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Chile, Bolivia and Peru: Deserts, Lakes and Canyons

Tailor Made Itinerary

17 Days From £5,105

Overview

A journey through three of South America’s most diverse and fascinating destinations, this is a true voyage of discovery and contrasts. Travelling from the spectacular deserts of northern Chile to the vast salt pans of southern Bolivia and the deep canyons of Peru, you’ll experience landscapes that combine a sense of real isolation with truly unforgettable images that are unrivalled anywhere else on the continent.

Beginning in the Chilean capital of Santiago, you will have ...

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TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

  • Discover the temples and preserved cultures of Lake Titicaca in Bolivia and Peru
  • Marvel at the spectacular scenery of the Atacama Desert in Chile
  • Cross the extensive Salt Lake of southern Bolivia and visit the train graveyard of Uyuni
  • Watch condors soar across the awe inspiring Colca Canyon in Peru
  • Enjoy the cosmopolitan culture of Santiago and Lima
  • Explore Sun Island with a stay on remarkable Lake Titicaca

ITINERARY

This is a suggested itinerary. Our experts have all travelled widely in the region and will be happy to tailor any of our itineraries to suit your tastes, or build a trip from scratch.

EXPAND ALL ITINERARY DAYS
COLLAPSE ALL ITINERARY DAYS

DAY 1: ARRIVE SANTIAGO (CHILE)

DAY 1: ARRIVE SANTIAGO (CHILE)

Upon your arrival in Santiago you will be welcomed at the airport and escorted to your hotel. Once you are settled in the afternoon, enjoy a half day tour of the city to discover its historic and modern districts. A host of colonial churches and palaces adorn the area around the main square, and you will also visit the new commercial area where the city’s progressive culture is being forged. Finally, take a funicular ride up San Cristobal Hill to the statue of the Virgin where on clear days, spectacular views of snow-capped mountain peaks can be observed.

Le Reve Boutique Hotel

DAY 2: SANTIAGO – CALAMA - SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA

DAY 2: SANTIAGO – CALAMA - SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA

Head north with a flight to Calama and transfer to your hotel in San Pedro de Atacama. Thrust straight into the desert wilderness by driving through the Moon & Death Valleys. Here you will be able to witness barren lunarscapes and salt sculptures made by wind erosion, before enjoying one of the finest sunsets in Chile.

Altiplanico San Pedro De Atacama
Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 3: SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA

DAY 3: SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA

Today you head into the desert’s largest salt flat which is inhabited by various species of flamingo. Then arrive at the expansive lagoons that flow down from the nearby volcanoes, with the scenery mirrored in their beautiful crystal waters. Along the way you will come across traditional settlements constructed from adobe, cacti wood and volcanic stone. Opportunity to visit a workshop and crafts market before returning to your hotel.

Altiplanico San Pedro De Atacama
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 4: SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA

DAY 4: SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA

An early start as you make your way to the Tatio Geysers where geothermal activity is at its peak at dawn, with some geysers spurting up to 8m high. After a picnic breakfast, enjoy the thermal pools before travelling on to a local village dedicated to herding and agriculture. At the end of the day, transfer to your hotel for your last night in Atacama.

Altiplanico San Pedro De Atacama
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5: SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA – UYUNI SALT FLATS (BOLIVIA)

DAY 5: SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA – UYUNI SALT FLATS (BOLIVIA)

This morning head to the Bolivian border at Hito Cajón and cross the border. You will be met on the Bolivian side and taken to National Park Eduardo Avaroa, a landscape of salt pans, volcanoes and thermal springs. Visit the stunning Laguna Verde (Green Lagoon) and Laguna Blanca (White Lagoon) at the foot of Licancabur Volcano. There is the option to go for a short hike to spot more Andean birdlife before arriving at your accommodation. Continue to “Sol de Mañana” Geysers, with fumaroles and volcanic craters of spectacular formation, reminiscent of the landscape dating from the beginning of the earth. The next stop is Laguna Colorada, known for its red waters and flocks of flamingo. Arrive at the Hotel Los Flamencos for an overnight stay.

Hotel Los Flamencos
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6: UYUNI SALT FLATS

DAY 6: UYUNI SALT FLATS

Your expedition continues across the Siloli desert where you pass volcanoes, traditional villages and sulphurous lagoons en route to the largest salt flat in the world. Also, of interest is the renowned train cemetery where steel trains have been eroded by the desert winds. End the journey in Colchani to see the process of salt treatment. Then check into Salt Hotel on the shores of the Uyuni Salt Lake.

Luna Salada Hotel
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7: UYUNI SALT FLATS

DAY 7: UYUNI SALT FLATS

Finally, you will arrive at the Gran Salar de Uyuni where photo opportunities abound. Take in the magnificence of this natural wonder before hiking up the island of cacti located in the middle of the salt flat. In the afternoon visit the mummies of Thunupa before returning to the salt for sunset on the bank.

Luna Salada Hotel
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 8: UYUNI SALT FLATS – LA PAZ – TIWANACU – LA PAZ

DAY 8: UYUNI SALT FLATS – LA PAZ – TIWANACU – LA PAZ

Depart early this morning to catch a flight to La Paz. You will be met at the airport and taken on a tour to Tiwanku ruins. The archaeological site was home to the Tiwanaku culture (1.580 BC-1.000 AD), one of the oldest civilizations in the Americas. The Tiwanku were outstanding in agriculture, hydraulic, architecture and medicine, as well as in social organisation. Due to an economic crisis caused by a long dry season, Tiwanaku collapsed around 1.000 AD. Stop for lunch at a local restaurant before returning to La Paz for a free afternoon.

Presidente Hotel
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 9: LA PAZ

DAY 9: LA PAZ

La Paz is framed by the majestic Illimani mountain and has an interesting and varied history. Explore the city on a guided tour stopping at indigenous, colonial and modern areas such as the Indian Market and Witch Doctor's Market. Next, visit the Moon Valley, a clay formation resembling the face of the Moon. Finally, take the cable car ride over the city for another view before returning to your hotel and enjoying a free afternoon.

Presidente Hotel
Breakfast

DAY 10: LA PAZ – HUATAJATA – SUN ISLAND

DAY 10: LA PAZ – HUATAJATA – SUN ISLAND

Rise early this morning to drive along the Royal Andean mountain range to the shores of Lake Titicaca, passing through tiny Andean villages, flanked by snow-capped peaks, rising to 6000m. Arrive into Huatajata and visit the Andean Roots Eco Village and The Altiplano Museum with its Handicrafts Village, Mud Igloos and the mortuary towers of the Urus Chipayas. Meet the Limachi family who built the RA II and Tigris which travelled on epic expeditions across the Atlantic Ocean. Then take the hydrofoil from Cocotoni to Isla del Sol (Sun Island). Trek along llama trails, stopping at Pilcocaina Sun Temple, to your overnight stay at Posada del Inca Eco Lodge.

Posada Del Inca Lodge
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11: SUN ISLAND – MOON ISLAND – COPACABANA – PUNO (PERU)

DAY 11: SUN ISLAND – MOON ISLAND – COPACABANA – PUNO (PERU)

Following a leisurely morning, you will walk down the Inca “Grand Stairs” to the Sacred Fountain. Drink a sample of the water believed to give eternal youth and happiness. Then visit the handicraft market and eat lunch at the Uma Kollu archaeological restaurant before cruising to Moon Island to see the Sun Virgins Temple. Continue to Copacabana, stopping at the shrine and the Indian Dark Virgin, and take the bus to Puno in Peru. Overnight at Casa Andina Premium.

Casa Andina Premium Puno
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 12: PUNO

DAY 12: PUNO

The tour today will go against the flow of the big tourist groups by travelling by speedboat. The shortened journey time of 1.15hrs from 2.30hrs allows you to beat the crowds. The first stop is on Taquile, the weavers' island, where you will discover communitarian life meaning everything on the island is shared. Then reach the less-visited community of Luquina on Chucuito Peninsula. Soak up the beautiful views of Lake Titicaca as you dine on a typical Andean lunch. End the tour sailing back to Puno, stopping at the floating reed islands of the Uros.

Casa Andina Premium Puno
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 13: PUNO - COLCA

DAY 13: PUNO - COLCA

In the early morning you leave Puno and head towards the Colca valley. After a 6 hour drive you will arrive at Chivay, Colca‘s most important town where you’ll make a short stop to explore the local market. Afterwards you continue the journey to the hotel.

Colca Lodge
Breakfast

DAY 14: COLCA CANYON

DAY 14: COLCA CANYON

Today is at leisure to recover from the previous busy few days and explore the incredible setting of Colca Canyon from Colca Lodge.

Colca Lodge
Breakfast

DAY 15: COLCA - AREQUIPA

DAY 15: COLCA - AREQUIPA

This morning you will head to an observation point at one of the deepest parts of the canyon; the perfect place to look down at the rock formations and look up to spot the legendary condor. The bird with the largest wingspan in the world can be seen rising and circling above the canyon, silhouetted against the magnificent backdrop of Andean scenery. You will then be driven to Arequipa, stopping at picturesque towns on the way. The road descends the slopes of Chachani Volcano passing highland plains inhabited by herds of vicuna, the rarest and most timid of the South American camelids. Overnight at Palla Boutique.

Katari
Breakfast

DAY 16: AREQUIPA - LIMA

DAY 16: AREQUIPA - LIMA

Because some of the old buildings are made of white volcanic material (sillar) Arequipa is also known as the 'white city'. You will visit the extraordinary Santa Catalina Convent on a walking tour of the city. This cloister, built in the 16th century, is a huge construction which once served as a town within itself housing 450 nuns. Traditionally, the oldest daughters of Arequipa's aristocratic families entered the convent in their early teens and spent their lives there, cloistered away. The convent complex has been beautifully refurbished, bringing the past vividly alive once more. You will then catch a flight to Lima, where you will be transferred to Arawi Hotel.

Arawi Hotel
Breakfast

DAY 17: DEPART LIMA

DAY 17: DEPART LIMA

You will be met and transferred to the airport in time for your onward flight.

Breakfast

SUGGESTED ACCOMMODATION

Premium

Excellent standards without the big price tag

Premium

Excellent standards without the big price tag

Superior

No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Premium

Excellent standards without the big price tag

Premium

Excellent standards without the big price tag

Premium

Excellent standards without the big price tag

Premium

Excellent standards without the big price tag

Premium

Excellent standards without the big price tag

Premium

Excellent standards without the big price tag

Premium

Excellent standards without the big price tag

Accommodation listed here is intended as a guide only, to give you a taste of what we can do. Our experts can tailor any aspect of this itinerary and accommodation to suit your budget and tastes.

GUIDELINE PRICE & WHAT’S INCLUDED

CHILE, BOLIVIA AND PERU: DESERTS, LAKES AND CANYONS (17 DAYS) £5,105

MEALS

As specified in the itinerary, sampling some of the country's finest cuisine.

TRANSPORT

Private air-conditioned vehicles with experienced, dedicated drivers.

ENTRANCE FEES

Tours and admission fees, including tickets specified in the itinerary.

EXPERT TEAM

Licensed English-speaking guides and a support team available 24/7.

ACCOMMODATION

As specified in the itinerary, using some of our favourite local properties.

ACCOMMODATION

Ultra - The best of the best, the ultimate indulgence
Luxury - Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium - Excellent standards offering a higher-end experience
Superior - Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple - No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

CARBON CONTRIBUTIONS

If you book international flights through Wild Frontiers.

This itinerary is aimed to give you an idea of what we can offer. The price shown above is based on two people travelling outside of peak periods. As this itinerary is only a suggestion and can be tailor-made to suit your interests and budget, your final price may differ.

START PLANNING YOUR TRIP

Our team of experts have a wealth of knowledge and experience to help you plan your adventure of a lifetime.

WHEN TO GO

WHY WILD FRONTIERS?

Meet the expert, Richard

Richard is our Latin America expert, who has travelled extensively in the region.

Speak to Richard by calling
1(833) 200-4640

Southern Bolivia is more than the Uyuni Salt Flats. Further south this surrealism grows at the Salvador Dalí Desert and dreamlike lakes like Laguna Verde and Laguna Colorado that burst with colours.

OTHER ITINERARIES IN BOLIVIA