Founded in 1970, Lauca National Park in North Chile is part of a UNESCO-designated Global Biosphere Reserve. The park’s breathtaking scenery — snow-capped volcanoes, lakes, lagoons, hot springs and altiplano areas — attract visitors from all corners of the close. Home to more than 140 species of birds, the park is also one of the best in the country for birdwatching, and its biodiversity encompasses the Andean flamingo, giant coot, Puna Ibis and Andean condor, as well as mammals like vicuñas, vizcachas and guanacos.Lake Chungará, one of the planet’s highest lakes and a star feature of Lauca National Park, sits
at the base of the twin Payachata volcanoes, whose snowy peaks reflect off the glassy surface of the water. Trails winding throughout the park cater to visitors of all fitness levels, from the easy one-mile (1.5-kilometer) Las Cuevas interpretive trail to the longer 8-mile (13-kilometer) Cotacotani Trail.
Lauca National Park is located 91 miles (145 kilometers) east of Arica. Buses from Arica take slightly less than three hours.