Tara Salt Flat is located 4.300 mts (14.000 feet) msl, within Los Flamencos National Reserve, near the border point where Chile, Bolivia, and Argentina meet. Tara is set on the crater of Vilama Volcano and it has a rich ecosystem that houses several flora and fauna species, which make it an ideal spot for trekking and photography.
In Tara Salt Flat you can find a great variety of flamingoes as well as other species like Vicuna, Andean foxe, Andean Mountain Cavy, Tawny Tuco-Tuco, Andean Avocet, Puna Plover, Yellow-Billed Pintail, and Andean Geese. Flora is also varied with specimens like Coirón, Water Tola, and Tola Amaia, which you can observe on the slopes of the hills.
The greatest attraction in Tara is the Monjes de Pacana (Pacana Monks), giant vertical rocks that due to the wind erosion now resemble the silhouette of monks. They are located on a plain near Aguas Calientes Salt Flat. You will also find the Catedrales de Cenizas (Ash Cathedrals), geological formations made up by the ash coming from Llaima Volcano. They formed thousands of years ago during an eruption, and after years of being eroded they have acquired circular spiral shapes.
Tara Salt Flat is an amazing natural spot, ideal for trekking excursions. Despite being a bit far from San Pedro de Atacama, we assure you will amaze you with its astonishing natural beauty.
Within San Pedro de Atacama, there is a great variety of places to taste, like the typical Atacama food, pizzas to the stone or even different vegetarian option that use the vegetables and more typical vegetables of the zone.
Bus: 20 hours from Santiago to Calama/From Calama to San Pedro that is about 1 hour.
From San Pedro to the salar is about 100km.
We recommend you that you schedule your flight to Calama to arrive in the morning so you are able to participate in the scheduled activities without affecting the itinerary.
This place has a desertic weather and it’s also some meters above sea levels, which means that throughout the year there is a very large temperature oscillation between day and night. The average annual temperature is between 14° C and 3 ° C.
Many of the excursions and tours that are done include visiting places that are in the Chilean plateau, 3,500 above sea levels. This means that people may experience altitude sickness. It is important that people drink lots of water so they keep their body well hydrated. People shouldn’t make sudden or harsh movements, and let their body get used to the heights and the altitude.
There are few ATMs in San Pedro de Atacama. You have to consider that the demand for these ATMs is high, so they don’t always have money. We advise you to bring some cash with you.
Stores in rural areas are open all day, but they close between 13.00 and 15.00. We advise you to carry local currency (Chilean pesos), since it isn’t possible to pay with debit or credit cards in kiosks and rural stores.
Do not throw garbage on the beaches, parks or streets. To take care of our environment is everyone's responsibility. Avoid fines by following the rules.