The Copiapó Valley & its endless adventures

Francisca Pizarro | Live the World

November 23, 2022

Copiapó is a small city located in the north of Chile, in the Atacama Region. Like with many other cities in Chile, its origins are closely linked to mining. The city is usually a starting point for endless adventures nearby. If you want to spend a day on the beach or maybe appreciate a flower show in the desert, Copiapó Valley is for you.

Flowerful Desert

Once every five years, the region of Copiapó in the Atacama Desert hosts a garden of flowers blooming in the desert. This phenomenon is caused by the “El Niño” current, a warm marine current that brings rains and makes the seeds hidden in the soil germinate. The miracle of the flowerful desert is a sight to behold. September 2021 will be the perfect time to visit this once-in-a-lifetime experience, and it is also forecasted to last through October. The first blooms are already visible, announcing the show that is coming!

© Istock/JeremyRichards
© Istock/abriendomundo

Bahia Inglesa

With its turquoise water and white sand, Bahia Inglesa is a Pacific beach in the desert coastal zone and a hotspot for locals and tourists alike. Take your towel, sunblock and prepare yourself for intense relaxation while feeling the heat of the sun and the soft breeze on you. This beach has a particular vibe to it, trust me, you will never want to leave it. If you like water sports, this beach is perfect for you, as the place is a well-known kitesurfing spot. I highly recommend the visit to the Playa de la Virgen and La Piscina.

© Istock/Jessica Sedo Garcia

Mina San José

The Mina San José (San José Mine) is well-known because of an accident and subsequent rescue that took place within it in 2010. Remember 33 miners who lived underground for almost three months? They were miraculously rescued using a massive yet delicate drill to cave a hole so that a capsule (named Phoenix) would provide a safe ride to the outside. This operation is considered a big success, and you can visit the historical place where the events happen. Please keep in mind the accident was very traumatizing and still has its toll on the miners and their families mental health and lives.

© Wikimedia/Gobierno de Chile

Nevado Ojos del Salado

Nevado Ojos del Salado is the tallest active volcano in the world, or at least the one with the highest crater. The Nevado Ojos del Salado is as impressive as it sounds. It is a very popular place to practice trekking. It is quite hard to get there, so I would recommend you take an organized tour. Keep in mind the high altitude of the place and also do not forget that it is a trekking adventure for the most experienced ones. 

© Instagram/over.monroeville

Mar de Dunas

Translated as the "dunes sea", Mar de Dunas is a wide extension of sand forming dunes. The tallest one is named Medanoso, and it is a hotspot for sandboard and trekking. Some people like to go there by car to defy the slippery sand under its wheels (I do not recommend it because it is a dangerous experience even when riding a 4x4 vehicle). The view is stunning, and it feels as if the place belongs to another planet. I highly suggest you catch the sunset in this place, it is a memory that will be engraved in your soul for life. 

© Istock/abriendomundo

The Copiapó Valley holds many secrets and adventures to unravel. A visit to this place will certainly be the highlight your traveling experiences as the things you can see and do here are very exclusive to this small side of the world. As you saw, the possibilities are infinite, ranging from a *nice relaxing day on the beach to a hardcore extreme adventure in the Ojos del Salado*. Visit the Copiapó Valley and experience endless adventures!

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