanoes Licancabur, Juriques, and Toco – and hopefully a flock of llamas!.

  • Overnight at hotel Altiplanico.

Day 3, Geyser del Tatio, Salar de Atacama, Laguna Chaxas

Atacama Desert, Chile.

We set off early in the morning to reach El Tatio, home to more than 80 very active geysers, where blooming columns of steam rise more than 12 meters high from the mysterious depths below. We’ll have breakfast here and take in the spectacle at sunrise. Our return route is just as picturesque – not to mention wildlife filled. Train your lens on the vicuñas, foxes, vizcachas (large desert rodent), and the ostrich-like suris. Happily, our day is not complete – after lunch, we’re off to photograph the antics of flamingos, Andean seagulls, and other wetland birds at Laguna Chaxas. Sunset catches us still at large in Los Flamencos National Reserve. With the volcanoes of the Andes mountain range in the background and the salty patterns of the Salar de Atacama in foreground, today’s sunset is an event we won’t forget in a hurry. We recommend you also pack your swimming gear for this day as there is the opportunity to swim in the thermal waters at the Tatio Geysers!.

  • Overnight at hotel Altiplanico.

Day 4, Guatin Gorge and in the afternoon goodbye San Pedro de Atacama!

Atacama Desert, Chile

This morning we’ll head to the Guatín Valley. Our subjects will be the centuries old cacti (or cardones) of the area, which we’ll get to know as we make our way on foot to the confluence of the Puritama and Purifica Rivers. Together, these two rivers – the first, warm water, the second, cool – give birth to the Vilama River which nourishes the Guatín Canyon’s desert ecosystem. Keep your equipment at the ready: now we’ll descend down a rocky pathway to cross the river below and hike through the canyon’s varied vegetation, where many a close up of desert foliage waits to be snapped. Later, after making our way back to our hotel, we’ll prepare to take our transfer service out. Our time in San Pedro de Atacama may have come to an end – but the photographs we captured will tell the tale for years to come!.

 

 

Image Banner:

Rates valid through December 2016

Prices per person:

  • CLP 2,757,800 p.p. / 2 people
  • CLP 2,089,100 p.p. / 3 people
  • CLP 1,741,900 p.p. / 4 people*
  • CLP 1,548,100 p.p. / 5 people
  • CLP 1,448,800 p.p. / 6 people
  • Single room supplement: CLP 99,000

Minimum 2 people / Maximum 8 people

Regular departures dates 2015/2016:

  • September 7 – 10, 2016
  • November 2 – 5, 2016

Privat departures – Got your group sorted already?

Make it a private trip by taking over one of our regular dates!

Starting / Finishing Points

The trip starts in the morning at Calama Airport, please book any flight arriving before midday. The trip finishes at Calama Airport, please book a flight after 6pm.

Included

  • 3 nights accommodation at Altiplanico Hotel – Standard Room
  • Transportation and activities as detailed in itinerary
  • 1 bilingual local guide
  • 1 bilingual professional photographer
  • Meals (B: Breakfast, BL: Box Lunch, L: Lunch, D: Dinner)

    • Day 1: D
    • Day 2: B, BL
    • ​Day 3: B, BLDay 4: B, BL

Not Included

  • Flight tickets
  • Meals, drinks, and snacks not mentioned in the program
  • Insurance (it is mandatory that you purchase appropriate insurance for this trip)
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Voluntary tipping of guides and hotel staff
  • Photo equipment, binoculars – please bring your own.

Transport

All transport on location is by van, jeep, and 4×4 vehicles.

Weather

In the Atacama region the weather follows a typical desert pattern of hot days and cold nights. The Atacama Desert is considered to be the driest place on earth and rain is rare at any time of year!

Spring-Summer (October to March): Daytime temperatures usually range between 20°C – 24°C (68-77 F). Night time temperatures will most likely range from 5°C – 0°C (41 – 32 F)

Autumn-Winter (April to September): Daytime temperatures range from 15°C -20°C (59-68 F). Night time temperatures will most likely be -10°C – 0°C (14 – 32F) 

Itinerary Modifications

We reserve the right to change the order of the days in any itinerary at the discretion of the trip guide and based on operational considerations. The trip guide can modify, change or eliminate part of the itinerary based on safety/weather considerations.

Physical Demands

This trip does not demand extensive physical activity, other than walking a maximum of three consecutive hours over fairly flat terrain. We stop as many times as necessary depending on the rhythm of the group. Nevertheless, we advise travelers to be in relatively good shape before arriving, as there is the added challenge of high altitude.

What You Need to Bring

Photography equipment, day pack (3-10lt), hiking shoes, windbreaker, parka, comfortable walking shorts and clothes. Also swimsuit, sunscreen, sunglasses, hat/bandana.

 

Altiplanico Atacama

Tucked away on a gentle stretch of land in the outskirts of San Pedro de Atacama, surrounded by the quiet presence of the Andes, Altiplanico San Pedro faces the impressive Licancabur Volcano, with a unique design inspired in the style of an Altiplano village. Enjoy the famous Atacama sunsets and relax from the smoldering sun in the fresh covers of our private terraces and beautiful swimming pool after a day exploring the driest desert in the world. The hotel was developed following the concept of visual silence, the eye registers the hotel in its totality included in the in the immensity of the Atacama desert.

Rooms

Hotel Altiplanico RoomsThe objective was to develop a private, warm space allowing feeling of being sheltered from the strength of the desert. The hotel has 29 rooms arranged in three semicircles, with cultivated fields in between. It has single, doubles, triples and family rooms, based on separate houses, with individual terraces, private bathrooms and independent entries. Some rooms have outside showers to enjoy the starry night and sunny days. They are decorated with great simplicity, using different resources of color and shape. Inside the atmosphere is fresh and cozy; each has a terrace to enjoy the view. Most furniture is in built to give the feeling that the hotel is part of Atacama, arising from the earth. 

Each room is unique, with different distribution and decoration. This contributes to the feeling that predominates which is that the hotel is really a home. To honor Atacama’s old Indian concept of rooms as a refuge for the intense sun of the day and cold of the night, was developed. This is why windows are small and walls are thick; to live the desert one has to go outside.

Architecture

Hotel AltiplanicoThe concept anchors the design to the earth color of the walls and straw ceilings that merge the hotel with nature. Great emphasis in the use of the earth materials as well as a design inspired in the Altiplano Chilean-Boliviano gave origin to this project. This method of building is mixtures of Indian culture with Spanish colonization, both are present, and are an excellent solution to the intense desert climate. The decoration highlights the Indian roots.
The desert is beautiful for its silence so the visual information was minimized to reduce competition of color with the landscape. Its construction is totally adobe bricks, stone, wood and other noble materials of the area, such as tar and straw. The hotel combines in a very particular way refinement in the decoration; simplicity of materials, good taste and beauty, giving finally the impression of being in a small village of the Altiplano. This gives the opportunity to the guest to feel the Atacama spirit in a cozy hotel with great privacy, space and comfort, enjoying at the same time the silence and the spectacular view that offers Ayllu Quitor with volcano Licancabur as silent witness.

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