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Atacama Desert Tours

Atacama Desert
As the driest place on earth, you’d expect the Atacama Desert to resemble a barren wasteland. Instead, the vast and arid landscape offers plenty to see and explore, including blue lagoons, salt flats, and active geysers—and also offers some of the world’s best stargazing opportunities. 

The Basics 
The Atacama Desert in Northern Chile is the driest place on earth outside of the poles; until 2018, no rain had been recorded in its core in 500 years or more. Visit to see the otherworldly terrain, which include sights like the dune-filled Moon Valley (Valle de la Luna) and Laguna Baltinache, which has the same salt content as the Dead Sea. 

To explore the rugged terrain, you’ll need to travel by a 4-wheel-drive vehicle. Guided excursions of the area often include stops at the Atacama Salt Flats (Salar de Atacama) and El Tatio Geyser, where you can soak in thermal pools. Some include other nearby natural wonders, such as the Red Stone Desert, Cejar Lagoon, and Los Flamencos National Reserve.  

Things to Know Before You Go 
  • Most tours of the Atacama Desert require some walking on uneven terrain, so ensure you’re wearing sturdy and comfortable shoes. 
  • The town of San Pedro de Atacama serves as the gateway to the desert; here, you can find an abundance of shops, restaurants, and accommodations. 
  • Temperatures in the desert can plummet at night, so be sure to bring some warm clothing, especially if you plan to star gaze.

How to Get There 
The easiest way to reach the Atacama Desert is by taking a flight from Santiago to Calama, then driving to the town of San Pedro de Atacama, about 1.5 hours away. Alternatively, you can take a 24-hour bus ride to San Pedro from the capital.

When to Get There
Daytime temperatures in the Atacama Desert range from the high 70s and low 80s in summer (Nov–February) to the 60s in winter (June–August). If you plan to go stargazing, it is best to visit between September and April, when the evenings are mildest. 

Stargazing in the Atacama Desert 
The Atacama Desert has some of the clearest night skies on earth and is a mecca for astronomers. The area boasts several astronomical observatories where visitors can book a slot to see the night sky through ultra-powerful telescopes. You can also opt to visit multiple telescopes on an astronomer-led tour, which includes a guided look at the constellations and an opportunity to take photos of the moon’s surface. 
Address: San Pedro de Atacama, Antofagasta Region, Chile, Chile
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7 Tours and Activities to Experience Atacama Desert

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Atacama Desert Stargazing Tour

Atacama Desert Stargazing Tour

star-4
Gaze at the sparkling stars of the Atacama Desert with an expert astronomer on a stargazing tour from San Pedro de Atacama. Visit South America’s largest astronomical observatory and gain insight into the secrets of the night sky; stare at stars through a state-of-the-art telescope, discovering glowering planets invisible to the naked eye; and capture photographs of the moon’s crater covered surfaces. Conclude your magical evening with a steaming cup of cocoa as you digest your newfound cosmological knowledge.
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$44.00
Price varies by group size
From
$44.00
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Moon Valley Tour & Death Valley Safari style by Grade 10

Moon Valley Tour & Death Valley Safari style by Grade 10

star-4.5
Traveling routes with us you can become part of nature and also enjoy great comfort, security and an excellent service. In an exclusive safari-style bus, with reclining seats and an unparalleled panoramic view, we will take you to the most spectacular places in the Atacama Desert, such as the Moon Valley and the Death Valley. In the valley of the moon & death valley tour you can see the Atacama desert in its maximum splendor from the top of a dune until we enter the valley of death. Enjoy on the tour a rich orange soda with ice to pass the heat and continue enjoying. Finally you can enjoy all the safari style of a sunset that will leave you impressed by its beauty and colors.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$30.77
From
$30.77

Guided Buggy Safari

Guided Buggy Safari

star-5
Guided Tour. Pick up 16:00. The buggy can accommodate up to 5 passengers plus the guide. This is the perfect vehicle to explore a wide variety of terrains including river bed crossings, steep mountain climbs and beautiful sand dunes. Your expert local guide drives you up thrilling trails and entertains you with their extensive local area knowledge. Stop over on archaeological site of Tulor Village. You get spectacular photo opportunities. Recommendable to wear comfortable clothing, long pants, closed snickers. Feel free to bring water, snack, a camera and a bag with you.
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  • 3 to 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$107.70
From
$107.70

Ancestral Caravan with Sandra Flores - Half Day Special Tour - Local Community

Ancestral Caravan with Sandra Flores - Half Day Special Tour - Local Community

For a couple of hours, Sandra Flores and her friendly llamas show you a part of the Likan Antai culture in a relaxing journey through the desert. They take you to the past to enjoy and admire San Pedro de Atacama’s peace and vastness. Sandra guides the tour while you walk holding the llama’s reins. It is not just a walk to have an experience with a llama, it is a sort of therapy. Every step you give next to the animal, feeling its muscles, its breathing and the sound it makes with its mouth, causes a unique impression while you are here in San Pedro de Atacama: a real connection with nature and liberty in the immensity of this magical place. Emotions here intertwine and mix: joy, tranquility, nervousness and many others that appear across these paths that, hundreds of years ago, were also walked by the local tribes, and that today have become one of the desert’s most exclusive attractions.
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  • 2 to 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$86.00
From
$86.00

Laguna Cejar Tour Safari style by Grade 10

Laguna Cejar Tour Safari style by Grade 10

star-5
In an exclusive safari-style bus, with reclining seats and an unparalleled panoramic view, we will take you to the most spectacular places in the Atacama Desert. Traveling routes with us you can become part of nature and also enjoy great comfort, security and an excellent service. On the Cejar Lagoon tour you will see incredible places from the heights of our overland bus. You can bathe in a salt lagoon where the bodies float, you will see the reflection of the mountains in the Tebenquinche lagoon and finally enjoy a cocktail watching the sunset in the middle of the desert with an exquisite cocktail prepared by our staff all this in our safari bus Recommendations: Bring a jacket, bathing suit, towel, sunscreen and 1 liter of mineral water per person. Note: Use of sunscreen and sandals is not permitted in the lagoon.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$35.90
From
$35.90

Quad Safari Atacama

Quad Safari Atacama

Our tour offers you a new way to explore the vast Atacama Desert, accompanied by a guide, on first generation ATV QUAD SAFARI vehicles, we will cross the Cordillera de la Sal and its surrounding valleys . The Quad Safari Atacama - Desert Tour will take you through dunes and rivers, to reach a very special point, from where we will enjoy stunning views of the landscape of the mountains and valleys
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$409.00
From
$409.00
Taking safety measures

Atacama Desert Night Camping in Atacama

Atacama Desert Night Camping in Atacama

The San Pedro de Atacama desert is famous for having some of the best viewing for stars in the night sky, and it’s full of otherworldly-looking canyons, lakes, and landmarks. So, with our Camping Tour, we offer you the posibility of going star-gazing and watching sunrises from out in the wilderness. We include all the necesary equipmant as well as meals, so you just have to relax and enjoy your adevnture!
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  • 2 days
  • Taking safety measures
From
$229.57
From
$229.57
Taking safety measures

Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What's the best way to experience Atacama Desert?

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