During the evening we will ascend about 1.000 meters until we reach the village of Talabre. There we will walk through Kezala, one of the canyons that connect the high mountains of the Andes with the basin of the Atacama Salt Flat and which preserves an invaluable archaeological heritage in the form of rock paintings. Towards the sunset we will head to Chile´s biggest salt flat to marvel at its geography and its unique ecosystem where we can spot Flamingos, amongst other birds.
|SEMI-PRIVATE SERVICE: High quality standard services with a maximum of 10 passengers per group, most of them from hotels that work with us. Our bilingual guides (spanish – english) assure a personalized service.
The days and hours of the excursions may vary depending on the season, climatic conditions and the groups that we form. The final itinerary will be confirmed upon arrival in San Pedro, but even during your stay it can vary depending on the mentioned conditions, we will be informing immediately about any change.
Talabre, Kezala Canyon
In order to get to (the) Kezala canyon we drive south towards the promontory of the Andes – a sector dominated by the volcano Lascar, which is permanently active. We pass through Talabre, at 3.600 meters, whose inhabitants had to relocate in the 80ies from their old village in a close-by canyon, to their current location due to the risk of floods.
Kezala canyon is located in the vicinity of Talabre. Here we can observe a large extension of petroglyphs and pictoglyphes depicted on the rocks from thousands of years ago. This prehistoric treasure is administrated by the indigenous community of Talabre.
Atacama Salt Flat, Chaxa Lagoon, Flamingos
We head towards the Atacama Salt Flat, located close to the village of Toconao. Being Chile´s biggest salt flat it is also a huge and important deposit of minerals where we can find a multitude of mixed salts like potassium, borax and one of the biggest reserves of lithium on the planet. The salt flat extends in an enormous depression of more than 3.500 km2 at 2.300 m.a.s.l. where – between a rough and wrinkly surface of different forms and colors, small ridges and perfect hexagons – we can find solitary lagoons due to the fact that the basin receives water coming in the form of rivers and melted snow from the mountains without having an outlet. In these lagoons one can observe three varieties of Flamingo or Parina: Andean Flamingo, Puna (or James´s) Flamingo and Chilean Flamingo. In order to protect them, the National reserve Los Flamencos has been created, divided into several sectors, one of them being the core of the Atacama Salt Flat.
The Chaxa Lagoon, located in the Atacama Salt Flat, is one of the most visited places in the surroundings of San Pedro. It is an aquatic system that contains a big quantity of salt. At its borders a special flora develops which – adapted to the salty and desertic climate – adds a golden touch to the landscape, especially at sunrise and dawn, thanks to the effects of the sunlight. One of its main attractions is the possibility to observe colonies of flamingos that fly over the area at certain times of the day, beautifully displaying their colors. Here we will wait for the sunset, when the colors of the lagoon and its surroundings offer us a spectacular view.
The Chaxa Lagoon is co-administrated by Conaf (National Forest Corporation) and the indigenous community of Toconao.
14:45-15:15 Pickup from your hotel
Hike through the Kezala canyon
What to bring?
- Comfortable clothing, walking shoes.
- Warm clothing for the coolest hour around sunset.
- Sunblock, hat, sunglasses, lip balm.
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