Buenos Dias Chile!

San Pedro de Atacama Travel Blog

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Thermal springs at sunrise

Had a very restless night, nice and warm, but poor old Noel is suffering with a sinus/infection with a dry cough, so not very happy!  Left the hostel at 4.30am to drive to the thermal springs for the sunrise.  We layered on the thermal underwear but still froze almost solid (OK, slight exaggeration) as we stood in the dark looking at the geysers bursting through the earth.  As we arrived at the springs, the sun was just starting to come up through the clouds, so looked lovely with the steam coming off the warm water.  We weren´t brave enough to get in because too worried about getting out, but one of our group did it, a real water baby.  Had breakfast here, the most delicious hot chocolate ever, purely for its warming effects, then drove on to the Bolivian exit point where two men in a shack stamped us out of the country.

Volcano on Laguna Verde, near the thermal springs.
  We said goodbye to our 4WDs and hopped in a mini-bus to take us down a couple of thousand metres to San Pedro, an oasis in the Atacama Desert (the driest in the world).  Because of Noel´s infection, his ears gave him agony and it took all day to come good.

Noticed the difference in Chile immediately - real tarmac roads, line markings and crash barriers on the steep sections!  Even had signs on the road telling you where you were going, luxury!  Stopped at the Chilean immigration/customs point and had all of our bags searched.  Like Australia, they are very strict here on bringing in food stuffs, seeds, etc..  They let us ham-flavoured crackers in though!  Had a lovely hot shower at the hotel and then went for a wander around town.  Changed some money and bought some juice and empanadas, so our tummies were happy too.  Much more expensive here than Bolivia, but more more first world as well, so with development comes expense.  Bought a few snacks and some more empanadas and then went back to the hotel to dose Noel up with antibiotics and put him to bed.

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Thermal springs at sunrise
Thermal springs at sunrise
Volcano on Laguna Verde, near the …
Volcano on Laguna Verde, near the…
Bolivian Exit Checkpoint - featuri…
Bolivian Exit Checkpoint - featur…
Welcome to Chile!
Welcome to Chile!
The adobe church in San Pedro de A…
The adobe church in San Pedro de …
San Pedro de Atacama
photo by: eefab