Antofagasta Region is one of the fifteen administrative districts of Chile. It includes the provinces of Antofagasta, Tocopilla and El Loa. The regional capital is the port city of Antofagasta. This northern part of Chile includes some of the most arid places in the world. Visitors staying in discount hotels in Antofagasta are advised to take bottled water with them when they go on excursions, especially if they go into the Atacama Desert. Among the sites to be seen in the city of Antofagasta are San Jose Cathedral and La Portada de Antofagasta.
Take a day trip from your budget hotel in Antofagasta to the town of San Pedro de Atacama. This is an oasis community in the middle of the desert. The surrounding countryside looks like the surface of an alien planet. You’ll see giant sand dunes, bizarre land formations, rugged canyons, salt pillars, giant geysers, and even a volcano. You can still see Tulor, an Atacama Indian village that dates back to 800 B.C. This is a very popular area with cyclists and hikers. Note: it gets cold at night. Be sure to visit the Museo Arqueologico Padre le Page, where you can see well preserved Indian artifacts. There is even a real mummy, known affectionately as “Miss Chile.” Also look into the La Mano Arte gallery.
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