LBO

Bolivia & Chile's Atacama Desert Trip Notes

Ways to Travel:
Guided Group
Destinations:
Bolivia, Chile
Programmes:
Culture
Trip Code:
LBOL
Activity Rating - Leisurely/Moderate
Leisurely / Moderate

You are reasonably fit, enjoy the outdoors and are looking for some exercise. Some previous experience is preferable for activity based trips.

12 Days Land only
Ages: 18+

Trip Overview

An in-depth discovery of these fascinating countries! Landlocked in the high Andes, Bolivia is a simply breathtaking destination. Home to some of the oldest cultures in the New World, the largest lake on the continent, the most dramatic landscapes in Latin America, and a bevy of unique wildlife, Bolivia offers the adventurous traveler a multitude of natural and cultural wonders. On this comprehensive tour, visit La Paz, the world’s highest capital city; cruise along legendary Lake Titicaca; stroll through colonial Potosi and Sucre; and marvel at the glittering white expanse of the Uyuni Salt Flats. Continue to Chile’s Atacama Desert – a sparsely populated plateau extending from the Pacific to the high antiplano. Spend three days immersed in the beauty of Atacama, which boasts turquoise lakes, red plains, shifting dunes, stark volcanoes and one of the world’s largest saltpan — Salar de Atacama — a magnet for three species of flamingos: Andean, Chilean and James.

At a Glance

  • 11 nights accommodation in hotels and lodges
  • Travel by internal flights and bus/boats (hydrofoil)

Trip Highlights

  • Enjoy spectacular stargazing - your stay in the Atacama is timed to coincide with the darkest nights of the month
  • Visit the magnificent colonial cities of Potosi & Sucre, both are UNESCO World Heritage Sites
  • Discover the cosmic center of the Incan world—Lake Titicaca—and visit the Isla del Sol, the island where the Incan sun god is said to have emerged from the icy deep to create the universe
  • Photograph a variety of stunning subjects from towering volcanoes & extraordinary landscapes to graceful colonial architecture & vibrant markets frequented by colorfully clad locals
  • Stay in the Hotel De Sal Luna, this unique property is built almost entirely of salt and is situated on the edge of the Uyuni Salt Flat — a spectacular salt pan that stretches to the horizon in a glittering sea of crystals
  • Explore the remote, otherworldly landscapes of the Atacama Desert, home to geysers, colorful thermal pools, bizarre rock formations, steaming fumaroles & the stark lunar-like vistas of Moon Valley

Is This Trip for You?

This tour has been graded 2: Leisurely/Moderate

Bolivia is less developed than many of its South American counterparts and things do not always happen as planned; expect the unexpected and approach travel here with an adventurous spirit.

The sightseeing around archaeological sites and tours of some of the cities may involve walking up and down steep streets or on uneven steps/ground. As such, you should have a good level of mobility and a reasonable level of fitness.

Although graded Leisurely/Moderate (level 2), the altitude can make physical activity feel more tiring than at sea level. As this trip spends considerable time at altitude we ask you to refer to the Altitude Warning within the Trip Notes for more information and advice on how to limit the effects of altitude sickness.

Isla del Sol 4,000m
La Paz 3,640m
Sucre: 2,800m 
Potosí 4,060m
Salar de Uyuni ranging from between 3,650m and 4,850m
San Pedro de Atacama 2,408m

The maximum altitude on this trip is 4,850m in Uyuni– please ensure that your insurance covers you up to this altitude.

Due to the altitude you should expect some low temperatures, particularly during the Salar de Uyuni adventure when it regularly falls well below freezing at night. 

In Uyuni you will spend a considerable amount of time in the 4WD vehicle, although there will be plenty of stops to enjoy the landscape, take photos, and to explore on foot. 

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as not suitable for full wheelchair users, but it may be suitable for other persons of reduced mobility. Please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Group

There will be a local leader, drivers and local guides where needed.

Adult min age:
18
Min group size:
6
Max group size:
16

Itinerary

Land Only

Start City:
La Paz, Bolivia
End City:
Calama, Chile

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    La Paz

    Arrive aboard your independent flights to La Paz, Bolivia—in the shadow of the majestic Mt. Illimani—and transfer to the Casa Grande Hotel, where you spend the next two nights.

    Accommodation: Casa Grande Hotel or similar.

  • Day 2

    La Paz

    Enjoy a morning at leisure, taking time to adapt to the city’s altitude—11,942 feet above sea level. Enjoy an afternoon exploring the treasures of La Paz, discovering a living history of indigenous, colonial and modern wonders. Our afternoon tour includes stops at an underground temple, Indian Market, famed Bennett Monolith and even the witch doctor’s market. Soar over the city aboard Mi Teleférico, La Paz’s urban cable car system. After dinner at a local restaurant, return to our hotel. 

    Accommodation: Casa Grande Hotel or similar.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Dinner
  • Day 3

    La Paz / Lake Titicaca

    After breakfast drive to Huatajata or Cocotoni and board our hydrofoil cruise to Moon Island. On this mystical Island are the ruins of the Iñak Uyu, Sun Virgins' Temple. Here the most beautiful maiden of the Incas where chosen to become the wives of the Inca nobles. The Virgins of the Sun were responsible of maintaining an eternal fire in devotion to their sun god, Viracocha. Continue to Sun Island. According to Andean mythology, Viracocha sent his son and daughter, Manco Kapac and Mama Ojllo, to Earth, where they found the Inca Empire. Visit Pilcocaina Sun Temple before taking a hike along an ancient trail. Your afternoon is free to explore the nearby community and savor sunset over Lake Titicaca. 

    Accommodation: Pasada Del Inca EcoLodge or similar

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 4

    Sun Island / Copacabana / La Paz

    Climb 206 Inca steps to enjoy a breathtaking panorama of the lake and Andes. It is possible to drink water from a sacred fountain, believed to grant eternal youth and happiness. After lunch board a hydrofoil to Copacabana. Once sacred to the Incas, Copacabana is home to the revered statue of Bolivia’s patron saint — La Virgin de la Candelaria. While this small city is far less famous than the beach of the same name in Brazil, Rio’s famed beach was actually named after this town. Tossed in a storm, grateful Brazilian fisherman credited their rescue to the Virgin of Copacabana. Learn about the culture of building reed boats at Huatajata and the Andean Roots Eco-village before returning to La Paz and the Casa Grande Hotel.

    Accomodation: Casa Grande Hotel or similar.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 5

    La Paz / Sucre

    Fly to Sucre, Bolivia’s constitutional capital, and arguably one of the country’s most pleasant cities. Our afternoon tour includes an overview of colonial architecture as well as Liberty House, where the Bolivian declaration of independence was signed. At the ASUR Museum of Indigenous Art, discover the work being done by local anthropologists to maintain and strengthen the cultural integrity and economies of the Jalq’a and Tarabuco communities, by promoting high quality indigenous arts and textiles. Spend the next two nights at Parador Santa Maria la Real.

    Accommodation: Parador Santa Maria la Real or similar.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 6

    Sucre / Potolo

    Wind into the mountains west of Sucre to Potolo, home to the Quechua-speaking Jalq’a community. These welcoming people are renowned for their locally produced textiles and conical hats. Spend a day learning about their weaving techniques, which incorporate designs of local wildlife, including vicunas, llamas, eagles, condors and frogs. Return to Sucre this evening.

    Accommodation: Parador Santa Maria la Real or similar.

     

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 7

    Sucre / Potosi / Uyuni

    Set out early this morning for Potosi. Once one of the richest cities in the world, Potosi boasts many beautifully-restored buildings, including several ornate religious buildings and colorful winding streets full of charming vendors. Silver put Potosi on the map in the mid-16th century and it quickly became the Americas’ largest city and the world’s largest source of the precious metal. The mines of Cerro Rico unfortunately found their infamy in their inhumane mining practices and have been operating, in various degrees of success, for over 400 years. After savoring a relaxing lunch, visit the Casa de la Moneda (Royal Mint). Here, wooden machinery was used to transform silver from the mines into coins for Spain. Continue to Uyuni, where we spend the next two nights at Hotel de Sal Luna.

    Accommodation: Hotel de Sal Luna or similar.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 8

    Uyuni Salt Flat

    Set out on a 4 x 4 excursion to discover the wonders of the high altiplano! Explore the Uyuni Salt Flat, or Salar, the largest salt pan in the world. In this landscape of snow-white crystals, deep blue sky and hot pink flamingoes, you can take perspective-defying pictures. Visit Incahuasi Island, or Fish Island, one of many “islands” in this pre-historic sea. Once the top of an ancient volcano, Incahuasi is formed of algae and fossils. Incahuasi is a unique ecosystem, which includes a stranded colony of the chinchilla-related viscacha and most impressively, enormous cacti, some more than 30 feet tall. Stop in the foothills of the Tunupa volcano to learn about the 3,000-year-old Coquesa mummies, a collection of bodies mummified by the arid, salty air. Throughout our day we’ll see salt processing and extraction plus watch for bubbling springs—called Ojos de Agua or “eyes of salt”—where water wells up under the salt crust. Return to Hotel de Sal Luna this evening.

    Accommodation: Hotel de Sal Luna or similar.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 9

    Uyuni / Laguna Hedionda

    Continue our exploration of Bolivia’s westernmost highlands, with stops at the stunning lakes of Canapa, Chiar Kota, Honda and Hedionda. The shores of these glacial lakes are lined with three flamingo species—James, Andean and Chilean. Flamingos thrive here while feeding upon the lagoons’ algae, which would be poisonous to most other wildlife. The landscape is also dotted with llama, alpaca and possibly even vicuña. Continue to Los Flamencos EcoHotel, perched on the shores of Lake Hedionda. Savor a dinner prepared using traditional Bolivian techniques and organic products.

    Accommodation: Los Flamencos EcoHotel or similar.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 10

    Abaroa National Reserve: Red Lagoon & Green Lagoon / San Pedro de Atacama

    Discover lagoons in a diverse array of colors, from the milky Laguna Blanca to the blood-red Laguna Colorada, "Red Lagoon,” and the green Laguna Verde, “Green Lagoon”—each getting their striking color from algae. This is the ideal place to photograph flamingos. Seeing them in such large numbers may lead you to believe they’re very numerous. But in fact James’s flamingoes were once believed to be extinct before being rediscovered in this area. At "Sol de Mañana" Geysers, watch lava boil at the bottom of craters, while fumaroles spout water and super-heated steam high into the blue sky. Continue to across the Chilean border and check into the Desertica Lodge, our home for two nights. Our journey has been timed during the New Moon so you can enjoy stargazing during low-light.

    Accommodation: Desertica Lodge or similar.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 11

    Atacama

    Savor breakfast overlooking the geothermal field of fumaroles and giant cacti at El Tatio Geyser—world’s second highest geyser field. The steam and vapors are all the more impressive with the cold and the light of the early morning. At the geyser field, we also see thermal pools, mud fountains, colorful rock formations and endemic wildlife, including viscacha and nandues. Cap-off our morning taking in the enormous dunes, dramatic rock formations and stark lunar landscape of Moon Valley. The lagoons Miscanti and Miñiques—part of Los Flamencos National Reserve—act as mirrors, reflecting dramatic volcanic peaks. In addition to flamingos, watch for rare horned coot and even culpeo fox. Take advantage of another night to practice your astronomy skills. The Atacama’s remoteness, altitude, lack of light pollution and arid atmosphere make it one of Earth’s best places to stargaze. Accommodation: Desertica Lodge or similar.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch,
    Dinner
  • Day 12

    Atacama

    Spend a relaxing morning exploring the town of San Pedro de Atacama, which grew around a small oasis. Stroll through a sleepy plaza past the old church and stop by local craft workshops to learn about efforts to preserve traditional art. This afternoon, transfer to Calama airport to board your independent flight from Calama to Santiago and connect with your international flights.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast,
    Lunch

Accommodation

Boutique Hotel and Lodge

Desertica Hotel Chile

Casa Grande Hotel

Luxury meets innovative sustainable design at Casa Grande Hotel, your accommodation for portions of IE’s Bolivia tour. Located in the heart of La Paz Bolivia’s South Zone, easily accessible from the commercial and financial centers, our hotel exudes urban sophistication. Each if the bright, fresh guestrooms and suites are uniquely designed to offer a blend of eclectic style, luxurious comfort and chic sophistication. Offering views of the mountains or La Paz cityscape, all accommodations offer contemporary furnishings, spa-style bathrooms with rain showers and complimentary Wi-Fi.

Posada del Inca Eco Lodge

The charming Posada del Inca Eco-Lodge is located at the top of the Sun Island and surrounded by pastoral sceneries and the majesty of the snowed peaks of the Andes. This is one of a few places on Earth where you can still breathe the authenticity of an unspoiled nature. This old restored hacienda has 20 rooms, all with modern facilities: electric blankets, private bath, hot water, individual heating and the most breathtaking panorama of the Sacred Lake Titicaca.

Parador Santa Maria la Real

Set in a colonial style building dating back to the 18th century, Parador Santa Maria La Real offers stylish rooms with private balconies. Boasting four-poster beds, rooms at Parador Santa Maria La Real feature large windows and mini-bars, and some of them are located on the ancient subterranean halls. Free Wi-Fi is provided. Spa facilities include a sauna and a hot tub. Guests can request massage sessions or unwind in the charming terrace overlooking the patio, or on the picturesque lounge decorated with vaulted brick ceilings.

Hotel de Sal Luna

Featured in National Geographic, Hotel de Sal Luna Salada is entirely constructed from salt blocks, with sweeping panoramic views of Salar de Uyuni dotting the hotel. All of the rooms are built entirely out of salt, from the walls to the furniture, and even the floor. While staying here, Bolivia tour guests experience the tranquil atmosphere of our salt hotel, imbued with the energy of the Uyuni salt flats all around, and filled with Andean charm. Free WiFi is available in common areas.

Los Flamencos EcoHotel

Perched along the shores of Laguna Hedionda, Los Flamencos EcoHotel is named after the resident pink flamingos which are found in this scenic lake. This fabulous vision along with the mountains of the Cordillera Real de los Andes that tower above the lodge create a magnificent natural setting. Enjoy a refreshing stay here with the natural spring waters from the lagoon used throughout the property. Savor a range of tasty national and international dishes which can be enjoyed as you take in the starry view from below the restaurant’s skylight.

Desertica Lodge

Desertica is situated in an old Atacama family farm, surrounded by pepper trees, chañar trees (Chilean palo verde) and algarrobos or Carob trees. The 12 rooms feature fireplace or heating, large en-suite bathrooms with showers as well as organic, biodegradable amenities, hair dryer, robe and slippers.

Where a single supplement is available, paying for a single will only guarantee a room for single use. It does not necessarily mean a twin or double room will be provided for sole occupancy.

Please note that a member of the group may be allocated a single room by default if the make-up of the group means there isn’t anyone for them to share with. Paying the supplement in advance is the only way to guarantee a single room.

Single supplements cannot be refunded retrospectively.

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

All breakfasts, 10 lunches and 10 dinners included.

Bolivian cuisine is a fusion between Spanish and Andean traditions and varies from one region to another. In the lowlands fruit, vegetables, yucca and fish are abundant whereas in the altiplano these are less readily available and there are more spiced dishes to combat the cold. Bolivian cuisine has a reputation for its meat dishes but corn (maize), quinoa and potatoes are also part of the staple diet.

Common street food and snacks include ‘salteñas’ (baked pastries filled with spiced meat or vegetables), ‘buñuelos’ (sweet or savoury bread – often stuffed with cheese) and ‘papas rellenas’ (deep-fried battered stuffed potatoes).

Popular main dishes include ‘pique a lo macho’ (a kind of beef stir-fry, served with chunky chips), ‘picante de pollo’ (spicy chicken) and ‘tucumanas’ (a sort of pasty). In Sucre try ‘mondongo’ (a dish made of chicharron – crispy fried pork usually accompanied by corn, potatoes and a rich chilli sauce) and in La Paz check out a ‘sandwich de chola’ (pork sandwich).

Transportation

We use a combination of internal flights and private coaches.

Please be aware that last minute schedule changes may affect the timing of internal flights, so flexiblity is needed. Depending on the availability of these flights, there may be a supplement to pay. 

Weather & Seasonality

Weather Information

Since Chile is in the southern hemisphere, the seasons are the reverse of those in Europe; trips are therefore organized between October and March, to take advantage of the longer, warmer days in the rather brief summer period. During these months the summer temperatures in Santiago reach a maximum of 35degC.

Differences in topography and climate separate Bolivia’s lowlands and highlands into distinct areas. Weather conditions vary significantly from region to region.

Altiplano (highlands), including Lake Titicaca, La Paz, Sucre, Potosí and Uyuni - Climate varies from cool and humid to semi-arid. The average annual temperature ranges from 15 to 27°C (60 – 80ºF) but in the dry season its more likely to be 10 to 15°C with the coldest temperatures occurring in the south-western portion of the Altiplano during the months of June and July. Nights can get very chilly, dropping to around 0 °C. In Salar de Uyuni, night-time temperatures in the dry season may fall as low as -15°C (particularly from May to August). Between April and September there is a chance of snow, especially to the north of the highlands, but it is not very common. The unrelenting rainy season occurs between December and March. 

Joining Instructions

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Location start:
La Paz, Bolivia
Location end:
Calama, Chile

What to Take

Essential Equipment

We suggest loose, comfortable clothing appropriate for the variable conditions you will encounter. Bring adequate sun-protective clothing and gear, including a hat, sunglasses and sunblock, as we will be out of extended periods of time. Being out early in the morning or later in the evening will result in cooler temperatures, so dress accordingly. It is highly recommended to dress in layers for added comfort and wardrobe versatility. Wash-and-wear, lightweight fabrics are recommended.  Please note that in higher altitudes, the wind can also be very high, so adequate protection against the wind is highly recommended.

There will be opportunities for hikes of varied lengths, so bring sturdy, non-skid, waterproof walking or hiking boots. Make sure your boots are well broken-in before you depart. Also, keep in mind that we could encounter rain showers on our excursions as the weather can sometimes be unpredictable. We suggest bringing a light rain jacket in case of showers.

Internal Flights Weight Limit

  • Please be advised that domestic flights in Japan have a 20kg maximum for check-in luggage. 
  • Please also be advised that one carry on piece of luggage means a single bag weighing no more than 5kg, plus a personal item such as a purse.or camera bag.
LBO

Practical Information

Passport

Bolivia

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for 6 months beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information below is primarily for UK passport holders, and other nationalities should check with their travel agent or the relevant embassies. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Chile

All nationalities require a full passport that must be valid for 6 months beyond the intended length of stay. It is your responsibility to have the correct personal documents and to obtain your own visa, if one is necessary, in accordance with the regulations of the country you are to visit. The information below is primarily for UK passport holders, and other nationalities should check with their travel agent or the relevant embassies. We are not responsible for the actions of local immigration and customs officials, whether at points of entry or otherwise, and any subsequent effects.

Visa

Bolivia

British Citizens, most Western European nationals, Canadians, Australians, New Zealanders, South Africans and most other nationalities do not require visas. US citizens who are not of Bolivian origin need a visa of which full details are available on www.boliviawdc.com. If you are in any doubt, please contact the nearest Bolivian Embassy.

Chile

British, most European and most other nationalities, including Canadians, Australians and New Zealanders, do not require visas. All other nationalities should contact the nearest Chilean Embassy if in doubt. Citizens of Australia pay a fee on first entry into Chile by air (cash US Dollars only, no credit cards or cheques) $95 - valid for only 90 days). There is no fee for other nationalities at the time of writing. The one-time charge is valid for the life of your passport so keep the stub stapled in.

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

Vaccination

Bolivia

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. 

A Yellow Fever certificate is required for travellers over 1 year of age arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission. 

There is a risk of yellow fever transmission in parts of Bolivia. Vaccination is recommended for travellers aged 9 months and older travelling to areas below 2,300m east of the Andes Mountains. These areas include the entire departments of Beni, Pando, and Santa Cruz, and some areas in the departments of Chuquisaca, Cochabamba, La Paz and Tarija. 

Malaria is present throughout the year however, with the exception of the northern provinces of Beni and Pando (the Amazon region), and Nor Cinti province in the south, the risk of Malaria is low and antimalarial tablets are not usually recommended, although may be considered for certain higher risk travellers. If visiting the Amazon region in the north, Malaria precautions are essential. If visiting Nor Cinti province, Malaria precautions may sometimes be recommended for certain travellers.

You should be aware that Dengue Fever and Yellow Fever are present in the Amazon region in northern Bolivia - these are non-preventable diseases caused by daytime biting mosquitoes. You should always apply insect repellent and wear long-sleeved shirts and trousers while in the rainforest to avoid being bitten.

Zika fever is a mosquito‐borne viral disease and a known risk in places visited on this trip. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available, we therefore strongly recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

Chile

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Tetanus, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. Dengue fever is a known risk in places visited. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

As we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information. Please note: vaccinations that are routinely recommended to residents of the UK, North America or Australasia are not considered to form part of the travel health advice, and you should ensure these are kept up to date where necessary.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

Altitude warning

This trip includes one or more nights over 3500m above sea level, where there is a genuine risk of being affected by Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). If left untreated AMS can be life-threatening. We expect most clients to experience some mild symptoms of altitude sickness, such as headaches and shortness of breath while walking or sleeplessness. Our leaders are trained to identify symptoms of severe AMS and if a client requires extra care, arrangements such as rapid descent will be made immediately.

On some days this trip climbs faster than commonly published ascent rate recommendations. Based upon an assessment by our external safety and medical advisors and our risk assessment process, we consider the ascent rate is acceptable due to the additional safety measures that are in place for our customers. All our trips operating at high altitude meet our internal altitude safety standards that minimise the risk of serious incidents occurring whilst travelling at altitude.

A number of medical conditions or medications can reduce your body's ability to acclimatise. This may affect your performance and make you more susceptible to AMS. If you are worried about any pre-existing conditions, such as heart conditions, or your overall physical ability, you must seek medical advice prior to booking. The drug Diamox (also known as acetazolamide and normally only available on prescription) has been shown to aid acclimatisation in some individuals, and therefore may reduce the risk of AMS. Clients considering using Diamox should speak to their doctor about the drug, its side-effects and a prescription. Please note that while we endeavour to assist all our clients in achieving their goals, there may be times when your leader decides to delay or stop your ascent based on your overall condition, or the onset of AMS.

If you are not taking out Exodus Travel Insurance, make sure that your policy covers you up to the maximum altitude on this trip (if trekking in the Himalaya your policy should also cover the use of a helicopter for emergency medical evacuation).

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will be asked to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

Local Time

Bolivia's Timezone:
America/La_Paz -04 (GMT -04:00)
Chile's Timezone:
America/Santiago -03 (GMT -03:00)

Electricity

Bolivia's Electricity:

All hotels have electrical sockets in the room (usually 220volts) ‐ most will take both 2‐pin US flat or European round plugs.

Plug types A & C; establishments often take plugs with 2 flat parallel pins and/or 2 round pins.

Chile's Electricity:

220 volts

Money

Bolivia's Currency

The national currency of Bolivia is the Bolivian Boliviano (BOB), with an exchange rate at the time of publication (August 2021) of approximately 9.4 to the GBP, 6.9 to the USD, 5.4 to the CAD, 8.1 to the EUR, 4.9 to the AUD and 4.7 to the NZD.

Most major currencies including Sterling, Euros and US Dollars can easily be changed into local currency (Bolivianos) at all bureau de change in Bolivia, although US Dollars usually attract the best exchange rates. Torn, damaged or marked foreign bills are often refused.

Chile's Currency

The national currency of Chile is the Chilean Peso (CLP), with an exchange rate at the time of publication (October 2020) of approximately 1,019 to the GBP, 782 to the USD, 596 to the CAD, 923 to the EUR, 564 to the AUD and 520 to the NZD.

ATM Availability

ATMs supporting major credit cards are accessible in La Paz and Santiago. They may not be available in other places. Please note some banks may only let you withdraw small amounts per day, depending on the bank.

LBO

Responsible Tourism

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here

Exodus Community

Join the Exodus online community

Don't forget to visit the Community area on our website. You can view the range of Exodus videos and podcasts, read trip write-ups which have featured in the national media and take advantage of some special deals on travel gear and equipment.

In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

To make full use of the Community you'll need to join My Exodus. It's free, registration is simple and easy, so what are you waiting for?

Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 14 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred.

On all trips

In booking this trip you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

 

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons - climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

TRAVEL AWARE – STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD

 

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office and the NHS have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more on security, local laws, plus passport and visa information, see https://travelaware.campaign.gov.uk/

Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/

Advice can change so check regularly for updates.

For all latest travel information about your holiday, please visit our Travel Safety Advice page.

How to Book

1. Check availability

Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.

2. Secure your place

You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.

3. Complete your booking and payment

When you're ready to book, go to our website for online bookings, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque. Book with confidence: Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582 issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA ‐ The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.

TRIP NOTE VALIDITY

These Trip Notes are valid from the "Current as" date on page one. They will occasionally be updated post booking and pre-departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary bookers will be written to separately. All customers will also receive a link to the most up-to-date version of the Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions pre-travel.