Friday, 30th January – Monday, 2nd February
We left Santiago for Calama and on to San Pedro de Atacama, in the Atacama Desert. There our hotel was in the adobe style. On our first morning we were up at 4pm for a trip to the El Tatio Geysers, the highest geyser field in the world at 4,300 metres (14,000ft). You have to arrive at dawn to experience the maximum effect. They were somewhat disappointing when compared to Rotarua in New Zealand and the temperature was below freezing. We had breakfast cooked in the geyser pools and afterwards Michael swam in a hot spring. On the way back we visited a desert village.
While we were in San Pedro we visited a local archaeological museum, the church, and took a trip to the Valley of the Moon and nearby desert canyons. San Pedro is at 2,500 metres and we hoped we had acclimatised to the altitude somewhat before we were transferred to the Bolivian border.