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Excursions

(ANF201) HALF DAY EXCURSION IN ANTOFAGASTA 
Duration: 3 hours approx.
Available: All year. 
Operates: Daily.
Notes: Museums closed on Mondays and National Holidays.
Description: The city of Antofagasta, otherwise known as “the Pearl of the North”, was founded in 1868 and has become the region’s economic capital due to the important mining centers nearby. Our half-day excursion will take us to some of its most outstanding attractions, starting with La Portada (Gateway), a natural rock formation in the ocean, in the shape of an arc or doorway that has been declared a Natural Monument. We’ll also explore the port’s facilities, paying a visit to the Fish Market (Terminal Pesquero) frequented by pelicans and sea lions that live off the fish scraps. The historical center will give you a good idea of the city´s urban development and architectural style. We’ll go by the buildings of the FCAB, the railway system connecting Antofagasta and Bolivia and actual survivor of the fall of the nitrate industry, that is currently used to transport mining supplies. We’ll also visit the Regional Museum and will continue our tour on foot to the Plaza Colon (city square) and Catedral de San Jose (cathedral).      

(ANF301) FULL DAY EXCURSION TO BAQUEDANO AND CHACABUCO NITRATE MINES
Duration: 8 Hours approx.
Available: All year round.
Operates: Daily. 
Description: The era of splendor of the so-called boom of the “White Gold of the Pacific” (nitrate) at the end of the 19th century can be admired during this expedition that includes stops to visit two historic and patrimonial sites. Venturing northeast of the city of Antofagasta into the arid Atacama Desert, our first destination is the spectacular Railway Museum of Baquedano, which was declared a National Monument in 1983. The Baquedano Station, of great historical interest, features the railway installations, locomotives and equipment used in the past. Nearby is the town of Baquedano that in 2008 emerged from its sand and heat obscurity to become one of the locations of a James Bond movie: “Quantum of Solace”. A visit to the ghost town of Chacabuco, a former nitrate office and processing plant, follows. It has been declared a National Monument to preserve it as a witness of the saltpeter industrial development in northern Chile and the way of life in those golden times. End of tour and return to Antofagasta.  

(ANF302) FULL DAY EXCURSION TO BAQUEDANO CHACABUCO NITRATE MINES – SAN PEDRO DE ATACAMA
Duration: 10 Hours approx.
Available: All year round.
Operates: Daily.
Description: The era of splendor of the so-called boom of the “White Gold of the Pacific” (nitrate) at the end of the 19th century can be admired during this expedition that includes stops to visit two historic and patrimonial sites. Venturing northeast of the city of Antofagasta into the arid Atacama Desert, our first destination is the spectacular Railway Museum of Baquedano, which was declared a National Monument in 1983. The Baquedano Station, of great historical interest, features the railway installations, locomotives and equipment used in the past. Nearby is the town of Baquedano that in 2008 emerged from its sand and heat obscurity to become one of the locations of a James Bond movie: “Quantum of Solace”. A visit to the ghost town of Chacabuco, a former nitrate office and processing plant, follows. It has been declared a National Monument to preserve it as a witness of the saltpeter industrial development in northern Chile and the way of life in those golden times. After the visit, we head to San Pedro de Atacama.

(ANF303) FULL DAY EXCURSION TO BAQUEDANO CHACABUCO NITRATE MINES – CALAMA
Duration: 9 Hours approx.
Available: All year round.
Operates: Daily. 
Description: The era of splendor of the so-called boom of the “White Gold of the Pacific” (nitrate) at the end of the 19th century can be admired during this expedition that includes stops to visit two historic and patrimonial sites. Venturing northeast of the city of Antofagasta into the arid Atacama Desert, our first destination is the spectacular Railway Museum of Baquedano, which was declared a National Monument in 1983. The Baquedano Station, of great historical interest, features the railway installations, locomotives and equipment used in the past. Nearby is the town of Baquedano that in 2008 emerged from its sand and heat obscurity to become one of the locations of a James Bond movie: “Quantum of Solace”. A visit to the ghost town of Chacabuco, a former nitrate office and processing plant, follows. It has been declared a National Monument to preserve it as a witness of the saltpeter industrial development in northern Chile and the way of life in those golden times. After the visit we head to Calama.

(ANF304) EXCURSIÓN DE MEDIA DÍA AL OBSERVATORIO ASTRONÓMICO CERRO PARANAL
Duration: 4 hours approx.
Available: All year round
Operates: Only Saturdays, at 10AM and 2PM.  
Notes: Subject to weather conditions and available space 
Description: The vastness and loneliness of the magnificent Atacama Desert are not only mirrored in its lunar landscapes of sand and rock…but are also reflected in its skies -that without exaggeration- are the most beautiful in the world. It is worth mentioning that 40% of the world’s astronomical observations are performed in Chile, which has become an authority in this area. This not-to-be-missed tour for enthusiastic star gazers will take us directly to the Cerro Paranal Astronomical Observatory, located about 130 kilometres (80 miles) south of Antofagasta, at an altitude of 2,635 meters (1,637 miles) that offers 350 cloudless days a year, an extraordinary location in our planet. The Very Large Telescope (VLT), the world’s most advanced visible-light astronomical observatory, is one of the observatory’s premier sites, consisting in four interconnected 8.2-metre diameter (320 in) telescopes. The four main telescopes can combine their light to operate as a single device offering a unique optical resolution. In addition, there are 4 movable 1.8-metre diameter Auxiliary Telescopes. The visit includes an astronomy lecture and a visit inside the observatory. The tours are offered on Saturdays at 10AM and 2PM.