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Chile: Lauca National Park

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Close to the border with Peru in northern Chile, rising into the high Andes between the Pacific coast and the Atacama Desert is the stunning Lauca National Park. Wetter than the desert, and at over 4,000m above sea level, this high altitude park springs into life with paintbox green wetlands and coarse tufted prairies. The landscape is dotted with 6,000m snow-tipped volcanic cones, often sitting on the shores of ice-cold lakes of gemstone clarity. The wildlife here is copious, with grazing herds of llamas, alpacas, vicuñas and vizcachas (chinchillas) easily spotted, along with the more elusive deer, foxes and armadillos.

Our holidays to Lauca National Park

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breakfast onboard Silversea cruise

Culinary cruise along the Humboldt Current - 23 Oct 2017

Private journey

18 days from £5,771pp

Our insider tips for Lauca National Park

David

David Nichols

Viewing the cobalt waters of Lake Chungará, one of the world’s highest at the foot of twin volcanoes with peaks smothered in permanent snow.

Mary Anne

Mary Anne Nelson

Visiting one of the tiny thatched churches in the altiplano villages.

Lina

Lina Fuller

Bird-watching in the wetlands: there are 140 species to be found on the lakes and in the marshes including Andean flamingos, ducks, grebes, coots, ibis, avocets, geese and gulls.
Sophie Barber

Sophie Barber

Spotting a condor soaring on a thermal in the unpolluted egg-shell blue skies above you.

What our experts say

Wedged between the Chilean coast and Bolivia the Lauca National Park isn't hard to reach, but is a world away from the towns and highways at sea level. Famed for its lagoons and flamingoes it is definitely worth the drive on an excursion from Arica or en route to Andean Bolivia or San Pedro de Atacama..

Isabelle

Isabelle Mazille

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