San Pedro de Atacama

San Pedro de Atacama is not only famous for its beautiful natural scenery; the town and its surrounding area were the center of the Atacama culture and are now regarded as the archeological capital of Chile.

Take a closer look at Tulor, a 3,000 year old village that belonged to the Atacama people and was discovered in 1940. The village had been completely buried in sand and a research project made it possible to recover the buildings, which are now open to visitors. You can also pay a visit to the town’s cemetery, another record of the ancient farmers and llama breeder´s culture, who wrapped their dead in finely woven cloth before burying them in sandy graves.

Discover ancestral traditions through the local handicrafts, whose techniques have been handed down through the generations. Among their creations you can find fine llama, alpaca and sheep textiles, as well as reproductions of Atacama pottery, made by the area’s expert craftspeople. There are also original bread baskets, lamp shades, musical instruments and decorations made from cactus fibers.

To find out more about the indigenous culture, be sure to visit the local Padre Le Paige museum, whose history dates back to the arrival of the Belgian Jesuit Priest, Gustavo Le Paige in Chile. In 1955 he moved to San Pedro and in addition to his pastoral works, began collecting material of tremendous archeological importance. In 1957 he and his colleagues opened the first museum in his parochial house, which housed a number of pre-Hispanic pieces (ceramics, stonework, textiles and metals), as well as mummies, all of which await you on your visit. 

Sportstour suggests:
 4 day (3 night) trip
 Arrival and departure transfers between Calama Airport, as well as daily excursions

Recommended activities:
 Visit the archeological museum
 Enjoy a visit to a traditional Atacama house
 Visit an Atacama community and take part in an ancient caravan
 Discover local foods, such as quinoa and llama meat
 Take a dip in the Puritama hot springs
 Cycle to the salt lakes
 Watch the amazing pink flamencos
 Horse riding in Death Valley
 Enjoy sunrise at the Tatio Geysers