San Pedro has several claims to fame. It’s in the driest desert in the world, adjacent to some of the world’s largest lithium mines, and is populated by incredibly friendly people (lithium in the water?). It’s also a half-day trip from dozens of volcanic features unlike anything else in the world. These volcanos, including one of the world’s two super volcanos, worked to mold the landscape millions of years ago. Our six days in San Pedro allowed us to see geological formations we didn’t even know existed.
Fully exploring “The Atacama” requires guided tours or renting a car. We booked four outings with Flamingo Tours and got a package deal. Our adventure started with a midnight stargazing (no pictures, sorry!)
The next day we were picked up from the hostel at 8am for the Petroglyphs and Rainbow Valley. We started by climbing up to some ancient petroglyphs carved into volcanic rock. Here we see images of elders in a ceremonial circle.
When the rocks were volcanic ash, the ash moved very quickly and formed air pockets. Now these old air pockets make the rocks look like Swiss cheese.
Will contributed his artistic talent to the petroglyphs…I mean… Will pointed out these flamingos.
We moved to another area to see even more petroglyphs. We were instructed to stay on the path.
Which led us to these images of this llama and baby llama…
And this “two headed dragon.” The lack of wind in this area prevents the petroglyphs from eroding away.
Next we headed for Rainbow Valley. We were dropped off at the top of the path, where Will immediately climbed this rock. Can you find him?
We made our way toward the rainbow color rock. Different minerals have caused the rock to turn multicolored.
Will meditated for a moment.
And I contemplated the copper in the green rock.
Rainbow Valley has many views, and many colors.
We tried to capture as many colors as we could before our day’s adventure ended.
Check out our other galleries from San Pedro de Atacama:
Day 4 Valle de la Luna
Elizabeth & Will