10 spots that will make you want to head to Chile’s Atacama desert

The Atacama region covers the entire northern third of Chile, is the driest place known on earth, and has a “you better keep hydrated” impressive average elevation of 13,000 feet. There are parts of the desert where rain has never been recorded since humans have been recording such things. Not only are there volcanoes, flamingos, salt flats, and turquoise lagoons pretty much everywhere you look, but there’s also wonderfully creepy abandoned mines, ALMA (the world’s most powerful ground-based astronomical project in existence – it probes stars and galaxies and directly images the formation of planets), and a list a mile long by the locals of UFO sitings. A little something for everyone.

Editor’s note: These spots are all taken directly from travelstoke®, a new app from Matador that connects you with fellow travelers and locals, and helps you build trip itineraries with spots that integrate seamlessly into Google Maps and Uber. Download the app to add any of the spots below directly to your future trips.

Ojos del Salar

Los Flamencos National Reserve

Salar de Tara

Quebrada de Jere

Hotel Alto Atacama

Valle de la Luna

Termas de Puritama

Salar de Atacama

On Safari Atacama

Laguna Tuyacto

Watch the video: Chilean astrophysicists on alien life, Mars and space exploration. Talk to Al Jazeera

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