3892
Chile/Rapa Nui
The Atacama Desert and Easter Island: Different Worlds
The Moai structures of Easter Island and the geoglyphs of the Atacama Desert have puzzled and delighted mankind for centuries. Come see why as you unravel the mysteries for yourself.
Rating (5)
Program No. 3892RJ
Length
20 days
Starts at
7,199
Flights start at
1,000
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20 days
19 nights
52 meals
17 B 18 L 17 D
Getting There
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DAY
1
Departure
In Flight
DAY
2
Check-in, Registration, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Santiago
B,L,D
Hotel Torremayor or similar

Activity note: This day includes a Santiago city excursion duiring the afternoon by private bus with some stops that will require getting on and off the bus and walking of short distances on even terrain to explore city highlights.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at hotel will be offered if rooms are not ready at the time of arrival

Morning: Airport transfers for scheduled passengers from Santiago's International Airport (SCL) to the Hotel. Check in at Hotel and time to rest until lunch. If rooms are not yet available at the time of arrival, complimentary free breakfast will be offered. Big and comfortable lounge to rest available at hotel. (Standard Check in time is at 02:00 pm-Check out at 12:00 pm))

Lunch: Fixed lunch with bottled water included in the hotel dining room.

Afternoon: An after lunch complete program introduction will be given to program participants that includes a welcome folder with written material that will be part of their experience in Chile (money issues, safety, detailed program itineraries, domestic travel, etc) which is reviewed item by item. A Santaigo city excursion will be the next activity that will give participants a first site impression of a dynamic South American capital and a city of contrasts.

Dinner: Fixed dinner with bottled water and a glass of wine per person

DAY
3
Valparaiso Harbor & Viña del Mar, Casablanca Wine Valley
Santiago
B,L,D
Hotel Torremayor or similar

Activity note: Day trip will be done on a bus with some stop overs that will require getting on and off the bus. The day also includes a short boat ride around Valparaiso harbor and bay that could be done in or out of the boat cabin. Walking of short distances is also part of the overall experience.

Breakfast: Buffet style breakfast at hotel

Morning: Day trip to Valparaíso city, a UNESCO World Heritage site, crossing the coastal mountain range from Santiago to Valparaiso through the Casablanca wine valley. Experience a 30 minute boat ride to see Valparaiso harbor and hills from the ocean. Learn of the pioneer history of Valparaiso city and explore some of its hills.

Lunch: Fixed Menu with bottled water and a glass of Chilean wine served at a local restaurant located on top of one of the most traditional hills of Valparaiso which is accessed by a traditional funicular..

Afternoon: Excursion continues after lunch with a bus ride along the coast road from Valparaiso to neighbouring Viña del Mar city with some stop overs on the way before heading back to Santiago (ride to Santiago takes abaout 2 hours) Upon arrival in Santiago, you will have some time to rest before the next activity: a lecture that will introduce Chile and its different aspects that include geography, economy, politics, education among other topics.

Dinner: Fixed dinner at hotel with bottled water and a glass of Chilean wine included.

DAY
4
San Pedro de Atacama, San Pedro de Atacama
San Pedro de Atacama
B,L,D
Hosteria San Pedro de Atacama

Activity note: Walking excursion around San Pedro de Atacama village (dirt road) on even flat terrain, no climbing or hikes. 50 minute walk app. to get familiar with the town.

Breakfast: Buffet style breakfast at hotel

Morning: Introduction to site. Check out from Santiago Hotel, Transfer to airport, Domestic flight to Calama (2 hour flight). Transfer by private coach to San Pedro de Atacama (1h50m ride) with stop over to admire the landscape and photo options. Highest point on the road 9,700 ft.(Domeyko mountain range) to rapidly descend to 7,700 ft.average altitude in San Pedro village.

Lunch: Fixed menu with bottled water included at hotel or local restaurant

Afternoon: Time to rest from trip and to get used to altitude. Guided walking excursion around town to get used to the area

Dinner: Fixed dinner with bottled water at local restaurant that introduces local products and traditional recipes in a fusion cuisine of appealing tastes and flavours.

DAY
5
Museum of San Pedro, Salt Mountain & Magical MoonValley
San Pedro de Atacama
B,L,D
Hosteria San Pedro de Atacama

Activity note: Walking from Hotel to Museum (10 mins app). Hike sand dune (656 ft long) to eye witness the marvellous scenery of the moon valley and Andes (walking sticks if desire but not a must) Sun glasses, hats and sun screen lotion highly recommended. Water will be distributed on all field trips.

Breakfast: Buffet style at hotel includes scrambled eggs, milk, coffee, tea, yougurt, cereals, loaf bread, regular bread, fruits, cereals, cheese, butter, jam, juice among other items

Morning: Lecture: Anthropological development of the Atacameño people & Visit to archeological museum Father Le Paige led by archeologist from Chile North University.

Lunch: Fixed lunch with bottled water at local restaurant that introduces local products and traditional recipes in a fusion cuisine of appealing tastes and flavours.

Afternoon: Half Day excursion to visit the Moon Valley and geological formations located in the salt mountain range nearby San Pedro de Atacama town (40 Mins). Hiking of a sand dune to experience the sunset and light reflection over the Andes range and salt mountain range. Return to hotel after sunset.

Dinner: Fixed dinner and bottled water at local restaurant that introduces local products and traditional recipes in a fusion cuisine of appealing tastes and flavours.

DAY
6
Pukara de Quitor, Tulor Village is dated 800 BC-100 AC
San Pedro de Atacama
B,L,D
Hosteria San Pedro de Atacama

Activity note: Hiking and climbing of the Quitor Pukara has two options. First, going up the hill using a road built with ramps, easy. Second, going through the fortified buildings that is built on the side of a steepy hill. For the last one, hiking shoes or shoes without flat soles are recommended, walking stick(if necessary). In both cases a hat, sun screen, sun lotion and sun glasses are recommended. Water will be available.

Breakfast: Buffet style at hotel includes scrambled eggs, milk, coffee, tea, yougurt, cereals, loaf bread, regular bread, fruits, cereals, cheese, butter, jam, juice among other items

Morning: Lecture: Atacameño culture, Religion and Family life. After lecture, field trip to Pre Inca Fortress Pukara de Quitor. Hiking and climbing to explore this defensive laberynth set on the side of a hill by the Atacameños. Return to hotel

Lunch: Fixed lunch with bottled water at local restaurant that introduces local products and traditional recipes in a fusion cuisine of appealing tastes and flavours.

Afternoon: Field trip to El Tulor Village, one of the oldest settlements in Northern Chile dated between 800BC-100AC. Buried in the sand, it was discovered in 1958 by the founder of San Pedro de Atacama archeological museum, father Le Paige.

Dinner: Fixed dinner and bottled water at local restaurant that introduces local products and traditional recipes in a fusion cuisine of appealing tastes and flavours.

DAY
7
Atacama Salt Flat, Flamingoes & Toconao Village
San Pedro de Atacama
B,L,D
Hosteria San Pedro de Atacama

Activity note: Walk on the Atacama Salt Flat on even terrain to experience salt crust formations and admire flamingo colonies and other bird species. Walking is done on marked pathways and may take an hour app. Binoculars and comfortable walking close shoes are suggested. A hat, sun screen, sun lotion and sun glasses are recommended. Water will be available.

Breakfast: Buffet style at hotel includes scrambled eggs, milk, coffee, tea, yougurt, cereals, loaf bread, regular bread, fruits, cereals, cheese, butter, jam, juice among other items

Morning: Lecture: Flora & Fauna of the Atacama region Free time for optional suggested activities by group leader, such as, death valley walking excursion, biking or car ride to the the devil's gorge, etc.

Lunch: Fixed lunch with bottled water at local restaurant that introduces local products and traditional recipes in a fusion cuisine of appealing tastes and flavours.

Afternoon: Trip to Chaxa Lagoon in the heart of the Atacama Salt Flat to observe flora and fauna, flamingo colonies and other birds. Stopover in Toconao village to learn from local people of the agricultural work and use of water resources, visit to local house and craft maker.

Dinner: Fixed dinner and bottled water at local restaurant that introduces local products and traditional recipes in a fusion cuisine of appealing tastes and flavours.

DAY
8
Transfer to Iquique
Iquique
B,L,D
Hotel Terrado Arturo Prat

Breakfast: Buffet style at hotel includes scrambled eggs, milk, coffee, tea, yougurt, cereals, loaf bread, regular bread, fruits, cereals, cheese, butter, jam, juice among other items

Morning: Transfer by private coach to Antofagasta city airport to take flight to Iquique with stop over in Calama city for lunch. (1.45 mins from San Pedro to Calama) (Lunch time 1h30 m break & rest) (resume from Calama to Antofagasta 3 hours). A flight from Calama city airport to Iquique might be available but not guaranteed depending on airline schedules, if so, it will be first option, if not transfer is done as described above.

Lunch: Lunch at local restaurant in Calama city with bottled water and fixed menu.

Afternoon: Arrival in Iquique city. Site orientation. Time to rest or to explore city on your own.

Dinner: Fixed menu with bottled water per person at a restaurant or hotel

DAY
9
Iquique's History, Festival of La Tirana Virgin
Iquique
B,L,D
Hotel Terrado Arturo Prat

Activity note: Bus ride around Iquique city that includes getting on and off the bus plus walking and standing during visits.

Breakfast: Buffet at hotel

Morning: City exploration by coach and on foot with stopover at local museums, theater, etc. to discover Iquique's history and people.

Lunch: Lunch at local restaurant with bottled water and fixed menu.

Afternoon: Lecture on Iquique's history to discover its impact on Chile's political and social development. Introduction to Religious festival of La Tirana Virgin with hands on experience with locals.

Dinner: Fixed menu with bottled water per person at hotel or local restaurant

DAY
10
Nitrate Ghost Towns of the Pampa & the Aymara Ethnic Group
Iquique
B,L,D
Hotel Terrado Arturo Prat

Activity note: Bus ride to the pampa salitrera (nitrate plains) to walk around the nitrate towns. Walking on even terrain that resquest standing in some parts of the excursion. Hat, sun screen and sun glasses are necessary.

Breakfast: Buffet at hotel

Morning: Guided trip to abandonded nitrate mines to discover life and mineral extraction process in the old days. Exploration of Santa Laura and Humberstone (World Heritage Site declared by UNESCO) mining towns.

Lunch: After returning from nitrate mine, lunch at local restaurant or hotel with fixed menu and bottled water.

Afternoon: Embrace the Aymara Culture of northern Chile and its shared widely spread cosmovision in neighbor countries such as Peru, Bolivia and Argentine Lecture: Aymara Culture of Chile Free time

Dinner: Dinner out at local restaurant with fixed menu and bottled water.

DAY
11
Pintados Geoglyphs, Matlla & Pica at the Foot of the Andes
Iquique
B,L,D
Hotel Terrado Arturo Prat

Activity note: Walking on even terrain duirng visit to Pica town and Matilla. Paved streets and some dirt paths. Walking on even and uneven flat terrain to eye witness the geoglyphs panels that extend for 2,5 miles at Pintados site.Hat, sun screen and sun glasses are necessary.

Breakfast: Buffet at hotel

Morning: Day trip to explore Pintados hills (59 miles from Iquique) covered by more than 300 geoglyphs that were made between the year 500 to 1450 AC. After exploration of this impressive site, it is time to cross the Pampa (plains) towards the oasis towns of Matilla and Pica located on the foot of the Andes.

Lunch: Traditional Lunch with fixed menu at Local restaurant in Pica Town. Bottled water included or local fruit juice.

Afternoon: After lunch explore the orchards of Pica with its Mango trees and limes, try the traditional mango cakes or simply walk to the Cochas, spring water pools. On the way back, a stop in Matilla town to visit the local church with the impressive real size religious images and the old wine industry from the XVII century. Final stop will be La Tirana town, place that hosts the most important religious festival in the country.

Dinner: Fixed menu with bottled water at hotel or local restaurant

DAY
12
Iquique to Santiago, Introduction to Easter Island
Santiago
B,L,D
Hotel Torremayor or similar

Activity note: Flight from Iquique to Santiago takes app. 2hours 30 mins.

Breakfast: Buffet at hotel

Morning: Lecture to introduce Easter Island: from the Continent to Rapa Nui Transfer to Iquique airport Flight to Santiago

Lunch: Lunch during flight

Afternoon: Free time

Dinner: Fixed menu with bottled water and a glass of wine at Local restaurant or Hotel in Santiago

DAY
13
Flight to Easter Island
Easter Island
L,D
Hotel Otai

Activity note: Non stop flight from Santiago to Easter Island (app 5 hours) Local time time in Easter Island is two hours back from main land Chile.

Morning: Arrive Rapa Nui at approximately 12 pm and transfer to the hotel

Lunch: At the hotel

Afternoon: Free afternoon to rest or explore Hanga Roa town on your own.

Dinner: At the hotel

DAY
14
Padre Sebastian Englert Museum, Ahu Tahai, Dance Performance
Easter Island
B,L,D
Hotel Otai

Activity note: Walking and standing during study trip to ahu Tahai, uneven terrain. Hat, sun screen and/or umbrella suggested.

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel

Morning: Class on the Settlement of Polynesia & Rapa Nui Human History followed by a guided visit of the Padre Sebastian Englert Archaeological Museum.

Lunch: Lunch at the hotel, fixed menu with water.

Afternoon: Field Study of Tahai for an introduction to the famous monoliths of Rapa Nui. The three ahu (platforms) with moai (statues) that you will see facing inland, are part of one ceremonial compound which was restored in the 1960s by the late archaeologist, William Mulloy. Return to the hotel. Dinner. Evening Performance by cultural group of the island (music and dance)

Dinner: Dinner at hotel, fixed menu with water and a glass of wine.

Evening: Cultural Event: Rapa Nui folkloric traditional dance, featuring island dancers accompanied by musicians playing traditional instruments. A featured dance, the Hoko is an ancestral dance that represents the wars and confrontations between various tribes

DAY
15
Optional Field Study to Ahu Vaihu & Rano Raraku,Tongariki
Easter Island
B,L,D
Hotel Otai

Activity note: Walking up and down the quarry of the moais. Tracks and stairs while climbing. Climbing shoes, no flat soles, are recommended. Walking sticks in case you need extra support.

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel

Morning: Class: History of Hangaroa Town, including the History of Christianity in Rapa Nui. Take an Optional Escorted Walking Excursion of Hanga Roa Village or explore the village on your own. Depart on bus for full day Field Trip of archaeological sites. Field Studies at Ahu Vaihu which is constructed of finely crafted stones and Tongariki the largest ahu (temple platform) on the island.

Lunch: Picnic Lunch in the National Park

Afternoon: Field Study at Rano Raraku, the quarry of the moai. View the quarry from which the massive moai were carved out of the hard basalt. Moai in all stages of production cover its southern flank - unfinished giants still imprisoned in stone. If the path is open, those who wish can hike with the guide over a low point in the crater rim to view the lake inside and, from a distance, more moai in the process of being carved in the interior. From Rano Raraku, we drive down the South Coast past many collapsed ahu, toppled moai, and fallen stone fences built by the sheep company. Our goal is Tongariki, the largest ahu (temple platform) on the island. Demolished in 1960 by the tremendous force of a Pacific tsunami (tidal wave) generated by an earthquake in Valdivia (southern Chile), Tongariki was restored by Chilean archaeologists Claudio Cristino & Sergio Rapu, with the help of Japanese archaeologists and the Rapa Nui people, so it once again supports its 15 moai. Return to the hotel.

Dinner: Dinner at hotel, fixed menu with water and a glass of wine.

DAY
16
Ahu Vinapu,Ahu Nau Nau & Poike Ditch,Rapanui Family Exchange
Easter Island
B,L,D
Hotel Otai

Activity note: Optional swimming at Anakena beach during lunch break. Study field trip demands some walking and standing to appreciate stone structures. hat, sun screen and/or umbrella suggested.

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Class on the People of Old- Rapa Nui Ancient Culture Field Study at Ahu Vinapu, an archaeological site that has raised many questions over the years because of its similarity in appearance and construction to the pre-Columbian structures found in Cusco, Peru.

Lunch: Barbecue lunch at Anakena, a beautiful, sheltered, white sand beach surrounded by swaying palm trees; optional swimming available. This beach is the largest in Rapa Nui.

Afternoon: Field Study at Ahu Nau Nau, a very complex archaeological site located on the hill overlooking the beach. This site includes seven finely carved moai with elaborately decorated backs and at least four levels of ahu construction. Field Study at Poike Ditch and then return to the hotel via a drive along the South Coast.

Dinner: Home-Hosted Dinner with a local family.

Evening: Meet and get to know a local family. A great opportunity to learn about life in Rapa Nui!

DAY
17
Optional Church, Parque Nacional Rapa Nui & Orongo Village
Easter Island
B,L,D
Hotel Otai

Activity note: Excursion to Ana kai Tangata cave requires climbing even and uneven stone steps to reach and exit cave. Afternoon field trip to Orongo demands some walking on even and uneven terrain, also climbing few steps and standing during explanations. Light wind breaker recommended.

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel

Morning: Opportunity to attend a Church Service at Historic Rapa Nui Roman Catholic Church or enjoy Free Time before departing on a Field Trip

Lunch: Lunch at the hotel

Afternoon: Depart for a Field Trip to the Parque Nacional Rapa Nui to study Rano Kao crater and Orongo Ceremonial Village. Rano Kao's huge crater-lake contains a bog filled with native totora reeds and is the fresh water reservoir for the island. The ceremonial village, Orongo, is on Rano Kao’s seaward edge. Then, head to Ana Kai Tangata, which can be translated as place-men-eat,which could mean a place where men took shelter for meals.The cave is known for its ancient paintings of sooty terns flying across the roof. Return to the hotel for Free Time before dinner.

Dinner: Farewell Umu (Earth Oven) Dinner at the hotel.

DAY
18
Depart Rapa Nui - Flight to Santiago
Santiago
B,L,D
Hotel Torremayor or similar

Breakfast: Continental Breakfast at hotel in Easter Island

Morning: Free morning to prepare for departure and transfer to airport. Flight to Santiago.

Lunch: Lunch during flight

Afternoon: Arrival in Santiago, Transfer to hotel, check in, Farewell cocktail party with entertainment

Dinner: Cocktail party, dinner and entertainment

DAY
19
Program Summary, Excursion to Craftmaker Artisan Village
Santiago
B,L
Hotel Torremayor or similar

Activity note: Excursion to craftmaket demands some walking on even terrain available seats to rest at the site.

Breakfast: Buffet style at hotel

Morning: Program summary, suggested optional activities, check out

Lunch: Fixed menu with bottled water included in the hotel dining room.

Afternoon: Transfer to airport with stopover at Los Dominicos fine craftmakers artisan village on the way to airport.

DAY
20
Program Concludes
In Flight