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ruta del desierto part 3
Written by sophie et jeremy   
Wednesday, 18 April 2018

After these few resting days, we hit back the road to the east and the high altitudes. On the menu of our last days in Chile:sand, hot springs, lagunas, salars, canyons , volcanoes and of course lamas...

We drive again on the ‘ruta del desierto’, section ‘quebradas’ (gorges). Indeed, we drive along huge gorges, and deep valleys, covered in pink sand, and pass by the ‘atacama giant’, a huge geoglyph. Back in the mountains (so we loose 30°C in one day) we go across the beautiful park Isluga, doted with adobe churches and lamas, with snow-capped volcanoes on the background.

quebrada quebrada

adobe church adobe church

A bit more north, is the multicolored salar de Surire, all red, blue; green and yellow surrounded by mountains and volcanoes. We walk there and could approach a bit more vicunas and flamingos! Here are also the Polloquere hot spring, a smoky hot turquoise lake. We have a bath in its sulfur waters and will keep the smell for some time...

surire 1 surire 1 surire 2 surire 2

surire 3 surire 3 surire 4 surire 4

surire 5 surire 5 surire 6 surire 6

We continue north, on mountain roads; linking villages sat in the middle of the cliffs, loose the road in the rivers, go across a park of ‘candelabra’ cactus, camp in the middle of the desert and visit a museum with the oldest mummies of the continent.

road under the river road under the river

cactus candelabre cactus candelabre

The road goes then east to Bolivia, across the park Lauca. There are very beautiful landscapes, some of the highest lakes of the world, volcanoes over 6500m high and lava fields. Here too, lamas and vicunas are thousands and not shy.

lauca 1 lauca 1

lauca 3 lauca 3 llama llama

We pass by Putre and Parinacotta, 2 small Aymaras villages made of stone, cross the border, and against all odds, enjoy a better road on the other side!

drone surire drone surire


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