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Travel Blogs from San Pedro de Atacama
... covered in cacti and are also populated with a number of bird varieties which seems strange in the middle of the empty Salar. In the heat of the day the islands appear to float above the land.
Driving across the salt is easy. It provides a good gripping surface and it is flat so produces a smooth ride. The whole surface is patterned because of the crystalline nature of the salt and from a distance or low perspective this can look like loose snow. The only difficulty is ...
... like a long lost friend. The landscape was breath taking - volcanic cones and snow-capped mountains merged with blue sky above and bare solid below as we zoomed along, stopping briefly to view (at considerable distance) the ALMA telescope located at 5000m. Marguerita had told us previously about how this facility housed 100 scientists who spent 5 weeks at a time in a completely enclosed facility, due to the low oxygen levels outside. They got to go to town once a week ...
... geothermally influenced streams run through the geyser field and natural pools have been created for those wanting to bath in the warm waters. By the time we got around to doing this, the air temperature was above zero and the thermal pools seemed decidedly cool. Having satisfied our interest in the geyser field, we headed towards home, stopping to admire a diversity of water birds at the Putana Stream, an extensive wetland system where we observed the Giant Coot carrying ...
... afar) and Darwin’s Rhea (related to the ostrich and emu), we got to see huge numbers of flamingos which was really impressive.
Our last day took us through more amazing landscapes and lagoons plus a hot spring, which with the absolutely freezing conditions was not touched by me or Christine simply because we wouldn’t have been able to get out. From there we ventured across the border to Chile.
San Pedro de Atacama, Chile (13/10 to ...
... were dozens of tourists flooding out of our bus terminal but we were thankful for our good luck nonetheless!!
Soon enough we arrived at a local shanti house made from scrap materials and wood. Realizing there were only female and male dorms, Sam and I split up and settled in. I was lucky enough to stay in a 3 bedder with 2 amazing German girls who were super friendly and interesting. Sam seemed to get along with his boys too.