Atacama Desert – Chile

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A stay in the Atacama Desert will blow your mind. Surrounded by the Andes mountain and located in the northern part of Chile, San Pedro De Atacama is home the most spectacular unspoilt landscapes. As it is the driest desert in the world, dramatic features await you with volcanoes, canyons, gorges, hot spring, salt flats and more.

Experience a luxurious ecological lodge surrounded by wilderness and interact with local people to learn more about the indigenous culture.

Choose a full-day or two half-day excursions from more than 30 different available options, or you may just choose to relax and indulge in the hotel spa.

NOTE: 3 & 5 days program also available. South America Tours suggests a minimum stay of 4 days to explore this area.

For more information on Alto Atacama and to start creating your tailor-made itinerary please contact us!


    From the moment you arrive, the Alto Atacama team will take care of you.

    The expert guides and crew, are able to make any one feel at home in the middle of one of the driest deserts in the world.

    Amongst other things, you will have the chance to feel you travel in harmony with the landscape, within the principles of the Leave No Trace outdoor system, leaving the places you travel to, as well or better than when you first arrived. On outings, both bikes and vans keep to the roads marked.

    Depending on your arrival time, you may take an excursion or relax and enjoy your desert oasis. (D.)


    Choose a full-day or two half-day excursions from more than 30 different available options, or you may just choose to relax and indulge in the hotel spa. (B. L. D.)

    Find below some of the many activities options ...

    Cultural Excursions:

    The first traces of human activity in the area date back more than 10 thousand years. Since then, the Atacama Desert has continued to be a hub of human interaction, a commercial crossroads for Andean peoples and a proud cradle of Ancient cultural heritage. Choose from 6 cultural tours that allow you to explore the legacy left by indigenous populations:

    Lickanantai Culture Tour Half Day
    Rock Art Tour Half Day
    High Andean Villages Tour Full Day
    High Catarpe Hike Half Day
    Tambo Catarpe Tour Half Day
    Andean Orchards Tour Half Day

    Contemplative Excursions

    Atacama Geysers Contemplative tours are designed to allow a deep immersion into the diverse topography, nature and culture of the Atacama. The varying routes were carefully considered by expert guides to offer guests the chance of exploring the enigmas of the desert. (Most do not require extensive acclimatization or excessive physical exertion; however some are best enjoyed once completely acclimatized.):

    Valley of the Moon Tour Half Day
    Atacama Salt Flat & Toconao Village Tour Half Day
    Tatio Geysers Visit Full Day
    The Salk Lakes Tour Half Day
    Andean Lagoons, Salar Aguas Calientes & Tuyajto Full Day
    Wetlands & Pecan Monks Full Day
    Sunrise in the Atacama

    Astronomical Excursions

    As the Atacama Desert is one of the driest places on Earth, it leaves the sky free of clouds, meaning that the skies above are some of the clearest in the world. Many regard this region as the best in the Southern Hemisphere to practice astronomy. We consider the skies above the desert to be the window pane of the universe. Alto Atacama's location is a spot to observe in peace the magnificent spectacle of stars, planets, galaxies, constellations and nebulae that have left us wondering since the dawn of time:

    Andean Astronomy Observatory 1 Hour
    Full Moon Walk 1.5 Hours

    Adventure Excursions

    These adventure tours will offer guests just that – an adventure! This range of walking and biking excursions allow the force of the Desert to be revealed with the natural energy it deserves:

    The Colorados Half Day Hike
    Cardones Ravine Half Day Hike
    Inca Pass Half Day Trek
    Catarpe Valley Half Day Trek
    Devil's Throat Half Day Mountain Bike

    Expedition Excursions

    These tours are the most demanding and require a minimum of two days altitude acclimatization as many of these expeditions pass over four thousand meters above sea level. From the heights of volcanoes to the depths of the streams, these excursions present a range of unique challenges to all thrill seekers. Amongst other things, you will hike through the mountains that populate the vast high Andean plains, and have given protection to the indigenous cultures of this region for centuries:

    Desert Valley Half Day
    Route of the Shepherds Full Day Hike
    Llaretas Route Full Day Hike
    Toco Volcano Half Day Climbing Tour
    Soquete Volcano Half Day Climbing Tour
    Licancabur Volcano Two Day Climbing Tour


    Flamingo's Atacama
    Chile’s desert is blessed with the world’s clearest skies. Alto Atacama’s unique location away from the bright lights of the village of San Pedro means there is zero light pollution, providing the most dramatic setting for an evening of stargazing. The viewing area is atop a small hill, right next to the hotel, thus providing an even better vantage point. The hotel even offers a professional telescope. There is also much to see with the naked eye, as one can simply sit back on one of our specially designed lounge chairs, sip a pre-dinner drink, and absorb the majesty of the night sky.

    PuriSpa – after the excursions, it is time to relax!

    Alto Atacama desert lodge & spa’s deluxe PuriSpa provides an experience that pampers, reduces tension and heals. Located near the six wonderful oasis-like swimming pools, the PuriSpa is a haven of relaxation, featuring an indoor Jacuzzi, steam room, sauna, massage, aroma therapy, reflexology, and even gong therapy. Try a Moonlight Massage, or enjoy a romantic candlelit massage for couples and Altiplanic Mud Wrap or a Quinoa Facial. Treatments are not included in your price.


    Whether it's exploring ancient Incan ruins and petroglyphs, climbing volcanoes, mountain biking through desert canyons or just taking in your surroundings from one of the six open air pools, there's really no shortage of things to do here. (B. L. D.)


    After breakfast buffet, we will transfer you to Calama Airport for your onward travel destination. (B.)

Alto Atacama Desert Lodge & Spa is the only lodge in the San Pedro region that is totally enveloped by natural surroundings. Located in the lush Catarpe Valley of the Salt Mountain Range, just over a mile from the plaza of San Pedro, the Alto Atacama’s design was influenced by local village architecture and conceived to blend seamlessly into its environment and appear as a part of the terracotta-colored ridge that rises behind it.

The setting, the sweeping views, the tranquility and silence, and the hotel’s wonderful outdoor lounge spaces make the Alto Atacama a destination unto itself, and unlike any other hotel property in the region.

Environmental sustainability and a strong connection with the local culture have put the Alto Atacama in a category of its own, as has its “Andescape” concept of decorative flora and stable of friendly llamas and alpacas, local cuisine, and Leave No Trace-schooled guides. Veronica Poblete, creator of Andescape, is a Paris-trained landscape designer and botanist, and ex-Harvard lecturer who has developed this new concept using local flora and ancient agricultural techniques.

Alto Atacama rooms:

Suite Tilo / Lagoon in the native language “Likan Antai”

10 Privileged rooms, specially located in the gardens of Alto Atacama, with an open view to the quiet Lagoon and the Catarpe Valley.

  • 70 m2 (770 sqf)
  • Private Terrace
  • Private Patio with an additional outdoor shower
  • Safe Deposit Box
  • Minibar
  • 2 of these suites are connected. Ideal for families.

Standard Catarpe / The name ‘Catarpe’ derives from the valley in which Alto Atacama is found

27 rooms located in the gardens of Alto Atacama. Slightly larger than the “Quitors”, with a more private terrace, offering an uninterrupted view to the Cordillera de la Sal Range and the Catarpe Valley.

  • 51 m2 (550 sqf)
  • Private Terrace
  • Safe Deposit Box
  • Minibar

Quitor / ‘Quitor’ derives from the Pukará de Quitor a former pre-Columbian fortress found very close to Alto Atacama

5 rooms closest to the Common Areas. The view from the private terraces of these guestrooms looks out on to the garden area of the hotel, framed against the Cordillera de la Sal in the background.

  • 50 m2 (550 sqf)
  • Private Terrace
  • Safe Deposit Box
  • Minibar One of these rooms is wheelchair accessible


  • Meet and greet at Calama airport
  • Arrival and departure transfers between Calama airport and the hotel
  • 2, 3 or 4 nights’ accommodations
  • All meals
  • Daily excursions (2 half-day or 1 full-day)
  • Free use of mountain bikes
  • Access to the spa (sauna, stea room, jacuzzi, etc.)
  • Access to swimming pools and outdoor jacuzzi
  • Complimentary transfer service between the hotel and the village of San Pedro (between 8:30am to 11:30pm)


  • Travel insurance
  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Meals and beverages not mentioned
  • Gratuities
  • Items of a personal nature


  • Prices are “from” per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season.
  • Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply.
  • Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability.
  • Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request
  • 3 & 5 days program also available. South America Tours suggests a minimum stay of 4 days to explore this area.

For more information on Alto Atacama and to start creating your tailor-made itinerary please contact us!