Many people avoid Chile when visiting South America, or just give Santiago a token visit before flying away. Reasons are usually that it’s too expensive or too far out of the way. I think it’s because people are idiots. This was day two in San Pedro de Atacama. All photos are taken with a ‘camera.’
Usually I consider photo essays to be very lazy and uninspired when a travel writer just posts a series of photos up and think they’re being creative. The only thing more boring is a photo essay about food (fucken oath, right?). But when it comes to San Pedro de Atacama in northern Chile words don’t do it justice. Nothing irritating or amusing happened, I just spent two days in jaw-dropped awe of the place, roaming around lost in the scenery before being shepherded back in to the mini-van to go to another equally spectacular setting.
I arrived in Santiago at 11 pm on a Tuesday night. My eyes began to water because of the tear gas still in the air from the student protests, and there were garbage bonfires on the road stopping traffic. This made me strangely excited to be there. I stayed for two weeks.
The day got off to an auspicious start with some typically South American inefficiency which had so far been absent for much of my time in Chile. Finding a passage from San Pedro de Atacama in northern Chile to Uyuni in south-west Bolivia had proved harder than expected, with buses only going twice a week and at extremely inconvenient hours, but with a bit of research I had found a company that would take me directly through the desert, four-wheel-drive, in one day. Perfect. But two hours after the intended departure time we were still in San Pedro at the immigration office with every other bus and truck in northern Chile trying to get through at once. And somehow my driver was still at the back of the line, chatting jovially to his colleagues, in no hurry at all.