Altiplanic Lagoons Tours
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Part of Los Flamencos National Reserve, the high-altitude Altiplanic Lagoons are nestled between the Andean peaks of Chile, Argentina, Bolivia, and Peru. The Miscanti and Miñique lakes are managed by an indigenous community located in Socaire, a town often visited for its handmade crafts and historic church.
The volcano-surrounded lagoons were created by cooling molten lava and therefore create a visual spectacle that’s best appreciated on foot. The Altiplanic Lagoons are a common feature of tours of the Atacama Desert, one of the driest places on earth. Excursions typically explore the desert in a 4WD Jeep and cover highlights such as the Chaza Lagoon, the Atacama Salt Flats (Salar de Atacama), and the handicraft villages of Tocaire.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Most trips to the Altiplanic Lagoons involve at least some walking, so ensure that you’re wearing sturdy shoes and plenty of sunscreen.
- Due to the high altitude, the area surrounding the lake is generally quite chilly, so be sure to take a jacket.
- Swimming in the lakes is not permitted.
How to Get There
The Altiplanic Lagoons are located 71 miles (114 kilometers) from San pedro de Atacama. No public transport services the area and the only way to tackle the desert’s harsh terrain is by 4WD drive as part of a tour.
When to Get There
The conditions of the Atacama Desert remain steady throughout the year; expect no rain and cool temperatures due to the altitude. In order to beat the crowds, try to visit during the shoulder season, which runs from September to November and between March and May.
Exploring the Otherworldly Landscapes of the Atacama Desert
Chile’s Atacama Desert is home to wealth of natural wonders; its landscapes are more reminiscent of Mars than they are Earth. Must-see sights include the wind-sculpted valleys of Moon Valley (Valle de la Luna); the steaming El Tatio Geyser, which is powered by geothermic activity; and Laguna Baltinache, whose high salt content allows you to float.
8 Tours and Activities to Experience Altiplanic Lagoons
You can reserve your spot today and pay when you're ready.
You can reserve your spot today and pay when you're ready.
Atacama Salt Flat Day Trip from San Pedro de Atacama including Los Flamencos National Reserve and Socaire Village
Discover the natural splendor of the Atacama Salt Flats on a full-day tour from San Pedro de Atacama. Accompanied by a knowledgeable guide, visit the luminescent salt flats of Soncor; observe fabulous flocks of brightly colored flamingos in Los Flamenco National Park; and explore the luscious lagoons of Miscanti and Miniques. Feast upon a traditional Chilean lunch in the charming village of Socaire, and browse the bespoke boutiques of Tocanao for special souvenirs and artisan treasures.
Driving for a couple of hours during some days in the area. A tour in the morning, another in the afternoon. Many days scaping from the city to get to another routine: traveling and seeing the desert, its valleys and lagoons. Stop. Breathe. Give yourself some time to know the place, but to do it for real. Rest your mind and your body in front of the altiplanic lagoons. Know Toconao and Socaire: the hospitality, its history and its people. Walk through the Inca Trail, the point where the Tropic of Capricorn crosses, see the reflection of the hills and the sun in the lagoons water, and say hi to the flamencos that inhabit the Atacama salt flat. A diverse but rewarding tour through the San Pedro de Atacama heights and places that will appeal your emotions and the will to stay there. We invite you to make this tour because the Chilean desert has a minute for you and will give you the opportunity to simply slow down.
The landscape is amazing at 4200 masl. The vicunas, which run free, feed on the straw that abounds in the place. In the background first appears the Miscanti volcano and the Miñiques volcano, at its feet two majestic lagoons that bear the same name of the mountains and that dazzle anyone. Located in the Chilean highlands
See multiple attractions around the Atacama Desert on this full-day guided tour from San Pedro de Atacama. Enjoy a hassle-free pickup from your hotel and start your day with breakfast (included) in the Miscanti and Miñiques highland lagoons. Continue your day exploring Salar de Talar, the village of Socaire, and Salar de Atacama, Chile's largest salt lake where you can see flamingos. Your final stop is town of Toconao before you get dropped off back at your hotel.
We are the best local suppliers in the region to make sure your next trip is a safe, personalized and exceptional experience. Our prices are not higher than what you will find at destination. We do not charge management fees. We accompany you before, during and after your trip to immediately address all your doubts and requirements, in your language and through the service channel you prefer. and we are the only ones with cocktail in Valle de la Luna
Taking safety measures
Face masks required for travelers in public areas
Face masks required for guides in public areas
Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
This 4-day tour of the Atacama Desert takes the planning and guesswork out of exploring the region’s highlights. Your guide accompanies you to the otherworldly landscape and salt caves at Valle de la Luna (Moon Valley), vibrantly colored red rock formations Chaxa Lagoon, and off-the-beaten-track sites that you might miss on your own. All transportation is included with daily hotel pickup and drop-off, so you can choose your own accommodation and meals to suit your tastes.
Discover one of Chile’s most unique natural landscapes on this 10-hour tour from San Pedro de Atacama, including hotel-up. Marvel over the stark white plains of the Atacama Salt Flats, see the shimmering Miscanti lagoon and spot pink flamingos bathing in the Chaxa lagoon. Finally, get a taste of life in the Atacama Desert as you visit the traditional villages of Socaire and Toconao.
We are known for providing a family experience to be a trip made by father and son who have always lived in the area. Patricio father will be the driver and chef and Patricio son the local certified guide and also a professional photographer with extensive knowledge in all aspects of the area. Also this tour can be fully customized if necessary, focused on people who just want to know the area and even professional photographers who want to leave the usual hours.
Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What's the best way to experience Altiplanic Lagoons?
The best ways to experience Altiplanic Lagoons are:
- Atacama Salt Flat Day Trip from San Pedro de Atacama including Los Flamencos National Reserve and Socaire Village
- Altiplanic Lagoons and Piedras Rojas Tour - Full Day Tour - Private Option
- Altiplanic Lagoons
- San Pedro de Atacama: Full day Altiplanic lagoons, include breakfast and lunch.
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