When to go

When planning your trip you should take into account the time of year. High season is during the summer (especially January and February), when most areas are open to visitors, although the altiplano (the high plain of the Andes east of the Atacama) can experience heavy rain. It is also worth bearing in mind that many destinations are busy with Chilean and Argentine tourists at this time, especially in the far south, and bus fares and hotel prices are up to 50% higher. The north has another high season in July and August, but these are winter months in the south, meaning that many services here are closed and transport links are reduced.

Probably the ideal seasons for a visit, therefore, are spring (October to December) and autumn (March to April) when many facilities in the south are open, but less crowded, and temperatures in the northern and central regions are lower.

It is also worth arranging your travel plans to coincide with certain festivals . In this case, it is best to book transport and accommodation well in advance. The period around the national Independence festivals on 18 September will be especially busy wherever you are.

This is edited copy from Footprint Handbooks. For comprehensive details (incl address, tel no, directions, opening times and prices) please refer to book or individual chapter PDF
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