A heavenly adventure in Chile’s Atacama Desert

A heavenly adventure in Chile’s Atacama Desert

  • Travel
  • March 16, 2023
  • No Comment
  • 4

Alto Atacama is the first property outside of Costa Rica for eco-hospitality brand Nayara. It opened just before the pandemic and then closed until reopening in September 2021. Our stay at the lodge was exhausting. We mountain biked the nearby Devil’s Throat, a series of twisting slot canyons. We hiked through the Rainbow Valley surrounded by striped peaks that looked like Neapolitan ice. We visited the Valley of the Moon, a landscape so barren that NASA used it as a proxy for Mars. And in a setting framed by active and dormant volcanoes, the snow-capped peak known as Licancabur in the indigenous Kunza language always towered the tallest.

When the altitude caught up with us, we stayed on the property, feeding clumps of algaroba pods to the hotel’s llamas, or lounging in one of the pools. A couple of times we took a shuttle to the nearby town of San Pedro de Atacama. At first it reminded me of Mos Eisley, the pesky spaceport in Star Wars, with its jewelry sellers and tour operators. But soon, as we were having ice cream in the plaza, even that enchanted us.

Late in the day we took walks along a dry riverbed near Alto Atacama, past the archaeological site where a pre-Columbian fort is being excavated and watched the changing colors of the lunar terrain. As Urbano Mena had said about the night sky when we arrived, the landscape looked like nothing. But after our eyes got used to it, we started to see everything.

plan it

For a unique astronomical itinerary, Black Tomato’s seven-day Atacama experience includes guided stargazing, as well as adventures like private trekking along the Rio Salado and flamingo-viewing at Laguna Chaxa.

More heavenly adventures

Torunn Tronsvang, the founder of Up Norway, says now is the perfect time to see the Northern Lights in Norway’s city. NASA is forecasting a few years of solar activity, meaning the Aurora Borealis will be more intense and frequent than ever, peaking in 2025.

In South Korea, Yeongyang Firefly Eco Park, the first park in Asia to be recognized as a Silver-tier International Dark Sky Park by the International Dark-Sky Association, is 175 miles from Seoul. Abercrombie & Kent’s Gerald Hatherly can plan a two-night trip to gaze at the Milky Way or, for those who want a soundtrack to their planetary gazing, attend a nightly concert.

Due to the dry weather, high altitude, and wide open spaces, Utah’s southern territory offers unparalleled nighttime visibility. Woodlyn Travel’s Melissa Wu suggests Bryce Canyon National Park as an ideal base camp, allowing visitors to partake in daytime activities like hiking and ATV tours.

This article appeared in the April 2023 issue of Condé Nast Traveler. Subscribe to the magazine here.

Related post

Biden vetoes his first presidency, rejecting the GOP-led bill to reverse the ESG investment rule

Biden vetoes his first presidency, rejecting the GOP-led bill…

Millions are retiring with no savings Millions of Americans nearing retirement with no savings 02:22 WASHINGTON — President Biden on Monday…
Magic Johnson joins a bidding group to buy Commanders

Magic Johnson joins a bidding group to buy Commanders

Earvin “Magic” Johnson has joined a group led by Josh Harris bidding for ownership of the Washington Commanders, sources told ESPN…
Duolingo is working on a music app

Duolingo is working on a music app

Duolingo, a language learning app with over 500 million users, is working on a music app, Zoo House News has learned.…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *