Norte Chico

From the Earth to the sky, the beauty of this corridor is expressed at each destination. Chañaral, Copiapó, Coquimbo, El Salvador, La Serena, Ovalle, Vallenar, Vicuña and Easter Island make up the picturesque Near North. The desert opens way for the green valleys up to the beautiful large beaches by the sea. These sceneries are accompanied by privilege weather during most of the year, which not only are enjoyed at the various bathing resorts but also permit the development of significant astronomical activities.

It includes the regions of Atacama (III) and Coquimbo (IV). To the North of Chañaral lies the Pan de Azúcar National Park, which shelters a singular Humboldt penguin colony. El Salvador copper mine, where gold and silver are also exploited, operates to the East of such district.

Two other protected areas lie within the Atacama Region: the Nevado de Tres Cruces National Park and the Llanos de Challe Park. And almost on the border of the IV Region, the Ojos del Salado snow-capped mountain -6,893 meters high- represents the highest mount in Chile and the highest active volcano in the world.

La Serena is the pearl of the beaches bathed by the Pacific, along with others such as Bahía Inglesa, Los Vilos and Pichidangui.

Elqui Valley treasures magical places, like the Pisco Elqui settlement, where the famous Chilean brandy is made, and Vicuña, cradle of poet Gabriela Mistral, Nobel Literature Prize in 1945.
Visitors remain astonished as they behold the clearest skies in the South America. The prestigious astronomical observatories of La Campana, La Silla, Comunal Cerro Mamalluca, El Tololo, Cerro Morado and the European Southern Observatory are located in this area.

The good infrastructure, services and mass media provided by the main urban centers invite visitors to see the fascinating attractions of this Chilean corridor.

Recommended activities

Total: 18 tours and excursions.
Symbol of Christianity

Coquimbo - IV Región de Coquimbo

Symbol of Christianity

In Coquimbo, the Third Millenium Cross stands as the biggest monument to the Christian faith in South America. A real tourist icon made of concrete.

Witnesses of a Splendorous Past

Isla de Pascua - V Región de Valparaiso

Witnesses of a Splendorous Past

The moais are the faithful reflection of the marvelous legacy of the Rapa Nui culture, which dwelled on the island. This is an invitation to learn about the...

A Place to Remember

La Serena - IV Región de Coquimbo

A Place to Remember

In the very center of La Serena lies one of the most important handicraft markets in the country. We visited La Recova and were amazed at what is sold there.


Map of Norte Chico