San Pedro de Atacama Travel Guide

San Pedro de Atacama Sports & Activities

San Pedro is an outdoors lover's dream. There are great places for biking, hiking, and horseback riding in every direction. Extreme-sports enthusiasts can try their hand at sandboarding on the dunes of the Valle de la Muerte. Climbers can take on the nearby volcanoes, which provide an exhilarating high-altitude ascent; the only trouble is the crowds. At the Valle de la Luna, for example, sunset at the large dune is somewhat spoiled by the large tourist vans that dump a couple hundred sightseers there for the renowned sundown. The number of tour agencies and outfitters in San Pedro can be a bit overwhelming: shop around, pick a company you feel comfortable with, ask questions, and make sure the company is willing to cater to your needs.

Whatever your sport, keep in mind that San Pedro lies at 2,400 meters (7,900 feet) above sea level. If you're not acclimated to the high altitude, you'll feel tired much sooner than you might expect, so save excursions to the altiplánico or geysers until your last days. Also, remember to slather on the sunscreen and drink plenty of water.

Horseback Riding

Atacama Horse. San Pedro has the feeling of a Wild West town, so why not hitch up your horse and head out on an adventure? Although the sun...

Sandboarding

Sandboarding in the Atacama is surprisingly popular among backpackers, despite the occasional heat rash and painful abrasions. Many agencies...

Stargazing

The Atacama Desert is one of the best places for stargazing in the world due to its clear skies, high altitude, and isolation from light pollution...

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