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Stay at the Tierra Atacama hotel.
Enjoy all-inclusive adventure programmes at the famous Tierra Atacama, renown for its top quality guides, food and services.
From these plush surroundings, set off and explore Atacama, the world’s driest desert.
Included adventures are by vehicle, on foot, on horseback and on a bicycle.
Tierra Atacama has the philosophy of an adventure spa. The ambience is casual and friendly, the common areas comfortable, there are outdoor terraces with fire pits, a spa, an indoor and outdoor pool.
The grounds include special areas for sitting and relaxing and simply enjoying the natural peace of the area and the wonderful views of the Licancabur Volcano.
The incredibly comfortable rooms all have wifi, private terraces and the luxury of an outdoor shower.
All meals are included as well as an open bar and each evening you will choose from a menu of included half and full day tours for the following day.
Atacama – the world’s driest desert
San Pedro de Atacama is located in the heart of Chile’s Atacama Desert, the most arid in the world.
The landscape is a palate of earthy tones contouring magnificent mountains and volcanoes, peppered with wonderful wind sculptured rock formations, flamingo strewn salt flats and cacti.
Millenary cultures and pre-Columbian archaeology as well as an incredible fauna and some of the clearest skies in the world make this an unforgettable destination.
Doubly unforgettable from the luxury of the Tierra Atacama Hotel.
Stay at one of Chile's most iconic and luxurious hotels: Tierra Atacama.
Explore San Pedro de Atacama desert, one of the world's most incredible destinations.
Enjoy the hotel's spa, terraces and indoor and outdoor pools.
Fine dining paired with exquisite wines to enjoy at meal times.
Rooms have wonderful views, outdoor showers and terraces to relax on.
Fantastic guides for exclusive tours around Atacama.
The Atacama stars were all I was hoping for. Some excellent shooting starts and clear nights.
G. Austin, Atacama
Arrive Calama airport. You will be met on arrival by a representative from the hotel and transferred to the hotel with any other hotel passengers who were on youir flight.
Check in time is 15.00. Time to explore the hotel, enjoy the facilities or go into town.
Dinner is included.
After breakfast you will set off on your chosen full or half day excursion.
See Practical Information below for more information about possible trips.
For those on a full day excursion a packed lunch will be included whilst those on two half day excursions will return to the hotel for lunch.
At the established time you will be provided with a shared transfer for the 90-minute drive to Calama airport for your departure flight.
Prices From $2,300 / £1,950 per person
Enquire about booking
Transfer to and from Calama Airport (CJC), accommodation at Tierra Atacama Hotel & Spa, American breakfast, lunch and dinner, open bar – soft drinks, mineral water, juices, house wines, beers and liquor (premium wines and vintage liquor available for an additional cost), daily excursions (two half-day or one full-day excursion per day in small groups with other guests, accompanied by our guides), full use of all the hotel facilities, including gardens, pools, saunas and jacuzzi, check-in time is 15.00, check out time is 11.00.
Spa treatments, drinks and wines from the premium liquor and wine list, telephone calls, laundry and other personal expenditure, flights, tips, insurance, personal items.
Tierra Atacama Hotel is a 32-room desert oasis in northern Chile. There are several room types to choose from.
Oriente rooms: Bed with roll down shades, a frosted glass enclosed bathroom, an outdoor shower in addition to the indoor shower, private terrace and spectacular views of the Licancabur Volcano. Please note Oriente Rooms do not have bathtubs. These rooms can be set up with two twin beds or one king bed. Amenities: Wi Fi, Private Terrace, Outdoor shower, Central heating, Air conditioning, Ceiling fan, Hair dryer Safety deposit box.
Poniente rooms: More spacious than Oriente Rooms. Private terrace with outdoor shower overlooking the Salt Mountain Range and the hotel gardens. Poniente rooms offer views of the Licancabur Volcano through large windows. These rooms can be set up with two twin beds or one king bed. Amenities: Wi Fi, Private Terrace, Outdoor shower, Central heating, Air conditioning, Ceiling fan, Hair dryer Safe deposit box.
Bath tub family rooms: On two floors with an internal stair case. Sleep up to 6 people. Upstairs, master bedroom with bathroom. Downstairs, two rooms each with two twin beds and their own bathrooms downstairs. A large private terrace upstairs looks over the hotel gardens. Amenities: Ceiling fan, Hair dryer, Safety deposit box, Wi Fi, Private Terrace, Central heating Air conditioning and cooling fans in the master bedroom. The twin rooms downstairs are equipped with cooling fans.
Staff who run the hotel are from the local area.
All guides are bilingual, English-speakers with many years’ experience guiding in Atacama.
The dining experience at Tierra Atacama takes advantage of local produce, filling the menu with innovative twists on north Chilean cuisine.
With the potential for warm days and the hotel’s high-altitude location, our expert chefs create dishes that are light and tasty, not heavy or overwhelming. This approach complements the local traditions with fresh, rainbow-like salads, Peruvian corn, quinoa and a range of appetising meat or vegetarian mains.
Everyday the focus is firmly fixed on using innovative techniques and a modern approach to both the taste sensations and plate presentation, while also staying true to regional recipes and seasonal ingredients along the way.
You can choose how active or relaxed you wish to be at Tierra Atacama, so there is always something for everyone.
Atacama is at high altitude so we recommend that everyone takes it easy, physically, on arrival, unless already acclimatised.
Chile is the land of contrasts, from verdant vineyards to driest desert, deep fjords and towering glaciated volcanoes.
A narrow but incredibly long, snake-like country, Chile’s unusual geography features more than 5,000km of South Pacific Ocean coast. The country is almost 4,400km long but barely more than 160km at its widest.
It is best divided into general regions, all of which offer spectacular landscapes and identities of their own.
This variety means Chile is the land where almost every activity is possible. Hiking, biking, rafting and kayaking.
Or climbing, cruising, fishing, horse riding, wine tasting.
Or simply eating great food, relaxing and exploring.
Trekking heaven. Paine National Park lies in Patagonia and features some of the best trekking in South America. With no altitude worries here, hikers enjoy an unrivalled mix of access to wild flora and fauna that exists in this massif. It is at once windswept, and then balmy. Paine National Park is a must see for walkers visiting South America.
Northern Patagonia is the least densely populated part of the country – spectacular virgin scenery make this a hidden gem and superb area for trekking, boating and horse riding.
And that’s before you think about possibly cruising through fjords, or kayaking them, flying to Antartica or staying at a working hacienda.
Iconic, Easter Island is an archaeological treasure. Here you will find the famous Moai stone statues, as well as caves and rocks decorated with etched petroglyphs and painted pictographs.
Northern Chile features the Atacama, the driest desert with the clearest skies in the world, is alive with active volcanoes replete with spitting geysers mixed with archaeological wonders and fantastic rock formations.
Central Chile is the heart of Chile and includes the capital Santiago. With its Mediterranean climate of hot dry summers and mild wet winters, this central valley produces some of South America’s finest wines, Colchagua Valley to name but one.
Here, the Andean mountain chain soars more than 6,000m above sea level. Chile’s traditional symbols such as huaso (cowboy) and cueca (national dance) originate here, an area which is rich in agriculture and produces most of Chile’s export fruit.
In winter, skiers are attracted to this tasting the promise of some fabulous snow on the huge peaks which overlook Santiago.
Southern Chile and the Lake District
Lush and verdant, The Lake District area is the place to climb snow-capped volcanoes by day while relaxing next to stunning glacial lakes by evening. You can walk, bike, raft, cruise and drive your way around this beautiful region.
Central, southern and Patagonia Andes all present different challenges to mountaineers and trekkers. Options are varied in the central Andes with many of the Patagonian peaks remaining unexplored and unsummitted.
Altiplanic Lagoons (Aguas Calientes & Tuyajto); 6 to 8 hours.
We will drive to the remote altiplanic lakes of Aguas Calientes, located over 4,000m/13,123ft above sea level. A visit to the Tuyajto salt flats is also included as well as Piedras Rojas (Red Rocks) which are wonderful rock formations.
Depending on the weather conditions lunch will be served at the salt flats, if not in a small restaurant in the town of Socaire.
Salar Tara ( Tara salt flat ); Duration: 6 to 8 hours.
Driving east from the hotel towards the Argentine border we find the Salar de Tara. This salt flat is 4,200m/13,780ft above sea level and is looked over by the majestic Licancabur Volcano. There should be good options to spot some of the local bird life as well as the curious Monjes de Pacana ( Pacana Monks ) natural rock sculptures. Lunch is in Tara.
The Tatio Geisers; 7 hours.
Difficulty; Easy (with acclimatization)
The Tatio Geisers are located at an altitude of 4,300m/14,190ft.
As dawn breaks huge steam columns which can reach heights of 12m burst upwards. Breakfast is served at the sight.
Afterwards visit to the Andean town of Machuca and if lucky en route you may spot vicuñas, foxes, vizcachas and Andean ostrich. We stop in the hamlet of Machuca before returning to the hotel by vehicle.
Machuca; 5 to 6 hours.
The small village of Machuca is located north of San Pedro at an altitude of 4,000m/13,123ft It is a typical village whose only street is lined by cactus roofed houses and the church is of special cultural significance. The surrounding countryside has many species of birds and llamas.
Puritama Hot Springs; 3 hours.
Not far from San Pedro are the Puritama hot springs. Hidden at the bottom of a steep sided gorge, and surrounded by vegetation, you will find 8 natural pools whose water temperature is around 33 Celsius.
Moon Valley; 3 hours.
Visit the Salt Mountain Range and its stunning scenery in the Death Valley and Moon Valley. Includes short walks in areas with rocky outcrops. Great photo opportunities.
This excursion is offered in the morning when there are fewer people around.
Atacama Salt Flat (Chaxa Lagoon & Flamingo Reserve); 4-4.5 hours.
The journey starts with a brief visit to Toconao village where the square and the historic church are the main attractions. We then drive to the National Flamingo Reserve at the Atacama salt flat where three types of flamingo are to be found.
Walking & hiking
Cornices: 2.5-3.5 hours.
This can be done in the morning or in the afternoon. From the old road to Calama the walk starts with visits to archaeological sites as well as a descent of the “huge dune” in the Death Valley, 2,600m/8,530ft.
Devils Canyon & Vilama; 2.5-3.5 hours.
A morning or afternoon excursion. Depart the hotel by vehicle and head to Devil’s Canyon to start the walk at 2,450m/8,038ft. The first hour is along flattish ground then along a dry river bed through some lime formations, passing some petroglyphs and finishing at the town of Vilama. Drive back to the hotel.
Guatin / Gatchi; 2 to 3 hours walk 1 hour by vehicle.
Drive to the Guatin Valley (2,800m/9,186ft) This is the confluence of two rivers; the warm thermal waters of Puritama and the other, the Purifica River.
This unique mix of warm thermal spring water and cold clear mountain snowmelt gives rise to a new river giving the Guatin Canyon a unique ecosystem.
Walk along the river by waterfalls with some rocky climbs and many Candelaria cacti.
Guatin / Puritama; 2.5-3.5 hours hike 1 hour by vehicle.
Morning excursion because of the temperature changes. Starting altitude of 2,800m/9,186ft. The walk is a steady uphill climb through the valley scattered with igneous rocks.
Arrive to the Puritama hot springs, a collection of 8 natural pools with water temperatures of 33 Celsius.
Machuca / Río Grande; 7 to 9 hours (5 to 7 hours hiking).
This walk takes place at around 4,000m/13,123ft. If you want to climb a volcano during your stay this hike is a good acclimatisation walk.
This walk follows the river with opportunities to spot llamas, alpacas and local birds. Stop for lunch in the abandoned village of Peñaliri. Continue walking to the town of Río Grande from where you will be driven back to the hotel.
Ruta Purilaktis; 4 hrs walk 2 hrs by vehicle.
Drive through the Domeyko Mountain Range to the starting point at 3,000m/9,843ft.
Hike along a small gully which then opens up to large rock formations marked by petroglyphs. The route has great views and after a gentle climb-descent finish at the Matancilla Valley, also known as Rainbow Valley.
Lunch then drive back to the hotel.
Devils Canyon / Catarpe; 2.5-3.5 hours
Cycle out of the hotel heading for the Salt Mountain Range and the Devil’s Canyon. The ride takes place at an average 2,400m/7,874ft. In the Canyon the ride is a constant gentle climb until reaching the Catarpe plateau.
The return journey follows the San Pedro River back to the hotel.
Windy Lookout Point / Moon Valley, the Dune; 2-3.5 hours.
Morning or afternoon excursion. Cycle out of the hotel heading for the Salt Mountain range. Cycle along the cornices viewing the formations of Death Valley from above, before heading down into the valley.
Cycle through the valley before heading back to the hotel. There are some steep uphills and downhills during this ride.
Bike Ride through the Ayllus / Atacaman Communities; 1.5-2.5 hours.
Morning or afternoon excursion. Cycle through the nearby oases villages and the surrounding agricultural land where the way of life has been preserved over time.
Other options include volcano climbs, horse riding, cultural, flora and fauna and astronomy.
Chile’s climate varies greatly, owing to its sheer length, variation of terrain and varying altitudes and latitudes.
Lake District and Patagonia
In the south of Chile, here temperatures drop a little compared to the rest of Chile.
It can be better to go in the Austral summer (Oct-March). Daylight hours are much longer at this time, with Nov-Feb being popular times to visit. October and March can be very colourful and vivid with less visitors, but weather can be more blustery.
In Patagonia, the weather is, putting it mildly, variable, and variable on a daily basis. It is usually cool and windy all year round but seldom does the temperature fall below freezing point. Some days start with snow and end in balmy sunshine. It is always interesting, and can range from 10°C-20°C in the summer, although the wind can make it feel chilly.
The vast unbroken stretch of ocean to the west and south of the South American continent leaves the Patagonian Andes very exposed to the saturated winds that circle the Antarctic landmass. Also the South Patagonia Ice field influence makes the weather hard to predict. In spring or early summer fine weather may deteriorate almost without warning, bringing rains and eventually snow. Even in summer (Dec-Mar) you should come prepared to find cold, strong winds (up to 130 km/hr) and rainfalls. The summer’s average temperature is 11ºC/52ºF (24ºC max, 2ºC min).
Winter visits to these southern areas are possible, but many hotels close and not all trips are possible. Daylight hours can be very short, but the lack of visitors can greatly improve chances of seeing wildlife in parks such as Paine.
The Lake District’s temperate climate can be said to resemble that of the UK, with rain possible but also enjoying long spells of fine, fresh weather in the summer (Oct-March).
Although sub-tropical and essentially a year-round destination, Dec-Feb are the most popular times to visit Easter Island as it is summer there and temperatures average 24°C. There can be colder days and it can be humid too.
The winter months (Jun-Oct) on Easter Island are not overly cold, but they can be cool. The average low temperature is 16°C but there is usually a wind at this time of year that makes the temperature feel cooler than it really is.
The wind rarely stops blowing at this time of year.
The north of the country lies in the tropical zone, but in the main is desert. It is dry and sunny all year round, but does get cold at night time in the high altitude areas.
In winter (June-Aug) the average daytime temperature is 22°C (72°F) and by night 4°C (39°F), descending to -2°C (28°F) in extreme cases.
During summer (Jan-Mar) the temperature fluctuates between 27°C (81°F) and a minimum of 16°C (61°F) at night, reaching maximums of 32°C (90°F), with occasional showers.
The wine growers love the central valley, which has a suitable Mediterranean climate of hot dry summers (Nov-March).
Then, temperatures range from 17°C in the evening and can go up to 30°C inland. It is cooler during the day on the coast.
During winter (May-Sept), which is essentially mild and wet, temperatures inland can vary from 5°C to 18°C during the day, and a bit warmer on the coast.
Autumn (Mar-April) and Spring (Oct-Nov) are lovely times to visit, although hotels in Santiago can book out in March, October and November, as it is conference season.
Andean Trails has two decades of experience of dealing with South America holidays.
We pay a fee to the CAA for every licensable passenger we book since we hold an Air Travel Organiser’s Licence granted by the Civil Aviation Authority. In the unlikely event of our insolvency, the CAA will ensure that you are not stranded abroad and will arrange to refund any money you have paid to us for an advance booking.
We also offer ATOL (Civil Aviation Authority) protected holidays to give our customers peace of mind when booking and travelling.
When you buy an ATOL protected air holiday package from Andean Trails Ltd you will receive a Confirmation Invoice from us confirming your arrangements and your protection under our Air Travel Organiser’s Licence number 6275.
You can read more about ATOL, who is covered and what protections you have if not ATOL-covered, on our ATOL page.
What is ATOL?
The CAA’s ATOL scheme offers protection to your money and your holiday if you book with us. Not everybody is covered (see ‘Who is covered?’ for more), as you must purchase an ‘air package holiday’ with Andean Trails to be protected.
And ‘air package holiday’ is defined as including a flight and some ground services (hotel, transfer, trek etc). This is also known as an ‘ATOL-protected holiday’.
Who is covered?
To be covered by ATOL, you must book a flight and some ground services with us and be from the UK. If you are from the UK and only book ground services and no flights, you are not covered by ATOL (see below for more on how non-ATOL clients are covered).
If you are outside the UK and buy flights with us, you will be ATOL protected IF any of the flights booked with Andean Trails touches/stops in the UK at any point during your holiday package booked with us.
If you buy your flights elsewhere, please check with that agent if you are ATOL protected. Be careful with online flight purchases and make sure you know what protection you have, if any, before paying for flights.
Not all holiday or travel services offered and sold by us will be protected by the ATOL scheme. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking.
For land only holidays not involving any air travel, in accordance with “The Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992”, all UK passengers booking with Andean Trails Ltd. are fully protected for the initial deposit and subsequently the balance of all money paid to us, arising from cancellation or curtailment of travel arrangements due to the insolvency of Andean Trails.
I’m not ATOL covered, what protection do I have?
If you are not ATOL covered, any payments you make to us go to a Trust account.
We can only access this money once your tour has been completed, meaning that if anything happens to Andean Trails Limited while you are on holiday, then your money is secure and you can either complete the trip or be able to make it home.
If you pay for your holiday with a credit card, some offer payment protection – please check with your cardholder.
You also should have cancellation protection written into your insurance (which we recommend you have at the time of booking) in case you need to cancel.
The Chilean Lake district is an area of snow capped volcanoes that overlooks pristine lakes surrounded by forests and rolling countryside.
The Northern gateway is Temuco Airport. A short drive is Villarrica Lake overlooked by the volcano of the same name. The monkey puzzle tree is autochthonous to the region and can be found all over particularly in Conguillio National park.
The town of Pucon is a great base from which to explore the nearby National parks, hot springs, Mapuche indigenous settlements and for the more adventurous rafting, canopy, trekking and climbing.
In the middle of the region you will find the private Huilo Huilo Biological Reserve, a protected area of Patagonian cold rain forest.
The Southern sector, whose gateway is Puerto Montt, is dominated by Lake Llanquihue and the conical Osorno Volcano.
A popular base is the town of Puerto Varas on the lake shore from where one can visit the local beauty spots or set off on adventures that include biking, kayak, trekking, rafting and much more.
This area combines very well with the Argentine Lake district and the towns of Bariloche and San Martin de Los Andes.
The Atacama desert covers the northern quarter of Chile.
Said to be the driest in the world it is a melting pot of earthy tones ( red, yellow, purples, browns etc ), amazing rock formations, stunning mountains and volcanoes, flamingo speckled salt flats and some of the clearest skies on the planet.
San Pedro de Atacama is the ideal base to explore the nearby geysers, hot springs, salt flats, lakes, and at night be amazed by the star studded skies.
Those after adventure can pass the time trekking, biking, horse riding and exploring.
For a bit of culture the pre Columbian museum, colonial churches and pre Columbian archaeological sites will keep one fascinated and for the nature enthusiast the scenery, wildlife and environment won’t disappoint.
Chilean Patagonia is a pristine wilderness of fjords, glaciers, plains, mountains and forests.
Southern Patagonia’s main attraction is the Torres del Paine National park. The granite spires attract many visitors to what some have called the 8th Wonder of the World. The park is a trekkers paradise with two classic treks, the Paine W and the Paine Circuit.
Northern Patagonia, the Aysen region, is one of the least populated parts of the country and is blessed with spectacular countryside.
The main airport is Balmaceda near the city of Coyhaique and must see places include Lake General Carrera and the Marble Caves, The San Rafael Glacier, the Quelat Hanging Glacier as well as driving the Austral Road.
The Futaleufu River is a must for white water enthusiasts.
The region also offers great horseback opportunities as well as kayaking ones. Nature enthusiasts can admire the impressive scenery, imposing glaciers and fascinating wildlife and flora.
The Aysen region is one of the great undiscovered destinations of Chilean Patagonia.
Here you will find the world renowned white-water of the Futaleufu river, the marble caves on Lake General Carrera, the San Rafael Glacier, the Quelat Hanging Glacier and stunning scenery.
This part of the country is the least densely populated, so if you want to get away from the crowds this is the place to come.
Access has always been difficult to the region – the principal airport Balmaceda and it was only opened up less than 30 years ago, with the construction of the Austral Road from north to south.
The central coast is a rugged coastline very reminiscent of California – here you will find a string of small fishing coves, holiday towns and cities.
The ramshackle city of Valparaiso, with its colourful houses perched on the hills overlooking the bay, is a cultural icon, with its Museum home of Pablo Neruda, the Chilean Nobel prize-winning poet.
The coastal town of Zapallar is a great place to get away from it all and recharge the batteries.
The Humboldt current means cold water temperatures and currents that are not conducive to sea swimming, but does provide some of the best seafood in the world.
There are plenty of seabirds, including pelicans, and seals as well as sea lions.
Puerto Natales has the feel of a small frontier town.
Located on the banks of the Last Hope Sound this town had its origins in the shipping out of lamb from the local estancias.
Now it is the gateway to the Torres del Paine National Park and boasts an impressive selection of accommodation and restaurants.
Nearby attractions include the Milodon Cave and a full day sailing tour to the Balmaceda and Serrano Glaciers.
If you have time it’s worth trekking to the top of the nearby Dorotea hill for a spectacular view of the surrounding country side.
Santiago, Chile’s vibrant capital sits in the middle of this thin long country flanked by some of the highest peaks of the Andes.
The city reflects the prosperity of the Chilean economy with a modern architecture particularly in the east of the city.
However there is still plenty for traditionalist to explore in the centre of the city including the Moneda Palace, Cathedral, Central Market with its array of fish restaurants and the pre-Columbian Museum.
There are lots of day trips nearby, from vineyard visits to Valparaiso, making Santiago a great base from which to explore.
The granite spires of Chile’s Torres del Paine National Park are one of the great draws to Patagonia.
The Horns of Paine and the Towers of Paine look down on a network of valleys and lakes punctured by the odd glacier, which are a trekker’s paradise.
There are two classic treks, the Paine W and the more challenging Paine Circuit.
As well as the spectacular scenery the flora and fauna are great attractions and you will find many herds of guanacos as well as rheas, the odd Pudu – a rare miniature deer.
And if you are lucky, even a puma.
Chile is home to world famous wines and vineyards.
Its wine country surrounds the Metropolitan region of the capital, Santiago, making visits easy.
Many wineries can be visited as day trips from Santiago or there is the option to stay in a winery or hotel in the wine country.
The Colchagua Valley, a 3-hour drive from the city, has become a popular destination with a good offer of hotels in and around the town of Santa Cruz.
There are opportunities for visits to the wineries with tours of the production facilities and tastings. Mountain bike and horse back rides are also an option.
This part of Chile’s is also the heartland of Chiles rural traditions and the Chilean Huaso – cowboy and its traditional dances and music.
01st Nov 2022 - From $2600 / £2204.8
01st Mar 2023 - From $2300 / £1950.4
01st Jul 2023 - From $2300 / £1950.4
Select an available date to view pricing and information for that particular trip.
2022-23 midseason price, double room, per person
Longer and shorter stays possible
Single supplement applies
Midseason: Jul 1-Oct 31, 2022 / Mar 1-Apr 30 & Jul 1-Sep 30, 2023.
High season: Nov 1 to 28 Feb, 2023, from 2,600pp
$2,300 / £1,950
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Prices From $1,817 / £1,541 per person
Dates: From May 2022 to September 2022
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The famous Puerto Madryn penguins, where up to a million Magellanic penguins congregate to breed, are not found in Puerto Madryn. While the town is famous for being one of the best places to see penguins in Argentina, Puerto Madryn penguin tours actually take place in Punta Tombo. However, the tours do start in Puerto Madryn. The colony of penguins at Punto Tombo allows people to get close to these adorably cute creatures. Read the lowdown on how to get there, what to expect, plus fun facts about Magellanic penguins. We’ll also talk about the area, replete with wildlife. Introduction …
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