Atacama Desert & Altiplano


The Atacama desert and high Andean plateau or Altiplano are among the most breathtaking places you´ll ever experience (and not just because of the altitude)...the scale of landscapes is overwhelming, and the crisp light is ideal for photography and wildlife watching. In this program we´ll visit places like Andean bogs, the Puna or Altiplano, vast salt flats, gurgling ravines and oasis where a number of interesting and unique birds live.

Some of the bird specialties from this area include Horned Coot, Puna Flamingo, Puna Tinamou, Puna Teal, Red-backed Sierra Finch, Black-hooded Sierra Finch, Grey-bellied Shrike-Tyrant, Rufous-naped Ground Tyrant, Creamy-rumped Miner, White-winged CinclodesGolden-spotted Ground DoveMountain Parakeet, Straight-billed EarthcreeperCreamy-winged Cinclodes, Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe and Black Siskin, among many others.

Some other wildlife here includes the Vicuña, a wild Andean relative to Llamas, Culpeo Fox, Vizcacha (a huge rodent who lives among boulders), and the endemic Fabian Lizard.


Tour highlights

  • Price: US$ per person. Including: English-speaking Ornithologist and Birding Guide, lodging, all meals, national flights, private transportation and entrance fees to national parks.

    Meet and depart: Antofagasta or Santiago.

    Dates: All year.

    Optional extension to "Peru-Chile Pacific Slope, Pre-Puna & High Andean Plateau".

Atacama Desert & Altiplano - 5 days / 4 nights

Day 1

Flight from Santiago to Antofagasta. Antofagasta & Mejillones (Coast): Grey Gull, Band-tailed Gull, Peruvian Tern, West-Peruvian Dove and Seaside Cinclodes, among others. Lodging: San Pedro.

Day 2

San Pedro de Atacama & Los Flamencos National Reserve (Oasis, Valleys and Andean Bogs): Chilean, Andean and Puna Flamingos, Andean Gull and Chiguanco Thrush, among many others. Lodging: San Pedro.

Day 3

Salt Flat and Pre-puna: Horned Coot, Andean Coot, Andean Avocet, Black-winged Ground Dove, Black-billed Shrike-Tyrant and Yellow-rumped Siskin, among many others. Lodging: San Pedro.

Day 4

Altiplano: Andean Goose, Puna Teal, Puna Hawk, Giant Coot, Puna Plover, Tawny-throated Dotterel, Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe, Golden-spotted Ground Dove, Mountain Parakeet, Straight-billed Earthcreeper, Cordilleran Canastero, Rufous-naped Ground Tyrant, Andean Negrito, Greenish Yellow Finch, Black-hooded Sierra Finch and Red-backed Sierra Finch, among others. Lodging: San Pedro.

Day 5

Flight to Santiago. End of the Trip.