Things to do in
North Chile

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Our most recommended things to do in North Chile

Santiago: Cajon del Maipo & Embalse El Yeso Trip with Picnic

Santiago: Cajon del Maipo & Embalse El Yeso Trip with Picnic

Discover the magnificent Andes Mountains on a guided day trip from Santiago. Pass by the Tinoco Tunnel, admire the picturesque Cajón del Maipo gorge, and enjoy a picnic lunch overlooking the El Yeso Dam. Start your tour early in the morning with a convenient pickup directly from your accommodation. Hop into the air-conditioned van and set out towards the Maipo Canyon. As you travel, admire the wonderful views of this natural landscape full of high mountain passes, lakes, and forests. Hear about the area's traditions and listen to folktales told by your guide. Along the way, you'll pass the Tinoco Tunnel, a dark disused train tunnel that runs along the Camino Al Volcán, a remnant from the region's railway days. Listen as your guide tells you about the history of this unusual attraction and the tragic story behind the shrines located at the tunnel's entrance and exit. Not far from here, you'll reach the El Yeso Dam. This large reservoir was created in 1964 by damming the Yeso River and now serves as one of the major sources of water for Santiago. Stop here to enjoy a picnic-style lunch served with a glass of wine and some juice. Then, sit back and relax as you set out on your return journey to Santiago, where your driver will drop you off directly at your accommodation.

San Pedro de Atacama: Valle de la Luna Sunset Tour

San Pedro de Atacama: Valle de la Luna Sunset Tour

Meet your group at the meeting point and travel to Valle de la Luna, located 13 kilometers from San Pedro de Atacama. Explore the lunar-like landscape which will mesmerize you with its colorful geology. Discover interesting rock formations composed of natural minerals, including Las Tres Marías created by wind erosion over many decades. See other sights such as the Grand Dunes, the Salt Cave, the Amphitheater, and the Coyote Stone. At the end of the day, admire the sunset from an exceptional lookout point overlooking the valley. Enjoy a panoramic view of the rugged beauty of the Atacama desert, and see the beautiful colors of the sky as the sun gradually sets.

San Pedro de Atacama: El Tatio Geysers Tour

San Pedro de Atacama: El Tatio Geysers Tour

Discover the third largest geothermal field in the world and the largest in the southern hemisphere in the Atacama Desert. At 4,200 meters (13,780 feet) above sea level, the Tatio Geysers are a natural marvel that will take your breath away, in more ways than one. Leave early in the morning, before sunrise, after pickup from your hotel. Arrive at the geysers early to have the opportunity to observe the contrast between the sunrise and the steam from the heat of the magma-affected waters. After sunrise, savor a complete breakfast with bread, cheese, ham, scrambled eggs, coffee, chocolate, milk, and jam. Once you've eaten, spend some more time exploring the 80 geysers around the national park. From there, ride through the Putana Valley. See endemic flora and fauna and stop at a lagoon to see flamingos before returning to your hotel.

Puerto Natales: Torres del Paine Full Day Tour

Puerto Natales: Torres del Paine Full Day Tour

Start the tour with pick up from your accommodation and set off for the Torres del Paine National Park. After arriving access the park through Portería Laguna Amarga, where you will be able to get an excellent view of the Paine Towers. As you venture through the park, observe a wide variety of native fauna and flora. Make several stops at the main viewpoints to appreciate the uniqueness of the landscape and the magnitude of the Paine Massif from different perspectives. At Midday, stop for lunch before continuing the itinerary toward Grey Lake. Here, enjoy a 1-hour hike through an ancient Lenga forest and along Grey Lake Beach. From this side of the park, it is possible to enjoy the view of the West face of the Paine Massif and the intense blue hues of Grey’s glacial ice. Once your adventure in the park is over, drive back to Puerto Natales. On the way, stop by the Mylodon Cave Natural Monument, of the Pleistocene era. Return to the city by about 7 PM.

Calama Airport: Shared Transfer to/from San Pedro de Atacama

Calama Airport: Shared Transfer to/from San Pedro de Atacama

Start or end your time in San Pedro de Atacama stress free with a reliable shared transfer service between your accommodation and the airport. Please confirm the departure time with your airline at least 24 hours before your service to avoid any delay, and keep in mind that the distance between Calama airport and San Pedro de Atacama is 1.5 hours. Some of the drivers speak little or no english, so please ask for assistance over the phone in case of any miscommunication. Upon arrival at the airport, your driver will be waiting by the exit door to greet you with a card that says your name. If you are traveling from your hotel to the airport, you will usually be picked up at least three hours before your flight departure. On the way between the airport and your hotel, enjoy comfortable and air-conditioned transport, listen to music, or ask your driver about things to do during your stay in San Pedro de Atacama.

Punta Arenas: Walk with Penguins on Magdalena & Marta Island

Punta Arenas: Walk with Penguins on Magdalena & Marta Island

After check-in at the meeting point, transfer to Laredo Bay port to board speedboats for a 45-minute trip to Magdalena Island. Once there, enjoy 1 hour with a guide to discover the habitat of the Magellanic penguins on Magdalena Island, the second largest Magellanic penguin colony in South America that receives more than 120,000 penguins every year. Next, if the weather conditions are good, continue your journey to Marta Island, which hosts a colony of more than 1000 Patagonian sea lions, as well as copious bird life. Keep an eye out for cormorants, skuas, austral seagulls, Antarctic pigeons, and the occasional elephant seal. If you're lucky, see southern dolphins, piebald dolphins, and sei whales during your trip. The tour includes with return to Laredo Bay port and transfer back to the original meeting point.

San Pedro de Atacama: Etno-Stargazing Tour with Telescope

San Pedro de Atacama: Etno-Stargazing Tour with Telescope

Enjoy two different views of the night sky during your tour. The first will be the Western vision, which studies the universe, the brightness of the stars, and their planets. You can observe, with a telescope, objects in the solar system, deep space, and constellations. Learn about the cosmos and its formation.  Then, go on an ethnic astronomical journey to understand how the ancient inhabitants of the Andes interpreted the universe, the milky way, and the night sky. Many centuries before the arrival of the Spaniards, in the indigenous settlements of America, many wise observers of the universe interpreted the objects of the night sky. In all the black spaces, they observed figures that gave them information about their daily life including animals, water, rivers, schedules, and life after death. 

Santiago: Viña Del Mar, Valparaiso, Casablanca & Reñaca Tour

Santiago: Viña Del Mar, Valparaiso, Casablanca & Reñaca Tour

Head out from Santiago to some of the most emblematic destinations within Chile, like Valparíso and Viña del Mar, as well as stopping by one of the best wine markets in Casablanca on your way and a visit to the famous Reñaca beach. Marvel at the towering Andean mountains that flank the road to your full-day tour outside of Santiago. You will stop at Río Tinto in the town of Casablanca, a wine market in the middle of Chilean wine country, for a complimentary glass of wine and an olive oil tasting. Afterward, visit Valparaíso and its city center which was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Its charming and picturesque houses include La Sebastiana, one of the houses of Nobel Prize winner Pablo Neruda. Your next stop is Viña del Mar, famed for its music scene and its numerous parks and gardens, which have earned it the nickname of the Garden City. Head along the coastline northwards to visit Reñaca, the most popular beach area in the region.

San Pedro de Atacama: Hidden Lagoons of Baltinache Tour

San Pedro de Atacama: Hidden Lagoons of Baltinache Tour

Meet your local host in the main street of San Pedro de Atacama to begin your experience. Heading towards the southeast of the desert taking the scenic route to the hidden lagoons of Baltinache. During the 1-hour drive, see all the rock and salt landscapes that make up the desert, and learn about why this area is believed to have been at the bottom of the ocean millions of years ago. Walk to the beginning of the track where you can visit all 7 lagoons. Be stunned by the crystal clear waters of the lagoons and wonder how such a thing is possible in the middle of nowhere. If you wish to take a dip, you are permitted to swim in the first or at the last lagoon only, for conservation purposes. Due to the amount of salt that they have in the water, experience the sensation of floating like a cork. Swim and relax in the water for up to 20-minutes. After swimming, enjoy a shower and remove the salt from your body to return to the city. Then, enjoy the scenic ride back with the opportunity to catch the sun setting over the desert. Finally, arrive back in San Pedro de Atacama where your memorable tour concludes.

Piedras Rojas, Altiplanics Lagoons & Salar Full-Day Tour

Piedras Rojas, Altiplanics Lagoons & Salar Full-Day Tour

Be collected from your accommodation in San Pedro de Atacama around 6:30 AM. Your first stop, after an hour, will be at the Miscanti and Miñiques highland lagoons, located at 4,200 meters above sea level. In these lagoons, enjoy breakfast and admire the fauna and flora here.  The next visit is to the Salar de Talar, known as Piedras Rojas or purple stones. The beauty of this place will leave you speechless. Continue to your next stop at the Atacameño village of Socaire, where you can observe the terraces of cultivation and the village church. Then visit the Salar de Atacama, Chile's largest salt lake. Here are the national flamingo reserve and the Chaxa lagoon, which is home to three types of flamingos as well as other species. Return to San Pedro de Atacama around 5:00 PM. 

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What people are saying about North Chile

Overall rating

4.5
(819 reviews)

The company (Zenit) you do this trek with is full of actual experienced climbers and trekkers, and unlike other tour companies you are not shipped off to a third party. You climb with the people you talk to. All of our guides were very knowledgeable, especially about safety. And although anybody in reasonable shape could probably do this, it definitely was harder than we were expecting as athletic mid 20s. Still 5/5 overall.

The Tour was beautiful. Our guide Alexander was perfect, he knew so much about the area, was always kind, friendly and enthusiastic and got never tired of answering our questions. He really took care that the whole group was feeling ok despite the altitude. The food was really nice, too. It was a fantastic day. When you have the chance, try to book a tour with Alexander!!

This tour is very good. We saw flamingos and mountains and lagoons and much more. Our guide (Illian) was very nice and knowledgeable about what we were doing and seeing. Just note that you are pretty far from San Pedro so there is a lot of driving involved. Breakfast and lunch were also very good!

Ramiro and Tamara were some of the best guides I’ve ever had. Warm, funny, engaging, and educational. The hike was also excellent, quite intense but with some extraordinary views along the way. This experience is definitely a must for anyone looking for a one day trek.

very enthusiastic and knowledgeable guide. Great tour to get to know Santiago and its origin. Added bonus on tips of where to eat or drink. highly recommended.