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San Pedro De Atacama to Arica in the high season

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Jul 23rd, 2013, 08:21 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Jun 2013
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San Pedro De Atacama to Arica in the high season

Hello fellow SA travellers!

I have been booking my internal flights for SA trip in Dec-Jan and now I am up to northern Chile.

We fly into Calama on the 2nd January from Santiago. How many days should we allow for San Pedro De Atacama?

And is there frequent buses from San Pedro/Calama to Arica? I've looked at flights and they are very expensive as you have to have a stop over back at Santiago!

I've been alright by myself booking this trip, up until now! Any help is appreciated!
sammybuttons is offline  
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Jul 24th, 2013, 02:58 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
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I believe only Turbus does a daily bus to Arica, anyway buses are very limited. Calama, 1.5 hr away has many more options. Have a look at flights to Arica from Antofagasta (4 hrs away from Calama by bus) and see if that works out better, but it may be easier to go via Santiago in the end. If you want to get on the bus in San Pedro you would need your lodging to book it for you in advance as it always leaves full.

I think how long you stay in San Pedro depends on which excursions you want to do, but probably 3 days. If you want to go to the Bolivian salt flats and back from there you need to add on another 4 days. You may require a visa to enter Bolivia but you can pay for it at the border.
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Jul 24th, 2013, 04:05 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2013
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I'd prefer bus over plane for that distance any day, since it'll give you much more adventure! If you have the time, anyway.
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Jul 26th, 2013, 03:42 AM
  #4
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We don't have the time really, which is unfortunate! Flight connecting back thru Santiago seems to be the way to go, as I can't really rely on catching that "one bus" if we have a connecting flight at Arica.

7 hour layover back in Santiago will be enough of an adventure I guess! Haha
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Jul 26th, 2013, 08:10 AM
  #5
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
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In the long run, going back to SCL will be less hassle in the end. Just one heads up if you are flying LAN. They do move their schedule around sometimes and you need to check that the original flight times are still valid before you go.
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Jul 28th, 2013, 12:30 AM
  #6
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Yeah I have booked a few flights with them and have already had 3 flight changes so far. At least they are emailing me the changes in advance though! Thanks for your help
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