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Lauca National Park

Why visit Lauca National Park?

Learn about Aymara Indian history and culture and shop for lovely textiles and traditional handicrafts – or taste llama or alpaca meat. Lauca National Park, its landscape dominated by the snow-capped peaks of the twin Payachatas volcanos, is a stunning place. Studded with beautiful lagoons and rivers, wonderful for hiking, camping, fishing and kayaking.
Reasons to visit Lauca National Park include:

  • See traditional dwellings and 16th century Spanish colonial architecture and shop for handicrafts in the Aymara village of Putre, set 3500m up on a hillside. 
  • Walk along Putre’s O’Higgins Street, a 19th Century avenue named after the Chilean independence leader. 
  • Visit the ancient, baroque church in tiny, semi-abandoned Parinacota village and wander past the stone and mud houses.  
  • Explore the magnificent Lauca National Park World Biosphere Reserve, with its diverse Highland flora and fauna. Look out for alpacas, llamas and condors. 
  • Photograph the volcanos reflected in the calm waters of Chungara Lake. 
  • Bath in the soothing waters of the Jurasi hot springs.

When to go to Lauca National Park

This is an incredibly dry region - its annual rainfall measured in fractions of milimetres. The warmest time of year to visit is February and the coolest August but it is essentially a year-round destination.

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facts and information

Time: GMT -4 hours

Flight time:

There are direct flights from London Heathrow to Santiago, which operate 4 times a week and take 14 hours 40 minutes. The Chilean airline, LATAM, flies via Madrid.

Language: The official language is Spanish. but other local languages are also spoken. English is spoken quite widely.


Visas are not currently required for British passport holders staying for up to 90 days, who are issued with a ‘Tarjeta de Turismo-Tourist Card’ on arrival. You must retain this and present it to immigration on departure.


Generally none is compulsory but we recommend the following: hepatitis A and B, typhoid, diphtheria, meningitis, tetanus, rabies and polio. There is no malaria in Chile. A yellow fever certificate is required if you are coming from an infected area.



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