Leaving Chile

San Pedro de Atacama Travel Blog

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My bus was due in the morning at half 10; I left early to make sure I could find the station and the bus, naturally, was late, so I spent the first hour of my day standing in the blisteringly hot desert sun. Once the bus did arrive I was pleased to discover it was quite nice, however the 12 or so people around me all knew each other and were loud and moving around constantly.  We boarded and about 2 minutes later were off again for the border exit stamp, which took ages as the 3 bus companies that go to Salta all leave 3 times a week, the same days and hours, which really defies logic.  Finally we were back on, and continued for about 2 hours more before we reached the Argentinian border check.  This took ages as well, and they had us all pull our big bags from the bottom of the bus and line up to be searched.
  We stood there for about 10 minutes before someone changed his mind, so we put all the bags back on, unchecked.
    The rest of the bus ride went smoothly, we even had good movies, in English no less (Spanish subtitles), plus snacks and coffee!  The landscape soon turned from desert to mountains, beautiful multicoloured ones that I had seen on Google Earth ages ago and had wanted to see.  We went down one curvy road that led us into these mountains, which were surrounded by fog halfway up and appeared as if straight out of a fairy tale.  I was scared that taking pictures would look too cheesy and touristy, but the rowdy group around me were running all over the bus doing the same, so I didn't need to worry.
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