mike.frei Check-Ins

Date Place Comment
March 17th, 2020 Laguna Chulluncani Camp

Very nice camp spot at a bit of a distance to the laguna, but with a great view. From here it is only 16km to the main road.

March 16th, 2020 Start of Laguna Route/Southwest circuit

The laguna route is stunning and absolutely worth the trouble of some bad roads. We did it with our 3.5 ton Mercedes Benz 310 van, 4x4 and only needed 4x4 once. Some parts are a bit sandy. Make sure you have enough fuel. In this altitude we needed 30l/100km of gas and we drove 400km inbetween gasstations (San Pedro (Chile) – San Cristobal (Bolivia)). I recommend to ha fuel for at least 500km (depending on the route) and expect much higher consumption due to thr altitude (everything is above 4000masl).

March 15th, 2020 Taller Mecanico Fernando

You can find him in the El Tatio Street 163. We got stuck 12km before the Bolivian Border and couldnt move anymore. Fernando helped us even though it was Sunday. Friendly, fair price, fixed our car immediately. We can highly recommend him.

March 14th, 2020 Licancabur View on 3995 m.a.s.l.

Nice view at Licancabur. Perfect spot to aclamatize for Bolivia. You can be seen from the road but there is very few traffic at night.

March 13th, 2020 High Desert camp

We only had lunch break at this beautiful spot, when a guy from the municipalidad showed up and told us, that his boss whats us to move, we could not park here. I guess, if you come in the evening/ at night, no one will care.

March 12th, 2020 Ckunna Restaurante

One of the best restaurants we‘ve been in SA. The food is excellent and beautifully presented. Meat, fish, vegetarian options, all great. The staff is very professional, attentive, friendly. Mains are between 9000-15‘000p. The also serve excellent wine and desserts. Highly recommended. Wifi quite ok.

March 12th, 2020 Overlooking the village

A bit higher up than the other spot. As we didn‘t know if it would rain we felt safer a bit away from the river. To get here you need high clearance. The spot is levelled and quiet next to a big rock that gives you some shelter from the wind. We asked some locals if it‘s ok to camp here and they smiled and said yes.

March 12th, 2020 Laguna Inka Coya

The laguna is nice for a little lunch stop. A sign at the entrance is indicating that camping is not allowed. If you don‘t need a break from driving it‘s not worth the detour.

March 11th, 2020 La Casa Del Sol Naciente CAMPING

Small, but convenient only minutes away from the centre. Toilets and showers were clean, water hot. Wifi slow, but usable. Owners are very friendly.

March 9th, 2020 Entrance to Valle de la Luna

Beautiful landscapes and well worth visiting. We had rain 3 days in a row (yes, in the dryest desert in the world!). Because of thunderstorm and lightning we were denied the entry on the first day. On day two we could only see the duna mayor before they sent us bakc out again. Only on the third day we could visit the whole park and the viewpoint (direction Calama). Our ticket we bought on the first day was revalidated twice without discussion. Very friendly staff and worth the money.

March 9th, 2020 lonely tree

Really nice place, convenient to visit the different sight on the salar and great view of the volcanoes around. Just be careful when rain sets in. Some parts of the site are flooded within minutes and we suddenly stood in 20cm deep water. In the morning we only managed to get out thanks to 4x4 and diff lock.

March 8th, 2020 Atacama Valley Look Out

Great spot and the first one no too high. Access demands some high clearance. Beautiful views of the volcanos around. Except for some few trucks very quiet.

March 8th, 2020 Roadside Restaurant/Hotel

We had a nice lomo and an omelette, both just fine and not really expensive. Wifi was slow, but ok, staff friendly. They only accept cash (Pesos or USD).

March 7th, 2020 Hosteria Bebo Vilte

Now called „camping encantada“. The yard is dusty, like everything in this region, but still ok. You can find a bit of shade under some trees. The facilities are mostly clean, showers hot, everything very basic. The duenos are not really friendly. Charged us 300p pp and 100p for the car. Our friends only paid 600p. When we asked for the reason they claimed, that it is not true, the als paid 700p (so the clients are lying). We spent there two nights (just because of our friends), the owners never showed up to ask if everything is ok, two toilets were not cleaned once during that time. Wifi is very slow, still no electricity. At least it is very close to town.

March 6th, 2020 Mirador Serranía de Hornocal

Absolutely stunning view of the 14 colores and worth the drive. Road condition still very good. We arrve at 11:30, no one was at the gate, so we entered. When we got back 20min. later a lady (not recognisable as an official) first asked for 200p, when we explained that we are not a „transito“, she said 80p was ok. When I gave her 100p she said she had no change. I took the money back and left. It‘s not about the 80p, but when we arrive that late and lots of cars are already up there and she claims not to have change... very unprofessional.

March 5th, 2020 Quebrada de las senoritas

Really nice and quiet place. Just a few hundred meters after the little village. 2WD accessible, but high clearance recommended.

March 5th, 2020 Posta de Hornillos Museum

Small, but very nice museum with friendly stuff. Worth a stop of half an hour.

March 4th, 2020 Camping Municipal Carlos Xamena

Still very cheap camp ground. After beginning of March, the pool has no water (season‘s over). The facilities are run down, but clean regularly. Showers hot. Easy to leave your camper here and take a cab into the centre (140-170p).

March 4th, 2020 Chango Más supermarket (Walmart)

Huge supermarket (vegetables and fruits are poor). It also has a Western Union on site.

March 4th, 2020 Alto Noa Shopping Center

Typical mall with expensive shops (lots of international brands). It has 3 outdoor shops (Columbia, Montagne, Cumbres), all of them have good outdoor eqiûipment (mostly clothes, few other items).

March 4th, 2020 Museo de Güemes

It‘s a very interesting museum, about the Güemes family who lived and faught here against the Spanish invaders. It has mostly panels on display that tell a story (very entertaining). Everything is in Spanish with English subtitles. Costs: 150pp (kids under 12 are free). Time: approx. 1hr.

March 4th, 2020 Best mechanic in town

Guillermo is an excellent mechanic. Very determend to help you in the best possible way. He explains everything to you. The whole staff is very friendly, they let you sleep in the workshop if needed. The price is very fair. Highly recommended.

February 25th, 2020 Canyon and colored rock

Nice view. Ok for a night. Leveled space is rare and there is no wind protection. Very quiet. Ideal when you want to go to Piedra Pomez the next day.

February 25th, 2020 La Clemira free campground

It‘s a small deli with lots of homemade goodies, such as goat cheese, milaneses, empanadas, coffee, mate, liquor...
Very friendly owner. We don‘t know about camping, just enjoyed the food.

February 24th, 2020 Gem next to the river

We found this gem right next to the Rio El Bolson. It‘s close to the street, so a bit of noise and not completely hidden. However, with the very few nice places between Hualfin and El Peñon this is great. Probably only accessible when it hadn‘t rained and we advice 4x4 and some high clearance. There is a small step to be taken and the sand is quiet hard, but still sand. Yes, you sleep right on the levelled ‚beach‘ with a greatview into the green.

February 23rd, 2020 Selling fuel

Ask for Juan, he sells fuel (super and diesel), prices a bit more than regular (super for 75p/l).

February 23rd, 2020 Small Laguna

Absolutely remote beautiful spot on the first small laguna. The little hills around give very little wind protection, but better than nothing. It‘s already on 4000m.a.s.l., so make sure you are already used to this height. Nice place if you want to go to or come from the laguna grande or diamante. Lots of levelled space, no 4x4 needed (coming from El Peñon), but high clearence recommended. Say hi to the vicuñas (or are they guanacos?).

February 19th, 2020 Camping Los Hornos

Nice simple campground with all the amnenities needed. Everything is very simple, but functional. The pool is very nice, the owners friendly and the wifi works slow, but works. 100pp (small children don‘t pay).

February 18th, 2020 In front of the lake

Wonderful spot to spend the night before doing paso agua negra. Beautiful lake-mountainview. Not many levelled spots, but enough for 2-3 rigs.

February 18th, 2020 Wildcamp right next to small river

We only had lunch at this peacful place, but it‘s about 60km from ARG aduana down a small, but easy road. You can stand right next to the river with a van, larger rigs can park a few meters up, where there is more levelled spots.


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