They say that San Pedro is an oasis surrounded by geysers, sand dunes, salt flats and lost Andean villages. What better way to find out than rent some bikes and set off and explore for the day..
Looking back, we had a pretty hectic day and covered a respectable 65k on the desert roads. The pictures below are pretty random but encompass Quebrada del Diablo (Devil’s George), Pukara De Quitor (a crumbling 12th century fortress ruins) and Valle De La Luna or Valley of the moon (a maze of sandunes where you can see the sunset over the Andes).
We left our hostel at 8:30am and didn’t return until 8pm so it was pretty full on. After sunset we had a 12–14k bike ride home in the dark. We had hoped to fit in the desert star-gazing tour upon our return but it was fully booked – damn – no tour agencies were open when we set off.
Star-gazing in the Atacama desert is supposed to be best in the world and we were absolutely gutted to have missed out. Our neighbours came back with pictures of Saturn, falling stars and various other astronomy marvels – adding salt to an already gaping wound. Nevertheless, it was still pretty amazing having the opportunity stare up at the sky to see the sheer number of stars and the milky way in such a remote part of the world.