When visiting the Atacama Desert, the one area that you absolutely must make the journey to is Piedras Rojas. I’ll warn you – it’s far and quite the trek from San Pedro de Atacama – but it is absolutely 1 million % worth it.
First, take a look at the journey on the way out. The scenery is beautiful and constantly changing as you get closer and closer to the destination. You can see changing colors of flowers, vibrant greens and yellows, red and black jutting volcanoes, and plenty of llamas!
Then finally, out of the blue, you will turn the corner and see this view in the distance. This is the Piedras Rojas in her full glory, and you can start to see the true magnificence.
When we visited, we saw signs that indicated you weren’t allowed to go and walk closely to the rocks, so these pictures are from a bit further away. Although we wanted to get close, I always want to respect the place I’m visiting, and if that means keeping away to prevent erosion or damage, then I’ll stay away.
Here are the views of the area from a few different angles. The ground itself is red, but the hills are the colors and textures of an elephant, it was truly breathtaking. Then, when you get closer to the lake, the swirls and colors paint the canvas of the ground unlike anything I’ve ever seen. To say the least, it was magical.
After we visited the lake here, we carried along the road and came across another smaller salt lake that we didn’t see anywhere in any of the brochures, tours, or tourism literature. If you carry along the road (away from San Pedro), you’ll come up to it on the left hand side. While you’re out there, you must make the short trip and see this place too.
We tried to do those perspective-shifting photos like you see on the salt flats, and they’re pretty goofy… but hey, at least we gave it a good shot 😛
And lastly, we stayed the night here in our camper van. The wind was insane, and the temperature dropped really low, but it was by far our #1 favourite place we slept in our camper van the entire 6 weeks we were on the road ❤
Soooo go! It’s magical, it’s wonderful, and you need to see it ❤ ❤