Itinerary in brief:
- 3 nights in San Pedro de Atacama
- 3 nights in Salta
Day 1: Arrive in Calama
On arrival at Calama airport, you’ll be met and taken to San Pedro de Atacama to check in for a three-night stay. In the afternoon, you’ll join a small group tour to visit the Death and Moon valleys where you’ll witness the spectacular sunset over the incredible sand and stone formations. At the end of the tour, you’ll be driven back to your hotel.
Day 2: San Pedro, Toconao & Atacama Salt Lake
After breakfast, you’ll go on a tour of San Pedro followed by a visit to the 3,000-year-old pre-Columbian village of Tulor. The archaeological remains here are the oldest evidence of human settlement in the valley. You’ll have lunch and continue to the village of Toconao and the Atacama Salt Lake, an ancient inland sea characterised by stunning rock formations and crystalised salt formed millions of years ago. In the late afternoon, you’ll be taken back to your hotel to spend the evening at leisure.
Day 3: El Tatio and Machuca
There’s an early start today as you’ll be picked up before dawn and driven to El Tatio Geysers, a geothermal field with impressive peaks all around. The scenery is spectacular and at 4,300m and this is the highest in the world. We suggest bringing some warm clothing for today’s excursions as temperatures at this kind of altitude and time of day can be quite low. We’ve included a packed breakfast followed by a visit to the village of Machuca. You’ll return to San Pedro late morning and will have a free afternoon.
Day 4: Bus journey to Salta
Today you’ll cross from Chile into Argentina with a long, yet spectacular bus journey to reach beautiful Salta. You’ll be picked up at your hotel in San Pedro after breakfast and taken to the bus terminal. The trip is about 10 hours but buses are very comfortable, and you’ll be passing through such beautiful landscapes that the time will fly! Bring food and drinks for the bus as only a snack is provided and you won’t have many opportunities during the journey to buy refreshments.
Once you arrive in Salta, you’ll be taken you to your hotel for a three-night stay.
Day 5: Salta city tour
Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before a morning tour of the city. Salta is the provincial capital of this mountainous region, founded in 1582. It is famous for its Spanish colonial architecture combined with Andean heritage. The afternoon will be free for you to spend as you wish.
Day 6: Humahuaca Gorge
Today will be an early departure to travel to the Quebrada de Humahuaca (Humahuaca Gorge), s a narrow and arid mountain valley that follows the line of the Camino Inca, along the spectacular valley of the Rio Grande. The valley’s residents adhere to their ancient traditions, and you’ll learn how the valley still shows evidence of its use as a major trade route over the past 10,000 years.
You’ll also visit some of the villages where you’ll have lunch, and at the end of the day, you’ll be driven back to your hotel in Salta.
North-west of Argentina has a diversity of landscapes; South of Salta are lush, green valleys famous for wine production. If you wish to visit some of these wineries and maybe even spend a night, we suggest speaking to one of our consultants and add a night or two to this itinerary.
Day 7: Depart Salta
You’ll be collected from your hotel today and be taken to the airport by private transfer to connect with your onward travel plans.