Adventure, wine and steaks

Chile – Argentina – Bolivia

LEFT:

2019/01/04 08:00:00

ABOUT THE TRIP

2800 EUR driver, 2000 EUR passenger

4 - 24 January 2019

Start/Finish: Valparaiso or Arica

Difficulty: 5/10

This trip takes you along the most beautiful routes in the Andes. There are high mountain passes and the world’s driest desert (Atacama), majestic ocean waves and the wilderness of the jungle. You’ll get to see the one and only Salar de Uyuni – most definitely an unforgettable experience. You’ll bathe in hot springs and have breakfast by spectacular geysers. We’ll take you to the foot of 5000m volcanoes and show the most spectacular places on the Incan trail. For those with refined palates a true feast – wine tasting and famous Argentinian steaks. And the highlight of the trip – you’ll get to cheer for the legendary Dakar Rally competitors. All of this under the clearest skies you can possibly find. On average, this region has impressive 350 days without a single cloud. How big, how blue, how beautiful, one might wonder. Nights aren’t any less spectacular – nowhere else will you find such starry skies. This route is perfect for heavy bikes – BMW 1200 GS, BMW F 800, Honda XRV 750, or Africa Twin. The roads are rather forgiving – mostly asphalt and gravel. No extensive camping gear necessary – the nights we spend mostly at guesthouses and hotels.

 

DAY 1

Valparaiso

We start slow. Pick-up of the motorbikes, rest, sightseeing. Night at a hotel.

DAY 2

Valparaiso– Combarbala (333 km)

We leave Valparaiso first thing in the morning and slowly head for the wild. The transition is gentle, as the route leads through a luxury holiday resort Vina del Mar and along the coast of the Pacific. Once we reach Concon, it’s time for the best empanadas in the whole Chile. The rest of the road winds through the mountains. The surface is mostly asphalt, sometimes gravel. There are a few old rail tunnels along the way – reminiscence of a railway which used to cut through those mountains. Night at a guesthouse.

DAY 3

Combarbala – Vicuna (230 km)

Warning! Amazing gravel highways ahead! Prepare for an exciting ride between the mountains covered with… cacti! This part of Chile is a very dry piece of land, almost no greenery at all. In the afternoon we reach a cosy little town of Vicuna, famous for its

 

delicious pisco. Some serious wine tasting in the evening is a very pleasant end of the day.

 

Night at a guesthouse.

DAY 4

Vicuna – Pasp De Aqua Negra – Rodeo (274 km)

A farewell to Chile. We head for the border in Paso de Agua Negra along a charming, asphalt road. Then the surface changes and there’s gravel for next 100km. This day’s destination is a beautiful town of Rodeo, a popular summer resort. Night at a cabana (a chalet).

DAY 5

Rodeo – Valle de la Luna –
Villa Union (311 km)

The mountain trails slowly start turning into a bizarre, moon-like scenery. The highlight of this day is a visit to the Moon Valley (or the Valley of Death in the old days). In this absolutely unique place you can still find skeletons of dinosaurs, which, for some strange reason, used to die here in massive quantities (hence the old name). As for the route, apart from visiting the Valley, we only ride on asphalt roads. Night at a hotel.

DAY 6

Villa Union – Chilecito – Belen (359 km)

The first part of the day is definitely a lot of fun for most bikers – long smooth winding asphalt roads. After lunch in Chilecito we leave the mountains behind, but definitely not out of our sight. And, on the plus side, it’s getting a lot warmer. Night at a guesthouse.

DAY 7

Belen

Day off. You can use the time as you please. Some prefer to rest, others cheer for (or maybe even shake hands with) the Dakar Rally riders. And trust us – once you’ve experienced the way they do it in South America, you’ll see that Europeans know absolutely nothing about cheering. Night at a hotel.

DAY 8

Belen – Cafayate (254 km)

An amazing route leads along the foot of the Andes and lands on a vast Argentinian plane. Picturesque towns and villages along the way slowly turn into miles and miles of vineyards. This is the wine region. Prepare for an unforgettable evening of wine tasting and a side of a delicious steak. Night at a hotel.

DAY 9

Cafayate – Salta (197 km)

This is one of the most beautiful regions in this part of Argentina. Asphalt roads dive into green gorges and writhe between vineyards and crimson mountains. There will be many photoshoot breaks, no doubt about that! We reach the charming city of Salta, the heart of the region, in the evening. Night at a hotel.

DAY 10

Salta – Humahuaca(245 km)

The way out of Salta is quite unusual – it leads through a jungle. You see lianas over the road, and hear birds in the lush greenery. This change of scenery definitely makes an impression, especially after the high mountains and deserts. That break however is short, as the caravan heads towards Jujuy plateau. Then, colourful mountains start emerging again. Destiny – a picturesque town of Humahuaca. Night at a hotel.

DAY 11

Humahuaca – Tupiza (258 km)

Day 11 starts in Argentina and ends in Bolivia. Doesn’t seem that extraordinary, right? You’d think that it’s just crossing the border. Well, in fact it’s more of a portal to another dimension. One thing we can promise – you’ll definitely experience the real folklore of this region. From the busy border town we head for the red mountains, to Tupiza. Night at a hotel.

DAY 12

Tupiza – Uyuni (206 km)

The surface of the road is full of surprises – at times perfectly smooth and then perfectly… gravel! Spectacular views however, should not come as a surprise at this point of the trip. They are utterly amazing! This day’s destination – Uyuni. Night at a hotel.

DAY 13

Uyuni

One of the most unforgettable days ever! Time for Salar de Uyuni. We choose our transport depending on the weather. If Salar de Uyuni is dry – we hop on our bikes, if it’s wet (after heavy rainfalls) we use support cars throughout the whole excursion. First thing in the morning a visit to the train cementary and then the famous salt monument of the Dakar Rally. Regardless of the means of transport the views are breath-taking. Night at a hotel.

DAY 14

Uyuni – Ollague (228 km)

The road to the Bolivian-Chilean border cuts through a dry plateau surrounded by volcanoes. It’s mostly gravel so prepare for a rough ride. This is the least civilised part of the trip. Well, at least until Ollague, where the perfectly smooth asphalt starts. The whole route leads along marvellous volcanoes, so the views are truly spectacular. Night at a hotel.

DAY 15

Ollague – Chuquicamata – San Pedro de Atacama (101 km)

This day starts with a picturesque ride along lagoons and snow covered volcanoes. Lunch break at Chuquicamata – world’s biggest open pit copper mine. Blows your mind! We reach San Pedro de Atacama, the most touristic town in the region in the afternoon. Night at a hotel.

DAY 16

San Pedro de Atacam

A day packed full with the most interesting spots! The region of San Pedro de Atacama is all about surprises – hot springs, flamingo sanctuaries, geysers, The Moon Valley, the volcanoes and of course the Atacama itself. And the best thing is that all of this is just a few hours ride away! Night at a hotel.

DZIEŃ 17

San Pedro de Atacama – Antofagasta (312 km)

Dzisiaj cały dzień jazda przez najsuchszą pustynię świata – Atacamę. Będzie naprawdę gorąco. I prawdopodobnie nie zobaczymy żadnych oznak życia po drodze. No może poza przemieszczającymi się w tym rejonie gigantycznymi ciężarówkami pracującymi w licznych tu kopalniach miedzi. Jazda jak w transie gwarantowana. Nocleg w hotelu.

DZIEŃ 18

Antofagasta – Bahia Inglesa (470 km)

To będzie długi dzień. Trochę przez góry, trochę wzdłuż gór, ale cały czas nieopodal wybrzeża Pacyfiku. Prawdopodobnie już będziecie mieć dosyć gór: dziś w końcu będziemy mogli się nacieszyć widokiem oceanu. Kąpieli nikomu nie polecamy na tym kawałku: wybrzeże jest bardzo dzikie i skaliste, a woda wyjątkowo zimna (z powodu przepływającego w pobliżu chłodnego prądu). Na noc zatrzymamy się w nadmorskim miasteczku, Bahia Inglesa, położonym nad rozległą zatoką. Przy wietrznej pogodzie, co zdarza się tu często, na pewno będziemy mogli podziwiać kitesurfurów. Nocleg w hotelu.

DZIEŃ 19

Bahia Inglesa – La Serena (403 km)

Kontynuujemy naszą podróż wzdłuż wybrzeża Pacyfiku. Posmakujemy jazdy słynną „Panamericaną”. Będzie i po płaskim, i po górach. Nocleg w hotelu.

DZIEŃ 20

La Serena – Valparaiso (433 km)

Ostatni dzień naszej motocyklowej podróży. Poczujecie, że zbliżamy się do cywilizacji. Ruch będzie coraz większy. Droga coraz lepsza. Za to niezmiennie zachwycające pozostaną widoki. Nocleg w hotelu.

DZIEŃ 21

Valparaiso

Wylot

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