Altiplano Program

13 Or 14-Day Tour

Accommodation Included

Comfortable Transfers

On this tour you’ll journey to hidden paradises off the beaten path, explore the peaks and valleys of the Andes, and witness diverse and contrasting landscapes. The barren beauty of the Andean highlands is an ethereal, once-in-a-lifetime destination.

What You'll See

Atacama Desert

Rainbow Valley

World Biosphere Reserve

Thermal Springs

Salar de Uyuni

Bolivian Highlands

Flamingos, Vicuñas, Llamas

Volcanoes, Lakes, Lush Valleys

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Trip Details

Price

2,520,000 CLP | 3,650 USD


Departure Time

Dependent on your flight arrival. Please coordinate with us before you land.


Duration

13 days


Meeting Point

Arica airport (Chacalluta International Airport)


Season

Year round


Group Size

Min 5 | Max 15


Min Age

18


Included
  • English-speaking tour guide
  • All transfers in private vehicles
  • All entrance fees, according to the program
  • Travel literature
  • Accommodation
    6 nights: Double room in a hotel
    5 nights: Multibed room in a hostel
    1 night: Double room in a guesthouse
  • Meals: 12 × Breakfast, 3 × Lunch, 1 × Lunchbox, 7 × Dinner

Not Included
  • International flights
  • Unspecified meals and drinks
  • Optional excursions and activities
  • Tips

About the Guides

You will be accompanied by an English-speaking guide.

Journey to Hidden Paradises

Day 1: Welcome to Arica

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After landing in Chile’s most northern city, your guide will greet you at the airport and drive you to your hotel. Once you’re refreshed and recharged, we’ll embark on a leisurely tour to explore the city center and soak up the incredible skyline from El Morro hill. If you’re feeling brave, take a refreshing dip in the waters of the Pacific Ocean! Your accommodation for the night will be at a hotel.

Day 2: Azapa Valley

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Leaving the coast, we’ll make our way towards the Azapa Valley, a lush oasis of olive groves on the edge of the Río San José. Our first stop is the impressive Archaeological Museum of San Miguel de Azapa where we can marvel at the oldest mummies in the world, dating back more than 7,000 years! You’ll also get the opportunity to pass by the pre-Columbian hilltop fortification, Pukará de Copaquilla, before reaching the idyllic village of Putre, situated at about 11,000 feet (3350 m). Treat yourself to an alpaca steak in the evening! Your accommodation for the night will be at a hotel.

Day 3: Acclimatize at Suriplaza

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We’ll embark on a gentle hike this morning in picturesque surroundings. The Suriplaza is a sprawling volcanic plateau framed by colorful volcanoes. If you’re fit and up for a challenge, you can choose to climb the Cerro Cosapilla (around 17,000 feet). Your accommodation for the night will be at the same hotel as before.

Day 4: Visit a World Biosphere Reserve, Lauca National Park

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You will reach the true Altiplano after entering Lauca National Park. This world biosphere reserve is a haven of native flora and fauna and boasts 130 different bird species, vicuñas, vizcachas, condors, and much more! The Lago Chungará appears at an altitude of around 15,000 feet (4500 m), and it mirrors the majestic twin volcanoes Parinacota and Pomerape. On a hike amid this fascinating scenery, you will get to know the diverse flora and fauna of the park. Spend the night in Andean Village Parinacota, a family-run enterprise, in a multibed room with shared bathrooms.

Day 5: Bask in Thermal Springs at Salar de Surire

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The majestic Salar de Surire and its thermal springs, situated 14,000 feet (4200 m) above sea level, is one of the highlights of this trip. The brilliantly white salt lake is nestled between ocher-colored mountain peaks, which you will have the opportunity to appreciate during a soothing bath. We’ll then make our way to the picturesque village of Colchane at the foot of the Isluga Volcano (around 18,000 feet). The village and its surroundings host an array of wildlife from ñandú and flamingos to vicuñas and alpacas. Spend the night in family-run enterprise (a multibed room with shared bathrooms).

Day 6: Witness an Ancient Geoglyph

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Today we’re moving away from the Andean highlands. On our journey to Pica, we’ll pass the “Giant of the Atacama”, one of the world’s largest ancient geoglyphs. The impressive artwork depicts a tall desert god. Afterwards, we’ll make our way to the old saltpeter town of Humberstone, a UNESCO site with a rich and multicultural history. The city is a relic of the past century, and today it hosts a big open-air museum. We’ll end the day in Pica, an oasis town in the middle of the desert. Your accommodation will be in a hotel.

Day 7: Explore Chile’s Largest National Reserve

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The first stop of the day is one of the most beautiful salt lakes in northern Chile, Salar de Huasco. Straddling the border with Bolivia, the high mountain peaks of the region are home to pink flamingos and gorgeous hiking routes. After some time exploring the outskirts of the salt lagoon, we’ll drive to Alto Loa National Park, Chile’s largest national reserve. Your accommodation will be a multibed room in a simple hostel.

Day 8: Next Stop - Salar de Uyuni

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Bienvenidos a Bolivia! We’ll cross the border first thing this morning and drive directly towards the largest salt desert in the world – Salar de Uyuni. Encounter numerous lagoons (Honda, Cañapa, and Chiguana) along the way, as well as volcanic peaks and clusters of pink flamingos. You won’t want to forget your camera for this trip! Your accommodation will be at a simple salt hotel in Chuvica.

Day 9: Bolivian Altiplano

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Awaken early this morning to witness the sunrise above the endless salt desert. We’ll then cross Salar and visit the cactus-covered island of Incahuasi. After a typical Chilean breakfast, we’ll make our way to the rock formations in Cañon de la Anaconda. We’ll finish the day with a gentle hike through this beautifully barren landscape, encountering llama herds on our way. Your accommodation for the night will be at a family-run enterprise in the village of Quetena Chico.

Day 10: Reach the Peak of Uturuncu

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Uturuncu is the only volcano in the area that reaches around 20,000 feet. Our route to the peak takes us along fumaroles before we start our steep ascent! After about 13,000 feet you will be rewarded with breathtaking views of the salt desert. Your accommodation for the night will be a multibed room in a hostel.

Day 11: Licancabur Volcano or Crossing to San Pedro (Optional Activity)

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*Optional Day*
The Licancabur Volcano, straddling the border between Bolivia and Chile, is one of the most characteristic volcanoes of the region due to its almost perfect conical shape. We’ll rise early in the morning to witness the unique spectacle of the rising sun illuminating the crater rim before beginning our ascent. Enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and the world’s fifth-highest lagoon. The descent takes about 3-4 hours to the mountain hut, from which we’ll drive to San Pedro de Atacama. Your accommodation will be at a hotel.

Day 12: Rainbow Valley & Moon Valley

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Today we’re heading off the beaten track to the middle of Salar de Atacama and seven small lagoons which stand in striking contrast to the white salt desert. After a gentle stroll to soak up the incredible, barren landscape, we’ll visit Rainbow Valley with its colorful canyon and rock formations. The highlight of the evening is watching the sunset in the lunar landscape of Moon Valley, as the surreal desert landscape and the mountains behind it are painted various shades of red. In the evening, a typical Atacameño meal awaits you.

Day 13: Baltinache Lagoons and Sunset in Salar de Atacama

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Today we will enjoy breakfast in a very special place, where you can swim in a salt lagoon and enjoy the landscape around San Pedro! In the afternoon you can enjoy the quaint town of San Pedro and finish your Atacama experience with dinner in a very special restaurant which combines indigenous food from the entire length of Chile.

Day 14: Final Day

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Unfortunately, today is the final day of your tour. We’ll provide a transfer to El Loa Airport in Calama. If you’re not ready for the adventure to end, we recommend a follow-up program in Patagonia or Santiago! Get in touch for more info.

Don't Forget!

  • Our guides can speak English, Spanish, and German
  • Please let us know in advance if you have any medical conditions so that we can be fully prepared for the tour
  • Please let us know if you have any dietary requirements. We can cater to vegetarians and vegans if you let us know in advance
  • Flecha Extrema aims to be as inclusive as possible because the beauty of Chile should be accessible to all. Please get in touch if you have a group with special requirements, and we will try our best to accommodate your needs
  • Flecha Extrema is not responsible for lost items