Atacama Desert: Pintados Geoglyphs, and Pica Village Tour
- Humberstone and Santa Laura: Walk around these mining ghost towns, which at their peak formed the hub for a system of 200 saltpeter works.
- Pintados Geoglyphs: Get a feel for the ancient side of the desert as you drive past these impressive carvings in the hillside from over a thousand years ago.
- San Andres Church: built to honor Saint Andrew, this majestic Catholic church in Pica features lots of religious imagery, including a mural of the Last Supper.
About this Iquique tour
In the Atacama Desert, the hills may not have eyes, but they do have fish, dogs, and llamas.
We're talking about the Pintados Geoglyphs, a collection of over 400 mysterious carvings, some covering 60,000 square yards, in the landscape of the Tamarugal Plateau. You'll get to see a few of these on your way through the desert to stop at some major landmarks of the region.
One such landmark is the Humberstone and Santa Laura mining compound. Originally constructed during the 1870s when Chile's nitrate boom was in full swing, at its operational height, this outpost was home to thousands of salt mine workers. You'll realize this when you notice that there's much more than just mining equipment left in the area: Humberstone also includes a theater, hotel, and church, all built for workers and their families.
Speaking of churches, on this tour you'll also get to take in the splendor of one of Chile's most beautiful: the San Andres church, in the small desert town of Pica. First built between 1880 and 1886, the striking 19th-century domes, curves, and arches give the church its distinctly classical style. Walking inside, you may be even more impressed by the stunning azure ceiling and the realistic Catholic icons.
A decent proposal
According to local lore, a Spanish explorer in the Tamarugal region wished to wed the daughter of a native chief. The chief responded sarcastically that he would allow it "when the desert bloomed." Undeterred, the Spaniard set up an irrigation system, allowing all types of flowers and plants to bloom in the area and forcing the chief to acquiesce. And you thought your father-in-law didn't like your proposal.
Iquique Cruise Pier. Your guide will be standing on your ship's pier close to where you will disembark. They will holding a sign with your name on it.
Air-conditioned transportation cannot be guaranteed in this destination. A boxed lunch is included in your tour. Please bring some cash for any purchases you might like to make.
This tour's activity level is moderate. Anticipate walking over some uneven surfaces and paved walkways and climbing a few stairs.
Cultural, Family Friendly, Walking Tour, Full Day, Bus Tour
Beverages - Water
Tour Participation Requirements
This experience is rated moderate. Full participation may require extended periods of walking over even and uneven surfaces, steep terrain and/or water activity in a slight current. There may be steps, inclines, cobblestone surfaces, and extended periods of standing. Participants with physical limitations should take this into account.
Suitable for all ages.
Full refunds issued for cancellations made 7 full days prior to the date and time of requested services. Cancellations made within the 7-day and 72-hour window will receive a 50% refund of purchase total. Purchases are non-refundable inside of 72 hours.
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